Innovation in Battery Technology: Cobalt-Free Battery

December 18, 2019

An article was posted on IBM Research Blog written by Young-hye Na (Manager, Materials Innovations for Next-Gen Batteries, IBM Research).

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Summary of the article:

Today, IBM Research is building on a long history of materials science innovation to unveil a new battery discovery. Many battery materials, including heavy metals such as nickel and cobalt, pose tremendous environmental and humanitarian risks.

Using three new and different proprietary materials, which have never before been recorded as being combined in a battery, our team at IBM Research has discovered a chemistry for a new battery which does not use heavy metals or other substances with sourcing concerns.

The materials for this battery are able to be extracted from seawater.

Discovered in IBM Research’s Battery Lab, this design uses a cobalt and nickel-free cathode material, as well as a safe liquid electrolyte with a high flash point. This unique combination of the cathode and electrolyte demonstrated an ability to suppress lithium metal dendrites during charging, thereby reducing flammability, which is widely considered a significant drawback for the use of lithium metal as an anode material.

This discovery holds significant potential for electric vehicle batteries, for example, where concerns such as flammability, cost and charging time come into play. Current tests show that less than five minutes are required for the battery – configured for high power – to reach an 80 percent state of charge. Combined with the relatively low cost of sourcing the materials, the goal of a fast-charging, low-cost electric vehicle could become a reality.

This battery are still in the exploratory phase

To move this new battery from early stage exploratory research into commercial development, IBM Research has joined with Mercedes-Benz Research and Development North America, Central Glass, one of the top battery electrolyte suppliers in the world, and Sidus, a battery manufacturer, to create a new next-generation battery development ecosystem. While plans for the larger development of this battery are still in the exploratory phase, our hope is that this budding ecosystem will help to bring these batteries into reality.

Click to read full article.

After 5 Months

May 18, 2020: Chinese battery company SVOLT released a launch video battery. General Manager of Svolt, Yang Hongxin says “EVs will not be just transportation tools but will also provide entertainment. Vehicles will have multiple functions, such as mobility, entertainment, communication, and even energy regulation. The energy demand for EVs will change and become distinctly different from what it used to be.”

About the SVOLT new cobalt free battery, he also says “We have created a battery that has a range of over 800 kilometers. New battery will work for 15 years or up to 1.2 million kilometers”

Click for launch video.


SVOLT Energy Technology (formerly the Battery Business Unit of Great Wall Motor) started pre-research work on batteries in 2012, and separated as an independent entity in February 2018. Headquartered in Changzhou, Jiangsu, SVOLT is committed to spearheading innovation in the manufacturing and R&D of the next-generation of battery materials, cells, modules, systems, BMS, energy storage systems and solar technology. Company has more than 2200 employees, including 1100 R&D engineers.