Energy storage is a big problem for small electronic devices. Researchers at Aalto University in Finland have demonstrated a new manufacturing method that could help make microbatteries more efficient. Their new fabrication method produces lithium terephthalate, an emerging material that has great potential for anodes in lithium-ion batteries.
In a research paper published in Nano Letters, the Aalto team described how they fabricated the material. They used a technique called atomic/molecular layer deposition (ALD/MLD) to make organic lithium electrode thin films. With this method, the materials can be made into 3D microstructured architectures, which make the batteries more efficient by exposing a larger surface area of the material. The battery the researchers developed retained 97 percent capacity after 200 charge/discharge cycles. Now that there is an effective way to produce lithium terephthalate, it can be used to make batteries that store large amounts of energy in very small packages.