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Inventory of six major breakthroughs in the battery field in 2019

Battery is undoubtedly a hot keyword in 2019. Every aspect of society will benefit from car manufacturers, consumer electronics manufacturers, and all advances in battery technology that care about the environment. This article has taken stock of the most important technological breakthroughs in the battery field in 2019.

1.Rechargeable under high temperature conditions

Ideally, the lithium-ion batteries that power our mobile devices and electric vehicles should be kept within a certain temperature range when charging, otherwise there will be a risk of degradation and a much shorter service life. However, if we can charge it safely, it can be charged at higher temperatures, which means higher efficiency, so the charging time may be greatly shortened.

In October, a research team at Pennsylvania State University demonstrated a new type of battery to absorb heat. Scientists generally believe that charging batteries at about 60 ° C (140 ° F) is prohibited, but researchers' devices can reach these temperatures in just 10 minutes and then quickly cool down to minimize harmful effects.

The focus of the breakthrough was a thin nickel foil, which scientists attached to the battery's negative terminal so that it quickly warmed as the electrons flowed, and then quickly cooled again. In this way, the team can safely charge the battery at more than 1,700 cycles at this temperature. Scientists say that this is so efficient that it is equivalent to charging an electric vehicle within 200 to 300 miles (320 to 480 kilometers) in just 10 minutes.

2.Capturing carbon dioxide while charging

In October, a team of researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology demonstrated a new type of battery that has the ability to capture carbon dioxide from the surrounding air. The device is called an "pendulum" battery, and it uses a stack of electrodes coated with a compound called polyanthraquinone, which allows them to absorb CO2 molecules that are just nearby.

This process occurs naturally when the battery is charged until the electrode is full of CO2. At this point, it can be released to absorb CO2 molecules for collection and use as an industrial product. The team said that laboratory tests showed that its electric swing-type battery could last 7,000 charge cycles and that efficiency was only reduced by 30%. Researchers are now looking at 20,000 to 50,000 cycles.

3.Lithium-carbon dioxide battery can be fully charged

The energy density of a lithium-carbon dioxide battery is more than seven times that of a lithium-ion battery. However, it has been very difficult to develop a version that can be repeatedly charged. This is because during the charging process, excessive carbon deposits on the battery catalyst.

In September, scientists at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC) reported a solution to the problem of carbon deposits, demonstrating what they call the first fully-chargeable lithium-carbon dioxide battery.

The battery uses a "nanosheet" of molybdenum disulfide built in the cathode and a mixed electrolyte composed of ionic liquid and dimethyl sulfoxide. This material combination prevents carbon from accumulating on the catalyst and enables the battery to Charging takes place in successive cycles.

4.Grid-level energy storage with a molten silicon core

Renewable energy sources such as wind and solar energy can generate a large amount of electricity, but it will store this electricity in case it is needed, which is required by the uncertainty of the weather. As early as April, Australian startup Climate Change Technologies (CCT) introduced a solution it believes is more efficient than standard lithium-ion-powered grid storage solutions.

Its thermal energy equipment (TED) is known as the world's first operational thermal battery. It is a modular battery that can be fed from any source and used to melt the silicon in the insulating room. The heat engine can then extract this energy for use as needed, each TED box can store 1.2 MWh, and the various units can be connected to make a battery that may have unlimited size.

According to CCT, a big advantage of this system is that molten silicon does not degrade like lithium. In testing, the company stated that its batteries showed no signs of degradation over 3,000 test cycles, and it expects them to last 20 years or more. In addition to a long service life, TED batteries are said to store up to six times the energy per unit capacity of lithium-ion batteries, with prices ranging from about 60% to 80% of their price.

5.Double energy density

Lithium-ion batteries can carry enough energy to maintain your phone's working time for a day, or power your laptop with a power source, but it will be limited for transportation. This is because compared to conventional fuel, the built-in battery energy density of cars and airplanes seem too pale, which means that if you do not increase its weight can not increase mileage.

In October, a promising path was proposed through the Institute of Advanced Materials at Deakin University, Australia, where scientists demonstrated a new type of battery with a solid electrolyte made of commercially available polymers. This is considered to be "in the scientific community and no liquid transport lithium ions efficiently first instance."

By avoiding flammable volatile liquid electrolytes, batteries should be safer, but their potential doesn't stop there. Researchers say that this type of design will eventually allow the use of lithium metal anodes, which can double the density of lithium batteries. This could lead to greater range for electric cars, while electric planes can travel meaningful distances.

6.Expansion of the world's largest energy storage project

In 2017, Tesla won a contract to build the world's largest lithium-ion battery, providing South Australia with 129 MWh of additional storage capacity and a maximum output of 100 MW.

Now, under a new agreement, South Australia is asking for a further increase of 64.5MWh of capacity and 50MWh of output. The project, scheduled for mid-2020, will increase the size of the world's largest battery facility by about 50%.

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