August 5, 2021
So, what is the problem with lithium-ion batteries?
Conceived in the 1970’s, lithium-ion batteries are still the fastest growing battery technology. Lithium is the lightest metal, has the highest electrochemical potential and biggest energy density, making it ideal for a battery material.
Yet, lithium-ion batteries today are made like consumables. They’re produced to be used and then disposed of. The challenge is that these batteries are often manufactured in a manner that isn't sustainable. Lithium-ion batteries are made of groups of lithium-ion cells (sometimes similar in shape and size to AA batteries) which are assembled and electrically connected. Traditional assembly techniques for these batteries use permanent assembly methods like spot welding and adhesive bonding, which make recycling or reuse impractical due to the time-consuming and expensive processes needed for disassembly. This ultimately leads to high disposal rate of valuable but inaccessible materials and components. The lithium-ion battery is typically designed like a consumable: focus is placed on production and usage. End of life waste management is often an afterthought.
How can we be on our way to living on a cleaner planet and overcome this sustainable roadblock?
At Aceleron, we’ve approached the battery design not from a linear economy (traditional commercialisation) point of view, but from a circular economy angle – there’s a lot of recoverable energy stored inside used lithium-ion batteries, and through research and engineering we have found a way to extract as much value out of them as we can. We are developing methodologies for testing, failure prediction and performance optimisation that complement our compression assembly technology, thus making sure no precious resources are wasted and the batteries can be maintained and upgraded.
Take our new Essential battery for one, it is anything but ordinary. Our design engineers have studied and tested a variety of methods with thorough precision to create an advanced solution that is easy to take apart, service or upgrade and put back together as a fully renewed product with an extended life. With the future in mind, we aspire to engineer our lithium-ion batteries with significant increase in battery life, optimum material uses and reduction of waste; thus, allowing you to positively impact our environment, economy, and society.
We are on the journey to accelerate access to cleaner energy storage around the globe. Our technology allows you to have all those creature-comforts without the consequence of contributing to the waste problem, which makes our batteries by definition ‘a better battery’ for this conventional world. Our conveniences don’t need to come at the cost of the environment, so powering the microwave, hair dryer and coffeemaker won’t be as harmful as it once was.
Curious about how we reimagined what lithium batteries need to be today? – Read our next story featuring Chief Product Officer Matt Isted here.
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