If electric cars are ever to drive hundreds of miles between
charges—as they must to compete with gas-powered cars—their batteries
will need to store much more energy. Unfortunately, several of the most
promising high-capacity battery materials are prone to breaking in ways
that would cut an electrified road trip short.
Now researchers at Stanford University have shown that mixing one
such promising battery material, silicon microparticles, with
self-healing polymers helps prevent a longer-lasting battery from
failing. They say the self-healing polymers could stabilize other
promising but damage-prone battery materials.
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