Accelerated Design of Redox-Active Polymers for Metal-Free Batteries
Growth in electrified transportation and grid-scale energy storage has been accompanied by increased demand for lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries. This has caused an increase in world-wide demand of strategic metals such as cobalt and lithium, for which the US does not have deep reserves. To address this challenge, this project envisions metal-free, recyclable, organic batteries based upon redox-active, radical-containing polymers using a multi-disciplinary data-centric approach. The project also bears impact on other potential application areas opening the door to metal-free electronics, memory storage, and spintronics. This project will provide educational training opportunities in synthetic chemistry, polymer science, electrochemistry, and computational chemistry and physics specific to organic batteries. Education and outreach activities will be jointly developed and deployed at The University of Chicago’s No Small Matter Molecular Engineering Fair, Texas A&M University’s Physics & Engineering Festival, and other venues. Workforce development is planned through participant mentoring and workshops targeted to industrial, academic, and government researchers.