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Tue Aug 18, 2015, 03:30 PM

Going solid-state could make batteries safer and longer-lasting

New research paves the way for rechargeable batteries with almost indefinite lifetimes, researchers say
http://newsoffice.mit.edu/2015/solid-state-rechargeable-batteries-safer-longer-lasting-0817


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Illustrations show the crystal structure of a superionic conductor. The backbone of the material is a body-centred cubic-like arrangement of sulphur anions. Lithium atoms are depicted in green, sulfur atoms in yellow, PS4 tetrahedra in purple, and GeS4 tetrahedra in blue. Researchers have revealed the fundamental relationship between anion packing and ionic transport in fast lithium-conducting materials.
Image: Yan Wang



Now researchers at MIT and Samsung, and in California and Maryland, have developed a new approach to one of the three basic components of batteries, the electrolyte. The new findings are based on the idea that a solid electrolyte, rather than the liquid used in today’s most common rechargeables, could greatly improve both device lifetime and safety — while providing a significant boost in the amount of power stored in a given space.

The results are reported in the journal Nature Materials in a paper by MIT postdoc Yan Wang, visiting professor of materials science and engineering Gerbrand Ceder, and five others. They describe a new approach to the development of solid-state electrolytes that could simultaneously address the greatest challenges associated with improving lithium-ion batteries, the technology now used in everything from cellphones to electric cars.

The electrolyte in such batteries — typically a liquid organic solvent whose function is to transport charged particles from one of a battery’s two electrodes to the other during charging and discharging — has been responsible for the overheating and fires that, for example, resulted in a temporary grounding of all of Boeing’s 787 Dreamliner jets, Ceder explains. Others have attempted to find a solid replacement for the liquid electrolyte, but this group is the first to show that this can be done in a formulation that fully meets the needs of battery applications.

Solid-state electrolytes could be “a real game-changer,” Ceder says, creating “almost a perfect battery, solving most of the remaining issues” in battery lifetime, safety, and cost.
(more)


... now, keep in mind this is cutting edge research and there is a lead time before a lab result makes it to a commercial reality - if it doesn't run into some prohibitive costs hurdles or technical problems in scaling this up from lab to industrial scale. But with these considerations in mind, this is indeed very interesting news on the research front.

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Reply Going solid-state could make batteries safer and longer-lasting (Original post)
Bill USA Aug 2015 OP
Fearless Aug 2015 #1

Response to Bill USA (Original post)

Tue Aug 18, 2015, 08:44 PM

1. It'll never happen unless they can find a way to make them "die" at some point.

Like CFL bulbs and intentional defects.

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