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Open Access Publications from the University of California

HPC4Mfg with Sepion

  • Author(s): Nugent, Peter
  • Prendergast, David
  • et al.

We employed ab-initio simulations and quantum chemical calculations to develop a computational framework for simulating the microscopic structure and mechanical properties of novel polymer membranes used in lithium sulfur batteries. To meet industry targets, next generation batteries with high specific energy (Wh/kg) are essential. Efforts to commercialize light-weight, energy-dense lithium-sulfur secondary batteries (2510 Wh/kg) have been stalled by ongoing problems with the battery’s separator membrane, which should prevent cross-over of active material from cathode to anode that, if unchecked, limits cycle-life. However, Sepion Technologies’ polymer membranes yield long-lasting lithium-sulfur cells. Advancing to 10 Ah battery prototypes, Sepion faces challenges in membrane manufacturing related to polymer processing and the molecular basis for membrane performance and durability. High performance computing offers critical new insight into these phenomena, which in turn will accelerate product entry into the market.

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