Common lithium-ion batteries that are used in electric cars could be substituted with lithium-sulfur batteries as they come cheaper, contains double the energy in similar mass and weigh much lesser. Lithium-sulfur batteries, however, become unstable in due course of time with electrodes deteriorating in over a period of time thereby limiting its adoption worldwide.
New Polymer Binder to Improve the Functioning of Lithium-sulfur Batteries
Led by the scientists of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab, a group of researchers has concluded that the component of new lithium-sulfur battery enables capacity doubling as compared to the prevailing battery of lithium-sulfur. Such doubling can take place even after more than 100 charge cycles take place at high current densities that are major performance parameters for its adoption by the aviation industry and in electric vehicles.
Such a feat was achieved by inventing a new polymer binder that proactively controls the major transportation process inside the lithium-sulfur battery. They have also exhibited how it works at a molecular level.
Lithium-sulfur batteries release and store energy and when it generates energy the resulting chemical reaction releases mobile molecules of sulfur which have become disconnected from the electrode thereby causing it to deteriorate and eventually downgrading the capacity of the battery in due course of time. In a bid to make these batteries more stable, scientists have traditionally worked to come up with improved protective coatings for their electrodes, and also to invent brand new polymer binders that work as the adhesive that holds components of the battery. These above-mentioned binders are meant for mitigation or control of the cracking and swelling of the electrode.
The said research work has been recently published in Nature Communications, a science journal.