Toyota Group has invested in Japanese polymer lithium-ion battery developer APB Corporation by means of third-party allocation of new shares.
Japanese conglomerate Toyota made the investment in the start-up that manufactures a bipolar-stacked lithium-ion battery through its trading arm Toyota Tsusho Corporation.
Through the investment, Toyota Tsusho plans to support the commercialisation of the world’s first all polymer battery by APB in a range of applications, including large, stationary power sources and motor vehicles.
In addition, Toyota Tsusho Group will promote APB products through its sales network.
APB’s next-generation lithium-ion battery is nearly all made of polymer, including electrodes, which it says shortens the manufacturing process of the cathode and anode in comparison to conventional lithium-ion batteries.
The polymer facilitates easier creation of thick-film electrodes, and enables increase in cell size and greater versatility in shape, say APB.
APB’s bipolar structure is configured to make the electric current flow perpendicular to the electrode plane, unlike the conventional lithium-ion battery structure in which the current flows parallel to the electrodes.
This structure enables use of a polymer current collector that has higher impedance for both electrodes and improves safety. Furthermore, the battery cells can be connected sheet by sheet in series, cutting down the number of parts and simplifying the production process.