Faradion demonstrates proof-of-concept sodium-ion electric bike

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British battery R&D company Faradion has demonstrated a proof-of-concept electric bike powered by sodium-ion batteries at the headquarters of Williams Advanced Engineering, which collaborated in the development of the bike. Sodium-ion intercalation batteries—i.e., Resources.

BASF investigating sodium-air batteries as alternative to Li-air; patent application filed with USPTO

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In a paper in Nature Materials , a team of researchers from BASF SE and Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen report on the performance of a sodium-air (sodium superoxide) cell. M solution of sodium triflate salt (NaSO 3 CF 3 ) in diethylene glycol dimethyl ether (DEGDME). Resources.

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New high-power, high-capacity, long-life sodium battery

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A team from the Max Planck Institute for Solid State Research in Stuttgart and the University of Science and Technology of China, Hefei, has developed a high-power, high-capacity sodium battery with 96% capacity retention after 2,000 cycles. The researchers combined sodium vanadium triphosphate (Na 3 V 2 (PO 4 ) 3 ) with a mixture of reduced graphene oxide and carbon nanotubes to improve the sodium compound’s conductivity. Resources.

Iowa State/Ames Lab researcher receives $3M from ARPA-E for solid-state sodium battery

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The Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) has awarded $3 million from its 2015 OPEN funding to a project to develop an all-solid-state sodium battery. When we look at ways to efficiently store energy from wind and solar sources, lithium-based batteries are expensive and world-wide geological resources of lithium are actually quite limited. And, nearly all countries have access to large amounts of sodium.

U Alberta team develops hybrid sodium-ion capacitor; intermediate in energy & power between ultracaps and batteries

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A team led by researchers from the University of Alberta (Canada) Scientists has developed a hybrid sodium-ion capacitor (NIC) using active materials in both the anode and the cathode derived entirely from peanut shells—a green and highly economical waste globally generated at more than 6 million tons per year. Resources.

UW researchers discover major lithium resource in Wyoming; potential integrated brine production/CO2 storage system

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Researchers at the University of Wyoming Carbon Management Institute (CMI) discovered a major new lithium resource near Rock Springs during a geological carbon dioxide storage site characterization project sponsored by the US Department of Energy. The potential new lithium resource discovered by CMI could transform the US from a significant lithium importer to an independent lithium producer.

U Waterloo team identifies key reaction in sodium-air batteries; implications for improving Li-air

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Chemists at the University of Waterloo have identified the key reaction that takes place in sodium-air batteries. The researchers from the Waterloo Institute for Nanotechnology, led by Professor Linda Nazar who holds the Canada Research Chair in Solid State Energy Materials, have described a key mediation pathway that explains why sodium-oxygen batteries are more energy efficient when compared with their lithium-oxygen counterparts. Resources.

Hollow carbon nanowires show high capacity and cycle life as anodes for sodium-ion batteries; insight into Na-ion insertion-extraction mechanism

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The researchers attributed the good sodium-ion insertion properties to the short diffusion distance in the HCNWs and the large interlayer distance (0.37 They investigated sodium ion insertion?extraction Resources. Discharge capacity of the HCNW electrode as a function of charge?discharge

Yissum offering novel high-performance anode for sodium-ion batteries; antimony sulphide nanoparticle-coated graphene

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Sodium-ion batteries (Na-ion, NIBs) are seen as an alternative to lithium-ion batteries for large-scale applications due to their lower cost and abundant supply of sodium. Yissum , the Research and Development Company of the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, is offering a novel anode for sodium-ion batteries (Na-ion, NIB) which enables the production of a battery with high capacity, excellent rate capability and good cycle performance. Resources.

Amorphous titanium dioxide nanotube anodes for sodium-ion batteries show ability to self-improve specific capacity

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A team of researchers at the US Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory has synthesized amorphous titanium dioxide nanotube (TiO 2 NT) electrodes directly grown on current collectors without binders and additives to use as an anode for sodium-ion batteries. Resources.

