Lion HD Project
– What problems come to solve the electrification of the fleet.
Greenhouse gas emissions are growing daily due to industrialization and the burning of fossil fuels in both industry and vehicles. Among the gases that cause this effect, the greatest contribution is due to carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions.In this sense, the electrification of the mobile fleet would contribute to the reduction of CO2 emissions by dispensing with the use of fossil fuels as a means of propulsion of said vehicles, and therefore, to the reduction of the impact of the greenhouse effect.
One of the main routes to remedy this fact resides in the electrification of the mobile park. In this context, lithium ion batteries (LIBs) are positioned as a fundamental pillar for the transition towards energy mobility. The use of this type of battery allows not only to dispense with fossil fuels, reducing the amount of greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere, but also allows the direct use of green energy, generated from renewable sources.
In this way, the electrification of the mobile park would lead to a more sustainable society by reducing the increase in the global temperature of the planet through the elimination of the use of fossil fuels as a result of using renewable energy sources.
– Operational aspects of the use of batteries in the car.
One of the factors that contributes to the delay in the electrification of the car lies in the difficulty of adapting the intrinsic infrastructure to the use of electric propulsion vehicles. The electrification of the mobile park, among other adaptations, requires the extension of the electrical network to accessible points to be able to recharge the vehicles. This point entails a huge economic and logistical investment that slows down the transition to electric mobility.
More specifically, charging stations are less common compared to gas stations, as a result of their cost of implementation and the difficulty in developing the infrastructure. Additionally, the difficulty of simultaneously charging several vehicles in the same area of residence leads to a very small network of vehicle charging points.
It should not be overlooked that a large part of the energy that we currently have comes from fossil energy sources, so an effective use of electric mobility lies in supplying the electricity grid with green energy obtained from renewable energy sources.
– What problems can it generate for society of the same nature as the one it comes to solve, beyond the merely operational ones.
One of the main problems associated with the electrification of the mobile park with current technology lies in the material that makes up the batteries. The most widely used technology in this context are Lithium Ion Batteries (LIBs), as they have a high specific capacity, relatively small sizes, good capacity and a low self-discharge rate.
However, this technology can also pose a potential risk in terms of sustainability, because of the use of lithium. Lithium is a rare metal in the earth’s crust (<0.002%), and its extraction, mainly from salt pans and mining reserves, can cause major changes to ecosystems and the inhabitants of areas rich in this metal. At the same time, in economic terms, a constant increase in the demand for this metal leads to a significant increase in its price.
In addition, the constant increase in the use of this type of battery generates a large amount of highly polluting waste at the end of its useful life.
– How the increase in battery capacity can contribute to solving these problems, beyond the merely operational.
Reducing the amount of obsolete lithium ion batteries produced happens directly to increasing the useful life of these devices. To this end, an increase in the cyclability of the cells with respect to the current state of the art technology is indispensable.
The increase in the cyclability of batteries makes it possible to address not only the problem associated with the incessant accumulation of waste from lithium-ion batteries, but also that associated with the scarcity of said metal.
Directly, by increasing the cyclability of the batteries, and, consequently, lengthening their useful life, the production of waste from this industry is slowed down and at the same time, the need to replace said batteries with new ones.
– Project description.
The LION-HD project aims not only to improve the energy density and cost of lithium-ion batteries, but also the sustainability of their production through the investigation of new functional materials, as well as the possible synergies between the different materials of these batteries. This research aims to overcome the main limitations of the different battery components such as the electrodes (cathode and anode), as well as the electrolyte.
The project brings together 8 companies dedicated to the production of advanced materials and 9 research institutes of great national and international impact in a consortium with extensive experience in different fields from the study to the production of functional materials. The project is included in Mission 2 of Sustainable and Intelligent Mobility of the Misiones Program, the Center for Technological and Industrial Development (CDTI), flagship of the institution destined to finance large strategic R&D initiatives in Spain. Rimsa participates in the consortium developing new active nanomaterials and innovative binders for the optimization of LIBs.
In this way, rimsa reinforces its commitment to offering solutions that promote a better future for everyone, everywhere, through research, development and innovation.