Energy Storage

Development of Battery and Fuel Cell Materials

Next-generation electric vehicles and renewable energy sources are pushing energy storage technology to the limit. These emerging sectors are placing increasingly stringent demands on existing battery and fuel cell technologies, fueling a massive global research effort to develop energy storage systems with higher capacity, greater power, longer lifetimes, lower cost, and increased safety.

Synchrotron techniques are increasingly being recognized as a crucial tool for the development of new battery and fuel cell materials. Advanced X-ray techniques allow us to probe the structure and electronic properties of electrode materials, electrolytes, catalysts, separators, and additives. Our team of researchers has over 25 years of combined experience with lithium ion batteries and other energy storage technologies.

Applications

  • Diagnostics of cell failure and degradation, combining electrochemical characterization with spectroscopic techniques
  • In-situ analysis of operating cells under a variety of operating conditions using synchrotron X-ray absorption and diffraction
  • Spectroscopic imaging to map oxidation states and determine how charge is distributed in electrode materials
  • Surface-sensitive and bulk spectroscopy for detailed analysis of interactions between materials in the cell (such as the solid-electrolyte interphase in batteries)
  • Advanced microtomography allows for detailed, high-resolution internal 3D imaging of steel-enclosed commercial cells
  • High-resolution infrared imaging to map compositional variations in complex organic cell components
  • Facilities are available on-site to handle air-sensitive materials and assemble in-situ cells under inert atmosphere

 

 

Synchrotron advantages over conventional research techniques

  • Element-specific spectroscopy allows for selective analysis of complex composites and alloy materials
  • X-ray diffraction offers much higher resolution and shorter acquisition times (uniquely suited to in-situ characterization of high-rate phenomena) compared to conventional laboratory sources
  • Energy-tunable, high-resolution X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy allows for chemical speciation at variable depths with high-energy penetration up to a depth of 50 nm
  • High-resolution spectroscopic imaging with pixel size as low as 5 nm
  • Non-destructive techniques allow for repeated experiments to investigate cell aging and degradation mechanisms

Discover our areas of expertise

 

Services

  • Unique-in-Canada analytical services:
    • Advanced X-ray imaging
    • Non-destructive testing
    • In-situ investigations
    • Bulk and surface investigations
  • A strong team of accomplished scientists to work with you to develop scientific experiments that meet industry standards
  • A full range of access modes to suit your needs
  • Remote data collection from anywhere in the world
  • On-site data collection, taking advantage of Saskatoon’s central location
  • Mail-in service, where competent staff perform experiments for you
  • Expertise across the scientific spectrum
  • Leading-edge research and development
  • Terms and Conditions

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