Batteries with 50 per cent more energy one step closer

Friday October 20, 2017 12:14

ECN’s spin-off company LeydenJar proves Li-ion pouch cell prototype

ECN has developed a new technology that increases the storage capacity of rechargeable batteries by 50 per cent. With this technology, the range of electric vehicles can be increased, batteries in smartphones, laptops and other electronic devices will last longer, and the costs of sustainable energy storage will decrease.

Start-up company LeydenJar Technologies BV, incorporated to bring the pure silicon anode technology to the market, has now been able to fast track the technology to a pouch-cell prototype cell.

The pouch-cell prototype is regarded by industry as a major milestone to prove that a new technology can work at large scale. LeydenJar Technologies reached the 100th cycle in a prototype pouch cell with a constant capacity of 1.000 mAh/g. Furthermore, it has developed Li-ion coin cells that cycle at high capacities (between 1.000 – 2.000 mAh/g) with 400+ (on going) cycles.

The advantage of pure silicon anode technology is that it has an unprecedented impact on energy density of Lithium-ion batteries, while replacing only the graphite anode with a pure silicon version. ECN has invented the technology using a roll-to-roll PECVD machine that has the potential to scale up to mass production. LeydenJar Technologies will now develop the technology in two tracks: first as a pouch cell prototype with a targeted energy density of 1.200 Wh/l or 480 Wh/kg, and then as a faster PECVD tool to demonstrate semi commercial production rates. 

Paul Wyers, director of solar research at ECN says tremendous effort is put into research worldwide to improve lithium-ion batteries, and a breakthrough is claimed every few weeks. “These discoveries usually concern materials that can only be produced in a laboratory environment on a very small scale. What makes our invention so promising is that the technology for mass production of this material is already within reach due to its similarity to an existing production process for solar cells. We believe that this gives us a unique advantage. Through the founding of LeydenJar Technologies, we will transfer this technology to the market and create a fit between the battery industry and venture capital investors.”

Christian Rood, founder of LeydenJar: “Our accelerated pace is based on combining technology hotspots in Europe, and on involving OEMs and battery manufacturers at an early stage”.

The pure silicon anode technology is increasingly being recognised by established industry players as a promising technology. Recently, LeydenJar won the BMW Startup Garage competition that was organised by BMW Group Nederland in partnership with the BMW Startup Garage in München. Other multinationals have started to test the pure silicon anodes in their R&D laboratories.


For more information about this development, please contact Paul Wyers or Wim Soppe via our online contact form

Category: Corporate, Solar Energy