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Tuning Ion Conducting Pathways Using Holographic Polymerization

Sponsor:

National Science Foundation

Principal Investigator(s):

Dr. Christopher Li, Professor, Materials Science and Engineering

IExE Cluster:

Energy Storage

Summary:

Lithium-ion batteries are the systems of choice for portable electronic devices because they offer high-energy density, flexible and lightweight design, and long lifespan. If lithium metal is used to form lithium-metal batteries, even higher power densities can be achieved. This system isn’t currently viable, however, because the liquid electrolytes used can lead to explosion hazards. In order to achieve safe operation for lithium-metal batteries, mechanically strong polymer electrolyte membranes with good room temperature ionic conductivity are needed. This grant funded by the National Science Foundation provides funding for development of a novel nanomanufacturing process, i.e. holographic polymerization, to fabricate such membranes. If successful, this project will lead to a library of unprecedented polymer electrolyte membranes that enable safe operation of lithium-metal batteries.