For over several years, the interest in battery technology has been growing, particularly given the recent rise in renewable energy production. With technology evolving, the storage of energy has become one of the key bottlenecks of today’s power industry. These requirements are driving and attracting greater levels of investment to find alternatives for the most widely used lithium batteries. Though solar and wind power can only be generated intermittently, it also requires efficient storage to help balance the grid.
As the power demands across the globe are growing, there is a growing necessity to find sustainable alternatives to the traditional battery systems. The applications of these batteries are not limited to using in smartphone and laptop life but also to electric power vehicles and the storage of energy from renewable resources like solar and wind. Lithium based batteries are being widely used for decades for such purposes, overtaking lead-acid batteries due to their longevity and energy density. But, the high rise in costs of Lithium as well as the fears over the supply chain, resource depletion, and sudden battery drains is driving developers to look for an effective, low-carbon battery base. Since its beginning, the searches have revealed a wide range of materials with the ability to solve the energy storage problem. This includes sodium, cobalt, water, and gold. However, as lithium is considered now a staple of modern technology, most researchers are working to develop advanced solutions to use the same metal.
Another component, Graphene has been widely used as a vital ingredient for future energy needs. Some of the other alternatives that are being researched include photosynthesis, fuel cells, solid-state technologies, solar, sodium-ion, and aluminum graphite. Many of these materials have the advantage of being more abundant or either safer than the most widely used lithium-based batteries.
Another area of the industry where the need for battery innovation is most urgently required is in the emerging wearable tech market. Using a rigid battery would not work in emerging areas such as smart clothing and smartwatches. This is driving researchers and organizations to look forward to a more flexible and advanced battery type. Recently, some researchers revealed that they had developed technology using graphene-oxide. They developed an ink-like substance that can be printed on to fabrics to transfer electricity. The ink acts as a solid-state flexible supercapacitor and is as flexible as cotton, has the ability to charge electronic components rapidly.