The safe, environmentally friendly battery can be an attractive option especially for the storage of energy from photovoltaic cells in private households, for example.
The researchers achieved another breakthrough with regard to the investigation methods used. In Raman spectroscopy, the interaction of light with matter is used to gain insight into the structure or properties of a material. Small-angle X-ray scattering (SAXS) makes structural changes during electrochemical reactions visible.
Both methods took place during the charging and discharging of a specially developed electrochemical cell. "Both operando Raman spectroscopy and operando SAXS were performed for the first time on a hybrid supercapacitor with aqueous NaI electrolyte at the Institute of Electron Microscopy and Nanoanalysis (FELMI) and in the soft matter application lab at Graz University of Technology. For the operando SAXS investigation, we have developed a special measuring cell for batteries and electrochemical energy storage devices," said Prehal.
The results of the work show that operando SAXS is ideally suited to follow structural changes in a supercapacitor or battery on the nanometer scale during charging and discharging. This new investigation method could therefore be widely used in future in the field of electrochemical energy storage.
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