US researchers have made an important breakthrough by releasing a genetically modified virus on microscopic electrode cables. In the research, it was understood that the power of lithium-air batteries could be increased.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) researchers have taken an important step in battery life, one of the most challenging issues for engineers in electronic devices.
Lithium-air batteries are seen as the key to long-range journeys, especially in electric cars, as their capacity can be increased without increasing their weight. However, the technology required to make the electrodes of the batteries long-lasting has not been developed yet, causing the charging times to be shorter than expected.
To circumvent the problem with lithium-air and lithium-ion batteries, MIT researchers added bioengineered viruses to red blood cell-sized nanowires during the batteries' manufacturing process.
VIRUS MOLECULE INCREASES ATTRACTION
According to the news of the iO9 site, the virus called M13 spreads on the surface of the cables over time and expands the field of electrochemical activity while the battery is charging or depleted.
Just as an oyster attracts calcium from the sea to grow its shell, nanowires assisted by the M13 virus attract metal molecules from room-temperature water. These molecules are then converted into specific structural shapes by M13. M13 reveals the large area where the electrochemical interaction will take place by forming manganese oxide with a pointed surface.
In the final stage of the process, palladium metal is added to the medium to increase the conductivity of the nanowires.
MIT researchers think that if they are successful, they can increase the battery life used in electronic devices 2-3 times.
The research on the M13 virus appeared in the journal Nature Communications.
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Source : ntvmsnbc