A University of California Riverside team developed a method that recycles waste glass into nanoscale batteries that are more efficient than ones currently used.
Capable of storing up to 10 times more energy than the commonly used graphite based battery anodes, silicon anodes made from recycled glass are being used in new high performance lithium ion batteries. A research team from the University of California Riverside’s Bourns College of Engineering has developed a three-step, patent pending process for turning the silicon dioxide in waste glass into nanoscale batteries.
The process that converts the glass into nanostructured silicon is low-cost and efficient, and one glass bottle provides enough silicon for hundreds of coin cell batteries or several larger ones. The new batteries could help improve the strength and overall life of electric vehicle and smart device batteries, thereby further increasing sustainability across industries.
From being powered by dirty water to safely dissolving in water for disposal, innovation in power generation tends to focus on environmental credentials and, often, miniaturization. How could some of the ideas behind smaller batteries be applied to household or community power generation?