Lithium batteries can be recharged in five minutes thanks to asphalt, which can be a solution for creating high-capacity batteries. Such batteries charge 20 times faster than commercial lithium-ion batteries.

Scientists from the William Marsh rice research University, located in Houston, have created an anode with the addition of porous carbon from asphalt, which showed exceptional stability after more than 500 charge-discharge cycles. The density of 20mA\cm2 demonstrated the possibility of using new material in fast charging devices that require high power.

Previously, the Tour laboratory used a derivative of asphalt-raw hilsonite, used to collect greenhouse gases from natural gas. This time, the researchers mixed asphalt with graphene conducting elements and coated them with lithium by electrochemical deposition. During testing, the anode was combined with a carbonized carbon cathode to fully charge the batteries. They showed a very high energy intensity 943 W*h/kg.

Carbon softened the formation of lithium dendrites-mossy deposits formed in the electrolyte of the battery. If there are too many of them, it is possible to short the anode and cathode, which will lead to fire and even explosion of the battery. However, the carbon produced from asphalt prevents the formation of dendrite and makes the use of lithium batteries safer.

And now, let us note that a special sulfur-containing material based on carbon was used as a cathode. It allowed to reach the figure of 943 WH/kg. In traditional lithium-ion batteries, the cathode is the limitation in the energy intensity of the battery, since the same lithium-cobalt has a slightly higher amount of energy than 160 mAh/gm (in tri-basic cathodes based on Nickel, cobalt, manganese can be 180 mAh/gm).

Scientists have found a very interesting component of asphalt, on the basis of which it is really possible to make an energy-intensive battery. However, first, the true capacity of the anode material is not specified. Secondly, as for the dendrites on the surface of this material: dendrites grow from lithium only if they do not penetrate into the structure of the material. Hence the question: is this material electrochemically active or it creates a developed surface on which there is a uniform deposition of lithium ions? 100% problems will arise in the relationship of pure lithium with the electrolyte, to the fact that the energy consumption in time with the resource and all indicators will be greatly reduced.

As for the recoil current, it should be noted that the battery is a closed system in which all components must meet the requirements of high recoil power. Otherwise, if one link of the system does not work, then the whole system will be limited to only one indicator. It is necessary to pay attention to the fact that if we are talking about high-energy anodes based on carbon, they should have a huge surface area, very high electrical conductivity and extremely low potential of lithium intercalation in the structure.

The article does not specify the energy intensity, and, meanwhile, carbon materials have an energy intensity of about 360 mAh/gm. This is due to the fact that lithium enters the structure between two hexahedrons of carbon atoms - 1 lithium atom is surrounded by 12 carbon atoms. If we talk about graphene, which is present in a monolayer of carbon atoms, in its structure per 1 atom of lithium has 6 atoms in a carbon environment. Therefore, it is likely to double the capacity of conventional carbon materials.

This news are, of course, amazing, but the study requires thorough testing. Especially for dendrites, as they can have a significant negative impact. The use of a resource cathode based on sulfur can give a very good solution, but at the moment the evidence and test figures of the material based on asphalt, which scientists have found, is not enough.
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