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Power Earth Software Hardware Science Technology

Solid-State Battery Could Extinguish Fire Risks (thestack.com) 53

An anonymous reader writes: "Researchers have designed a new type of battery that, unlike traditional models containing liquid or gel electrolytes, consists purely of solid chemical compounds and is non-flammable, representing a huge boost for improving battery safety," reports The Stack. "Responding to dangers linked to traditional lithium-ion batteries, the team based at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich, has built a solid alternative which contains only solid-state electrodes and electrolytes." The battery is constructed with a layer of highly conductive lithium garnet, which works as a solid electrolyte between two electrodes. The researchers applied the material of the negative pole in viscous form, which allowed it to seep through the porous electrolyte layer. The team was able to temper the battery at 100C. "With a liquid or gel electrolyte, it would never be possible to heat a battery to such high temperatures," the study claims.
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Solid-State Battery Could Extinguish Fire Risks

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  • Paper link (Score:5, Informative)

    by Fwipp ( 1473271 ) on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @08:29PM (#52723039)

    Because I had to click through three pages to get to the actual source:

    http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com... [wiley.com]

  • My forecast (Score:1, Insightful)

    This will come to nothing. In a few months time, it will have been forgotten. Who wants to bet against me?
  • I was using Catalyst Research Lithium Iodide cells in 1984.
  • Energy density? (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday August 17, 2016 @08:48PM (#52723105)

    Unless I'm missing something they were a little vague as to the energy density of this battery technology. The one detail they did appear to provide is that the batteries only function decently at over 200 degrees Fahrenheit. Unless they're dirt cheap or can make some major leaps in their specs I don't think we'll be seeing this technology in any real use for a while.

    • by Nutria ( 679911 )

      This answers my instant question of whether they'd be viable or not...

    • the batteries only function decently at over 200 degrees Fahrenheit.

      showcasing the difference between "won't catch fire" and "won't catch other things on fire".

      • by Z00L00K ( 682162 )

        It's on the obscure Fahrenheit scale, so it's still below the boiling point for water. Unless it comes into contact with some highly volatile stuff it won't be a fire hazard, just uncomfortable to touch. Unless you are a finn and runs into that temperature on a daily basis in the sauna.

    • The energy density per se depends mostly on the electrode materials used. This battery uses conventional electrode materials, so in principle it can achieve the usual energy density of Li-ion cells.

      The cells use Li4TI5O12 at the negative electrode, which means that they most likely operate at a lower nominal voltage than traditional Li-ion cells (somewhere around 3V as opposed to >4V), however since the electrodes can be made much more dense (because the liquid electrolyte does not need to penetrate in t

  • by Anonymous Coward

    Anything tiny that stores a couple of amp hours is going to do violent things when shorted out.

  • If they have made this battery you know. Does it or doesn't it?

  • This tech is much, much more promising than what Sweden is working on. [johnsonbatterytech.com] It also has the benefit of being made by someone with a history of actually bringing products to market, as well as said person having been a NASA engineer.

  • They obviously are looking for gullible investors..

  • Good: batteries that won't catch fire.

    Bad (but possibly good): batteries outgas lysergic acid during operation.

  • The issue is not one of liquid or gel construction -- which is an issue, to be sure... leaks, evaporation, boiling, etc. The issue with such technology is spelled:

    Lithium based batteries react rather poorly to being exposed to the atmosphere. Unless they've created a non-reactive lithium electrolyte, there's really nothing new here. (hint: that's not new, either.) So they've brought "AGM" to li-po technology.

  • They try to store as much energy as possible at least space as possible.

    That's the problem, why batteries are always dangerous. There is just a lot of stored energy in there. For example enough to start a fire or to explode.

When you don't know what to do, walk fast and look worried.