A biobattery that runs on a sugar solution that has an energy-storage density 10 times that of lithium-ion batteries. This discovery comes from a research lab at Virginia Tech, where a team led by Y.H. Percival Zhang has figured out how to synthesize a trio of enzymes and feed them maltodextrin to produce current. The result is a fuel cell that could be powering devices within three years.
“In fact, the supply of sodium is unlimited. Also, sodium ion batteries can be made using iron, aluminum, and sodium, rather than cobalt or copper as before. What’s more, our results show that battery capacity can be increased simply by using carbon made from sugar as the anode. So high-performance batteries like expensive lithium batteries, which are an important type of rechargeable battery, may be achievable using cheaper, more abundant materials. We believe that, if the technology and performance can be improved, development may progress toward practical batteries that can replace lithium ion batteries.”