BioSolar, Inc has announced that it has jointly filed a patent application with the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). This invention forms the basis for the company's super battery technology.
The inventors of the jointly owned patent application include Dr. Alan Heeger and Dr. David Vonlanthen of UCSB, and Dr. David Lee, the Company's chief executive officer and Dr. Stanley Levy, the Company's chief technology officer.
A battery contains two major parts, a cathode and an anode, that function together as the positive and negative sides. Today's state-of-the-art lithium-ion battery is limited by the storage capacity of its cathode, while the anode can store much more. BioSolar is developing a novel high capacity cathode that can fully utilize the storage capacity of conventional anodes. By integrating the BioSolar high capacity, high power and low-cost cathode with conventional anodes, battery manufacturers can create a super lithium-ion battery.
Instead of conventional cathodes that use lithium-ion intercalation chemistry, a process that is inherently slow, the company's novel high-capacity cathode exploits the fast redox-reaction properties of polymers to enable rapid charge and discharge. Based on the company's internal analysis, a super battery built using its technology can double the range of a Tesla electric car, cost four times less, enable a faster charging time and longer life, and can potentially break the $100/kWh cost barrier needed for mass market adoption of energy storage. Achieving the $100/kWh cost barrier would effectively reach what is referred to as the "holy grail" for utilities, with respect to energy storage. Reports within the last year from financial institutions such as Citigroup and Deutsche Bank illustrate the significance of developing energy storage technologies, as Citigroup reported the market could reach $400 billion by 2030, and Deutsche Bank believes a cost breakthrough could appear within the next five years.
"Filing this joint patent application is an important step in bringing BioSolar's Super Battery technology closer to commercialisation," said David Lee, CEO of BioSolar. "Rarely does one technology exhibit such potential across so many energy sectors, such as solar, electric vehicles, and traditional charging applications. This patent ensures that we not only protect our intellectual property, but that we control future licensing efforts that may one day represent a significant source of revenue."
BioSolar is currently funding a sponsored research program at the University of California, Santa Barbara, to further develop its super battery technology. The lead inventors of the technology are UCSB professor Dr. Alan Heeger, the recipient of a Nobel Prize in 2000 for the discovery and development of conductive polymers, and Dr. David Vonlanthen, a project scientist and expert in energy storage at UCSB.
For more read Analysis of over 140 Lithium-based Rechargeable Battery Manufacturers: Chemistry, Strategy, Success
Source and top image: Biosolar