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2017-03-22

New batteries can be made from salt and glass, shows research



Lithium-ion batteries are no longer enough to supplement the modern rate of energy consumption.
Going all-electric is pegged as the ideal way to a carbon-free economy. But the problem is that current battery technology is still largely insufficient. The man who invented the lithium-ion battery may have just invented the solution to this dilemma.
The 94-year-old inventor, John Goodenough and a team of researchers, has just developed the very first all-solid-state battery cells, reports Bloomberg.
“John Goodenough, inventor of the lithium battery, has developed the first all-solid-state battery cells,” said Alphabet Inc.’s executive chairman Eric Schmidt via Twitter. Schmidt adds that the new batteries are “promising.”
Goodenough claims that the solid-state batteries can carry three times the charge that current lithium-ion batteries can manage. He also says that these could be made entirely from glass.
The research team’s conclusion, as published by the United Kingdom Royal Society of Chemistry, indicated that the batteries could transmit and store energy at lower temperatures than lithium-ion packs, and could be made using sodium.
These low-cost, safe, high-density, and long life cycle batteries would be very beneficial to the growing electric vehicle market. Solid-state batteries would also help to supplement solar and wind energy use.
The reason behind Goodenough and his team’s research was driven by an urgent need to reduce fossil-fuel dependence and combat climate change.
The research team is currently working on several patents and are looking to collaborate with battery makers “to develop and test their new materials in electric vehicles and energy storage devices.”
It took 11 years for Goodenough’s lithium batteries to hit the market back in 1991. Given the current high demand for better batteries, what with all the gadgetry we have in our pockets, there’s hope that solid-state batteries won’t take a decade to become commercialized