Read More: Daily Mail Online
A rechargeable battery made from materials sourced from recycled glass bottles has been shown to store almost four times more energy than conventional ones. Used glass bottles can be ground into a fine powder to create silicon based anodes. They could improve the battery life of devices such as smartphones and even extend the driving range of electric cars. However, the new batteries developed by researchers at the University of California, Riverside (UCR), contain a silicon-based cathode. Even with recycling programs, billions of glass bottles end up in landfills every year, which led the researchers to question if silicon dioxide in waste glass bottles could be used to produce high purity silicon nanoparticles for rechargeable batteries. While silicon anodes can store more energy than carbon ones, expansion and shrinkage during charge and discharge can make them unstable. However, reducing the size of silicon particles to the nanoscale can reduce this problem.