Alternative Electrode Materials: Batteries Essay

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One of the greatest challenges in the twenty-first century is undoubtedly energy storage. The depletion of non-renewable resources such as fossil fuels is inevitable. This can be simply arrived at due to the fact that it is a finite resource. Additionally, the rate of generation of fossil fuels far exceeds the rate of its depletion so much so that it is negligible in comparison. Thus the world today has been forced to search for a better energy source. According to Chen(2013), “Batteries are crucial to solve this problem [the energy crisis] as they can efficiently store electricity in chemicals and release it according to demand”(p. 156). Furthermore, the batteries used currently do not meet the demands of modern society, such as the need…show more content…
Larcher(2007)discusses, “The first cells of this type appeared when Exxon energy tried to commercialize Li/TiS systems.” (p.236). These were low voltage systems that only operated near 2 volts. During that era graphite and layered sulfide were suggested as potential candidates for electrodes of a Lithium-ion battery. The next decade saw development on advanced battery systems based upon the insertion and removal of Lithium-ions into host compounds serving as both electrodes. Much of this work was associated with finding a suitable material to host lithium ions. Eventually in 1991, Sony introduced the first Lithium-ion cell with an operational voltage of 3.6 V.

The best rechargeable batteries used today are that of the Lithium-ion battery technology as they offer the highest energy density among all rechargeable technologies used today. However these batteries used currently require significant improvements in various parameters such as energy density, safety, durability and cost if it were to replace fossil fuels. Fletcher(2011) believes, “the limiting factors of the current Lithium-ion batteries used today include the following. One of the limiting factors of the batteries is the amount of charge they can store and how quickly they can be recharged.” Some of the materials for the cathode electrode that would enhance the performance of Lithium-ion batteries include the following. Scrosati(2000) states, “LiCoO2 is the cathode material used currently in Lithium-ion
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