Site icon Wonderful Engineering

These New High-Density Lithium Batteries Can Greatly Increase The Range Of EVs

The recent shift of the automobile industry towards electrical vehicles has made it clear that they are the future of this sector. Soon, conventional fuel vehicles will be made redundant and electrical vehicles will be seen everywhere. That is why, governments, scientists, and researchers are all working relentlessly to make it more efficient and enabled.

If these vehicles have to take over the industry, they will have to cover long miles without any unfortunate events like batteries giving up or not being powerful enough to fuel the journey. At the same time, batteries cannot be made too heavy as they are neither that effective nor efficient if bigger in size.

In order to address this predicament, researchers at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and Helmholtz Institute Ulm (HIU) in Germany have now demonstrated a new lithium-metal battery with a density well beyond the significant 500-Wh/kg benchmark. It will also enable the vehicle to carry on a journey for hundreds of kilometers.

Lithium-ion batteries are the most common ones used around us. They are used to power our vehicles, laptops, smartphones, and whatnot. They have endless possibilities and potential. Now, scientists and researchers have started working on making it more efficient by making some adjustments to the mechanism inside them.

A possibility that could tremendously change the performance of these batteries is that of substituting the already present graphite rods inside with pure lithium. This will enable the system to hold the energy with 10 times more capacity than it already does. This is the reason why lithium rods are considered the dream material for this. However, there are some stability issues associated with the material that may pose problems.

Researchers at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology and Helmholtz Institute Ulm (HIU) have worked out a solution for this. They have used a cobalt-poor, nickel-rich layered cathode (NCM88) and a commercially available organic electrolyte called LP30. The team used an alternative for LP30. As a result, the energy capacity reached 560 Wh/kg while the regular capacity is 250 to 300 Wh/kg. It can also reach the initial storage capacity of 214 mAh/g in the cathode material and retaining 88 percent of that across 1,000 cycles.

The research is published in Joule.