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High-performance batteries breakthrough

A project funded by the Australia-India Strategic Research Fund on new materials for large-scale, high-performance batteries has been successful in the development of novel polymer electrolytes and anode materials.

Efficient energy storage is the missing link that will allow the world to reduce its dependence on fossil fuels and move towards a reliable energy supply that includes renewable resources. The $AU1M project supported by the Australia India Strategic Research Fund (AISRF) is demonstrating new lithium and sodium prototypes based on the development of new materials. This work will help realise the goal of low-temperature, high-stability lithium and sodium-based energy storage technologies. The team has successfully developed large-scale polymer electrolytes and assembled the first all-solid-state pouch cell, using the novel solid polymer electrolytes – a key target for this project. For the high-energy-density batteries that include lithium-sulphur, sodium-air batteries are also being investigated.

Australian and Indian researchers in front of the Royal Exhibition Building during the Australia-India Workshop for Women in Energy Research in Melbourne.

Testing of the developed polymer electrolyte with novel anode materials has shown excellent electrolyte/electrode compatibility and better than expected performance. ​ As part of the project, a workshop for Women in Energy Research was held in Melbourne. More than 30 researchers from the University of Delhi, Advanced Research Centre International for powder metallurgy and New Materials – Chennai, Institute of Science (IISC) – Bangalore and Australian universities (Monash University, RMIT University, Deakin University) attended. ​ The discoveries from the project have already attracted the attention of industry, with some potential industry partners expressing interest in the materials and devices developed. Their engagement will accelerate the prototyping process, which is the main target of the project in the final year.