theion, a German sulfur battery start-up which aims to revolutionize mobile and stationary energy storage, announces advancements regarding their technological milestones as well as growth in terms of company scaling. The emerging Berlin-based start-up shares new insights into the company’s strategic progress following the expansion of its executive team last week. In addition to the progress in the development of its first monolayer pouch cells, theion’s team is expanding and moving into a new location in the district of Berlin-Adlershof.
theion’s team has now grown to 19 experts in their respective fields. Today, specialists from across ten nations work for theion. Furthermore, as part of their expansion efforts, the battery cell start-up has moved into a recently built 1,800 square meter location in Berlin’s leading science and technology park Berlin-Adlershof. The four floors, located in close proximity to the campus of Humboldt University Berlin, provide the company with space for further development and growth of sulfur battery technology.
“After successful testing of coin cells, we have built the first monolayer pouch cells. We will report on our progress after the next optimisation steps. Joining the whole team in one place is essential to keep up the pace and focus on the next milestones,” explains Dr. Ulrich Ehmes. “The potential of our technology is enormous. Either in combination with lithium for mobile applications or with sodium for stationary storage. We’re going to expand our team to work on the exciting challenges of developing products and processes.”
For mobile and portable applications, theion combines a monolithic sulfur cathode with a modified lithium metal anode. The monolithic sulfur-based cathode is prepared in order to present a high hierarchical morphology as well as an artificial percolation network that enables a high loading and a high utilisation factor of the active materials. To protect the cathode against polysulfide shuttles – the typical challenge of lithium-sulfur batteries – theion encloses the poly-crystalline sulfur wafer contained in its cathode with a special coating that is easy to apply and overcomes the insulating character of sulfur.
Next development steps include the conveyance of the process innovations from the coin cell level to pouch cells, and the assembly of multilayer pouch cells to increase the energy density of the battery.
For its first commercial cells, theion is aiming at a gravimetric energy density of 500 Wh/kg with a cyclability of 500 cycles. According to current material prices and the cost of material in application with theion’s technology, prices could be reduced significantly at even low production volumes, with the strategic advantage of full supply self-sufficiency and thus independence from cathode active material procurement from Asia. In the past months, relevant patents protecting the company’s main intellectual property were granted. Further patents are in the filing process.