According to experts, lithium metal batteries will replace lithium-ion batteries used in almost all modern gadgets. However, until now, it has not been possible to solve a number of problems causing the rapid degradation of such batteries. The breakthrough was reported by American scientists, whose technology makes it possible to make capacious batteries that support faster charging than existing solutions.
One of the ways to increase the battery capacity is to replace copper and graphite anodes with pure lithium. While this could increase the storage density of energy by a factor of 10, researchers have not yet been able to overcome the problem of dendrite formation that destroys the battery from the inside. A revolutionary solution was proposed by scientists from the University of Pennsylvania, who created a protective layer that can keep a lithium metal battery in working order for a long time.
“The lithium metal battery is the next generation after the lithium-ion battery. It uses a lithium anode and has a higher energy density, solving problems with dendrite growth, low efficiency and short service life, ”the scientists say.
The research team created a protective layer of electrochemically active molecules coated onto a thin film of copper. When the battery is being charged, it prevents dendrite formation. Experiments have confirmed that the battery can withstand multiple charging cycles, making it suitable for use in commercial products including smartphones, electric vehicles, and drones.
According to the researchers, the new technology demonstrates the ability to form a layer in time, decompose and spontaneously transform to stay on copper, as well as cover the surface of lithium.