Beach sand for long cycle life batteries

#sand #battery #chemistry #energy
This is the holy grail – a low cost, non-toxic, environmentally friendly way to produce high performance lithium ion battery anodes
Zachary Favors

Schematic of the heat scavenger-assisted Mg reduction process.
Herein, porous nano-silicon has been synthesized via a highly scalable heat scavenger-assisted magnesiothermic reduction of beach sand. This environmentally benign, highly abundant, and low cost SiO2 source allows for production of nano-silicon at the industry level with excellent electrochemical performance as an anode material for Li-ion batteries. The addition of NaCl, as an effective heat scavenger for the highly exothermic magnesium reduction process, promotes the formation of an interconnected 3D network of nano-silicon with a thickness of 8-10 nm. Carbon coated nano-silicon electrodes achieve remarkable electrochemical performance with a capacity of 1024 mAhg−1 at 2 Ag−1 after 1000 cycles.

Favors, Z., Wang, W., Bay, H., Mutlu, Z., Ahmed, K., Liu, C., Ozkan, M., & Ozkan, C. (2014). Scalable Synthesis of Nano-Silicon from Beach Sand for Long Cycle Life Li-ion Batteries Scientific Reports, 4 DOI: 10.1038/srep05623
(via Popular Science)

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