Scientists Developing Pure Lithium Anode Batteries: Expected to Triple Battery Backup Time in Future Smartphones

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A new lithium cell battery prototype designed by researchers
at America’s Stanford University promises to offer three times
the battery life offered by current smartphone batteries.
According to a PHYS report, scientists at Stanford University
have been successful in developing pure metal anode
prototypes, which differ from the current Lithium-Ion batteries.
“Of all the materials that one might use in an anode, lithium
has the greatest potential. Some call it the Holy Grail,” said Yi
Cui, professor of Materials Science and Engineering and leader
of the research team at Stanford University, to PHYS.
As lithium is said to possess the highest energy density and
specific capacity when compared to other metals, increased
power per volume should be obtained. This aspect should lead
to the development of lighter, more efficient batteries that
should find applications in daily life such as in portable
electronic devices (most notably smartphones), grid storage
and even in electric vehicles of the future.
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“You might be able to have cell phone with double or triple the
battery life or an electric car with a range of 300 miles that
cost only $25,000—competitive with an internal combustion
engine getting 40 mpg,” said Steven Chu, former US secretary
of energy and professor at Stanford University.
However, pure lithium anode batteries would require more
effort in terms of engineering, financial support and project
backup by major technology players across the globe.
In terms of engineering, scientists are currently focussed on
working towards incorporating lithium entirely in the anode
battery component.
A conventional battery comes with three basic components –
anode, cathode and electrolyte. The electrolyte could be either
in solid or liquid form, and commutes between the anode and
cathode thereby separating the two components with a fair
degree of accuracy.
Challenges to the development of pure lithium
electrodes
The challenge for researchers to incorporate lithium within the
anode is that the metal expands unevenly while charging,
thereby potentially leading to the formation of cracks on the
outer body of the battery.
These cracks tend to spill out lithium leading to the formation
of protrusions on the battery’s surface and these are knows as
dendrites.
According to researchers, these dendrites have a tendency to
cause battery short-circuits, and thereby reduce the overall life
of the battery.
Another challenge faced by the researchers is the intensive
chemical activity caused by lithium to the battery’s electrode,
along with the problem of overheating that

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  • Ifenna Maduka

    So am I, hope it’s not just propaganda. Thanks for your comments

  • Reg Montes

    waiting on that.