Many components inside of a lithium battery are soft materials. Electrode binders are a critical component of lithium-ion batteries, but have not been emphasized until recently. Without polymer binder, the electrode does not function properly. The emerging high-capacity materials for lithium-ion battery have large volume-change during operation, putting high demand on functional binders. Emerging high-capacity materials require non-traditional polymer binders, causing a recent explosive growth of research activities for the electrode binders. Currently, there are intensive research and development activities in lithium-sulfur battery, where electrolyte and electrode binder may play crucial roles to improve performance. The successful applications of soft materials in all the above areas require extensive engineering effort in both composite morphology and interfaces, for an optimized system performance. This seminar will discuss our recent activities in those areas in my laboratory.
Dr. Gao Liu is the Group Leader of the Applied Energy Materials Group in the Energy Storage and Distributed Resources Division at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, specialized in materials and energy storage R&D. Dr. Liu has led research projects for the U.S. Department of Energy and industry. He has over 100 peer-reviewed publications and over 20 patents and patent applications. He has received numerous awards from his work on electrochemical energy storage materials and systems. The most recent awards include R&D100 Award in 2013 for the conductive polymer for lithium-ion battery application, and FMC Scientific Achievement Award in 2014 for the understanding fundamentals of prelithiation, and R&D 100 Award in 2015 for the high capacity lithium-ion anode design.