New 'pomegranate-inspired' design solves problems for lithium-ion batteries

An electrode designed like a pomegranate – with silicon nanoparticles clustered like seeds in a tough carbon rind – overcomes several remaining obstacles to using silicon for a new generation of lithium-ion batteries, say its inventors at Stanford University and the Department of Energy's SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory.

Why lithium-ion-batteries fail

Lithium-ion batteries are in our cellphones, laptops, and digital cameras. Few portable electronic devices exist that do not rely on these energy sources. Currently battery electrodes contain active materials known as intercalation compounds.

Electric car batteries suffer unexpected problem

The lithium-ion batteries commonly used in hybrid and electric-only cars could fail earlier than expected because of a newly-discovered problem with the current collector.