His name is Dr. John Goodenough. He’s a tenured professor at the University of Texas at Austin’s Cockrell School of Engineering. He’s 94 years old, and he’s a superstar in the field of electrical engineering.
His accomplishments are both numerous and far-reaching. He was a significant player in the identification and development of the lithium-ion rechargeable battery. He was also on the team that did the research that led to the creation of random-access memory (RAM), a crucial form of computer data storage.
But, he’s really done it this time. It looks like Dr. Goodenough has surpassed even his own lofty standard. He’s come up with a rechargeable battery that has up to three times as much energy density as a lithium-ion battery. Furthermore, this battery would charge faster, stay cooler, and cost less than its lithium-ion counterpart.
Our team at Battery Depot wrote this article to tell you how Goodenough’s new battery technology could improve our lives. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us.
What’s So Special About This Technology?
There are two major chemical differences between Goodenough’s new technology and his old lithium-ion technology that account for their disparate energy densities.
First, the new tech utilizes a solid glass electrolyte, rather than a standard liquid electrolyte. Second, the new tech utilizes sodium ions, rather than the standard lithium ions.
Glass electrolyte: What are the advantages of a solid glass electrolyte? The electrolyte is the substance in a battery that produces an electrically conducting solution. Without the electrolyte, there’d be no ion flow, and therefore, no electricity. However, when a liquid electrolyte battery is charged too quickly, it can create metal whiskers or dendrites that short-circuit the whole reaction. This phenomenon doesn’t occur in Goodenough’s glass electrolyte battery. A glass electrolyte can also conduct at extreme temperatures (such as 0° Fahrenheit), whereas a liquid electrolyte can’t.
Sodium ions: Another benefit of the glass electrolyte breakthrough is that it’s allowed scientists to use sodium ions instead of lithium ions. What’s the big deal about sodium ions? Well, sodium is a lot cheaper than lithium. Since the outrageously high prices of electric vehicle batteries is a big factor that’s preventing many drivers from making the transition…well, you get the picture.
How Could This Battery Improve Our Lives?
To paint the clearest picture of how Goodenough’s new battery technology could significantly improve our quality of life, we’ll just quote the man himself:
“Cost, safety, energy density, rates of charge and discharge, and cycle life are critical for battery-driven cars to become more widely adopted. We believe our discovery solves many of the problems that are inherent in today’s batteries.”
Contact Us at BatteryDepot.com for More Information
Well, there you have it, folks; straight from the horse’s mouth! Nevertheless, we still understand that battery chemistry can be a tricky subject.
If you’d like some more information, our Battery Depot experts can help. Just contact us today to initiate a stimulating conversation.