474745 Session Keynote - Co-Extrusion: Advanced Manufacturing for Energy Devices
PARC’s scale-up of CoEx for electric vehicle (EV) batteries builds on a solid base of experience in applying CoEx to solar cell manufacturing, deposition of viscous ceramic pastes, and Li-ion battery chemistries. In the solar application, CoEx has been deployed commercially at production scale where multi-channel CoEx printheads are used to print viscous silver gridline pastes at full production speeds (>40 ft/min). This operational scale-up provided invaluable experience with the nuances of speed, yield, and maintenance inherent in taking a new technology to the factory floor. PARC has leveraged this experience, adapting the CoEx process for Lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery manufacturing. To date, PARC has worked with Li-ion battery materials and structured cathodes with high-density Li-ion regions and low-density conduction regions, documenting both energy and power performance. Modeling results for a CoEx cathode show a path towards a 10-20% improvement in capacity for an EV pouch cell. Experimentally, we have realized a co-extruded battery structure with a Lithium Nickel Manganese Cobalt (NMC) cathode at print speeds equivalent to conventional roll coating processes. The heterogeneous CoEx cathode enables improved capacity in thick electrodes at higher C-rates. The proof-of-principle coin cells demonstrate the feasibility of the CoEx technology and a path towards higher energy and higher power EV pouch cells.