Symposium EN03—Green Electrochemical Energy Storage Solutions—Materials, Processes and Devices
The United Nations define a sustainable development as “development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs”. However, the present technologies for electronic and energy storage devices, dominated by inorganic materials, have proven to lack sustainability since they generate colossal amounts of waste of electrical and electronic equipment (WEEE) and cause rapid depletion of natural elements. In contrast, "green" or “bio-sourced” carbon-based materials and technologies are paramount avenues towards the ambitious target of sustainability in the electronic and energy storage fields. Presently, batteries are one of the main sources of WEEE, therefore new chemistries and technologies covering the entire supply chain for developing environmentally friendly batteries are in high demand. Reuse and recycling are key strategy to achieve a low environmental impact of batteries, and in general electrochemical energy storage and conversion devices. Substituting critical materials (precious and/or heavy metals) and using easy-to-recover chemicals (like ionic liquids), implementing new electrode and membrane production processes (e.g. aqueous processing of composite electrode, additive printing, electrospinning methods) will have an impact on energy storage carbon footprint. Newly designed batteries, that use of carbon-based biosourced redox-active electrode materials, natural binders and aqueous electrolytes, are expected to be biodegradable within dedicated waste management facilities. At the same time, this symposium aims to develop perspectives for future research directions in lithium-ion batteries (e.g., graphite-LiCoO2 system with organic electrolytes) with significantly higher specific energy, enhanced safety and excellent cycle life. Such batteries must be developed so that electric vehicles can become a viable replacement for gasoline and disel powered vehicles.