Commercial Li-ion batteries made with Novacium’s first gen engineered SiOx Material

HPQ Silicon Inc., a technology company specializing in green engineering of silica and silicon-based materials, has announced a first significant milestone reached by its France-based affiliate, NOVACIUM SAS (“Novacium”).

Novacium commissioned an external laboratory to produce 18650 industrial batteries using its engineered SiOx material, for which HPQ Silicon Inc. holds exclusive global licenses. This process was initiated with the intent to validate the immediate industrial potential of its SiOx material.

The first batch utilized 100% graphite anode material, serving as benchmark batteries for performance comparison. These benchmarks were then compared to the second batch, which consisted of a blend of 90% graphite and 10% of Novacium’s first-generation engineered SiOx anode material.

“Charging and discharging cycle tests are ongoing, and preliminary results, after 5 cycles, are not just promising, they exceed our expectations [1],” said Dr. Jed Kraiem Ph.D., COO of Novacium.

ACHIEVING 14% BATTERY CAPACITY IMPROVEMENT WITH SILICON INTEGRATION
Achieving a 14% overall improvement in industrial type full-battery capacity compared to the 100% graphite benchmark batteries is indeed a significant accomplishment. These results surpass HPQ/NOVACIUM theoretical estimate of validating a 10% improvement in battery performance for these tests.

The absence of a measurable first cycle degradation, despite incorporating silicon, is particularly noteworthy. Silicon is known to expand and contract during charging and discharging cycles, which can lead to capacity loss. The fact that this issue has been mitigated is a promising sign for the potential application of this technology in battery manufacturing.

ENGINEERED SiOX MATERIALS STRATEGY
Novacium and HPQ are focused on creating engineered SiOx anode materials designed to improve the performance of graphite-based lithiumion batteries. These advancements target various applications, including energy storage systems, consumer electronics, and electric vehicles.

“Drawing on our technical expertise gained from the photovoltaic industry, our goal is to produce a proprietary engineered SiOx anode materials using cost-effective equipment and highly scalable processes that are already proven in a multi-ton-scale pilot manufacturing line, therefore allowing for the seamless integration of our engineered SiOx anode material into existing electrode mixing and coating equipment,” said Dr. Jed Kraiem PhD (in the photo), COO of Novacium. “The resulting Graphite and SiOx mixture will not only significantly enhance battery capacity but also can be utilized without modification by large-scale gigafactories worldwide.”

TEST OBJECTIVES
The primary aim of making industrial batteries from the start was to showcase our ability to produce graphite and engineered SiOx anode materials that battery manufacturers can use without altering their existing production processes. This capability is central to our strategy. The initial outcomes not only highlight the adaptability and compatibility of Novacium’s methods but also suggest the possibility for broader industry application.

Continuing the charging and discharging cycle tests will be crucial to further validate the long-term performance and durability of these batteries. If the positive trend observed in the initial cycles persists, it could significantly advance battery technology with potential implications for various applications, including electric vehicles and portable electronics.

“These first results exceed our expectations, especially considering that our initial series of tests used a non-optimized version of our SiOx material. This leaves room for further improved results in the future,” said Mr. Bernard Tourillon, President and CEO of HPQ Silicon Inc. and NOVACIUM SAS. “As more cycle testing results become available, we believe that they will further confirm our unique ability to make this product and the commercial potential of Novacium-engineered SiOx-based anode materials.”