Sodium-ion batteries for e-bicycle
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IIT KGP Scientists develop Sodium-ion batteries for E-Bicycles.

Sodium-ion batteries have triggered academic and commercial interest as a possible complementary technology to lithium-ion batteries because of the high natural abundance of sodium and the low costs.

Scientists at the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur have used nano-materials to develop Sodium-ion-based batteries and supercapacitors. The battery can be rapidly charged and used in an electric bicycle.

Sodium(Na)-ion batteries are cheaper than Li-ion batteries, which will reduce the cost of the e-cycles significantly.

Professor in the Department of Physics at the Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur, Dr. Amreesh Chandra, has been researching to develop energy storage technologies based on Na-ion, and his team has developed a large number of nanomaterials.

The team has used sodium iron phosphates and sodium manganese phosphates which they synthesized to obtain Na-ion-based batteries and supercapacitors with support from the Technology Mission Division (TMD) of the Department of Science and Technology (DST), Government of India. These sodium materials were combined with various novel architectures of carbon to develop a battery.

These sodium materials are cheaper than Li-based materials, high performing, and can be scaled up to industrial-level production. The Na-ion cell can also be discharged to zero volt, similar to a capacitor, making it a safer option than many other storage technologies.

Because Na-ion batteries can be charged rapidly, Dr. Amreesh has integrated them into e-cycles – an easy, affordable option for the general public. With further development, the price of these vehicles can be brought down to the range of Rs. 10-15 K, making them nearly 25% cheaper than Li-ion storage technologies-based e-cycles.

As disposal strategies of Na-ion-based batteries would be simpler, it can also help in addressing the climate mitigation issue. The research on the Supercapacitors was published in the Journal of Power Sources, and a few patents are in the pipeline for using these Na-ion-based batteries in e-cycles.

This research activity was funded under the DST’s Materials for Energy Storage scheme.

Also Read: GODI gets BIS certification to sell Li-ion cells in India.

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