Materials Research Lecture
Concerns over global climate change and energy independence have created considerable demand for energy storage at all scales (portable electronics, transportation and stationary storage). Although the lithium ion battery is currently the preferred energy storage device for many applications, it is apparent that no single battery or device architecture will provide a comprehensive solution across the entire application space and multiple chemistries will likely be necessary to meet our future energy storage needs.
Batteries are complex, dynamic devices and the development of advanced battery chemistries will require new tools to better understand the physical and chemical processes that occur during cycling and the ability to predict and ultimately control the key electrochemical properties (reaction potential, capacity, rate capability, life, abuse tolerance (safety)). This presentation will cover new methodologies for in situ and operando characterization of batteries and battery materials, including i) the utilization of novel reactors to monitor and tailor electrode synthesis reactions in real time; ii) the development of specialized electrochemical cells for operando x-ray and electron microscopy studies and iii) the utilization of reference electrodes and novel cell architectures to independently monitor cathode and anode potentials during electrochemical cycling. The insights provided by these in situ characterization tools are helping to guide the search for advanced battery materials along with the development of new models and algorithms for onboard state estimation and diagnostics.