Liquid battery could revolutionize the transition to renewable energy.

The discovery is based on a “magic” additive that enables the storage and release of electricity within liquid hydrogen.
Liquid battery could revolutionize the transition to renewable energy.

Scientists have discovered a way to store electrical energy in liquid fuels, which could significantly advance the transition to renewable energy sources.

Batteries that enable the storage of energy during periods of excess production and its return to the grid when production falls are essential for maximizing the potential of solar and wind energy.

The high costs of current lithium-ion batteries, which are found in everything from laptops to electric vehicles, for such large-scale purposes are driving scientists to seek alternative systems.

A team from Stanford University in the United States has unveiled a new method for using Liquid Organic Hydrogen Carriers (LOHCs) as a renewable energy storage medium. LOHCs, or liquid batteries as researchers call them, store hydrogen using catalysts and high temperatures and release it as electricity when needed.

Robert Waymouth, a chemistry professor in Stanford University’s School of Humanities and Sciences, stated, “The electric grid uses energy as it is produced, and if you’re not using it and can’t store it at that moment, you have to waste it.”

“We are developing a new strategy for selectively converting and storing electrical energy in liquid fuels for long durations. Additionally, we have discovered a new, selective catalytic system to store electrical energy in a liquid fuel without generating hydrogen gas.”

This discovery relies on a “magic additive” called cobaltocene, which acts as a catalyst in the reaction to store and release energy without producing hydrogen gas.

“This is simple and fundamental science, but we think we have a new strategy for more selectively storing electrical energy in liquid fuels,” said Professor Waymouth.

The research is detailed in the study titled “Cobaltocene-Mediated Catalytic Hydride Transfer: Strategies for Electrocatalytic Hydrogenation,” published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society.

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