A breakthrough in the technology of 3D printing of hollow electrodes for batteries has been achieved

The University of Carnegie Mellon developed a new kind of 3D printing, which allowed to bypass the previous shortcomings of “comb-like geometry”. And opened the way to the creation of complex multidimensional, but still porous on the micro level structures. The authors of the novelty are sure that they will make a revolution in energy.

A hollow electrode is by definition better than a solid electrode, since the electrolyte can not only settle on the outer layer, but also penetrate deep inside, which increases the accumulated charge many times over. The problem is to develop and implement such a structure that will retain strength, reliability in work and will not be too expensive. This direction is called “comb geometry”, but it is not suitable for printing really large objects on a traditional 3D printer.


Therefore, scientists have designed a new device that does not precipitate plastic, but shoots micro droplets in the right direction, with a strictly verified energy, vector and coefficients of adhesion and inertia. The drop hits the target, but does not drain, but freezes, becoming one with it. This allowed to print 3D designs of any complexity and create porous elements with a huge amount of empty space inside. The method is very effective and fast, so now the stage of obtaining a patent passes.

At the same dimensions, the porous electrode provides a specific capacitance four times that of the integral analog, and the volume capacitance doubles. And no degradation even after 40 cycles of charge-discharge. But the main thing is that the less material is used in the electrode, the easier it is, while maintaining similar operational qualities. This means that all batteries, batteries, fuel cells, etc. will be at times more compact than the current, if the technology will be commercialized.

Hollow Electrodes

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