RAL proposes new efficient and low-cost process to crack ammonia for hydrogen using sodium amide; transportation applications

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RAL researchers are proposing a new process for the decomposition of ammonia to release hydrogen that involves the stoichiometric decomposition and formation of sodium amide from Na metal. The new process decomposes ammonia using the concurrent stoichiometric decomposition and regeneration of sodium amide (NaNH 2 ) via sodium metal (Na); this is a significant departure in reaction mechanism compared with traditional surface catalysts. Resources.

Univ. of Maryland team develops promising sodium-ion cathode material: FePO4/nanotube composite

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Researchers at the University of Maryland have developed a nanocomposite material of amorphous, porous FePO 4 nanoparticles electrically wired by single-wall carbon nanotubes as a potential cathode material for sodium-ion batteries (SIBs). Recently, sodium ion batteries (SIBs) have drawn increasing attention from researchers, despite the fact that lithium ion batteries (LIBs) are still the predominant power source for home electronics and for future large-scale energy storage devices.

BC Hydro and SC Electric Company partner on sodium-sulfur battery energy storage project

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BC Hydro has selected S&C Electric Company, a renewable energy integration company, for a sodium-sulfur (NaS) battery energy storage project intended to improve service reliability for a remote mountain community in British Columbia. The energy storage system, which is funded, in part, by Natural Resources Canada’s Clean Energy Fund, will also reduce peak load demand for a second community, limiting carbon emissions and enabling deferral of capital expenditures.

UT Austin team identifies promising new cathode material for sodium-ion batteries: eldfellite

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Sodium-ion intercalation batteries—i.e., However, sodium-ion batteries face issues related to performance, weight and instability of materials. Sodium ion intercalation and storage is challenging because Na ions are about 70% larger in radius than Li ions. Resources.

Expanded graphite as a superior anode for sodium-ion batteries

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Researchers at the University of Maryland, with colleagues at the University of Illinois at Chicago, report on a new method for expanding graphite for use as a superior anode for sodium-ion batteries in a paper in Nature Communications. Resources.

Univ. of Texas researchers propose lithium- or sodium-water batteries as next generation of high-capacity battery technology; applicable for EVs and grid storage

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Researchers at the University of Texas, including Dr. John Goodenough, are proposing a strategy for high-capacity next-generation alkali (lithium or sodium)-ion batteries using water-soluble redox couples as the cathode. The present sodium-sulfur battery operates above 300 °C. Oxygen in air, an “inexhaustible resource” on earth, makes it possible to match the capacity of lithium metal. A = lithium or sodium (Li or Na), M represents a metal and 1 ≤ n < z.

Vanderbilt researchers find iron pyrite quantum dots boost performance of sodium-ion and Li-ion batteries

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nm, average) of iron pyrite (FeS 2 ) nanoparticles are advantageous to sustain reversible conversion reactions in sodium ion and lithium ion batteries. Resources. Researchers at Vanderbilt University have demonstrated that ultrafine sizes (∼4.5

Researchers significantly improve H2 storage properties of sodium aluminium hydride by doping with 2D titanium carbide

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A team at Zhejiang University in China has significantly enhanced the hydrogen storage properties of sodium aluminum hydride (NaAlH 4 ) by doping it with a 2D titanium carbide (Ti 3 C2) MXene. Resources. MXenes” are exfoliated 2D carbide and carbonitride nanosheets that are structurally similar to graphene, where M represents transition metals, and X is either C or/and N, earlier post ).

New high energy, highly stable cathode for sodium-ion batteries

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F 0.7 , for sodium-ion (Na-ion) batteries (NIBs). —can function as an excellent cathode for rechargeable sodium-ion batteries with a high energy density. Resources. Ragone plot for the new Na 1.5 VPO 4.8 cathode and other cathode materials for NIBs. Credit: ACS, Park et al.

Vanderbilt team develops ultrafast, high capacity and long-lived Na-ion anode

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As we demonstrate in this work, few-layered graphene materials may enable sodium-ion batteries as a storage platform which brings simultaneous promise for all of these applications. Resources.

New liquid alloy electrode significantly lowers operating temperature of sodium-beta batteries; improved performance

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Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) have devised an alloying strategy that enables sodium-beta batteries to operate at significantly lower temperatures. The new electrode enables sodium-beta batteries to last longer, helps streamline their manufacturing process and reduces the risk of accidental fire. The traditional design of sodium-beta batteries consists of two electrodes separated by a solid membrane made of the ceramic material beta alumina.

