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Gillian Goward Gets $3.5m for Electric Car Battery Research Print E-mail

Goward group2                                           Click on the picture for a CHCH News clip!

Yesterday, Dr Gillian Goward was presented with $3.5m for her research in electric car batteries.  Here are her words after receiving the grants and in-kind donations:

Good Morning. Thank you to Mike Wallace, for taking the time to visit us here at McMaster, and also welcome to Mayor Bratina. It is a pleasure to be able to show you some of what we have planned, and who will be involved, in this new research initiative.

I would like to start by acknowledging that this is a collaborative project, lead by our industrial partners, and with a strong multi-disciplinary flavor, encompassing experimental expertise in advanced characterization strategies, solid-state electrochemistry, and computational modeling. Researchers include Prof. Gianluigi Botton, in electron microscopy, me, in electrochemistry and magnetic resonance, and Prof. Bartek Protas mathematical modeling. Prof. Janine Mauzeroll at McGill provides expertise in scanning electrochemical microscopy, and additionally, two electrochemistry groups are contributing to the development of materials and electrochemical devices. These are lead by Prof. Andy Sun at the University of Western Ontario, and Prof. Steen Schougaard at the Universite Quebec a Montreal.

Automotive Partnerships Canada is a unique granting program, which puts the leadership of the research initiative in the hands of the industrial partners to choose the research questions that we set out to answer. For this reason, our collaborators in GM, both in Oshawa, and in Detroit, are incredibly important. The problem we have chosen to tackle is how and why lithium ion battery performance degrades over time, and what can be done to alleviate this loss of performance. This question is key to allowing GM to establish the warranty-able lifetime of new generations of cells. Our in situ characterization strategies will allow us to watch the electrochemical processes occurring in the battery in real time, using both magnetic resonance and electron microscopy techniques. Two key features are the structural properties, and the lithium ion dynamics. These properties, determined at the molecular level, govern the performance of the cell, whether it is a small coin cell, like these studied in chemistry groups worldwide, or in larger cells such as this prismatic cell, or in a large assembly of prismatic cells, as might be used in an electric vehicle.  

Our goal is to assess new chemistries of cathode, and electrolyte, and provide rapid feedback on the details of the performance of these emerging chemistries, using state-of-the-art methods. This data will be utilized to develop models of battery performance, and input into the design of next generation battery management systems.

In this project we will train 14 graduate students, and 5 post-doctoral fellows, over a 4 year time frame, as well as several undergraduate students.

Thank you to Mo, John Capone (& Lisa Barty) and Brian McCarry, my group.  Thank You - Jeff Nerenberg & John Wood, Government of Canada, Industry Canada, and GM, Bruker, Heka

(Link to The Spec article)

Chemistry & Chemical Biology
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