Proton batteries efficiently use cheap carbon instead of lithium

The world energy sector is in dire need of a revolutionary energy storage device that will replace lithium-ion batteries that are outdated in all respects, but so far uncontested for mass use. Another candidate for this role, through the efforts of scientists from Melbourne, was the so-called "proton accumulators", a combination of a fuel cell and a chemical battery.

The design is based on electrodes made of modified carbon, for example, graphene with its high absorption capacity. Plus a cell membrane, which allows ordinary water to be separated into oxygen and hydrogen, whose ions are immediately absorbed by carbon electrodes. This is a charging process, and when discharged, ions are released - electrons form an electric current and give up energy, protons combine with other electrons from the environment and oxygen, turning into water.

We can say that the main "working substance" in this case is just the protons of hydrogen, but this is not the main thing. The charge-discharge process, unlike fuel cells, does not generate explosive hydrogen gas. And there are no energy losses associated with a change in the state of aggregation of matter, so the efficiency of this design is comparable to lithium-ion batteries.

And what is the advantage of proton batteries over lithium-ion batteries? Carbon is cheaper and much more reliable and easier to handle in modified form than lithium. A prototype battery for 1, 2 V has been successfully tested, now scientists are deciding the issue of scaling their development. In the long term, it can compete with all existing battery models.