A group of Japanese engineers at the University of Kogakuin developed translucent lithium-ion battery that can be recharged in the sun. Solar rays are converted into electricity, the fact that the electrons, excited by the light are accumulated in the negative electrode. In the future, experts intend to create a “smart box”, which will function as a large battery, and as a solar panel.
When the battery fall into the sun’s rays, it becomes slightly tinted: light transmission drops to 30%. Discharge causes the growth of up to 60% light transmission. The trick lies in the fact that the scientists were able to make the electrodes exceptionally thin – just 80 nanometers. These improved materials which have been used in batteries – lithium iron phosphate positive electrode and lithium titanate negative. According to the developers, now the battery can withstand 20 charge-discharge cycles. Development is the next step to the windows of the future, acting as solar panels. They will not only automatically obscure the sunlight, but also store energy for the consumer devices.