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Researchers Create A New Aluminum Air Battery That Can Significantly Increase The Duration Of Use
Nov 13, 2018

According to foreign media reports, the power density of rechargeable lithium-ion batteries is increasing at an annual rate of about 8%. If you continue at such a speed, they will approach the density of gasoline after about 10 years. On the other hand, aluminum-air batteries are almost as good as gasoline, and they are lighter and cheaper than lithium-ion batteries. However, it has a big problem, that is, corrosion.

But a new research team claims to have found a solution. According to their research paper published in Science, if they don't use lithium-ion batteries for a month, they will lose 5% of their electricity, and aluminum-air batteries will lose money in a month due to corrosion of aluminum. 80% of the electricity. However, the aluminum-air battery built by these researchers lost only 0.02% of electricity in a month, which is a thousand-fold improvement.

It is reported that a standard battery contains a liquid electrolyte, which is located between the anode and the cathode. When ions travel from the anode to the cathode, it generates energy by collecting the released electrons. In an aluminum-air battery, the anode is aluminum and the cathode is air. Since the battery can get air from the surrounding environment, and the aluminum is rich in reserves, light weight and low in price, this battery is likely to become the battery technology of the future.

Unfortunately, once the aluminum and electrolyte are mixed together, the latter begins to corrode the former. If a non-corrosive electrolyte is used, the performance of the battery is greatly reduced. Once the battery is back into standby, the electrolyte cannot be extracted because aluminum is hydrophilic. In response, the researchers proposed a solution to rinse the electrolyte with oil.

The researchers placed a thin film between the anode and cathode of the battery, which was filled with electrolyte twice when the battery was used. Once the battery enters the standby state, the side of the zui near the aluminum will be washed away by the oil. At this time, the oil acts to protect the aluminum. When the battery needs to be used again, the electrolyte will replace the oil. Since aluminum repels oil in the water, there is no oil left in the water at this time.

To test these batteries under test semi-realistic conditions, the researchers first used a small amount of power, then let it sit for a day or two, and then repeat the above steps. And this is similar to what electric cars might need to do in the city. At the end of the zui, the battery they developed continued to use for 24 days, which is 8 times more than the traditional aluminum-air battery.

Does this mean that aluminum-air batteries will replace lithium batteries in the next few years? The answer is no. Because there are still some complicated problems to be solved for charging the battery, the previous generations may not be able to charge or can only be charged several times.

Despite this, the aluminum-air battery can be used as an extension method like a hybrid car or when the driver forgets to charge the main battery. One researcher said that aluminum-air batteries have great potential in the market. "You can use the car and park it in the lane for a month. When you come back, you can still expect it to have a piece." The battery... I really think this is a game changer in battery usage."