Imec Solid-State Battery Is On Track For 2024 Release – 1000Wh/L at 2C

APR 27 2018 BY MARK KANE 22

Imec, the Belgium-based research and innovation hub vested in nanoelectronics and digital technologies, announced progress in next-gen solid-state batteries for EVs.

The company recently developed a prototype cell with energy density of 200 Wh/liter at a charging speed of 0.5C (2 hours).

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It’s still not enough to beat conventional batteries, but Imec encourages that there is potential to reach 1000Wh/L at 2C by 2024.

“Recently, imec developed a solid nanocomposite electrolyte with an exceptionally high conductivity of up to 10 mS/cm and with a potential to increase this even further. With this new electrolyte, imec has now made a prototype battery. The electrolyte was applied into the battery cell as a liquid precursor, and solidified afterwards. The prototype battery achieved a volumetric energy density of 200 Wh/liter at a charging speed of 0,5C (2 hours).”

“To further improve the battery performance, imec is looking into combining nanoparticle electrodes with its solid nanocomposite electrolyte. Imec uses ultra-thin coatings as so-called buffer layers to control the interface between the active electrode and electrolyte. This technology can also be used to improve the performance of standard liquid cells and even for all-solid-state batteries with pressed and sintered inorganic electrolytes.

Bringing innovative battery technology to fruition and transfer it to the market will require the involvement and commitment of the world’s major material suppliers and battery producers. Therefore, imec performs its battery R&D as a collaborative program for open innovation to which it invites all interested parties.”

Philippe Vereecken, principal scientist and program manager at imec said:

“Our results show that we can make solid-state batteries that have the potential to reach the capabilities of wet batteries, and this using manufacturing processes similar to those for wet batteries. But unlike wet-batteries, our solid-state batteries will be compatible with metallic lithium anodes with a target of 1,000Wh/liter at a charging speed of 2C (half an hour). This, together with their longer lifetime and improved safety, makes them a promising compact battery technology for tomorrow’s long-range vehicles.”

Imec’s innovative solid state battery technology from imec on Vimeo.

Interestingly Imec is working on the solid nanocomposite electrolyte for next-generation batteries also with Panasonic

In late 2017 Imec said that they “…have developed an innovative solid nanocomposite electrolyte for next-generation batteries with a lithium ion conductivity several times greater than its liquid equivalent. The ion conductivity already reaches several mS/cm at room temperature. Imec and Panasonic have set a goal to develop novel solid nanocomposite electrolyte materials towards 100mS/cm in the next few years, which would make them suitable for fast-charging high-energy cells for use in vehicles and electronics.”

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22 Comments on "Imec Solid-State Battery Is On Track For 2024 Release – 1000Wh/L at 2C"

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Sounds like wishful thinking.

If this pans out it will be great!
Didn’t Musk say power densities of 400W/L were required for commercial electric flight?😀

Current batteries already exceed 400 Wh/l. For aeroplanes, only weight is interesting. Probably he said 400Wh/kg.

I don’t know what Musk said, but he would probably be citing a figure for gravimetric density, Wh/kg, not volumetric, as space isn’t as much of an issue as weight. Both tend to increase together, but not necessarily and not proportionally.

Since it takes at least 5 years to test a battery, this announcement is an admission of not having 1000Wh/L battery! Still have not seen a viable solid electrolyte battery

Agreed, 5 year out is the hallmark of all pie in the sky technology. They have nothing.

They have a story….

“Still have not seen a viable solid electrolyte battery”

What about SolidEnergy:

Lithium metal anode, 450 Wh/kg, 1200 Wh/l
They only have a “Kilofactory” (780 kWh/year), but the cells are real and available to purchase. This isn’t a quack outfit, they raised $34m a few months ago and over $50m total.

I consider this one candidate for the Roadster2 battery.

Solidenergy doesn’t use a solid electrolyte. The spec sheet for their Hermes cell indicates it’s a solvent-in-salt electrolyte. Solvents are liquid. The “Solid” in their name refers to the fact that they use a solid lithium anode, well they actually describe it as semi-solid whatever that means.

