This award provides funding to support two related workshops bringing together US and Taiwan researchers, 12 from each side, to discuss issues related to electrochemical energy conversion and storage. The objectives are 1) to identify challenges and barriers to more efficient systems as targets of research and 2) to foster research and educational collaboration between the two groups. The first workshop will be in Taipei, Taiwan, in April 2011. In addition to technical talks, there will be a tour of relevant Taiwanese industry and laboratories. The second, follow-up workshop will be in Minneapolis, MN, in October 2011, in conjunction with the national meeting of the American Institute of Chemical Engineers. The latter meeting will provide an opportunity to showcase the topic and to engage the US research community more extensively.
The two workshops will engage leading researchers in this field. Taiwan is a leader in the field of batteries, both from a fundamental as well as a manufacturing perspective. The participants are well qualified to identify key issues and research opportunities for improvement of electrochemical systems for energy storage and conversion. Such systems range from very small batteries for portable applications to power sources for transportation to large units for storage of energy from intermittent renewable sources, such as solar or wind. The technical challenges to improving efficiency, energy density and power density need to be attacked by application of the latest developments in materials science as well as engineering analysis and design. The participants are well qualified to identify the most promising opportunities and to disseminate the information to the broader research community.
Two workshops were organized, the first on April 23-24, 2011, in Taipei, Taiwan, and the second on October 15-16, 2011, in Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA, to discuss materials and system challenges in electrical energy storage and to identify areas of mutual interests to the U.S./Taiwanese researchers. U.S./Taiwanese participants: U.S.: Dr. Geoffrey Prentice, NSF Dr. Thomas Chapman, NSF Dr. Trung Van Nguyen, University of Kansas (U.S. Organizer) Dr. Wesley Henderson, North Carolina State University (first workshop) Dr. Perla Balbuena, Texas A&M University Dr. Chunsheng Wang, University of Maryland Dr. Borr Yann Liaw, University of Hawaii Dr. Nitash Balsara, University of California- Berkeley Dr. Peter Pintauro, Vanderbilt University Dr. Gleb Yushin, Georgia Institute of Technology Dr. Daniel Scherson, Case Western Reserve University Dr. Dan Steingart, City University of New York Dr. Xiangwu Zhang, North Carolina State University Dr. Venkat Subramanian, Washington University (first workshop) Dr. Thomas Fuller, Georgia Institute of Technology (second workshop) Dr. Shirley Meng, University of California at San Diego (second workshop) Mr. V. Yarlagadda, University of Kansas (second workshop) Taiwan: Dr. Willis Lin, Taiwan National Science Council (first workshop) Dr. Alex Yu-Min Peng, ITRI (first workshop) Dr. Bing Joe Hwang National Taiwan University of Science and Technology (Taiwan Organizer) Dr. Fu-Ming Wang, National Taiwan University of Science and Technology Dr. Nick Nae-Lih Wu, National Taiwan University Dr. Chi-Chang Hu, National Tsing Hua University (first workshop) Dr. Hsisheng Teng, National Cheng Kung University Dr. Shih-Chieh Liao, ITRI Dr. Chia-Chin Chang, National University of Taiwan (first workshop) Dr. Kan-Lin Hsueh, National United University Dr. Jenq Gong Duh, National Tsing Hua University (first workshop) Dr. She-Huang Wu, Tatung University Dr. Shi-Chern Yen, National Taiwan University Dr. Kuei-Hsien Chen, IAMS-Academia Sinica Mr. Chang-Wing Yuan, Taiwan National Science Council (second workshop) Dr. Shih-Yuan Lu, National Tsing-Hua University (second workshop) Dr. Jing-Shan Do, National Chin-Yi University of Technology (second workshop) Dr. Kuan-Zong Fung, National Cheng Kung University Dr. Chia-Chen (Jason) Fang, ITRI (second workshop) Ms. Pauline Lin, TECRO (second workshop) At the first workshop, eight areas of interests were identified: Lithium Phosphate Cathodes Lithium Si/C High Capacity Anodes High Voltage Cathodes Flow Batteries Solid-Electrolyte Interface (SEI) Solid State & Polymer Electrolytes Super-capacitors Multi-Scale Modeling & Testing Protocols for Li Batteries At the second workshop, these eight areas were combined into four main topics: Electrolytes, Anodes, Cathodes and Flow Batteries. Issues identified for each area are listed below. Some are more extensive than others due to interest and level of significance. Solid-State & Polymer Electrolytes Issues: High conductivity in solid state (inorganic and polymeric) and gel conductors Electrochemically stable electrolyte Stability of electrode/electrolyte interface Mechanism of Li+ conduction Mechanical property of separator/electrolytes Composite polymer electrolyte assembly Low and high temperature lithium conduction electrolyte stability Potential solutions: Hybrid Li+ conducting polymers containing conducting polymer and inorganic particles Block copolymers with inorganics Composite blends/fibers with inorganics Modeling transport across electrode/electrolyte interface Molecular modeling of electrolyte breakdown Testing standards New polymers inspired by molecular modelers (structure and transport models) SEI Develop a model system to study (well-defined electrodes and electrolytes). Develop a common set of protocols for SEI formation for all in situ measurements Identify and implement in situ techniques for the characterization of the film as a function of potential, cycle number, temperature, and other relevant parameters. Fundamental understanding of the influence of impurities on the nature and properties of the SEI Understanding reactivity supported by quantum mechanical computations Development and implementation of advanced on line techniques to analyze SEI composition, AFM, RAMAN, Light Scattering Anodes High?energy multi?component nanofiber anodes by electrospinning or other spinning techniques Nanofiber fabrication (processing?structure?morphology-performance relationships) Nanoparticle preparation, anode coating, in?situ synchrotron X-ray microscopy characterization Electronically?conductive or ionically?conductive polymer coatings on anodes Cathodes Issues: Stability for high voltage cathode materials Layered LiMnO2 family Li?excess, Mn?rich layered oxides Approaches: Fundamental phase stability based on thermodynamic and kinetic perspectives for compositions that encompass various crystal structures Obtain basic information of the compositions (phases) and electrochemical behavior to obtain fundamental understanding of the stability issues Flow Batteries Three main classes of flow batteries: 1) Regenerative fuel cells with reactants in multiple phases 2) All liquid redox systems 3) Traditional stationary systems with flowing electrolyte to improve/enable convective mass transport All three systems can scale to MWhr and GWhr, and with proper maintenance, can last many decades. The fundamental issue is reducing capital and maintenance costs to levels that make storage economically feasible. The following areas can help the field collectively. Separators/ Membranes: Durable and perm-selective membranes to prevent crossover Catalysts: Durable, non-noble catalysts Materials: Materials that can withstand the high corrosivity of these systems