Goodenough (94) re-Revolutionizes Batteries

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94-year old Li-Ion battery inventor unveils ultra-efficient glass battery

glass battery technology green car reports john goodenough

John B. Goodenough, an emeritus professor at the Cockrell School of Engineering at the University of Texas, Austin, pioneered the lithium-ion battery technology that is now the industry standard, and now the 94-year-old is ready to push the envelope on battery innovation again. Goodenough along with senior research fellow Maria Helena Braga, lead a team of researchers who have developed a low-cost all-solid-state battery that is safer and more efficient than existing lithium-ion technology.

The new battery uses a sodium- or lithium-coated glass electrolyte that has triple the storage capacity of a lithium ion battery. It also charges in minutes instead of hours and operates in both frigid and hot weather (from -20 to 60 degrees centigrade). Early tests suggest the battery is capable of at least 1,200 charge-discharge cycles, significantly more charging cycles than a comparable lithium-ion battery, and best of all, the glass-based electrolyte will not form the dendrites that plague lithium-ion battery technology. The dendrites accumulate as part of the standard charging and recharging cycle and eventually cause a short circuit that often results in a smoldering or burning battery…

  • In this paper, we report a new strategy for a safe, low-cost, all-solid-state rechargeable sodium or lithium battery cell that has the required energy density and cycle life for a battery that powers an all-electric road vehicle.

  • The cells use a solid glass electrolyte  …which promises to offer acceptable operation at lower temperatures; the glass also has a surface that is wet by metallic lithium or sodium, … that makes it stable on contact with both an alkali-metal anode and a high-voltage cathode without the formation of an SEI. 

  • The glass also contains electric dipoles that endow it with a large dielectric constant; its optimal properties are, therefore, only obtained after aging for over 10 days at 25 °C, but only for a few minutes at 100 °C.3 

  • With this glass, a rechargeable battery with a metallic lithium or sodium anode and an insertion-compound cathode may require a polymer or liquid catholyte in contact with the cathode;

  •  but all-solid-state metal-plating batteries with the cathode strategy reported herein are simpler to fabricate at lower cost and offer much higher energy densities, longer cycle life, and acceptable charge/discharge rates.

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