Batteries have been one source for providing energy. Batteries are of two types which include primary and secondary types. Primary batteries are the single-use batteries that can’t be recharged. Secondary batteries are rechargeable batteries. People use secondary batteries widely around the world.
There are many types of secondary batteries, but lithium-ion batteries are popular among them. The major reason is because of the high energy density, high voltage capacity, and low self-discharge rate than other rechargeable batteries.
Though it has some advantages it still has some disadvantages which include, lithium is toxic hence it requires safe disposal and they are not robust. Lithium batteries have overcharging and discharging risks, hence needs protection.
Charging batteries by humidity
Professor Colin Price from Tel Aviv University has been working on new rechargeable batteries in which the batteries get recharged with the help of humidity. Researchers from Tel Aviv University have found that water vapor in the atmosphere has the potential to become a viable source of renewable energy.
They conducted experiments, but the voltage generated is extremely low. But if it scales up, they say they could be able to charge the batteries. We relate this work to the discovery that electricity materializes in the combination of water molecules and metal surfaces.
The natural phenomenon of Lightning
Professor Colin used the natural phenomenon of lightning for this research. He said,
“We sought to capitalize on a naturally occurring phenomenon: electricity from water. Water generates electricity in thunderstorms in its different phases — water vapor, water droplets, and ice. Twenty minutes of cloud development is how we get from water droplets to huge electric discharges — lightning — some half a mile.“
Their research work found out that a battery develops voltage only when the relative humidity in the air rose above 60 percent- atmospheric conditions that are extremely commonplace across the globe.
“Water is a very special molecule. During molecular collisions, it can transfer an electrical charge from one molecule to the other. Through friction, it can build up a kind of static electricity.” Prof. Colin said.
They found that materials like zinc and stainless steel could gain a charge of about one volt.
This technology could be very helpful in countries where people don’t have regular access to electricity. But they could be able to generate electricity if the humidity is high using this technology. If this succeeds, this technology could be able to create a revolution in batteries and eventually be a green energy source.
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