The cycle life of their cells is rather poor. The cell will retain 80% capacity after 250 charge cycles according to their Hermes spec sheet. If that cell were used in a Model 3 Long Range that means the range would drop to 80% of new after just 70,000 miles. Tesla’s current battery technology appears to be lasting at least 5 times longer.

Very well said.

And once they do get cycle-life better, their target market is cellphone batteries: $30 for a huge 20 Wh battery (equivalent to 5400mAh), weighing just 50 grams, i.e. $1500/kWh. I’d buy one for $50 easily, and so would tens of millions of other people spending $1-3k every two years on their phone+plan.

Definitely not going in any EV for many, many years. The Roadster2 only needs a notably higher C-rate than current cells, and much higher density isn’t necessary (but it would be helpful, of course).

SolidEnergy’s white paper describes the electrolyte as a solid layer which coats the lithium metal anode and retards “mossy lithium” growth plus a liquid layer that interfaces with the cathode. So half of it is solid:

“If that cell were used in a Model 3 Long Range …”

That’s why I said the 1000 km Roadster, not Model 3. 250 cycles is thus 250k km. That’s existing cells, it’s reasonable to expect improvement in 3 years.

Mint – Roadster does NOT need higher C rate. The SolidEnergy cell with rather poor 5C peak discharge and 0.2C recommended charging rate is fine. 1 MW discharge is more than needed for 1.9 seconds and 250 mph and overnight charging is fine for a 1000 km car (customers for $250k cars don’t drive 10 hours, “stretch their legs” for 40 minutes while Supercharging, then drive another 10 hours).

Low charge/discharge rates are the entire reason for the otherwise-unnecessary 200 kWh pack, IMHO.

On the other hand, a small car like the Roadster absolutely needs the high energy density and specific energy. NCA/NMC simply won’t cut it. There’s not enough room and a 2500 kg supercar would be a laughingstock.

I agree with everyone. The goals cited are strictly aspirational.

Usage of the S unit, as in mS/cm, is far too specialized of InsideEVs readers to be expected to know. I had to look it up, and it stands for siemens. This is a unit for inverse resistance, and was formerly sometimes referred to as “mho” (now deprecated). InsideEVs should watch for technical terms that need to be defined when echoing back press releases.

The most important parameter for batteries is Wh/kg (not Wh/L) and of course $/kWh … neither of those (important) parameters were mentioned in the article?

from “there is potential to reach 1000Wh/L at 2C by 2024”, it does ***NOT*** follow that “Imec Solid-State Battery Is On Track For 2024 Release”. “Release” in accepted English usage means ***COMMERCIAL*** product available for use, not the case if they’re still looking for partners (tech- and money-wise) to develop the basic cell.

I expect much better from InsideEVs.

If Panasonic is involved , I would not dismiss them so hastily ..

“…Imec encourages that there is potential to reach 1000Wh/L at 2C by 2024.”

Yawn. Another day, another claim for a breakthrough battery which is coming “real soon now”. But six years away isn’t exactly soon!

There is “potential” for a lot of things, most of which will never happen. Startups usually claim they will reach commercialization in 5 years, which really means “We hope we can find a way to make this profitable someday”. This company is actually targeting 6 years in the future; not a hopeful sign!

5 years from now, there will be EV’s on the road with 300+ miles of range, charge 0 to 80% in 30 to 45 minutes and beat ICE performance in every way…
Oh wait, they are already here in the form of the Tesla Model S, Model X, Model 3, and are on there way with the 2019 Tesla Semi, and 2020 Tesla Roadster mkII…
No solid-state mumbo-jumbo needed.

After a few years in consumer electronics, they might be ready to move to larger applications like cars.

Use little gas and go for 3 d structure

Use little heavy gas go for 3 d structure

Hmmm. Disappointing vision. 1000 Wh/l is just matching current state of the art liquid batteries. 2C isn’t particularly impressive either. The combo is a step forward, but nothing like what I expect from solid-state batteries.

Saying that a battery is “on track” for 2024 release is something like saying my pre-schooler is “on-track” for graduating high school in 2031.