Electrode manufacturing

© Photo Fraunhofer IPA

Flexibility and variability are essential when it comes to developing new energy storage systems in order to keep investment and operating costs low. On the other hand each process step must be investigated on the research side. To do this, the department “Functional Materials” has united the process steps required to manufacture small quantities with variable designs in its technical centre “Flexible battery production”.

The scalable processes enable alternative electrode materials as well as separator and electrolyte materials to be synthesized and evaluated in free-standing electrodes, cells and modules. The production processes can be varied to optimize synthesis, paste manufacture, coating and drying processes for new materials. Supported by continuous tracking of material and process parameters we aim to speed up the evaluation of innovative materials and new manufacturing processes.

 

Electrode materials and simulation

Hybrid materials for new energy storage systems are simulated and subsequently synthesized with the aid of plasma, CVD, wet-chemical and mechanical processes. We have the necessary expertise and equipment to produce, modify and handle these.

 

Slurry processing

By varying the solid content, as well as viscosity and conductivity, electrode pastes are developed and realized to meet individual customer and process requirements. The goal is to manufacture homogeneous pastes at lower cost, as well as to design production process that are more efficient and gentle on resources.

 

Electrode coatings

Variable and flexible processes for coating electrodes are available at the technical center. When optimizing electrodes, we assess new materials and modify existing coating technologies to meet specific customer demands.

 

Drying process

The right amount of energy and the right drying parameters are needed to dry active material layers in multi-layer coatings effectively. Energy can be used more efficiently through flexibly adapting and selecting drying processes (infrared, circulating air, UV).

 

Characterizing batteries and supercapacitors

We characterize these with the aid of free-standing electrodes, cells and modules. To characterize the electrochemical properties of the electrodes and prototype cells we develop, we apply conventional battery and supercapacitor test methods used in voltammetry, as well as impedance measurements (EIS).