Imagine painting your house, inside and out, and turning it into a very large battery that can store energy from your solar panels. Imagine the outside of your car being able to store enough energy for a thousand miles or kilometers!
It’s all going to be possible sooner than you think.
Scientific American reports about a new research that could change the way batteries are produced. The technique could eliminate restrictions on surfaces used for energy storage.
The paint-on battery, like all lithium ion batteries, consists of five layers: a positive current collector, a cathode that attracts positively charged ions, an ion-conducting separator, an anode to attract negative ions, and a negative current collector.
Throughout the research, the scientists have found the focus to shift towards battery integration. People are looking for more ways to design batteries that can be built into a variety of objects. Some teams have already began working on thin and flexible batteries, which can be integrated into textiles. The spray-on batteries look promising for solar energy since it would be a more efficient way to collect and store the energy.
To test their design, they applied the battery paints onto ceramic bathroom tiles, glass, a flexible transparency film, stainless steel and the side of a beer stein. In each case, the battery worked. In one experiment, they hooked a solar cell to one of the batteries and powered an LED display.
The technology is not yet available at your nearest home improvement store. There are many challenges to making it commercially available. There is still room for improving the stability and strength of the spray-on battery. Health and environmental concerns are also being addressed.
Read more at the Scientific American