Researchers Develop Batteries that Boast Greater Charge Cycle ‘by Chance’

April 28, 2016, By Sanjeev Ramachandran

There’s a reason why experimenting is always promoted. It doesn’t matter what the end result is; you may often end up with something new.

This is what happened recently with the researchers at University of California, Irvine, and the result they have stumbled upon is something that could be the key in the future of batteries.

With the experimentation on nanowire technology, the researchers here now cracked a way to bring an eternal element to the normal batteries. The overall life-cycle efficiency of batteries has been raised to over 200,000 charge cycles. This is massive, compared to the life cycle of current day li-ion batteries, whose capacity starts deteriorating nearing 1000 charge cycles.


Replacement of lithium with nanowires have been experimented for long, but the fragile filament of the latter always led to easy breaking with continuous cycles. This was what the five-member team managed to wipe out, and interestingly this wasn’t intentional.

One of the researchers is said to have been playfully experimenting with a layer of manganese dioxide gel coating over the gold nanowire. The real intention was to make a solid-state battery that would use electrolyte gel to hold the charge, instead of conventional liquid.

But the result was amusing as they managed to get over 200,000 cycles carried out without any capacity loss and corrosion of the filament. Interestingly, the researchers also admit that the real mechanism behind this prolonged capacity is yet to be found out. The usage of this nanowire technology has also got the benefit of making the filament more durable and resilient.

The discovery is now believed to lead the future technology of battery manufacturing that could result in expanded charge cycles. This would apply eventually to all fields including automobiles, smartphones, home appliances, computers etc.

The findings were published in The American Chemical Society’s Energy Letters journal this week.

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