Envia Systems promises 400 Wh/kg lithium ion batteries
By: +David Herron; Date: June 28, 2014
Envia Systems is a lithium ion battery technology research company based in Newark CA.
In January 2011 the company licensed cathode technology from Argonne National Labs. (see Argonne, Envia strike deal to license advanced battery technology) In the same breath, GM Ventures announced an investment of $7 million into Envia Systems, and Envia announced availability of the company's High Capacity Manganese Rich cathode material was available for pilot programs. GM (see http://www.anl.gov/articles/gm-argonne-sign-licensing-deal-advanced-battery-chemistry) and LG Chem (see http://www.anl.gov/articles/lg-chem-argonne-sign-licensing-deal-make-commercialize-advanced-battery-material) and BASF (see http://www.anl.gov/articles/argonnes-lithium-ion-battery-technology-be-commercialized-basf) and Tode Kogyo (see http://www.anl.gov/articles/argonnes-lithium-ion-battery-technology-be-commercialized-japans-toda-kogyo) have all licensed the same cathode technology.
The company's 45 AH cells.
In Feb 2012 Envia Systems demonstrated their technology at the ARPA-E conference lithium-ion battery technology with over twice the energy density and around 1/4th the cost of today's batteries. This makes the 300+ mile range affordable electric car a possibility. http://blog.greentransportation.info/2012/02/envia-systems-opens-door-to-affordable.html
In March 2012 during an interview in San Francisco, GM's CEO Dan Akerson spoke about the possibility of a 140 mile range electric car in a couple years. http://www.torquenews.com/1075/gms-akerson-talks-about-auto-industry-bailout-and-140-mile-range-volt He did not explicitly name Envia Systems, but given the investment by GM Ventures and that both GM and LG Chem have licensed the same underlying technology, these point to an agreement with Envia. Then in August 2012 Akerson was speaking to a GM Employees Meeting and explicitly named Envia Systems while talking about a 200 mile range electric car http://www.torquenews.com/1075/gms-akerson-promises-200-mile-range-electric-car-few-years [[/footnote]] as reported by an AP journalist http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=158527659 [[/footnote]] who was allowed to listen to the meeting.
This picture shows how the company's technology goes together into a complete cell.
The HCMR cathode is the part based on the Argonne technology, which in turn is only part of what makes that cathode function.
The company has developed an electrolyte it claims works at high voltage and is very stable.
And the company had an ARPA-E grant to develop anode material.
Claims published on Envia website, Feb 2012
Target: 400 Watt-hours/kg energy density at $125/kWh cost
The key to achieving the world record energy density is combining Envia�s proprietary high capacity HCMR� cathode with its proprietary high capacity Si-C anode.
Cathode: Envia has a unique cathode chemistry based on a unique crystal structure. It�s High Capacity Manganese Rich (HCMR�) cathode has excellent stability at high voltages and can access high capacities with long cycle life. Our proprietary nanocoating processes further enhance cycle life (>1000 at 100% DoD). Envia has built on Argonne�s layered-layered chemistry to fine tune the composition of Ni, Co, Mn and Li2MnO3.
Anode: Under the auspices of the ARPA-E grant, Envia has been able to demonstrate very high capacity (1530 mAh/g) and promising cycle life performance using silicon-carbon nanocomposite anodes. We successfully achieved the ARPA-E program goal to produce a battery with an energy density of 400 Wh/kg. We are currently scaling up the material using a low cost production process. This anode will be ready for commercialization in 2012 and will complement Envia�s high capacity cathode very well.
Electrolyte: Envia has developed an electrolyte that is stable up to a voltage of 5.2V (vs Li/Li+). In cyclic voltammetry studies of standard electrolytes, as the voltage window was opened from upper cut-off of 4.3V vs Li/Li+ the electrolytes showed an increase in oxidation currents. When the voltage window was further increased to voltages above 4.5V the oxidation currents increased significantly showing that the electrolytes were almost completely oxidized at these voltages. However, Envia�s High Voltage Electrolyte showed stability up to 5.2V without any rapid increase in the oxidation currents.