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Rechargeable Proton Battery Demonstrated

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.

Researchers have demonstrated for the first time a working rechargeable “proton battery” that could reconfigure how we power our homes, vehicles and devices. The battery is environmentally friendly and could store more energy than current lithium-ion batteries.

Potential applications for the proton battery include household storage of electricity from solar photovoltaic panels, just like Tesla’s lithium-ion Powerwall battery. With some modifications and scaling up, proton battery technology may also be used for medium-scale storage on electricity grids like South Australia’s new giant lithium battery, as well as to power electric vehicles.

The prototype proton battery uses a carbon electrode as a hydrogen store, coupled with a reversible fuel cell. During charging, protons produced by water splitting in the reversible fuel cell are conducted through the cell membrane and directly bond with the storage material with the aid of electrons supplied by the applied voltage, without forming hydrogen gas.

This process is reversed to produce electricity: hydrogen atoms are released from the storage and lose an electron to become protons once again. These protons then pass back through the cell membrane, where they combine with oxygen and electrons from the external circuit to re-form water.

A potential advantage of the proton battery is much higher...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.