Future Automotive Energy Technology Outlook: Rechargeable Fluid Battery

The battery can be fluid.

Recently, a new type of rechargeable fluid battery designed by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) did not rely on costly diaphragms to generate and store electrical energy.

This kind of fluid battery is expected to achieve lower cost and larger-scale energy storage in the future. Prototypes of fluid cells produce 3 times more energy per square centimeter than other diaphragm-based systems, and their power density is orders of magnitude higher than most lithium-ion batteries and other commercial and experimental energy storage systems.

The device's storage and release of energy is dependent on a phenomenon called laminar flow, where both liquids are pumped through a channel, and the electrochemical reactions between the two electrodes store or release energy. Where appropriate, this solution emerged through the channel stream and the two liquids were mixed slightly. The fluid naturally separates liquids without the use of costly battery spacers.

The reaction material in the battery contains liquid bromine solution and hydrogen fuel. The research team chose bromine because the chemical is quite cheap and easy to purchase. The United States can produce 243,000 tons of bromine per year. In addition to the lower cost of bromine, the chemical reaction between hydrogen and bromine has a great advantage for storing energy, but hydrogen and bromine-based fuel cell designs will appear as follows: Hydrobromic acid tends to devour the battery's spacer film, effective Slows energy storage reactions and reduces battery life.

In order to avoid these problems, the research team took a simple method - remove the battery spacer. Karen Buy, associate professor of mechanical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said: "This technology has a good prospect for the development of electrical energy storage."

Prof. Martin Basant, a member of the research team, said: “The battery system we researched recently performs better than the previous battery design. At present, we do not need to worry about the problem of spacer film. This is a huge breakthrough in energy storage technology.”

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