In what it is calling a “synergistic play,” battery technology startup Leyden Energy said Tuesday (Jan. 10) it is teaming with Powermat Technologies, a developer of wireless charging technology, to develop high-density battery cells and packs based on Leyden’s core Li-imide salt technology.
The partners said the battery cells and packs will include embedded wireless charging functions. The deal was announced during the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas.
Under terms of the deal, Leyden (Fremont, Calif.) will supply Powermat with a version of a lithium-ion battery that is thin enough to embed in Powermat’s wireless charger without compromising the cell’s original battery capacity.
The partners said integration of wireless charging functionality requires thinner batteries that create additional space for a new layer of technology for wireless charging. Reducing battery size normally results in reduced battery capacity. Leyden claims its Li-imide battery chemistry enables thinner batteries with higher energy density without sacrificing cycle life.
Leyden’s technology model is straightforward: Enhance the thermal properties of Li-ion batteries so they can last longer at higher temperatures. Since chemical reactions in batteries speed up at high temperature, performance is degraded, and the number of charging cycles is reduced. The company says its core Li-imide salt technology, based on a DuPont patent, allows it to offer a three-year warranty on its Li-ion batteries, compared with the one-year industry-standard warranty.
The company announced a Series B funding round totaling $20
million last September. Those funds were used to boost production capacity to meet growing demand in the consumer electronics market. “We’re putting a lot of emphasis on the mobile space” and collaborating in the electric vehicle market, including light EVs and even scooters, said Noam Kedem, Leyden Energy’s vice president of marketing.
The startup is currently working with an undisclosed EV partner as part of a $2.96 million grant from the California Energy Commission. It also has won a $1 million contract from the U.S. Energy Department to develop a non-flammable Li-ion battery electrolyte.