Dual-functioning electrolyte improves capacity of long-life batteries
By Nick Lavars
May 4, 2014
May 4, 2014
In testing the effectiveness of its newly-developed electrolyte, the team worked with a lithium carbon fluoride battery, deemed an ideal test subject for its long life, high energy density and stability. By incorporating a solid lithium thiophosphate electrolyte, the team created a battery chemistry wherein the electrolyte and the cathode worked in cooperation, resulting in a battery capacity 26 percent higher than if they were to function independently.
According to the researchers, this new form of cooperative chemistry could add years or even decades to the life of such batteries. The findings hold promise for any application where recharging or replacing a long-life battery can be problematic, such as in pacemakers, keyless systems or remote sensors.
“If you have a pacemaker, you don’t want to undergo surgery every 10 years to replace the battery,” Liang says. “What if a battery could last 30 to 50 years? Our fundamental research is opening up that possibility through a new design mechanism.”
The team's findings were published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.