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New aluminium-ion battery from Stanford

hist78

Active member
This type of battery can speed up IoT adoption, make electric cars more affordable, and offer a cost efficient way to store large amount of power during off-peak hours. The potential is unlimited. I'm wondering how soon this can be commercialized?

New aluminium-ion battery from Stanford
https://youtu.be/ZKIcYk7E9lU

Aluminum battery from Stanford offers safe alternative to conventional batteries
Aluminum battery from Stanford offers safe alternative to conventional batteries

Stanford Researchers Created A Smartphone Battery That Charges In Only One Minute
Stanford Researchers Created A Smartphone Battery That Charges In Only One Minute - Forbes

An ultrafast rechargeable aluminium-ion battery
http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/vaop/ncurrent/full/nature14340.html#affil-auth
 

Daniel Payne

Moderator
This battery technology looks promising, however it still has to make that giant leap from a research project into a commercial product.
 

Arthur Hanson

Well-known member
hist78, I have been following battery design for over ten years and have seen many promising technologies come and go. Even when they get to the point of a number of real demo vehicles on the street, the failure rate to take off for one reason or another is about ninety percent or even more. I keep hoping for a breakthrough, but won't really believe it until I actually see the batteries or sale. I figure I have looked at about 50 promising battery technologies over the last ten years and this is from reputable sources only. It I count pie in the sky technologies, it's easily over one hundred. I have learned the hard way to, as an investor. I won't invest until I see the batteries being sold by them selves or in a product. The same is true of many technologies. The best time to invest is after the first commercial product is released and this applies to all technologies with very rare exceptions for which I have had some very expensive lessons.
 

hist78

Active member
hist78, I have been following battery design for over ten years and have seen many promising technologies come and go. Even when they get to the point of a number of real demo vehicles on the street, the failure rate to take off for one reason or another is about ninety percent or even more. I keep hoping for a breakthrough, but won't really believe it until I actually see the batteries or sale. I figure I have looked at about 50 promising battery technologies over the last ten years and this is from reputable sources only. It I count pie in the sky technologies, it's easily over one hundred. I have learned the hard way to, as an investor. I won't invest until I see the batteries being sold by them selves or in a product. The same is true of many technologies. The best time to invest is after the first commercial product is released and this applies to all technologies with very rare exceptions for which I have had some very expensive lessons.

I totally agree with you. Many research projects failed to be commercialized once they tried to move from a lab prototype into a commercial production phase.

But for this battery research project, there is a very unique situation. The unique situation I'm talking about is not those smart and hardworking professors, researchers, and graduate students from the project team. And it's not because they're working under the Stanford University's roof either.

Please take a look of the sponsors organization/agency mentioned at the last paragraph in the Stanford's press release:

Aluminum battery from Stanford offers safe alternative to conventional batteries

"Principal support for the research was provided by the U.S. Department of Energy, the Taiwan Industrial Technology Research Institute, the Stanford Global Climate and Energy Project, the Stanford Precourt Institute for Energy and the Taiwan Ministry of Education"

Many people might not know much about the Taiwan Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI). This non-profit research organization does have some successful stories about moving research/pilot/prototype projects into commercial production. Among those successful stories, two companies we have been talking about all the time at SemiWiki: UMC and TSMC.

Hope this battery technology can be realized to help many industries (including semiconductors industry) moving forward to many applications we don't even dare to think about today.
 
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Arthur Hanson

Well-known member
I worked at a DOE facility and they had more than there share of very, very expensive failures and always needed just ten more years and did I forget to mention, MORE MONEY. I have real respect for Taiwan and substantial investments there. I still like to see at least one commercial project before I invest. I learned this from a top scientist out of Silicon Valley and some very expensive lessons. I don't know the success rate of ITRI, but I'd lay money it's higher than ours, but they still have a substantial failure rate, it's called experimentation.
 

Li Yisuo

Member
Great work.
Just my humble guess again, it is sensitive to temperature variation. Tetrachloroaluminate's chlorine bond is the key...
So you are absolutely right.
This type of battery can speed up IoT adoption
A lot of IoT application is not temp sensitive.
 

hist78

Active member
I worked at a DOE facility and they had more than there share of very, very expensive failures and always needed just ten more years and did I forget to mention, MORE MONEY. I have real respect for Taiwan and substantial investments there. I still like to see at least one commercial project before I invest. I learned this from a top scientist out of Silicon Valley and some very expensive lessons. I don't know the success rate of ITRI, but I'd lay money it's higher than ours, but they still have a substantial failure rate, it's called experimentation.

