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Researchers develop room-temp 1,000+ cycle rechargeable solid-state lithium-air battery

Researchers from the Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT), Argonne National Laboratory, and the University of Illinois at Chicago have developed a room-temperature solid-state lithium-air battery that is rechargeable for 1,000 cycles with a low polarization gap and can operate at high rates. The composite polymer-ceramic solid-state electrolyte enables a four-electron redox process in the lithium-air battery. A paper on their work is published in the journal Science.

The battery design has the potential to store one kilowatt-hour per kilogram or highe—four times greater than lithium-ion battery technology—which would be transformative for electrifying transportation, especially heavy-duty vehicles such as airplanes, trains, and submarines, said Mohammad Asadi, assistant professor of chemical engineering at Illinois Institute of Technology and senior author.

A lithium-air battery based on lithium oxide (Li2O) formation can theoretically deliver an energy density that is comparable to that of gasoline. Lithium oxide formation involves a four-electron reaction that is more difficult to achieve than the one- and two-electron reaction processes that result in lithium superoxide (LiO2) and lithium peroxide (Li2O2), respectively. By using a composite polymer electrolyte based on Li10GeP2S12 nanoparticles embedded in a modified polyethylene oxide polymer matrix, we found that Li2O is the main product in a room temperature solid-state lithium-air battery.

… The four-electron reaction is enabled by a mixed ion–electron-conducting discharge product and its interface with air. Lithium-air batteries have scope to compete with gasoline in terms of energy density. However, in most systems, the reaction pathways either involve one- or two-electron transfer, leading to lithium peroxide (Li2O2) or lithium superoxide (LiO2), respectively.

The composite electrolyte embedded with Li10GeP2S12 nanoparticles shows high ionic conductivity and stability and high cycle stability through a four-electron transfer process.

—Kondori et al.


  • Alireza Kondori, Mohammadreza Esmaeilirad, Ahmad Mosen Harzandi, Rachid Amine, Mahmoud Tamadoni Saray, Lei Yu, Tongchao Liu, Jianguo Wen, Nannan Shan, Hsien-Hau Wang, Anh T. Ngo, Paul C. Redfern, Christopher S. Johnson, Khalil Amine, Reza Shahbazian-Yassar, Larry A. Curtiss, Mohammad Asadi (2023) “A room temperature rechargeable Li2O-based lithium-air battery enabled by a solid electrolyte” Science doi: 10.1126/science.abq1347



Kudos to these teams. Fantastic performance!


Fingers, and everything else, crossed!

Contrary to what many think here, I am a fan of battery tech, and confident it will be perhaps the major driver of decarbonisation and transport.

I am just not a fan of wishful thinking, and assuming that we will shortly have what we can't do presently, and 'investing' other people's money on the basis of that assumption.

Still better than what the fossil fuel dinosaurs do though (Hey, Shell, BP, I'm talking about you!)

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