Engineering: Fully Funded EPSRC PhD Scholarship: Development of ionically conducting inorganic binders for solid-state batteries
Funding providers: Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC)
Subject areas: Electrochemical Energy storage, Batteries
Project start date:
- 1 July 2022
Project supervisors: Dr Anji Reddy Munnangi (Swansea University, UK)
Aligned programme of study: PhD in Materials Engineering
Mode of study: Full-time
This is an excellent opportunity to work on next-generation solid-state batteries. This PhD work will focus on the development of ionically conducting inorganic binders for solid-state batteries. Binders are used (generally PVDF) in the conventional roll-to-roll (RTR) process to fabricate non-aqueous batteries. These binders facilitate the coating of the electrode layer on the desired substrate and enable RTR processing. Besides, these binders hold active material conductive additives together with the substrate during the battery's cycling by buffering the volume changes occurring in the electrode materials during the charge/discharge process. However, binders like PVDF are ionic insulators unless filled with LEs. The use of LEs is not desired in SSBs, considering the flammability and low thermal stability of the LEs. Devising ionically conducting and thermally stable inorganic binders might solve this issue without scarifying thermal stability. Currently, our group is developing ionically conducting inorganic polymer binders to replace PVDF in batteries (manuscript under preparation). This PhD will focus on developing these binders and the design and development of such binders suitable for solid-state batteries.
At Swansea University, the PhD will be developed within the Energy Storage group, part of the newly created Centre of Excellence ‘CAPTURE’ at the Faculty of Science and Engineering. CAPTURE (Circular Applications To Utilise and Retain Energy) is an interdisciplinary research centre dedicated to developing a circular approach to the manufacture and management of energy storage solutions.