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Energy Storage

Vehicle Energy Storage

Vehicle Energy Storage

Lithium air batteries have the highest theoretical specific energy among all of the existing battery chemistries. This enormous increase in the battery's specific energy could mean much greater storage capacity for electric vehicle batteries, thus greatly increasing their range or decreasing their cost.

Lithium-ion batteries are the most promising energy storage technology for electric vehicles. They help reduce environment pollution and move the United States towards energy security. However, bringing electric vehicles to the large-scale market has been hindered by several challenges, including limited energy density, high cost, and thermal instability related to cathodes in Li-ion batteries.

At PNNL, our energy storage program for transportation applications aims to develop low-cost, high-energy electrode materials and electrolyte that will extend the life of Li-ion batteries, reduce costs, and improve the safety of long-range electric vehicles.

Additionally, we are exploring the next generation of energy systems beyond Li-ion batteries, which includes Li-sulfur batteries, Li-air batteries, and other Li-metal batteries. Various microscopic characterization technologies are used to investigate the fundamental failure mechanism in the electrodes and electrolyte as well as how these chemicals interact with one another.

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