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It depends of what you call "near future" I don't get excited about this sort of thing anymore until it's being produced commercially. Lots of breakthroughs never seem to amount to anything.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I don't get excited about this sort of thing anymore until it's being produced commercially. Lots of breakthroughs never seem to amount to anything.
I know, this is why I said "hopefully" :)

The article does say " However, there is a plan to create a prototype within a year. It's realistic, too, as it doesn't need expensive materials and could be used just like a run-of-the-mill lithium-ion battery"
Fingers crossed...
 

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Li-air batteries and metal-air batteries [e.g., Fe, Zn, Al] in general have been around a long time, and DOE funded research on these batteries in the 1980’s. In general, power is low because of the air electrode. Another issue is cycle life. It has been very difficult, to date, to produce a rechargeable metal-air battery. The article alludes to some of the problems, but does not mention the cycling difficulties. So currently, primary Zn-air batteries are available for hearing aids, but none of the secondary [rechargeable] type. The hype with Li-air has been going for a few years now, but I wouldn’t bet on a viable metal-air battery for EVs in the next decade.
 

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If you read the article, you will see that this is different and solves the issues of Lithium Air battery technology.
 

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If you read the article, you will see that this is different and solves the issues of Lithium Air battery technology.
I don't know what article you read but a cycle life of under a hundred with diminishing returns each time would mean the battery would have to be recycled and rebuild rather often.

Obviously that is still better than previous air batteries which were either not rechargeable or had a dozen cycles (in some cases) but I still don't see this as being very exciting. Improving that 100ish number in 10 years is also not very exciting.

To justify such a thing it would need to be very cheap with lots of capacity for people to put up with it, but I would have to bet this one wouldn't be cheap but it would be lite.
 

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If you read the article, you will see that this is different and solves the issues of Lithium Air battery technology.
Based on my experience, I disagree. There are many technical issues with metal-air batteries that must be addressed before we are talking seriously about a commercially viable product. In the old days, cycle life was a major problem, mainly due to the air electrode. In alkaline electrolytes, carbonation was an issue. Recharging the negative electrode (e.g., Li, Fe, Al, Zn) for practical cycle life was also problematic. That's not too say that R & D shouldn't be continued. However, the folks looking for research funds can put up a lot of hype.
 

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I don't know what article you read but a cycle life of under a hundred with diminishing returns each time would mean the battery would have to be recycled and rebuild rather often.

Obviously that is still better than previous air batteries which were either not rechargeable or had a dozen cycles (in some cases) but I still don't see this as being very exciting. Improving that 100ish number in 10 years is also not very exciting.

To justify such a thing it would need to be very cheap with lots of capacity for people to put up with it, but I would have to bet this one wouldn't be cheap but it would be lite.
More details are in this MIT press release:

http://news.mit.edu/2016/new-lithium-oxygen-battery-greatly-improves-energy-efficiency-longevity-0725

It says the prototype battery showed less than 2% capacity loss after 120 charging cycles. I'm not certain how to extrapolate beyond that, but let's say after 500 full charge cycles the battery shows a 10% capacity loss. If this technology were used to build a 500 mile range battery then after 500 cycles the car would have a range reduction from 500 to 450 miles after 225,000+ miles of driving. That would be awesomely great. This kind of battery design is aimed at enabling large battery pack ranges like that so the key factors become battery volume and cost.
 
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