DuPont, a science-based products and services company has created a new polymer-based separator for lithium-ion batteries that will improve their life and power and make them perfectly suited for electric and hybrid vehicles.
The company also said they want to expand the Energain separators production by building a new facility in Chesterfield County, Va.
“This launch and our investment in a new production facility are important steps in our strategy to expand DuPon’s role in energy storage,” said Thomas G. Powell, president DuPont Protection Technologies.
These separators are a film located between the two electrodes in every battery, working as a barrier that prevents the electrodes from touching and at the same time letting lithium ions pass between them, to allow the charge and discharge of the battery.
Usually, a hybrid vehicle uses between 50 and 70 batteries while a plug-in hybrid uses between 80 and 200 batteries. Fully electric cars such as those from General Motors and Nissan have the most batteries, at least 150.
A separator is nothing else but a thermoplastic like polyethylene or polypropylene. The company’s new Energain separators are made using a proprietary spinning process that creates filaments with diameters between 200 and 1,000 nanometers.
According to the company, Energain will help automakers reduce the number of batteries in their cars due to its property of increasing the units’ life by up to 20 percent and power from 15 to 30 percent.