Deakin Research

Institute for Frontier Materials

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Electrolyte scientists dare to dream

The world's leading electrolyte scientists have converged in Geelong for ISPE-14.

Softening the impact

Cracking the cartilage riddle, Deakin scientists synthetically mimic the body's most complex lubrication system.

Funding success for electromaterials researchers

Deakin to be part of a cutting edge new ARC Centre of Excellence.

Energy Storage - Advanced Metal Batteries

To meet the increasing demand for higher performance battery technologies, considerable research effort is directed at lithium metal, sodium-ion and metal-air batteries. The biggest challenge facing battery technology is the safety of these devices, which typically use flammable electrolytes, causing problems with large-scale applications such as full electric vehicles.

  • Lithium metal batteries are the best performing available system and provide the energy density required by tomorrow's applications.
  • Sodium-ion batteries are an emerging area of study with the potential to be a cheaper method of storing energy than the commonly used lithium-ion batteries.
  • Metal-air batteries require less costly materials and can, generally, be considered much less toxic than their lead-acid or lithium-ion counterparts.

Focusing on the electrolyte material, our approach is to apply and optimise Room Temperature Ionic Liquids (RTILs) and Organic Ionic Plastic Crystals (OIPCs) for these devices. Both these classes of material are non-volatile and have been shown to support the electrochemistry of the targeted battery systems.

Our work is helping to understand the physicochemical and electrochemical properties of these electrolytes, their interactions within an electrochemical cell and their effect on the capacity, energy density and safety of these devices.

Deakin University acknowledges the traditional land owners of present campus sites.

23rd January 2014