Zeta Energy awarded a grant to commercialize battery technology

Zeta Energy awarded a grant to commercialize battery technology

The VTO program was created to accelerate the development of mobility solutions that extend EV range while alleviating supply chain concerns.

Zeta Energy was awarded a grant from the U.S. Department of Energy’s Vehicles Technology Office (VTO) for a $4 million project to advance and commercialize its high-capacity lithium-sulfur battery technology. The VTO program was created to accelerate the development of mobility solutions that extend electric vehicle (EV) range while alleviating supply chain concerns for EV batteries, Zeta said. One of the program’s specific objectives is to further the development of long-cycle life, high-energy density lithium-sulfur batteries.

Zeta Energy said it has developed a sulfurized carbon material that leverages the high-energy density of sulfur, while preventing the “polysulfide shuttle” effect. Sulfur has long been of interest for batteries because its theoretical energy density is many times higher than that of traditional lithium-ion battery materials. Sulfur is also inexpensive and widely abundant, unlike most other materials typically found in the battery supply chain. Zeta Energy said its lithium-sulfur batteries use no cobalt, manganese, nickel or graphite and can be produced wholly with domestic materials. Lithium-sulfur batteries also have a significantly smaller CO2 footprint than other batteries and are less vulnerable to thermal runaway.

Its sulfurized carbon technology effectively binds the sulfur during battery operation, preventing the polysulfide shuttle effect and enabling sulfur-based batteries to achieve more than one thousand cycles, Zeta Energy said. Though Zeta Energy also has a proprietary 3D structured metallic lithium anode that further increases the performance, longevity and economy of its batteries, this project will demonstrate the use of Zeta Energy’s sulfurized carbon cathode with a range of anodes that are already commercially available.

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