Optodot Corporation has granted a license to LG Chem for batteries, cells, separators and electrolyte members comprising boehmite, an aluminum oxide hydroxide mineral. The license permits LG Chem to use boehmite separator films for lithium-ion batteries.
â€œBoehmite ceramic coating layers offer a number of distinct benefits in lithium-ion batteries, including improved thermal stability to enhance safety,â€ said Optodot CEO Dr. Steven A. Carlson.
Conventional battery separators reinforced with a ceramic coating have demonstrated significant improvements in safety, cycle life, and performance â€“ the ceramic coating helps avoid short-circuits by preventing dendrite growth.
LG Chem introduced its own ceramic-coated Safety Reinforced Separator technology in 2006, emphasizing its high thermal stability and excellent hardness compared to conventional polyolefin separators.
Optodot says that boehmite is a proven candidate material for separators, and that it has several advantages over alumina, including 25% lower density as well as greater mix stability and coatability. It is also much less abrasive than alumina (Mohs scale hardness of 3.5 vs 9), which means less wear on coating and slitting process equipment.
Optodot is also developing all-ceramic boehmite separators that are being evaluated by several lithium-ion battery manufacturers. The all-ceramic separators, trademarked NPORE, eliminate the need for the polyolefin support layer.