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According to a new study by University of Birmingham researchers, sodium-ion battery technology can hold as much as seven times the charge of the current lithium-ion solution. However, in an article published in the Journal of American Chemical Society, the biggest issue is the storage of these sodium ions.
Considering the fact that a sodium ion isn't small enough to fit between the graphite carbon layers seen on conventional lithium-ion batteries. Earlier, solutions had glass substrates and other materials. According to the recent study, the best intermediary for the batteries could be phosphorus.
In 2016, the use of complex quantum mechanical models run on supercomputers made it possible to settle the chemical element. This was followed by subsequent studies, which showed that the element forms helices during charging and that the final 'composition' of the phosphorus sodium-ion battery weighed seven times more than the current battery technology.
The new study also shows that this could prove useful in addressing the problems with the availability of materials and the speed of charging. Since both phosphorous and sodium are commonly found elements on earth, it solves the issue of sourcing materials for the rapidly-growing demand for portable power supplies.
That's not all, the blend of these two elements can also resolve the issues related to the instability of lithium-ion batteries and their vulnerability to explosions. This would make the batteries more eco-friendly as well as save money.
Keeping that in mind, there's still a lot of research and development to be put before the sodium-ion batteries start fuelling the electronics in the future. Lithium-ion cells took over a decade and became an important part of technology. The researchers haven't revealed whether the new technology is ready for use or that any talks are underway to explore real-world use. So we recommend our readers to take this piece of information with a pinch of salt, for now, at least.