MIT engineers have designed a battery that could provide low-cost backup storage for renewable energy sources. Less expensive than lithium-ion battery technology, the new architecture uses aluminum and sulfur as its two electrode materials with a molten salt electrolyte in between.
A team at Stanford University has developed a cheap, non-toxic way to make lithium-ion batteries that don’t require special insulation and anticorrosion measures.
The heat is naturally produced electrochemically by the charging and discharging of the battery. A spinoff company, Ambri, hopes to deliver its first products within the next year. Sulfur batteries could be used to store power and then release it quickly when needed.
Having a battery system such as this could eliminate the need for expensive new power lines. Avanti is co-founded by Sadoway and Luis Ortiz ’96 ScD ’00, who was also a co-founder of Ambri.