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Evonik Team Nominated for the German Future Prize

Trailblazing development leads to a new generation of lithium-ion batteries


The team comprising Dr. Andreas Gutsch, Dr. Gerhard Hörpel,both from Evonik Industries, and Prof. Dr. Paul Roth from the University of Duisburg-Essen has been nominated for the 2007 German Future Prize, the Federal President´s Award for Technology and Innovation. With its trailblazing development of a ceramic, yet flexible, separator - which separates the anode and cathode, and which will make lithium-ion batteries more efficient and powerful in future - the Evonik project team headed by Dr. Andreas Gutsch is one of four nominated teams hoping to be awarded the German President's Prize for Technology and Innovation. The prize will be awarded in Berlin on December 6 by German President Dr. Horst Köhler.

Small lithium-ion batteries are now used in almost all notebooks, cell phones, and camcorders throughout the world. But it has not been possible to use lithium-ion batteries in hybrid and electric cars, or in large stationary applications, because of the lack of reliability on the battery and cell levels. The current plastic separators, which separate the anode and cathode in the battery, lose their stability at temperatures above 140 degrees Celsius (284ºF).

With its SEPARION® separators - the pioneering product from the Group's lithium-ion technology portfolio - Evonik Industries has now succeeded in making lithium-ion batteries more reliable, more powerful, and longer-lasting. "With this technology we are developing very attractive applications for large mobile and stationary batteries, for which doubledigit growth rates are forecast," says Dr. Andreas Gutsch. "In the coming ten years, the market volume for large-volume lithium-ion batteries will cross the EUR10 billion threshold and sales of battery materials will exceed EUR4 billion." Dr, Gutsch, who is responsible for lithium-ion technology in the Evonik Group, is the spokesman for the three-man project team that has been nominated for the Future Prize. The other members of the team are Dr. Gerhard Hörpel (Evonik) and Prof. Dr. Paul Roth (University of Duisburg-Essen).

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