Fundamentals of Ionic Devices Research Team
We engage in nanoscale level observations to identify the causes of degradation in storage batteries, fuel cells, electrolyzers, and other ionic devices that are vital for a zero emission society.
- Creation of technology for highly efficient conversion of CO₂, water, and renewable energy into chemical substances
- Development of materials, safety tests, and operation methods based on analysis of electronic states, to realize safe, reliable, and high-performance power storage technology
Research Team Leader / Greetings
Our team is called the FINDER Team (Fundamentals of Ionic Devices Research Team). Our expertise is in clarifying the behavior of ions and electrons through electron microscopy and related technologies. We have cordial relationships with other research teams going back even before GZR's establishment, through the accommodation of equipment. Going forward, we will work to make the inspiring image of the zero emission society on the cover of this brochure into a reality through ongoing collaboration across the whole of the organization.
To realize “Zero emission society”, large-scale utilization of renewable energies, such as photovoltaics (PV) and Wind-power generation, is necessary. It is also necessary to develop technologies for energy storage and energy transport to effectively use of renewable energies because of output fluctuation of renewable energies.
Ionic devices such as storage batteries and electrolysis cells convert electrical energy into chemical energy, and vice versa. Electrochemical devices are necessary to storage and to transport electric energy as chemical energy.
Ionic devices are layers of different materials. On the materials’ surfaces and interfaces, chemical reactions and the movement of ions and electrons convert energy. What are the materials’ surfaces and interfaces like? When a device is operating, what happens on at the interfaces? The answers will lead to improved ionic device performance.
Our group carry out fundamental research on ionic devices, such as solid oxide electrochemical cells (SOCs) and lithium ion batteries (LIBs), to drastically increase performance and reliability. We produce ionic devices for various purposes and analyze them with cutting-edge measuring equipment for elucidation of physical properties and degradation mechanisms of devices.
①High-efficiency energy conversion system with SOEC technology
Solid Oxide Electrolysis cell (SOEC) has advantages of High efficiency with low electrolytic voltage, and it can directly produce syngas (CO+H2 gas) by co-electrolysis of H2O and CO2.
Combined with a catalytic reaction process, an SOEC is very efficient at turning converting water and carbon dioxide into various raw materials for making chemical products such as methane with a conversion efficiency of nearly 90%. SOECs will be a useful way to achieve carbon neutrality by producing fuel from the CO2 and renewable energy.
②Safe, reliable and high-performance batteries
A key feature of lithium ion batteries (LIBs) is extremely high energy density. For this reason, LIBs are the most promising batteries for distributed power sources such as electric vehicles and stationary batteries for homes. On the other hand, redox flow batteries (RFBs) are expected to be used in renewable energy power plants consisting of large-scale solar and wind power generation facilities, because key feature of RFB is large-capacity and long-life storage batteries. LIBs are devices that store energy in a solid. In recent years, there has been a growing interest in developing all-solid-state batteries that do not use an electrolyte. RFBs are devices that store energy in a liquid and operate by flowing the electrolyte.
For development of innovative materials for high performances batteries, we use cutting-edge nanostructural control techniques to elucidate physical properties and degradation mechanisms of batteries from the electronic state using the synchrotron radiation soft X-rays, and the obtained data is used for material development.
Goals of the Fundamentals of Ionic Devices Research Team
Our team is called the FINDER Team (Fundamentals of Ionic Devices Research Team). Our expertise is on clarifying the behavior of ions and electrons.
We will contribute to the achievement of an exciting zero-emission society with collaboration and communications across the global research institutes.