Scientists from the Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden discovered a technique to bring Lithium-Sulfer batteries to the forefront of innovation. These batteries promise 5 times more energy for smartphones and computer devices as compared to conventional lithium-ion batteries.
These next-generation batteries embed a graphene sponge, which acts like a freestanding electrode in the battery cell. It enables higher and better utilization of sulphur. The combination can deliver 1000-to-1500 watt-hours per kg. On the other hand, Lithium-ion batteries burn out at 300 watt-hours per kg.
The research can also make a breakthrough in solving the environment challenges created by fluorine, a commonly found chemical in smartphone batteries. According to Aleksandar Matic, leader of the research team, sulphur is highly abundant, cheaper, and a lot more environment friendly.
Initially, the research team was looking for ways to combine cathode and electrolyte present in batteries, into a liquid called a catholyte. Their aim was to increase the speed of charging, reduce battery weight, and increase additional capabilities.
During the research, they discovered that creating a thin layer of porous graphene aerogel soaks up cathlolyte. This catholyte rich in sulphur can transform the way we use batteries today.
Can Sulphur really Become the Cherry on Top?
We all love a cherry on top of our cakes. Don’t we? But, can sulphur, a well-studied substance really bring about a revolution in smartphone batteries? The study published in the journal of power sources definitely offers hope. However, its implementation would really depend on the stability and reliability in the long run.
Earlier, sulphur batteries were rejected in favor of lithium batteries as these showed low cycle life and instability as well. Nevertheless, the research promises to answer these questions too. The latest sulphur prototype showed a remarkable improvement during studies as it retained 85% capacity after 350 cycles. The researchers achieved this significant feat by reducing the sulphur dissolution into electrolytes.
Let’s hope the future of computing devices promises more surprises for us all.