Scientists develop new battery

The advancement of technology has added the word "smart" to the names of the glasses, watches, necklaces and other items we wear. Even the mobile phones used to make calls and send text messages have become smart phones. Smart devices do have more complete functions, but is it more convenient to be smart? I don’t know anything else, at least not when it comes to charging.

The current mainstream lithium batteries have a battery life of only a few days, and wearable devices are generally small in size. The energy density of lithium batteries determines that their volume ratio cannot be small. Although nuclear batteries have a high energy density, they are distasteful when talking about "nuclear". So how to solve the battery problem of current smart wearable devices? What is the next generation of lithium batteries? Some scientists have proposed the concept of "printable flexible batteries".

Printable Flexible Batteries?

Now flexible batteries are not a concept that scientists solve the problem of powering devices. Researchers at the University of California have made it, using a 3D printer to produce extremely small zinc battery particles. Of course, there are many kinds of materials. Carbon fiber and graphene are more popular in the research field, but zinc batteries are currently more suitable for battery manufacturing (for example, the cost is not particularly high).View more details:lithium battery pack suppliers

Since it is the successor of the lithium battery, it is naturally superior in power supply performance. First of all, from the metal point of view, zinc is more stable than lithium, and it is less prone to chemical reactions, which enhances the battery's ability to be recharged repeatedly. Then there is the electrolysis process. Zinc will appear in the form of a tree branch, spreading from one electrode to another, which reduces unnecessary power consumption and lasts longer.

The last is flexibility. It’s not that other metals can’t be used as flexible batteries. It’s just that when testing the flexibility of batteries, it was found that other batteries broke after being bent about 1,000 times, while zinc batteries remained stable. The consequences of breaking and placing on the battery may be safety issues caused by material wear and electrolyte leakage.

latest progress

How high can the energy density of flexible batteries be? Recently, scientists have developed an experimental battery chemistry for flexible devices that is said to have 10 times the energy density of current lithium-ion. The battery mentioned in this study is a chemical battery called silver zinc oxide.

In fact, considering energy density and safety performance, silver-zinc oxide batteries have always been the focus of research. The cathode of the battery is coated with lead oxide, which can improve the electrochemical stability and conductivity of the battery, and reduce the resistance of the battery to alternating current. But why is this technology not widely used? Not to mention the cost, but the technical aspect is unstable point cycle (short battery life).

So what's the breakthrough in this research? The method used by the researchers this time is to screen print silver oxide-zinc batteries, and assemble the printed unit cells together under sterile and vacuum conditions, which solves the problem of battery cell. The problem of unstable loops. After experiments, the researchers found the "ink formula" for printing, screen-printing the battery's current collector, zinc anode, new cathode and separator layer by layer on a chemically stable polymer film with a melting point of about 200° c.

As for testing, the printed battery cells were charged for more than 80 cycles without showing any noticeable signs of capacity loss. Despite repeated bending and twisting, the cells maintain normal function. By comparison, if this battery is used in a smart wearable device, it can provide 5 to 10 times more power than a typical lithium-ion battery of the same size.

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