Lithium-ion batteries are a popular choice for powering electronic devices due to their high energy density, excellent durability and lightness. However, recent cases of exploding smartphones and hoverboards have placed these batteries in the spotlight, sparking consumer fear and safety concerns.
The joint laboratory aims to improve solid-state batteries, which are considered to be a safer alternative to lithium-ion batteries, as they do not use flammable liquid electrolytes. In particular, the lab will focus on developing nanomaterials and nanotechnologies for electric vehicles and energy storage that are safe, efficient and cost-effective.
“The prevalence of electronic devices in our daily life and the quest for clean, renewable energy have led to increasing demand for more innovative and safer energy storage solutions,” said Professor Jackie Y. Ying, who heads NanoBio Lab.
Hydro-Québec recently opened its Center of Excellence in Transportation Electrification and Energy Storage, which is headed by Dr. Karim Zaghib.
“We approached Prof. Jackie Ying about seven years ago for a collaboration as we wanted to tap on her expertise in nanomaterials and nanotechnologies to develop new battery materials. Over the years, we have achieved excellent progress and are delighted to establish a joint research facility in this area with her new Lab. Together, we hope to contribute to more breakthroughs and advancements in safe battery technology, and look forward to manufacturing the new generation of solid-state batteries in Singapore and Québec,” said Dr. Zaghib.
A*STAR Chairman Lim Chuan Poh said, “I congratulate NanoBio Lab and Hydro-Québec on the setting up of this joint laboratory on battery materials technology. This is an emerging technology which could pave the way for cleaner and more renewable energy sources to power the next-generation of devices and vehicles.”
The lab will employ approximately 30 people.