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Lithium is a silvery white metal that is used in most modern electronic devices. It has one of the lowest boiling points and is extremely reactive, making it an important component in lithium-ion batteries.
Batteries made from lithium metal are a key source of energy in modern society. They have many benefits, including the ability to charge with wind and solar power, but they also pose several risks to consumers.
Among them is the potential for sparking that can cause serious burn injuries. It is therefore imperative that manufacturers and users take all necessary precautions to avoid such incidents.
This problem can be solved by introducing a material that has a low melting point, low boiling point and high reactivity. In this case, researchers at PNNL, led by David Goodenough and Michael Braga, have developed an alternative to lithium strips that can be used in battery manufacturing.
They found that lithium-ion batteries can be made with a new kind of strip, which has only a few atoms of lithium per inch. The team argues that the thinner strip enables better interactions between the electrolyte and the anode, allowing for a longer battery lifespan.
The researchers found that the thinner strips allowed for a better SEI, which enabled faster chemical reactions between the anode and electrolyte. This allowed for more efficient oxidation and scavenging of water moisture, which is a critical step in maintaining battery life. Eventually, they hope to work with battery makers to advance their technology.