Three Battery Technologies with Great Potential

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

It’s a good week when at least three battery developments show promise for electric vehicle use in the near future.  One advanced lithium-ion battery from France, a dual-carbon battery from Japan, and a supercapacitor that one can wrap around one’s finger comprise the trio. French Lithium-Tin Dioxide “Synthesizing nanoparticles of tin dioxide (SnO2) in the pores of a carbonaceous material,” researchers at the Institute of Materials Science of Mulhouse and Charles Gerhardt Institute of Montpellier, part of an electrochemical energy storage consortium called RS2E, have found the material to have “remarkable properties.”  Their work is the subject of a patent and published in the journal, Advanced Energy Materials. Researchers, hoping to obtain better performance that that achieved with carbon electrodes, tested …

Flexibly Keeping Batteries from Blowing their Cool

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Meltdown – not a term one wants to hear when confronting an obstinate boss or while levitating in his or her new Tom Swift Electric Octo-copter.  But it is a real specter confronting electric vehicle users, and one amplified to positive levels of terror in flight. Two groups of researchers have come up with novel ways of quelling that terror and getting rid of the normally flammable electrolyte that helps make lithium battery fires truly memorable. If researchers at Chapel Hill and Washington State University are successful in their research, that acid electrolyte can be replaced with something safer and as a bonus in both cases, batteries using these new substances will perform better and longer. Researchers at the University …

Better Batteries: Powers of Ten

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

The CAFE Foundation in its Electric Aircraft Symposia has put forth the idea of the 10X battery for many years.  Dr. Seeley therefore found a great deal of excitement in the following news. Researchers at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois have perhaps achieved part of that dream, with a graphene and silicon anode that yields a 10-times-faster charge and can hold a charge 10 times greater than that of a typical lithium-ion battery. Claiming their technology will be on the market in three to five years, the researchers have published a paper describing the research in the journal Advanced Energy Materials. A University press release explains.  “’We have found a way to extend a new lithium-ion battery’s charge life by …

Cambridge Crude and Range Euphoria

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants 1 Comment

Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) scientists have announced what they claim is a “Significant advance in battery architecture [that] could be breakthrough for electric vehicles and grid storage.”    According to a story by David L. Chandler from the MIT News Office, the new battery system is lightweight and inexpensive, and could make recharging “as quick and easy as pumping gas into a conventional car.” Seemingly requiring some active components within the battery, this “semi-solid flow cell” pumps solid particles suspended in a carrier liquid which form the cathodes and anodes through the system.  According to the MIT news item, “These two different suspensions are pumped through systems separated by a filter, such as a thin porous membrane.”  Mechanically more …