A dedicated Energy Storage Prototyping Lab has been outfitted at CTO. This lab aims to scale-up lab scale innovations; attracting both industry and academic partners that are interested in developing battery technologies in larger formats. It provides a link between typical research lab sized battery testing incorporating low volumes of active material such as coin cells and those more commonly found in a commercial / industrial setting such as pouch, prismatic and cylindrical (18650) cells. The lab will address challenges of reliability, scale-up of current technologies and provide a platform to produce prototype batteries utilising new material technologies developed in-house at ERI@N and further afield.
The prototyping lab has a state-of-the-art 40 m2 dry room facility, (-40°C dew point with 2 people working inside and dehumidifying capacity of 209 g/h), completed in October 2013. It can provide necessary space for battery fabrication and packaging. Prototype line facilities include dry room and all process equipment from slurry preparation, coating/pressing, cutting/tabbing, to battery assembly & packaging, and testing for making prototype pouch and cylindrical cells. The lithium ion battery prototype facilities at clean tech one are shown below. The focus on utilization of prototyping facilities can be categorised into four areas: a) Process Optimisation and Standardisation b) Scale-up c) Prototype Fabrication and d) Industry Partnership and Collaboration.