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Small Business Innovation Research/Small Business Tech Transfer

Carbon Nanotube-based Supercapacitor, Phase I

Completed Technology Project

Project Introduction

Carbon Nanotube-based Supercapacitor, Phase I
To address NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's need for improved cost-effective, low mass and low volume devices or methods to store electrical energy onboard long duration (100-day mission) balloon flights at mid-latitudes and altitudes of 30-40 km, Luminit, LLC, proposes to develop a new carbon nanotube-based supercapacitor (CANS) with our mature chemical solution deposition (sol-gel) technology. This approach incorporates new CNT-sol-gel based electrode materials and alignment of CNT in the sol-gel, which enables us to meet NASA requirements for cost-effective, low mass and low volume, 28 V DC and 100 watt to 1000 watt power level. CANS offers very high power and energy, millions of charge/discharge cycles, rapid charge and discharge times, high efficiencies (98%), and cycle life >15 years, and functions at extreme temperatures. In Phase I, Luminit will demonstrate the feasibility of CANS by fabricating unpackaged prototype CNT-sol-gel based supercapacitors and comparing their performance to that of commercially available rechargeable batteries, which will reduce development risk in Phase II. In Phase II Luminit plans to continue the research and development of the CANS fabrication process, optimization of electrode material, computer simulation to make a large supercapacitor using CANS (one CANS cell will provide 2.5 V to 3 V) to achieve NASA's requirements. The demonstrated results will offer NASA capabilities to provide power storage. CANS is currently at TRL #2 at the beginning, by the end of Phase I it is estimated that it will have reached TRL #3. More »

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