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HomeNanotechnologyNew battery may stop post-hurricane electrical automobile fires -- ScienceDaily

New battery may stop post-hurricane electrical automobile fires — ScienceDaily

A College of Central Florida researcher has developed know-how that might stop electrical automobile fires, like these attributable to saltwater flooding from Hurricane Ian.

The know-how, an aqueous battery, replaces the risky and extremely flammable natural solvents present in electrical automobile lithium-ion batteries with saltwater to create a battery that’s safer, quicker charging, simply as highly effective and will not brief circuit throughout flooding.

The work is detailed in a brand new examine in Nature Communications.

“Throughout Hurricane Ian, a variety of electrical vehicles caught fireplace after they have been soaked in floodwater,” says Yang Yang, an affiliate professor in UCF’s NanoScience Know-how Middle who led the analysis. “That’s as a result of the saltwater corrodes the battery and causes a brief circuit, which ignites the flammable solvents and different elements. Our battery makes use of saltwater as an electrolyte, eliminating the extremely risky solvents.”

Additionally key to the battery’s design is its novel, nano-engineering that enables the battery to beat limitations of earlier aqueous batteries, similar to gradual charging occasions and poor stability.

The UCF-designed battery is quick charging, reaching full cost in three minutes, in comparison with the hours it takes lithium-ion batteries.

Yang is an professional in growing supplies for renewable vitality gadgets similar to batteries with improved security.

Saltwater Electrical Car Fires

The problem of electrical automobile fires after saltwater flooding surfaced throughout Hurricane Sandy in 2012 and Hurricane Isaias in 2020.

Consequently, the U.S. Hearth Administration and the Nationwide Freeway Visitors Security Administration have issued particular steerage for responding to electrical automobile fires attributable to saltwater flooding.

The fires require copious quantities of water to douse, with the Worldwide Affiliation of Hearth Chiefs recommending firefighters safe a steady and sustainable water provide of three,000 to eight,000 gallons.

At the least 12 electrical automobile fires have been reported in Collier and Lee counties in Florida after Hurricane Ian, the place many vehicles have been submerged at the least partially in saltwater, based on the US. Hearth Administration.

Designing the Battery

Earlier aqueous battery designs have suffered from low vitality output, instability, the expansion of dangerous metallic buildings referred to as dendrites on the unfavorable electrode and corrosion.

By utilizing saltwater because the battery’s liquid electrolyte, the UCF researchers have been ready to make use of naturally occurring metallic ions discovered within the saltwater, similar to sodium, potassium, calcium and magnesium, to create a dual-cation battery that shops extra vitality. This implementation allowed them to beat the sluggishness of earlier single-cation aqueous battery designs.

To resolve issues with instability, dendrite development and corrosion, the researchers engineered a forest-like 3D zinc-copper anode containing a skinny zinc-oxide protecting layer on prime.

The novel, nano-engineered floor, which seems like a birds-eye-view of a forest, permits the researchers to exactly management electrochemical reactions, thereby growing the battery’s stability and fast charging capacity.

Moreover, the zinc-oxide layer prevented dendritic development of zinc, which was confirmed utilizing optical microscopy.

“These batteries utilizing the novel supplies developed in my lab will stay protected even when they’re used improperly or are flooded in saltwater,” Yang says. “Our work will help enhance electrical automobile know-how and proceed to advance it as dependable and protected type of journey.”

The patent-pending know-how is on the market for licensing by UCF’s Workplace of Know-how Switch.

The analysis was supported with funding from the U.S. Nationwide Science Basis and American Chemical Society Petroleum Analysis Fund.



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