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High-Energy Safe Anodes for Lithium Ion Batteries

Award Information
Agency: Department of Energy
Branch: N/A
Contract: DE-SC0018795
Agency Tracking Number: 237731
Amount: $154,823.69
Phase: Phase I
Program: STTR
Solicitation Topic Code: 13a
Solicitation Number: DE-FOA-0001771
Solicitation Year: 2018
Award Year: 2018
Award Start Date (Proposal Award Date): 2018-07-02
Award End Date (Contract End Date): 2019-04-01
Small Business Information
1408 East Olive Street, Shorewood, WI, 53201-1828
DUNS: 080472554
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: Y
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Carol Hirschmugl
 (414) 248-0846
Business Contact
 Carol Hirschmugl
Phone: (414) 246-0846
Research Institution
 University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
 Marija Gajdardziska-Josifovska
 3203 N Downer Rd
Mitchell Hall 251
Milwaukee, WI, 53211-3153
 (414) 429-1954
 Nonprofit college or university
Electric vehicle manufacturers and the Department of Energy want safer, longer-lasting batteries that utilize new, low-cost materials that are compatible with current battery manufacturing infrastructure and industry standardization. Lithium-ion batteries dominate the current electric vehicle market. The applicant, LLC holds an exclusive license to patented materials that have favorable properties for use in these batteries. In addition, these materials can also improve batteries for portable tools and electronics, medical implants, military and aerospace applications. The applicant’s founders are developing recently patented multiphasic composite materials—composed of graphene monoxide, graphene, and transition metal oxides—into marketable products for novel lithium-ion anodes. With these anodes, battery performance will surpass current lithium-ion batteries because the composite materials facilitate both lithium+ and electron transfer and actively store and release lithium+ during charge/discharge cycles. The new materials are compatible with graphite and silicon-graphite, enabling development of novel, lighter, and safer anode materials that will charge faster and increase battery energy and power densities. We will use 2 approaches to constrain costs: (1) maintain compatibility with existing anode manufacturing infrastructure and (2) initially enter the market as an additive to improve silicon-graphite anode performance. As economies of scale reduce the cost, the applicant’s materials will become a larger-volume fraction of active anode materials. The applicant envisions itself as a materials company that operates in the Chemical and Materials market of lithium-ion batteries. The specific market is advanced Anode Materials with application in electric, plug- in, and hybrid vehicles. Market research projects that the lithium-ion battery market will reach ~$46 B worldwide by 2022, and that its anode segment will reach $1.2 B by 2020 and then will outpace the cathode segment. The applicant’s primary customers are companies that assemble active materials into battery cells and design high-voltage battery packs for automotive applications. Additives can be an entry point into the market while material production scales up and costs decrease. Similarly, establishing with a regional strategic partner that the anodes work well in power tools will enable the applicant to approach enterprise-scale companies that manufacture materials in-house to build on national relationships and explore licensing options. Improved anode materials will result in better batteries, which in turn will make electric vehicles more affordable and convenient to drive. In addition to the economic benefits (such as job creation) from the innovative electric vehicle industry, political and environmental benefits include decreased dependence on foreign oil and reduced air pollution.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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