New battery charges a cellphone in one minute

Source: Stanford

For bauxite and graphite miners a major new source of demand may have opened up.

A new paper to be published in the journal Nature called An ultrafast rechargeable aluminium-ion battery describes a new power source that almost sounds too good to be true (just as well April 1 was last week).

The paper by Stanford University Professor Hongjie Dai and colleagues describes the accidental discovery of a battery that can charge a cellphone in a minute, can scale to many times the size of conventional ion-lithium batteries for electricity grid storage and can be recharged many thousands of times.

The aluminum-ion battery consists of two electrodes: a negatively charged anode made of aluminum and a positively charged cathode.

“People have tried different kinds of materials for the cathode,” Dai said. “We accidentally discovered that a simple solution is to use graphite, which is basically carbon. In our study, we identified a few types of graphite material that give us very good performance.”

According to Dai the new battery can withstand more than 7,500 cycles without any loss of capacity. That compares with a typical lithium-ion battery, which lasts about 1,000 cycles.

It’s also bendable, cannot catch fire “even if you drill a hole through it” and the electrolyte is “basically a salt that’s liquid at room temperature, so it’s very safe,” according to Stanford graduate student and co-author Ming Gong in the video below.

Read more at Stanford.

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