Lithium-Air Batteries

Despite Huge Challenges Lithium-Air Technology Has Fair Chance to Become a Base Delivery Platform for Electric Cars

Michael Thackeray in the Electrochemical Energy Storage Department is at the opinion that challenges lithium-air technology faces are engineering as well as scientific, and not scientific along. The scientist gives it decade or two for the lithium-air to reach market-ready maturity. The problem with the materials used in lithium-air batteries is huge: the metallic lithium, for example, is highly flammable and needs to be replaced; non-flammable electrolyte is what we are looking for. On the engineering side there is a design situation: the lithium-air approach uses atmospheric oxygen as an electrode and the battery design must ensure that the air makes contact with components in the cell. It will be quite a task to create cost efficient and safe at the same time platform to house the lithium-air technology in it. Good news is, once established, tested and profit-loss approved, the winning lithium-air platform could become a battery role-model for every car manufacturer in the world that wants to prosper.

References: IBM, Argonne National Laboratory, Michael Thackeray, Chuck Squatriglia