Clusters of silicon have energising applications

Source: Nian Liu, Zhenda Lu and Yi Cui/Stanford

Silicon clusters

By precisely controlling the process used to make them, Stanford and SLAC researchers can produce clusters of a specific size for silicon battery anodes. Left: Microscopic clusters form a fine black powder that can be coated on foil to create an anode. Middle: A single cluster. Right: In this close-up of a cluster, a silicon nanoparticle can be seen inside its yolk shell, with space to swell during battery charging