Lamborghini News: San Francisco: Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), including one of Indian origin, have designed a new battery material that could provide a more sustainable, cobalt-free way to run electric cars.
Automaker Lamborghini has licensed the patent on the technology. Chemists have developed a battery cathode based on organic materials, which could reduce the EV industry’s dependence on rare metals.
The material consists of several layers of TAQ, an organic small molecule consisting of three hexagonal rings linked together. These layers can spread outward in every direction, creating a graphite-like structure.
The study, published in the journal ACS Central Science, reports that within the molecules are chemical groups called quinones, which are electron stores, and amines, which help the material form stronger hydrogen bonds.
The researchers showed that this material, which can be produced at a much lower cost than cobalt-containing batteries, can conduct electricity at rates similar to cobalt batteries.
The new battery also has comparable storage capacity and can be charged faster than cobalt batteries.
Mircea Dinca, the W.M. Keck Professor of Energy at MIT, said, “This material is already competitive with existing technologies, and it is largely free from the cost and pain and environmental issues associated with mining the metals that currently go into batteries. Can save up to Rs.
Dinka is the senior author of the study while Tianyang Chen and former MIT postdoc Harish Banda are lead authors of the paper.
Most lithium-ion batteries contain cobalt as the cathode, a metal that provides high stability and energy density. However, cobalt has significant downsides.
It is a rare metal. Its price can fluctuate dramatically, and most of the world’s cobalt reserves are located in politically unstable countries.
Cobalt extraction creates hazardous working conditions and produces toxic waste that pollutes the land, air and water around the mines.
Dinka said, “Cobalt batteries can store a lot of energy, and they have all the characteristics people care about in terms of performance, but they have the problem of not being widely available, and the cost is roughly that of a commodity. “Fluctuates with prices.”
Tests of the new material showed that its conductivity and storage capacity were comparable to conventional cobalt-containing batteries.
Additionally, batteries with TAQ cathodes can be charged and discharged faster than existing batteries, which could accelerate charging rates for electric vehicles, the authors said.
Dinka and his team plan to continue developing alternative battery materials and exploring possible replacement of lithium with sodium or magnesium, which are cheaper and more abundant than lithium.