We have covered this before but I felt it was worth looking at again. I also like the intro to the video “Waring this video may contain science” I think that will be fair warning to the Free energy researchers who seem to be against all things science.
Engineers at the Toyota Research Institute of North America (TRINA) think they’ve found the secret to using magnesium in rechargeable batteries. This would replace lithium as a safer, more energy-dense option for batteries in everything from cell phones to cars.
Magnesium has been considered a potential replacement for lithium in rechargeable batteries for some time. Lithium is not stable in air and can combust when exposed, so to make lithium-ion batteries safer, the ions are reduced and the lithium is embedded into graphite rods. This reduces the amount of metal (reducing density), which limits the amount of power the li-ion battery can store. To increase density, engineers have toyed with the mix of lithium and graphite and the shape of the cells, but the balance is tricky.
Magnesium, on the other hand, is stable in the atmosphere and more potentially energy dense than is lithium in terms of storage. The trouble is, forming an electrolyte that doesn’t degrade the magnesium while offering efficient transfer had proven difficult – until a chance discovery during research into hydrogen fuel cells changed that.
Principal scientist and chemical engineer Rana Mohtadi of Toyota overheard colleagues discussing the challenges of developing a magnesium-friendly electrolyte. She realized that the properties of the hydrogen storage material she’d been working with might be conducive to a magnesium-based battery. They formed a team and set to work to test it.
The manager for Toyota’s research group, Paul Fanson, attributes the discovery to the diversity of the research staff at TRINA and the collaborative nature of the facility’s culture.
The team has produced a paper outlining the discovery, which was published in the Angewandte Chemie International Edition. They hope that other researchers outside of Toyota can find use in the material and hasten the development of usable magnesium-based batteries. There is still some way to go before we’ll be slotting magnesium batteries into our smartphones with the researchers estimating that it could be 20 years before these batteries go mainstream. The hope is that making the discovery public may help speed up that timeline.
An Efficient Halogen-Free Electrolyte for Use in Rechargeable Magnesium Batteries.
Unlocking the full potential of rechargeable magnesium batteries has been partially hindered by the reliance on chloride-based complex systems. Despite the high anodic stability of these electrolytes, they are corrosive toward metallic battery components, which reduce their practical electrochemical window. Following on our new design concept involving boron cluster anions, monocarborane CB11H12(-) produced the first halogen-free, simple-type Mg salt that is compatible with Mg metal and displays an oxidative stability surpassing that of ether solvents. Owing to its inertness and non-corrosive nature, the Mg(CB11H12)2/tetraglyme (MMC/G4) electrolyte system permits standardized methods of high-voltage cathode testing that uses a typical coin cell. This achievement is a turning point in the research and development of Mg electrolytes that has deep implications on realizing practical rechargeable Mg batteries.
© 2015 WILEY-VCH Verlag GmbH & Co. KGaA, Weinheim.