Batteries might gain a boost in power capacity as a result of a new finding by researchers at MIT, USA, lead by Yang Shao-Horn.
The team used a layer-by-layer fabrication method, in which a base material is dipped in solutions of carbon nanotubes (CNT) treated with organic compounds to create layers of alternating net charge. The CNT self-assemble into a tightly bound porous structure with oxygen groups on its surface, allowing it to store lithium ions efficiently.
The CNT electrodes showed good stability over time. After 1,000 cycles of charging and discharging a test battery, there was no detectable change in the material’s performance.
In future work, the team aims to produce thicker electrodes to extend the improved performance to low-power outputs and to refine the manufacture technique, replacing dipping with spraying, to allow scale up.
- High-power lithium batteries from functionalized carbon-nanotube electrodes
S. W. Lee, N. Yabuuchi, B. M. Gallant, S. Chen, B.-S. Kim, P. T. Hammond, Y. Shao-Horn,
Nat. Nanotechnol. 2010, 5.