Skip to main content
European Commission logo print header

CELLulose nanocomposite separators for the nEXt generation of smart batteries


As the popularity of electric vehicles continues to increase, so does the number of batteries reaching the end-of-life that are used to power them being expected that by 2030 it will reach 2 million tons worldwide. On top of this the complexity of battery production results in very high scrap rates (about 10%-30%), especially during production ramp-up, while the scarcity of raw materials in Europe are intensifying EU regulations to localize supply chains and safeguard critical raw materials.
It is evident that there is strong need to increase sustainability in the batteries value chain and contributions may come from improving both their lifetime and recyclability of the cell components. In EXCELL it is proposed to prove a new concept for batteries separators based on a 100% natural cellulose nanocomposite with tuneable mesopores obtained by a mixture of nanofibers and cellulose nanocrystals. Additionally, these new separators will be suitable for the incorporation of sensing elements that will enable the new generation of smart battery cells. EXCELL will follow the outputs of NEWFUN-StG where it was demonstrated that cellulose based ionic conductive materials are possible to be recycled and reused while maintaining the electrochemical performance. The PI’s team has also demonstrated that cellulose nanocrystals are able to create mesoporous ionic conductive channels that can be tunned to specific alkali ions but proper functionalization of the crystals’ surface. EXCELL will now demonstrate the synergic effect of combining both to form hierarchical mesoporous membranes exhibiting a unique set of characteristics that can meet those ones expected for an “ideal” separator.
EXCELL will follow an approach of validating the new separator concept and then implement a IPR consolidation and a business case to attract the attention of battery market stakeholders on new opportunities for cell components based on abundant natural resources that are recyclable/biodegradable.


Host institution

Net EU contribution
€ 150 000,00
1099 085 Lisboa

See on map

Continente Área Metropolitana de Lisboa Área Metropolitana de Lisboa
Activity type
Higher or Secondary Education Establishments
Total cost
No data

Beneficiaries (1)