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Institute of Energy and Climate Research

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Metal-air Battery

Enhancing the energy density of energy storage systems by optimizing the lithium ion storage material for all day use systems has reached its limits. Further increase of the energy density in lithium battery systems can be gained by the use of lithium air cells.

Metall-Luft Batterie

Figure: Scheme of a metal air battery with a porous carbon cathode coated with MnO2 and a Li metal anode.

To reduce the costs for the energy storage with maintaining the high energy density primary battery cells with an air cathode are already in use (zinc air batteries in hearing devices). But the reversibility of such systems has been paid little attention till now.

This is why the current research focus of the IEK-9 institute is to investigate air cathodes for the use in various metal (Fe, Si, Al, Mg) air secondary batteries.

Therefore we are using highly porous carbon membranes which we gain by the use of techniques like aero gel synthesis or electro spinning of polymer fibers.

To investigate the deactivation processes of these batteries, we will use and develop new methods of in operando spectroscopy. These spectroscopies include MAS-NMR, ESR and raman.

New results in the research of silicone oxygen battery systems prove that the reversibility of these battery systems is a valuable goal.

  • P. Jakes, G. Cohn, Y. Ein-Eli, F. Scheiba, H. Ehrenberg, R.-A. Eichel: “Limitation of Discharge Capacity and Mechanisms of Air-Electrode Deactivation in Silicon–Air Batteries“, Chem. Sus. Chem. 5 (2012) 2278-2285
  • G. Cohn, R.-A. Eichel, Y. Ein-Eli: “New insight into the discharge mechanism of silicon–air batteries using electrochemical impedance spectroscopy”, Phys. Chem. Chem. Phys. 15 (2013) 3256-3263