Association of European Automotive and Industrial Battery Manufacturers

Lithium-Ion (Li-Ion) is currently the dominant battery system for portable applications. It was introduced to the market by SONY in 1991. Due to the high capacity of active materials and a single cell voltage of 3.6V, Li-Ion provides the highest energy density of all rechargeable systems operating at room temperature. Li-Ion batteries are also available as lithium polymer batteries using a solid or gel-type electrolyte.

The Li-Ion battery employs a Lithium metal oxide cathode and a carbon anode with an organic electrolyte. Over the last years tremendous improvements on battery parameters have been achieved. Both the high level of energy and power makes the Li-Ion system very suitable for various applications, ranging from high energy to high power. The high single cell voltage not only results in high performance, but also allows the use of fewer cells, compared to other battery systems.

Lithium based batteries can be found in electric vehicles and aerospace applications.

In lithium based batteries, the anode is made of carbon, while the cathode is a lithiated metal oxide (LiCoO2, LiMO2, etc.). The electrolyte is made up of lithium salts (such as LiPF6) dissolved in organic carbonates. When the battery is being charged, the Lithium atoms in the cathode become ions and migrate through the electrolyte toward the carbon anode where they combine with external electrons and are deposited between carbon layers as lithium atoms. This process is reversed during discharge. Because lithium reacts to water, non-aqueous solutions are used.