Sand-based anode could triple li-ion battery performance

Scorpus

Posts: 1,992   +231
Staff member
Researchers at the University of California's Bourns College of Engineering have discovered that common sand, found at beaches and riversides everywhere, has the potential to drastically improve the performance of lithium-ion batteries.

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Jad Chaar

Posts: 6,482   +976
This is some exciting news. Sand is abundant and the fact that it can help increase battery life span and capacity is just amazing.
 

Forg0t2

Posts: 147   +25
You will only see improvements on phones and mobile devices for a very limited time. Why? Because than you can add stuff to the mobile device that is now still incapable of being added due to battery life. Still I like it very much that sometimes such big improvements come from such ordinary and (not literally) simple things such as sand...
 

Satish Mallya

Posts: 192   +178
TechSpot Elite
The article seems to be referring to an increased number of cycles, not an increase in capacity.
So battery life here means the number of years that you can go before your battery refuses to hold a charge.
 

WangDangDoodle

Posts: 199   +70
This is good news. Battery technology needs a serious bump. We keep getting bigger and faster CPUs, GPUs, APUs/SoCs and all that, but improvements to battery technology is a rare thing. Though, as Kibaruk pointed out, it remains to be seen whether or not this will result in something viable for mass production. It seems simple enough, using sand 'n all that, but I'm not a scientist. :)
 

Kibaruk

Posts: 3,836   +1,186
Even though it sounds simple maybe the process of converting or purifying sand to the needed point may be costly.
 

misor

Posts: 1,403   +312
Even though it sounds simple maybe the process of converting or purifying sand to the needed point may be costly.
da**. my plan to go to the beach and grab a handful of sand to power my smartphone has been crushed. :)

I love reading these news but we never see them in use or production, like graphene materials thats harder than steel or whatnot, lots of concepts that never reach mass production =(
agree with kibaruk.
 

psycros

Posts: 3,280   +3,613
Uh, this guy didn't "discover" anything. The properties of silicon dioxide are very well understood. Companies have been experimenting with silicon based battery tech for nearly fifteen years. Its been a theoretical approach for even longer than that.
 
Wow, its great to know such unique information as all of us are always up with our smartphones whenever we are on the beach or somewhere else.
 

captaincranky

Posts: 16,318   +5,109
da**. my plan to go to the beach and grab a handful of sand to power my smartphone has been crushed. :).
Dear God, I hope that pun was intentional.:D

Anyway, a large portion of beach sand is crushed quartz. Crushed quartz is comprised mostly SiO2, or silicon dioxide.

So, the next thing you know, they'll be trying to tell us you can make CPUs out of sand as well.
 

dexterkarthik

Posts: 21   +4
"The porous nature of the nano-silicon crafted from sand has the potential to increase the lifespan of a lithium-ion battery by three times or more"

This indicates only an increase in the battery life, but not clear if it is overall life or the life between charge cycles. I hope it is not the latter.