Carlsbad’s Amionx inks licensing deal with Stanley Black & Decker for safe battery technology

Carlsbad's Amionx inks licensing deal with Stanley Black & Decker for safe battery technology

Amionx, a Carlsbad company that has developed technology to make batteries safer, has entered into a patent licensing agreement with power tool maker Stanley Black & Decker.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed. But it is the first publicly announced license for Amionx’s SafeCore technology, which acts as a circuit breaker to prevent lithium-ion batteries from igniting from an internal short, overcharge or overheating in high temperatures.

Amionx also has a license with a well-known consumer electronics company that wishes to remain confidential, said Chief Executive Jenna King.

“The companies we are working with are all known for high-quality products that are safe,” said King. “But where they go with this technology is thinking about what can I do with that next-generation battery when it comes to energy density, for example.

“Or with some of the new chemistries, can this enable some of those chemistries that otherwise are out of reach because they are too volatile?” she continued, “Or can I now change the design of my battery?

Amionx is a spinout of American Lithium Energy, which has designed and manufactured batteries for the Department of Defense for more than a decade.

American Lithium founder Jiang Fan developed SafeCore for rugged, portable military battery packs to keep them from catching fire when damaged by gunfire or other means.

Fan is the chief technology officer of Amionx. The technology is applied as a thin coating between the current collector and the active electrode layer. The company says adding SafeCore in the manufacturing line does not require new equipment and adds only a small increase for the bill of materials for the battery.

While battery makers use myriad techniques to improve safety, they sometimes can reduce performance or increase costs, according to Amionx. It is targeting several sectors to prove its SafeCore technology, including electric vehicles, storage batteries to capture rooftop solar power and various consumer electronics products such as mobile phones, laptop computers and power tools.

Amionx doesn’t license to the battery makers themselves. Instead, it targets end customers who can then sub-license the technology to its battery suppliers.

“With all the companies we are working with, they have battery teams,” said King. “These companies are innovative and they are constantly looking for new and better battery technology and how they can work with their manufacturers to design that next-generation battery.”

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