Everything from electric vehicles to smartphones all run lithium-ion units with risky heavy metals that are a finite resource, Big Blue just made do without them.
Lithium-ion batteries require the use of heavy metals such as cobalt, manganese and nickel. These metals are hazardous to the environment; especially to the miners mining them out of the ground. They’re also finite resources.
So how did IBM Research solve this? Their Battery Lab replaced cobalt and nickel in the cathode as well as substituting the liquid electrolyte with a new type. The electrolytes enable the ions to move from one end to the other, generating power in the process. Furthermore, the new electrolyte also possesses a high flash point that reduces the creation of lithium dendrites and results in being less prone to short circuits.
IBM’s big brains also believe the new battery will boast a larger capacity than the equivalent lithium-ion battery, will charge up to 80 per cent in just five minutes, be more energy efficient and cheaper to manufacture.
MacDailyNews Take: As with every new battery breakthrough, hope that it makes it to market springs eternal.