Chinese university students pave the way with Calcium-based battery development

A team of visionary researchers at Fudan University in Shanghai, China, has achieved a groundbreaking leap forward that holds the promise of transforming how we power our world.

Source: AZoM

Their latest innovation involves the development of a novel rechargeable battery, leveraging the abundant metal calcium—a resource more prevalent than lithium, the current dominator of the battery market. This technological breakthrough not only signifies a potential cost reduction but also marks a significant stride towards more environmentally friendly energy solutions, aligning with the pursuit of sustainable practices.

The noteworthy aspect of this newly developed battery lies in its ability to withstand an impressive 700 charge-discharge cycles at present. Calcium, widely distributed in the Earth’s crust, positions these batteries as a feasible choice for widespread application. In contrast to the prevailing lithium-ion cells fueling our modern devices, calcium-based batteries eliminate the dependency on rare and expensive materials such as nickel, cobalt, and manganese. Instead, they utilize carbon for their cathode materials, resulting in a substantial reduction in costs and environmental impact.

Published in the esteemed journal Nature, the research highlights batteries that exhibit remarkable endurance at room temperature without compromising efficiency during 700 charge-discharge cycles—a milestone for calcium-based batteries, renowned for their safety and stable performance.

This breakthrough is particularly timely considering the surge in lithium demand driven by the growth of new energy vehicles and renewable energy storage solutions, prompting concerns about potential shortages. Calcium-based batteries, boasting high theoretical energy density, emerge as an exciting alternative. They also draw oxygen from the air, eliminating the need for material storage within the battery—a limiting factor in their previous development.

The success of the Fudan team lies in their creation of a groundbreaking liquid electrolyte that meets stringent requirements for a battery’s electrodes while preventing detrimental calcium reactions that could compromise capacity. This electrolyte not only conducts ions effectively at room temperature but also prioritizes the safety of the battery.

While further advancements are needed to match the lifespan of current lithium-ion cells, the potential applications of these calcium-based batteries in portable electronics, wearable devices, and beyond are undeniable. Moreover, the prospect of integrating these batteries into flexible textiles opens new avenues for innovative and versatile solutions.

Via

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