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49 Current news of Pacific Northwest National Laboratory

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A leap in using silicon for battery anodes

Novel nanostructure design lends extraordinary strength to a promising storage ingredient

30-Apr-2020

The same material you'll find at the tip of a pencil--graphite--has long been a key component in today's lithium-ion batteries. As our reliance on these batteries increases, however, graphite-based electrodes are due for an upgrade. For that, scientists are looking to the element at the heart of ...

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Army scientists look inside batteries with a molecular eye

10-Feb-2020

Scientists are closer to understanding exactly what happens inside batteries that make them prone to fire, thanks to a molecular eye of sorts. Scientists at the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command's Army Research Laboratory teamed with researchers from the U.S. Department of ...

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Scientists learn more about the first hours of a lithium-ion battery's life

New technology enables nanoscale molecular view of self-assembling gateway structure within

07-Feb-2020

The first hours of a lithium-ion battery's life largely determine just how well it will perform. In those moments, a set of molecules self-assembles into a structure inside the battery that will affect the battery for years to come. This component, known as the solid-electrolyte interphase or ...

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Expanding the temperature range of lithium-ion batteries

24-Jun-2019

Electric cars struggle with extreme temperatures, mainly because of impacts on the electrolyte solutions in their lithium-ion batteries. Now, researchers have developed new electrolytes containing multiple additives that work better over a wide temperature range. Lithium-ion batteries are widely ...

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Rust never sleeps

Chinks in iron crystals that can 'heal'

06-Feb-2019

Like iron flowing through the blood stream, iron minerals course through the ground. These minerals are used to make steel and other metal alloys used in everything from cell phone components and cars to buildings, industrial equipment and infrastructure. Unfortunately, when exposed to oxygen and ...

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Technology clears way for ethanol-derived jet fuel

13-Jun-2018

ASTM International recently revised ASTM D7566 Annex A5 -- the Standard Specification for Aviation Turbine Fuel Containing Synthesized Hydrocarbons -- to add ethanol as an approved feedstock for producing alcohol-to-jet synthetic paraffinic kerosene (ATJ-SPK). The revision of ASTM D7566 Annex A5 ...

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New insights into nanocrystal growth in liquid

18-Sep-2017

Many seashells, minerals, and semiconductor nanomaterials are made up of smaller crystals, which are assembled together like the pieces of a puzzle. Now, researchers have measured the forces that cause the crystals to assemble, revealing an orchestra of competing factors that researchers might be ...

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The layered look of lithium sulfur

12-Jun-2017

In the quest for longer-lasting lithium rechargeable batteries, some researchers are looking to use sulfur as electrodes. The chemistry of lithium-sulfur, in theory, could allow electric vehicles to go twice as far as conventional batteries. But, in practice, unwanted chemical reactions clog the ...

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Forces that align crystals and help them snap together measured

03-May-2017

Like two magnets being pulled toward each other, tiny crystals twist, align and slam into each other, but due to an altogether different force. For the first time, researchers have measured the force that draws them together and visualized how they swivel and align. Called van der Waals forces, ...

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From moo to goo

Cooperating microbes convert methane to alternative fuel source

13-Apr-2017

Oil and gas wells and even cattle release methane gas into the atmosphere, and researchers are working on ways to not only capture this gas but also convert it into something useful and less-polluting. Now scientists at the Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory have ...

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