Eonix was originally spun out of the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) to explore the commercialization of 21 novel ionic liquid electrolytes for ultracapacitors developed through a series of New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) grants. After receiving a National Science Foundation (NSF) i-Corps award to explore the market potential of these electrolytes, we discovered that ultracapacitor device manufacturers were hampered far more by cost rather than device performance, contrary to the claims in academia. These concerns regarding ultracapacitor device cost were echoed in the interviews we later conducted with representatives at automotive OEMs. Despite the automotive performance advantages offered by ultracapacitors and demonstrated in the Chinese hybrid bus and European start stop markets, ultracapacitors would not be adopted for hybrid and electric vehicles by domestic automotive companies without a significant reduction in cost and size. At the conclusion of i-Corps, Eonix was awarded a $250k NYSERDA grant to further study different electrolyte solutions on the benchtop and prototype scale. By leveraging the diverse characterization resources available at the CNSE, Eonix observed the impact of different electrolyte compositions on the degradation of these devices when exposed to a larger potential window. A novel salt that reduced device resistance by 40% was developed during this project. Eonix now aims to leverage this highly conductive salt to develop an electrolyte that expands the potential window of ultracapacitor devices from 2.7V to 3.5V.
Ultracapacitors have the potential to transform the energy storage marketplace as a power dense system to complement emerging low power, energy dense technologies, such as solid state lithium ion batteries, in transportation and grid storage applications. The adoption of these devices by the automotive industry has been impeded by the high cost and large size of ultracapacitor modules. The development of a high voltage electrolyte would significantly lower the cost and size of ultracapacitor modules by expanding individual cell voltages from 2.7V to 3.5V, thus reducing the total number of cells needed per module. The resulting lower cost and smaller ultracapacitor modules can be used in tandem with lithium ion batteries to dramatically improve the efficiency, range, and longevity of hybrid and electric vehicles by reducing the need to oversize the battery pack for the high-power strain imposed by acceleration and regenerative braking.
2018 Market: $80 Million
2022 Market: $400 Million
Eonix has developed a novel salt that reduces device resistance by 40% and increases capacitance by 10%. This increase in ion mobility is now being leveraged to mitigate the resistive contributions of high stability, low conductivity solvents that can expand the voltage window of ultracapacitors.
Technology Readiness Level (TRL) 3
Don DeRosa – Chief Technology Officer