InnovationLab acquires flexible, printed, rechargeable-battery tech from Evonik

Metal-free TAeTTOOz® polymeric materials for printed, rechargeable, solid-state batteries.

Heidelberg, Germany-based InnovationLab, an expert in printed electronics "from lab to fab," has acquired the TAeTTOOz® printable-battery technology from Evonik.InnovationLab and Evonik have been close partners in this field for many years and have jointly driven the technological development of TAeTTOOz to the present threshold of industrial-scale production.

TAeTTOOz is the first technology of its kind that enables flexible, rechargeable, solid-state batteries to be printed at industrial scale. These ultra-thin, printed batteries are far more flexible, safer and more environmentally friendly than traditional metal-based batteries. Typical applications are set to include low-cost IoT sensor labels for packaging and stock management, wireless industrial sensor technologies, and self-powered signage solutions.

Dr. Janusz Schinke, head of Printed Electronics at InnovationLab, says, "We are very excited to now be offering our customers printed, polymer-based, rechargeable batteries as the next game-changing component in the field of printed electronics. Our material and printing experts have worked closely with Evonik on developing this technology for several years. And with Heidelberg Printed Electronics as our manufacturing partner, we are now looking forward to bringing printed, rechargeable batteries into mass production. We have an existing portfolio of active customer projects that, thanks to TAeTTOOz, will continue to expand both in scope and number."

Dr. Michael Korrell, head of New Growth Area Energy Storage at Evonik, adds, "This industrialization phase will see Evonik providing TAeTTOOz technology to our long-term partner InnovationLab. InnovationLab's strong industry-leading position and its 'one-stop shop' philosophy, combined with TAeTTOOz and printed-electronics capability, will enable it to offer an impressive array of unique, customized solutions." 

TAeTTOOz technology can also be used with energy-harvesting components to create self-powered signage, packaging and other innovative devices. For example, the technology has already been successfully applied in conjunction with printed, organic photovoltaic (OPV) solar cells.

TAeTTOOz is based on redox-active polymers and can be processed using conventional-printing methods to produce thin, flexible battery cells, which enable electrical energy to be stored without the need for metals or metallic compounds. Furthermore, battery cells based on TAeTTOOz technology do not require liquid electrolyte to function, which inherently eliminates the risk of leakage and any resultant hazards.

The battery is not charged during production, so no extra handling precautions are needed, and it can be produced on standard printing presses. As the battery does not hold any voltage before its first charge, follow-up processes like picking and placing of components are possible, without the risk of damaging the components by overvoltage.