May 10 (UPI) -- Scientists with the U.S. Army have developed a new type of cathode chemistry that makes batteries safer and more efficient.
Currently, Soldiers must regularly carry batteries weighing between 15 and 20 pounds. But thanks to a new type of cathode and electrolyte, soldiers could soon be carrying safer and more efficient batteries weighing half as much.
Army researchers were able to boost lithium-ion battery energy density by using a totally aqueous electrolyte. The electrolyte is free of transition metal and boasts high-capacity energy storage.
"Such a high energy, safe and potentially flexible new battery will likely give the Soldiers what they need on the battlefield: reliable high-energy source with robust tolerance against abuse," Kang Xu, senior scientist at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command's Army Research Laboratory, said in a news release. "It is expected to significantly enhance the mobility and lethality of the Soldier while unburdening logistics requirements."