Scientists from Stanford University managed to find a solution to all the key problems of existing batteries based on liquid metals. According to them, we are on the threshold of discovery – the new battery will be cheaper, safer and more efficient than the current ones, while the technology is easily scalable, and the energy carrier remains liquid even at room temperature, without additional conditions. So what did they create?
The classic scheme of a liquid battery involves three tanks. The first two contain the cathode and anode in liquid form, in the third they are mixed, but remain separated by a membrane through which electrons leak, which ensures the charging and discharging of the battery. The potential capacity of such batteries is very high, but they use toxic components and require scrupulous maintenance.
Engineers from Stanford replaced the cathode with an alloy of sodium and potassium that remains liquid at room temperature and, in theory, has a 10-fold greater energy density than all other suitable metal mixtures. Four types of aqueous solutions are proposed as an anode. The old membrane has been replaced with a new one, ceramic, with a coating of potassium and aluminum oxides. It reliably separates two fluid media, but retains the property of migration of electrons between them.
The prototype immediately showed a twofold increase in the maximum voltage in comparison with other liquid batteries. And demonstrated stable performance for thousands of hours of experiments. The technology allows to improve the design of the battery in different directions, achieving improvement of specific indicators, it has tremendous potential for modernization. And this means that new records are just around the corner.js.src = “&version=v2.8”; 'script', 'facebook-jssdk'));