New heterogeneous acid catalyst shows high activity in release of hydrogen from sodium borohydride; lowest activation energy yet reported

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A team from the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay has devised a heterogeneous acid catalyst, silica sulfuric acid, that shows high activity towards releasing hydrogen from sodium borohydride (NaBH 4 ), with a hydrolysis rate of 5.5 When NaBH 4 is suspended in an aqueous solution and then passed over a catalyst, the reaction produces hydrogen, along with a benign byproduct—sodium metaborate—that can be recycled back into sodium borohydride. Resources.

Researchers improve the performance of sodium-ion batteries by using tailored carbon anodes with hierarchical porosity

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Researchers at Justus Liebig University, Giessen, Germany, have improved the performance of sodium-ion batteries ( earlier post ) by using tailor-made carbon materials with hierarchical porosity for the anode instead of common carbon-based anode materials. Resources.

Sodium-ion energy storage in nanocellular carbon foams shows high capacity and rate retention; not an intercalation battery

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Researchers at Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL) report in a paper in the ACS journal Nano Letters on high-capacity, high-rate sodium-ion (Na-ion) energy storage in functionalized high-surface-area nanocellular carbon foams (NCCF). Sodium-ion intercalation batteries—i.e.,

New 3-step process for conversion of kraft lignin from black liquor into green diesel

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The process produces a toxic byproduct referred to as black liquor—a primarily liquid mixture of pulping residues (such as lignin and hemicellulose) and inorganic chemicals from the Kraft process (sodium hydroxide and sodium sulfide, for example). Resources. Researchers in Sweden and Spain have devised a three-step process for the conversion of precipitated kraft lignin from black liquor into green diesel. Their paper appears in the journal ChemSusChem.

SiGNa Chemistry Demonstrates Sodium Silicate-Based Hydrogen Generation System for Portable Fuel Cells

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Prototype sodium silicate hydrogen generation system as presented earlier this year at DOE merit review. The H300 utilizes real-time swappable cartridges that generate hydrogen on demand using SiGNa’s proprietary sodium silicide (NaSi) powder. Resources.

Sumitomo considering marketing new lower-temperature molten-salt electrolyte battery to automakers for EVs and hybrids

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the ZEBRA battery, or GE’s Durathon sodium-metal halide batteries, earlier post ) has been the need for high operating temperatures to keep the salt molten. The company earlier reported that based on its trial calculations, assuming equal capacity, the new battery had half the volume of lithium-ion batteries and one quarter that of sodium-sulfur batteries, enabling miniaturization. Resources. Construction of the molten-salt electrolyte battery. Source: Sumitomo.

Researchers find tin nanoparticles promising electrode material for sodium-ion batteries

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Tin (Sn) shows promise as a robust electrode material for rechargeable sodium-ion (Na-ion) batteries, according to a new study by a team from the University of Pittsburgh and Sandia National Laboratory. reversible and rapid ion insertion and extraction, but using sodium ions rather than lithium. Resources. Mao, and Jian Yu Huang (2012) Microstructural Evolution of Tin Nanoparticles during In Situ Sodium Insertion and Extraction.

Antimony/carbon nanocomposite anode for Na-ion battery shows high capacity and stability

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Researchers at Wuhan University (China) have synthesized a Sb/C (antimony/carbon) nanocomposite for use as an anode material in a room-temperature sodium-ion (Na-ion) battery. A sodium disk served as the counter and reference electrode. Resources.

Xcel Terms First Phase of Sodium-Sulfur Battery Wind Energy Storage Test Project Successful

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In October 2008, Xcel began testing a one-megawatt sodium-sulfur (NaS) battery ( earlier post ) to demonstrate its ability to store wind energy and move it to the electricity grid when needed. Reduce the need to compensate for the variability and limited predictability of wind generation resources. Resources. Sodium Sulfur Battery Energy Storage And Its Potential To Enable Further Integration of Wind (Wind-to-Battery Project).

