News

Large-Scale Production of Carbon-Ion Cells Beginning in China

June 25, 2017 by Jeff Shepard

ZapGo Ltd. (Zap&Go), developer of Carbon-Ion (C-Ion) cells, a fast-charging and safe alternative to lithium batteries, is on course to begin manufacturing commercial quantities of its next-generation cells. The company has concluded a collaborative partnership agreement with Li-Fun Technology Co Ltd., a large-scale manufacturer of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries headquartered in Zhuzhou, Hunan Province, China. C-Ion cells are one of the first to reach commercialization as an alternative to lithium-ion.

Zap&Go’s technology will initially be used in electric scooters, cordless power tools and robotic cleaners. The cells can be recharged in five minutes or less instead of the current standard of several hours. Products powered by Zap&Go cells are expected to be available in stores and online in early 2018. The company expects to introduce further products as manufacturing capacity grows.

The cells are designed to be manufactured using the same production lines used for lithium-ion cells, thereby enabling high yield and quality levels without the need to design or install new production lines.

Stephen Voller, CEO & Founder of Zap&Go, commented, “Partnering with Li-Fun will transform Zap&Go from the R&D stage to commercialization and we look forward to bringing our disruptive technology to market. We believe Zap&Go’s C-Ion cells may soon replace lithium-ion in certain vertical markets where quick charging and safety are essential.”

Dr. Kent Tu, President & Founder of Li-Fun, commented, “We are pleased and honored that Zap&Go has selected us to be its first large-scale manufacturing partner. Our continual investment in state-of-the-art manufacturing facilities has made Li-Fun an ideal fit for Zap&Go. We look forward to a strong partnership and cooperation and to help bring C-Ion technology to market for use in a wide variety of electronic products.”

Two criteria are essential to the performance of Zap&Go’s Carbon-Ion cell: A large surface area is needed to store the charge, as the surface area is proportional to the amount of energy which can be stored. And, second, high conductivity is needed to deliver and remove electrons from the carbon surfaces. Conductivity is a measure of the speed and efficiency with which energy can be transferred.

Several classes of carbon are used to achieve the perfect balance. High surface area carbons can be created from pyrolysis of either synthetic polymeric materials, or natural materials such as coconut husks. These are activated by heating in either steam or carbon dioxide and are called ‘activated carbons’, the principal sources of energy storage capacity.

Carbon Blacks, Carbon Nanotubes (CNT) and Graphene are used to adjust the conductivity, and the speed and efficiency, of storage. As Graphene is the most conductive of these three, it offers both a faster rate of charging and also higher efficiency of storage