UCLA Supplies Scientists Awarded Grant for 3D Printed Batteries – 3DPrint.com

The College of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) introduced {that a} staff of supplies scientists on the college’s Samueli College of Engineering has acquired a grant to develop a brand new additive manufacturing (AM) course of for lithium-ion battery manufacturing. The US Division of Power (DOE) will give the staff $900,000 in the direction of its analysis.

The UCLA staff will likely be headed by two professors of supplies science and engineering, Bruce Dunn —additionally the interim dean of the engineering college — and Morris Wang. The staff can even work with researchers from the Silicon Valley-based Lawrence Livermore Nationwide Laboratory (LLNL) on the challenge.

One of the influential Federally Funded Analysis and Improvement Facilities (FFRDCs), the LLNL relies upon primarily on DOE funds. Traditionally, its main work entails administration of the US’s nuclear weapons stockpile. Nevertheless, the LLNL’s deal with laptop science has allowed it to department out into the total array of superior scientific fields, together with a various vary of power applied sciences.

3D Printed lithium-ion batteries. Picture courtesy of Blackstone Assets

The cash was allotted from a complete of $57.9 million awarded to 30 totally different renewable power initiatives again in June, through the DOE’s Superior Manufacturing Workplace (AMO). A minimum of 8 of these initiatives contain AM, and, together with the UCLA and LLNL challenge, 5 of these contain lithium-ion batteries.

Particularly, the challenge that UCLA/LLNL have been awarded the grant for is titled, “Direct Ink Writing of 3D Architectures for Lithium-Ion Batteries”. Within the challenge description, it states, “Introducing 3D constructions to Li-ion electrodes permits a rise in floor space relative to electrode quantity.” Primarily, the staff will likely be attempting to make the most of the advanced lattice constructions attribute of AM to create lithium-ion batteries able to charging extra shortly, whereas additionally storing extra energy.

Picture courtesy of UCLA

Lithium-ion batteries are nonetheless essentially the most generally utilized in all of the gadgets and vehicles and fridges, and so on. comprising the IoT. Then again, lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries have develop into more and more most popular for quite a lot of causes in recent times, and LFP batteries definitely appear poised to develop into essentially the most prevalent, within the not-too-distant future.

But, because the make-up of the grantees for the DOE cash exhibits, there have additionally been many important developments recently relating to AM functions for producing lithium-ion batteries. Lengthy-term, these functions have potential, specifically, owing to the potential of utilizing recycled supplies in AM-driven round economies. Thus, the present waning in buyer desire for lithium-ion might, in the long term, find yourself being a constructive for lithium-ion’s market share, if functions for printed batteries constructed from recycled supplies proceed to achieve traction.