Planar Sodium Nickel Chloride Batteries Could Deliver 30% More Power at Lower Temperatures Than Conventional Cylindrical Versions

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Schematic of a sodium-nickel chloride cell with planar design. A planar (flat) sodium-nickel chloride battery could deliver 30% more power at lower temperatures than the typical cylindrical design, according to researchers at the US Department of Energy’s Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL). Sodium-beta batteries have been around since the 1960s. The sodium ions diffuse exclusively within the conduction layers perpendicular to the c axis. Resources.

Study finds high sodium bicarbonate concentrations in water from coal-bed natural gas production harms aquatic life; water treatment can mitigate effects

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Produced water from coal-bed natural gas (CBNG) production may contain sodium bicarbonate (NaHCO 3 ) at concentrations that can harm aquatic life, according to a new study by the US Geological Survey; Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks; the Bureau of Land Management and the US Environmental Protection Agency. Salts such as sodium bicarbonate are found naturally in the water along the coal-bed natural gas seams. Resources.

German team produces hydrocarbons from thermal degradation of free fatty acids and animal fat in water and sodium carbonate; ultimately 43% diesel-range and 14% gasoline-range fractions

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Researchers in Germany have produced a hydrocarbon-based bio-crude and non-condensable gases from the thermal degradation of free fatty acids and animal fat in the presence of water and sodium carbonate (Na 2 CO 3 , a sodium salt of carbonic acid commonly used as a water softener). The process was carried out in a moving bed of sodium carbonate at 5 wt% water at 430± 20 °C at a pilot-scale plant. Coke deposits on sodium carbonate were determined to be 5 ± 1%.

Process for Hydrogen Production from Sodium Sulfite Solutions Resulting from Capture of SO2 from Coal Flue Gas

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Researchers at the University of Central Florida have developed a novel ultraviolet (UV) photolytic process for the production of hydrogen from aqueous Na 2 SO 3 (sodium sulfite) solutions created by the absorption of SO 2 using an aqueous sodium hydroxide solution as a mechanism to treat SO 2 emissions from sources such as coal-fired power plants and refineries. Resources.

Univ. of Tokyo researchers demonstrate new “oxygen-rocking” battery

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Batteries based on this system allow the use of various anode materials, such as lithium and sodium, without the requirement to develop new cathode intercalation materials. In the new study reported in the Journal of the American Chemical Society , they used the concept and demonstrated a new battery based on a CaFeO 3 cathode with a sodium anode, in conjunction with a NaClO 4 /triglyme electrolyte. Resources.

NSF to award $13M to projects focused on electrochemical and organic photovoltaic systems

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Processes for sustainable energy production must be environmentally benign, reduce greenhouse gas production, and utilize renewable resources. Advanced systems such as lithium-air, sodium-ion, as well as lithium-ion electrochemical energy storage are appropriate. The US National Science Foundation (NSF) will award more than $13 million to projects in the Energy for Sustainability program.

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UNSW team demonstrates high reversible hydrogen storage capacity under mild conditions for sodium borohydride using novel core-shell nanostructure; potential for vehicles

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A team from the University of New South Wales (Australia) reports on a novel core-shell strategy leading to high and stable hydrogen absorption/desorption cycling for sodium borohydride (NaBH 4 ) under mild pressure conditions (4 MPa) in an open-access paper in the journal ACS Nano. mass %), sodium borohydride is a promising hydrogen storage material. Resources. The core-shell NaBH 4 @Ni nanoparticles show high reversible hydrogen storage under reasonable conditions.

Lygos completes first pilot-scale production of malonic acid from renewable resources at Berkeley Lab’s ABPDU

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The petrochemical process to produce malonic acid requires chloroacetic acid and sodium cyanide, and is both costly and environmentally hazardous. Lygos, Inc. earlier post ) has successfully achieved pilot scale production of malonic acid from sugar via a fermentation pathway using engineered microbes.

Researchers develop rechargeable hybrid-seawater fuel cell; highly energy density, stable cycling

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The circulating seawater in the open-cathode system results in a continuous supply of sodium ions, endowing the system with superior cycling stability that allows the application of various alternative anodes to sodium metal by compensating for irreversible charge losses. Resources.

Researchers develop all-weather solar cell that generates power from rain as well as from sun

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The positively charged ions, including sodium, calcium, and ammonium ions, can bind to the graphene surface. Resources.

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