Honeywell has signed t used in electrolytes for lithium-ion batteries.

The grant, originally announced in August 2009, is intended to help Honeywell become the first US supplier of LiPF6. (Earlier post.)

The grant was awarded as part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and is designed to accelerate the market introduction and penetration of advanced electric drive vehicles, reducing fuel consumption and vehicle emissions of greenhouse gases.

The electrolyte in conventional lithium-ion batteries consists of a lithium salt such as LiPF6 or LiClO4 in an organic solvent such as ethylene carbonate or propylene carbonate.

LiPF6 facilitates the transport of lithium ions within the battery, which allows the batteries to store and discharge energy. Honeywell has developed a novel, environmentally-sound process to manufacture high-purity LiPF6. The process produces less waste and a more consistently pure product than alternate processes, according to the company.

According to independent market research published by Avicenne, a leading market research firm, demand for lithium-ion batteries is expected to grow more than 40%, from $7.2 billion in 2010 to $10.1 billion in 2015, driven by demand for plug-in hybrid and all-electric vehicles.

Honeywell’s LiPF6 production process was developed at Honeywell’s research and development facility in Buffalo, NY. The facility has a proven record of developing and commercializing innovative molecules used today in a number of applications, including refrigerants, blowing agents, solvents and energy storage.