Electrode Development

Group

Slurry processing and strip plating for Li-ion batteries in the Battery Technology Application Center.
Production of bipolar electrode coated on both sides from LFP (cathode) and LTO (anode).

The Electrode Development working group represents the interface between material and process development, transferring new electrode materials from the lab into pilot production. It thus represents the link between laboratory development and industrial production at the customer's site and supports commercialization with its specific expertise in technology scaling.

The team has extensive know-how in handling mixing, characterization, coating and drying technologies. In order to be able to map the complete production chain for Li-ion batteries and their components, Fraunhofer IKTS operates an application center at its site in Freiberg. New material systems for electrodes of Li-ion batteries, supercaps or MEAs for PEM fuel cells are manufactured on a pilot scale in small series on the facilities. Innovative cell designs, such as the bipolar EMBATT battery concept, with liquid or solid electrolytes are manufactured in a semi-automated process under dry room conditions. New manufacturing processes, such as cold and hot plastic flat sheet extrusion for conventional or polymer solid-state cells, are also the focus of research and development. In cooperation with the various working groups at IKTS, new shaping processes and test methods are being tested and optimized in battery production. In addition, the investigation of the filling and forming behavior of porous lithium-ion electrodes represents an important research focus, since these manufacturing steps are speed-determining and extremely cost-relevant in today's cell production, but hardly any analysis methods are available for process optimization.

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Services offered#

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  • Model-based electrode development and optimization according to client’s specification
  • Material and coating tests for electrode foils
  • Rheological sample characterization and moisture analysis
  • Investigation of the wetting behavior of electrodes during the formation process (“Cell-Fill“)
  • Development, testing and optimization of integrated manufacturing concepts for battery production
  • Upscaling of lab processes and technology transfer under dry room conditions
  • Feasibility studies and consulting in the field of process scaling

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Technical equipment#

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  • Material processing under dry room conditions down to dew point -70 °C
  • Mixing units (dissolver, planetary mixer, intensive mixer, kneader and extruder) for batch sizes of up to 10 kg
  • Tapecaster (doctor blade, slot die) up to 300 mm width with drying section and exhaust air treatment for organic solvents
  • Rolling and smoothing calenders for foil densification and lamination
  • Machines for cold and hot plastic flat sheet extrusion
  • Drying machines (passive drying, contact drying, IR drying)
  • Moisture analysis using Karl Fischer titration
  • Air-ultrasonic layer thickness measurement for the quality control of foils
  • Cell tester and climate chambers for characterization of test cells

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Battery technology from lab to fab

Current research

Optimizing the filling of Lithium-ion battery cells with in-line methods

Current research

Efficient design tools and coating processes for lithium-ion battery electrodes

Topic

Battery Technology Application Center

Topic

Electrode production and process development

Topic

Electrolyte filling and formation of Li-ion cells

Topic

EMBATT bipolar battery

Topic

Quality assurance in electrode production