Tesla Sponsored Research Shows Benefits of Single Crystal NMC
Nano One has had numerous inquiries regarding Tesla sponsored battery research at Dalhousie University and related news. The results lend strong support to Nano One’s work on NMC and a summary is provided below.
The research is presented in a paper by the Jeff Dahn Research Group at Dalhousie University and demonstrates how lithium ion battery cells with single crystal NMC cathodes and optimized electrolytes can be made to last 4000 cycles.
Q What does this mean for Nano One?
A This paper lends strong support to the importance of Nano One’s coated nanocrystal NMC technology. Nano One’s cathode differs by (i) the size of its crystals and (ii) the fact that coated nanocrystals can be made in a single step at a comparable cost to conventional cathode materials. See Nano One’s news on NMC Patents and Technology.
Q Why do single crystals matter?
A This paper has the same overarching narrative as Nano One on the benefits of single crystal NMC. (i) Coatings on single crystal particles remain intact with repeated cycling and (ii) this prevents undesirable side reactions with the electrolyte which (iii) leads to long lasting and durable lithium ion battery cells.
Q Is this a new cathode?
A This is not a new cathode and was actually supplied to the Dahn Research Group in ready-made pouch cells (no electrolyte) from a third party Chinese cell producer and filled with a range of liquid electrolytes using well known additives. There are few details in the paper on the cathode material other than images showing micron scale particles with ~50nm coatings containing titanium.
Q How important are these results?
A The paper provides a new benchmark for outstanding durability in NMC cells. It shows how known battery components (anode, cathode and electrolyte) can be combined for increased durability. The anode and single crystal cathode are from third parties and only the electrolyte was formulated by the researchers from well-known electrolyte components. The results demonstrates what NMC pouch cells are truly capable of regarding stability and durability.
Q How does this relate to Nano One?
A Nano One has been granted patents in the US and Korea for its coated single crystal NMC based on unique physical properties, related to size and nanostructure. These materials are enabled by proprietary manufacturing technologies, which are themselves protected by patents in the US, Canada, Taiwan, China, Japan and Korea. Single crystal NMC materials can be expensive to manufacture: Nano One’s process makes coated single crystal cathode materials in a patented one-pot process which is comparable in cost to conventional methods for making polycrystalline cathode materials.