New findings at Oregon State University have overturned a scientific dogma that stood for decades, by showing that potassium can work with graphite in a potassium-ion battery – a discovery that could pose a challenge and sustainable alternative to the widely-used lithium-ion battery.
Lithium-ion batteries are ubiquitous in devices all over the world, ranging from cell phones to laptop computers and electric cars. But there may soon be a new type of battery based on materials that are far more abundant and less costly.
A potassium-ion battery has been shown to be possible. And the last time this possibility was explored was when Herbert Hoover was president, the Great Depression was in full swing and the Charles Lindbergh baby kidnapping was the big news story of the year – 1932.
“For decades, people have assumed that potassium couldn’t work with graphite or other bulk carbon anodes in a battery,” said Xiulei (David) Ji, the lead author of the study and an assistant professor of chemistry in the College of Science at Oregon State University.
“That assumption is incorrect,” Ji said. “It’s really shocking that no one ever reported on this issue for 83 years.”
The Journal of the American Chemical Society published the findings from this discovery, which was supported by the U.S. Department of Energy and done in collaboration with OSU researchers Zelang Jian and Wei Luo. A patent is also pending on the new technology.
The findings are of considerable importance, researchers say, because they open some new alternatives to batteries that can work with well-established and inexpensive graphite as the anode, or high-energy reservoir of electrons. Lithium can do that, as the charge carrier whose ions migrate into the graphite and create an electrical current.
Aside from its ability to work well with a carbon anode, however, lithium is quite rare, found in only 0.0017 percent, by weight, of the Earth’s crust. Because of that it’s comparatively expensive, and it’s difficult to recycle. Researchers have yet to duplicate its performance with less costly and more readily available materials, such as sodium, magnesium, or potassium.
“The cost-related problems with lithium are sufficient that you won’t really gain much with economies of scale,” Ji said. “With most products, as you make more of them, the cost goes down. With lithium the reverse may be true in the near future. So we have to find alternatives.”
That alternative, he said, may be potassium, which is 880 times more abundant in the Earth’s crust than lithium. The new findings show that it can work effectively with graphite or soft carbon in the anode of an electrochemical battery. Right now, batteries based on this approach don’t have performance that equals those of lithium-ion batteries, but improvements in technology should narrow the gap, he said.
“It’s safe to say that the energy density of a potassium-ion battery may never exceed that of lithium-ion batteries,” he said. “But they may provide a long cycling life, a high power density, a lot lower cost, and be ready to take the advantage of the existing manufacturing processes of carbon anode materials.”
The Latest on: Potassium-ion battery
via Google News
The Latest on: Potassium-ion battery
- New material pushes performance boundaries of sodium-ion battery technologyon August 10, 2022 at 12:55 am
Researchers from Russia’s Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) and Lomonosov Moscow State University have developed a sodium-ion battery ...
- New research shifts sodium batteries from risky liquid to safe solidon August 8, 2022 at 5:05 am
Researchers from Deakin University in Victoria have announced a breakthrough in the development of new polymer electrolyte chemistries that they believe could pave the way for a safer and cheaper ...
- Removing obstacles to greener, cost effective, polymer batterieson August 7, 2022 at 6:26 pm
Deakin University researchers could help address a major obstacle for developing environmentally friendly, cost effective, polymer-based batteries.
- “Significant milestone” in quest for safer, greener, cheaper polymer battery alternativeon August 7, 2022 at 5:52 pm
A new breakthrough in research on polymer electrolyte chemistries that can be used with metals more abundant and less expensive than lithium.
- New path for next-generation polymer-based battery designon August 3, 2022 at 7:24 am
A breakthrough from Deakin University researchers could help address a major obstacle in the development of environmentally-friendly, cost effective, polymer-based batteries.
- Start-up Group1 seeks to commercialize potassium-ion batterieson July 28, 2022 at 5:32 pm
The battery start-up Group1 has emerged from stealth with plans to commercialize a cathode material for potassium-ion batteries that could be an alternative to increasingly expensive lithium-based ...
- SQM: A Diversified Play On The Current Lithium Boomon July 23, 2022 at 10:58 pm
Although there is the possibility to use other compounds in these battery technologies, with sodium-ion being touted as ... This consists principally of potassium nitrate, of which SQM is ...
- New Solution to Prevent Dendrites for Safer EV Batterieson July 20, 2022 at 5:00 pm
Related: Top 10 EV Values in Dollars per Mile “Specifically, we found that potassium ions mitigate the formation of undesirable chemical compounds that deposit on the surface of lithium metal and ...
- IT Futurist: Metal-Air Battery Technology Evolveson June 26, 2022 at 5:00 pm
Inherent safety concerns of the now-ubiquitous lithium-ion battery are eliminated with the subtraction ... Society's Applied Materials & Interfaces journal, has worked on a potassium-air battery. It's ...
- New Ultra-Fast Charging Tech Could Lead to a New Age in Energyon June 27, 2017 at 9:59 am
The researchers demonstrated that their new battery cells have at least three times as much energy density as today's lithium-ion batteries ... sodium or potassium)—which isn't possible with ...
via Bing News