Researchers have developed a new non-flammable electrolyte that makes it possible to create lithium batteries without the risk of explosion. This discovery could be easily integrated into existing production chains.
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The batteries lithiumlithium are everywhere, and each has the potential to become a real bomb. The risk mainly comes from damaged or substandard batteries. We will remember the famous recall of Galaxy Note 7 smartphones from SamsungSamsung following several explosions. More recently, New York is facing a growing number of deadly explosions caused by e-bikes with batteries that do not meet regulations.
To learn more about the bike explosions happening around the world, click the play button and let yourself be carried away. © Futura
This explosion is caused by thermal runaway. A defect, like a court-circuitcourt-circuitincreases the temperature of the electrolyte, which gives rise to chemical reactionschemical reactions which produce heatheat, creating an uncontrollable loop. In an article published in the journal Nature Sustainabilityresearchers have developed a new electrolyte which blocks thermal runaway, and therefore prevents the battery from taking feufeu or explode.
A non-flammable electrolyte
The researchers started by looking for a non-flammable substance already on the market, and opted for Novec 7300 de 3Mdue to its low toxicitytoxicity. By combining it with other chemicals to increase its sustainabilitysustainability, they were able to use it to create a battery that extinguishes any internal fire. It has been tested for a year of charge and discharge cycles, without significantly losing capacity. Additionally, this new battery can operate over a wide temperature range, from -75°C to 80°C.
The researchers tested their battery by driving a nail through it to simulate a short circuit, and unlike conventional batteries it did not catch fire. They emphasize that their electrolyte has properties similar to those already used, and therefore could easily be integrated into the production of batteries by manufacturers without having to change their current production lines.
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