PALO ALTO, California and BERKELEY, California, Feb. 22, 2018 /PRNewswire/ -- OneD Material™ ("OneD") announces the issuance on January 30th of US Patent No. 9,881,999 ('999) for an invention from Professor Peidong Yang, at the University of California, Berkeley, together with several co-inventors, covering a broad range of nanowire structures which can be used in various energy applications. This new patent, assigned to UC Berkeley, is part of a set of seminal nanotechnology patents exclusively licensed to OneD by UC Berkeley and by Harvard University.
The '999 patent belongs to a broad patent family originating from a US application filed in 2001, the same year when three world-renowned scientists, Prof. Peidong Yang, Prof. Paul Alivisatos (both now at UC Berkeley) and Prof. Charles Lieber (at Harvard) became the scientific co-founders of Nanosys®, a pioneer nanotechnology company in Silicon Valley, now leader in the production of quantum dots materials for displays. In 2013, OneD Material acquired from Nanosys its nanowire-related intellectual property assets (including exclusive rights to commercialize seminal nanowire inventions from the above universities and inventors) and the Energy R&D team led by Dr. Yimin Zhu, who then became OneD's Chief Technology Officer.
"Translating fundamental university research in nanowires into commercial applications requires many breakthroughs. A first step requires the ability to produce a large population of nanowire structures within a desired specification range, as taught in this newly granted patent. Given that industrial applications typically require hundreds or thousands of tons annually and that 100 billion nanowires weigh less than one milligram, it is not surprising that very few companies have been able to commercialize these nanostructures," noted Professor Peidong Yang.
"For over 10 years, Dr. Yimin Zhu and his team tested many silicon nanowire-based electrodes for various energy applications (fuel cells, super-capacitors and lithium-ion batteries) and translated fundamental nanowire inventions into composite silicon/carbon materials that can be produced in large industrial quantities at a competitive cost to meet market requirements. Along the way, many new structures, processes and equipment were invented (e.g. WO2018/013991, US9812699) and extensively tested, culminating in the recent completion of the transfer of production technologies to a Joint Venture Partner, now producing OneD's SiNANOde® material in increasing industrial quantities and supplying world-leading battery makers," added Vincent Pluvinage, OneD's Chief Executive Officer.
Silicon nanowires (known as a "one-dimensional material" because of their very small diameter and comparatively very long length) were first discovered about two decades ago. OneD's SiNANOde® materials add silicon nanowires' unique electrochemical and electronic properties to commercial graphite powders commonly used in coating anode electrodes for lithium-ion batteries. Use of SiNANOde® anodes in batteries leads to significantly higher energy and power densities, faster charging at lower temperatures, and better performance for a wide range of applications, from power tools to consumer electronics and electrical vehicles.