You brought a good point about the failure rate for a research institution's project. I tried but can't find any report about ITRI's failure rate. I'll pay more attention to this from now on.

ITRI's operation model is more like those traditional US corporation's research labs. That means ITRI's projects are very practical (not necessary shot term) and must have future market benefit to justify the project need. There are other national labs in Taiwan whose missions are more long term and more related to basic/fundamental research like some of those US DOE labs.

A common problem for DOE or other government labs is either lack of funding or budget allocation priority issue. For example the Fermi Lab used to be at the forefront of physics research but it needs to keep cutting personnel and shut down the Tevatron particle accelerator in 2011. Now we often hear news from Europ CERN's Large Hadron Collider instead. On the other hand, many nuclear weapon, security, or defense related projects are getting a lot of funding across DOE labs. Yes, nuclear weapon research is important. But other than government sponsored labs, who is willing to do super long term and large scale basic research?

Then look those famed corporation labs, such as Bell Laboratories. Where are they now? There were so many good things invented or discovered at Bell Laboratories like transistors, CCD, C and C++ language. As matter of fact, Bell Laboratories researchers have won eight Nobel Prizes. Also many industry leaders can trace their career back to Bell Laboratories.

I think a typical CEO does care a lot about his/her company's monthly or quarterly revenue and profit. But do they really care 4 years, 8 years, or 10 years from now an internal research will bring in some amazing findings? Today many those CEOs don't even stay longer than 2 or 3 or 4 years on their jobs!
 

Arthur Hanson

Well-known member
hist78, having worked at a government lab, the waste, sloth, laziness, and feather bedding was extreme to say the least. One long term scientist told me they use to get more work done when they had half the people. Having worked in numerous government and private facilities the contrast is dramatic. The only way to end the government wasting 80% of the money is to set performance standards and lay people off if they don't meet them or transfer the work to the private sector without government rules and regulations that many times force the private sector to be as inefficient and wasteful as the government. Until the government learns how to deliver value, we should keep cutting the money and use the money for tax breaks on private sector research.
It's all about value, efficiency and results. Jobs for life with little or no controls, breeds failure and waste with only a few very tangible results at great cost.
 
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hist78

Active member
hist78, having worked at a government lab, the waste, sloth, laziness, and feather bedding was extreme to say the least. One long term scientist told me they use to get more work done when they had half the people. Having worked in numerous government and private facilities the contrast is dramatic. The only way to end the government wasting 80% of the money is to set performance standards and lay people off if they don't meet them or transfer the work to the private sector without government rules and regulations that many times force the private sector to be as inefficient and wasteful as the government. Until the government learns how to deliver value, we should keep cutting the money and use the money for tax breaks on private sector research.
It's all about value, efficiency and results. Jobs for life with little or no controls, breeds failure and waste with only a few very tangible results at great cost.

Thank you for the comments. Many those government's failures are caused by nobody else, but "us". We elected those congressmen and senators but what they do balkanizing our country.

For example, for a while I don't understand why SpaceX can achieve so much in a relatively short period of time, especially compare to NASA. Until one day I heard an interview on the radio. He said for any typical large manufacturing facilities, the corporation will demand most their major suppliers close enough to their plants. But for many NASA projects, our senators and congressmen demanded their home state's companies must have a share in the project directly or indirectly (from hardware to software to services). Otherwise they won't support the project.

So guess what, that means NASA or a NASA’s general contractor often has to deal with suppliers all over our 50 states! No matter how technically or financially make sense or not.

We also see cities and States across country use tax incentive or subsidy to lure corporations to set headquarters or factories in their region. The problem is those politically well-connected companies (normally big ones) are always get whatever they want in the name of job creation. They got spoiled with no real consequence if they don’t deliver. On the other hand those small, innovative, but not politically powerful companies are left out in an unfair competition situation.

Sorry, the more I write, the more I’m off the original topic. Probably we should start a Public Policy & Strategy forum area.
 
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barun

New member
There are another segment which will be greatly benefitted of new battery technology. It is electric car market. A battery which can hold more energy (and as a result car can go longer distance per charge) or can be charged very fast (making the charging of car battery equivalent to filling of petrol in car) will revolutionize the electric car market

Regards,
Barun
 
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