Surrey team expands lifespan of solid-state lithium batteries

Researchers at Surrey University claim to have successfully increased the lifespan and stability of solid-state lithium-ion batteries.

Researcher holding solid-state lithium-ion battery with Ion Implanter
Researcher holding solid-state lithium-ion battery with Ion Implanter - University of Surrey - Advanced Technology Institute

According to the team, the new, high-density batteries are less likely to short-circuit — a problem found in previous lithium-ion solid-state batteries. The team hopes that the research will enable a viable approach for future widespread usage.

Dr Yunlong Zhao, from Surrey University’s Advanced Technology Institute, said: “We have all heard horror stories of lithium-ion batteries in transport settings, usually down to issues around cracked casing caused by exposure to stressful environments, such as extreme temperature changes.

“Our research proves that it is possible to produce more robust solid-state lithium-ion batteries, which should provide a promising approach for high-energy and safe future models to be used in real-life examples such as electric vehicles.”

At Surrey’s Ion Beam Centre, the team injected Xenon ions into a ceramic oxide material to create a solid-state electrolyte. They reportedly found that their method created a battery electrolyte that showed a 30-times improvement in lifespan over a battery that had not been injected.

Co-author of the study, Dr Nianhua Peng, said: “We are living in a world that is far more aware of the damage humans are causing to the environment. We hope that our battery and approach will help boost the scientific development of high-energy batteries to eventually move us into a more sustainable future.”

The full paper, led by Dr Zhao and Dr Peng, is published in Small.