Battery Research & Development

Miltec UV International, LLC, a division of Miltec Corporation, was formed in 2011 as a research and development company specifically focused on UV curable binders for Lithium-ion batteries. UV is proven to improve manufacturing speed, reliability, minimize or eliminate toxic solvents, and to lower costs. Therefore, UV processes provide an excellent manufacturing path for the expanding Li-ion Battery (LIB) market. Initially, Miltec UV received a cost-shared Federal contract from the Department of Energy for research on the “Utilization of UV or EB Technology to Significantly Reduce Costs and VOCs in the Manufacture of Lithium Ion Battery Electrodes”. Since then, Miltec UV has received additional grants, and our R&D efforts continue to make great progress in this market.

Miltec has been issued several global patents covering the use of UV chemistry to produce polymer- bound ceramic coatings on both separators and electrodes in Lithium-ion batteries. Miltec is currently researching the benefits of UV for producing LTO & ceramic coated anodes, and solid-state batteries including cathode, lithium anode and GPE and solid state.

UV Curing allows for rapid production beyond what is achievable by other means. In both the electrode and separator coating process, because the binder is completely cured upon UV exposure, it is possible to test the product immediately. UV is a fast, flexible electrode manufacturing process that is beneficial for today’s batteries and with research could easily integrate into next generation batteries.

Progress & Accomplishments

UV Curable Cathode Binder

  • Miltec UV curable binders have been shown applicable to multiple cathode materials and LTO anodes, all with very promising results.
  • Cathode samples have been prepared, with excellent results using NMC, LMO, LCO, LFP, NCA, LFP/NCA, LTO
  • High-power applications single layer cathodes
  • High-energy double and multilayered cathodes
  • Proven Manufacturing Consistency
  • Under evaluation by OEM’s and cell manufacturers in US, China, Korea, Japan, and Europe
  • Developed a UV binder that is NMP-Free allowing for high-speed curing with reduced manufacturing costs.
  • UV Curable Gel Polymer Electrolyte – Awarded a US DOD contract to develop pouch cell prototypes for two military battery applications.
  • Miltec UV Curing System is installed on a Battery Manufacturer line demonstrating UV technology for Military BB2590, F35 JSF, and 6T batteries.
  • Major challenges of capacity, impedance, and long-term cycling have been overcome for cathodes with a UV process.
  • UV Process with power batteries has the performance to compete with PVDF-NMP
  • UV Multilayer cathode process can be used to produce energy batteries (94-3-3, ~30 mg/cm 2 ).

UV Curable Ceramic Coated Separator

  • Developed a UV curable separator ceramic coating with UV Curable binders that achieves excellent resistance to shrinkage and abrasion while maintaining required porosity values.
  • UV Ceramic coating for separators shows higher temperature resistance, high adhesion, greater
    chemical and oxidation resistance resulting in greater voltage stability.
  • Tests show a separator coated on both sides reduced the shrinkage to below 3% after heating to 180°C.
  • Developed a printed ceramic pattern process that reduces the weight, allows for higher ion flow (more power) through the coated separator, adds structural strength and does not lead to dendrite growth.
  • The Separator UV binder is compatible with a variety of ceramic fillers, including alumina and boehmite powders.
  • Coating properties adaptable to different coating methods (i.e., gravure, flexographic).
  • Binder chemistry adaptable to meet different performance specifications for porosity and shrinkage resistance.

Capabilities

  • Slot-die Roll to Roll Coating with UV binders and active material for electrodes.
  • Kiss Gravure Roll to Roll Coating with UV curable ceramic coating on separator films.
  • UV Curing of coatings
  • Glove box for Coin Cell Assembly
  • Glove Box for GPE and Solid-State Applications
  • Various hand methods of coat Separator & Electrode Samples
  • Coin cell and Potentiostat Testing
  • Peel and tensile testing
  • Electrode Calendering
  • Roll Coater
  • Viscometers

Coating Methods

  • Gravure
  • Slot die
  • Flexographic
  • Roll
  • Little Joe, Orange Proofer, and anilox proofers