|Forbes：Your Next Battery Could Be Made From Salt, Scientists Make Greener Advanc|
|发布时间:2020-04-16 16:30:43| 浏览次数：|
Lithium-ion batteries came about as a replacement for their predecessor, lead-acid batteries, which were both very heavy and dangerous, in addition to having significant environmental and toxicity concerns. Lithium-ion batteries on the other hand offered a safer and more efficient alternative. However, when scientists made the lithium-ion battery, they tested a slew of other metals besides lithium. One of them was sodium, which happens to be in the same group as lithium and shares its chemical properties but differs in size. Due to the size difference, sodium travels slower from one electrode to another, thereby affecting the charge process of batteries. Thus, lithium being smaller, was faster and was one of the reasons as to why it was chosen as the optimal ion for the making of the battery. However, today due to the ubiquitous presence of electronic devices, which heavily rely on lithium-ion batteries, the process of mining lithium possess certain environmental and social concerns. In addition to that, cobalt is another element which is used for making a lithium-ion battery, which also has raised ethical concerns in regards to its mining operations. Moreover, cobalt is expensive.
Lithium and sodium are inherently different elements, therefore no matter how similar they may behave, they are still different and that is why research is necessary in figuring out a way to build an efficient sodium-ion battery. In addition to that, their chemistry predisposes them to different applications. In the case of sodium, being larger, the amount of energy that can be stored per unit of volume decreases, as does the time it would take to charge them. Therefore, the sodium-ion batteries would function better if size of the battery could be bigger. This means it may be best suited to power things that are of stationary nature, which points to applications in the fields of alternative energy fields. Wind and solar make good candidates because they are stationary and also because since wind or sun is not present all the time, the source of energy fluctuates, thus making energy output inconsistent throughout time. Therefore, having a battery store energy and supply it for a more consistent output is beneficial. In fact such an application occurred last year in China's Jiangsu Province, where a sodium-ion battery was used as a storage plant to regulate energy, “storing energy during low consumption hours and delivering electricity during peak hours,” according to Chinese Academy of Science.
Sources of information:https:https://www.forbes.com/sites/annapowers/2020/01/31/your-next-battery-could-be-made-from-salt-scientists-make-greener-advances/#5000de2043a5