Scientists have made a groundbreaking discovery that revolutionizes the way batteries are used in electronic devices.
Researchers from Harvard University say they have developed a rechargeable battery that is not only cheaper than battery technology used today, it can also hold charge for more than 10 years.
Researchers explained how “flow batteries” which are predominantly used today store energy in liquid form and often wear out quickly when they are used regularly.
However, with the new battery technology, researchers have been able to modify molecules in the electrolytes in order to make them more stable and longer lasting.
The researchers say they designed a system where by energy is stored in organic molecules which are dissolved in water.
The result is a battery which only loses one per cent of its charging capacity every 1,000 times it is recharged.
By comparison, a standard lithium-ion battery will only last for around 1,000 recharges.
Experts now believe the breakthrough is so significant the technology could be used to boost the electricity grid
Professor Michael Aziz from Harvard University said: “Lithium ion batteries don’t even survive 1,000 complete charge-discharge cycles.
“Because we were able to dissolve the electrolytes in neutral water, this is a longlasting battery that you could put in your basement.
“If it spilled on the floor, it wouldn’t eat the concrete and, since the medium is noncorrosive, you can use cheaper materials to build the components.”
Imre Gyuk Director of Energy Storage Research at the US Department of Energy said: “This work on aqueous soluble organic electrolytes is of high significance in pointing the way towards future batteries with vastly improved cycle life and considerably lower cost.”
Source: Harvard University