John Timer, Ars Technica :

With far fewer chemicals permanently inside the battery, it’s possible to achieve a much higher energy density—there have been demonstrations of lithium-air batteries with an energy density five times that of current lithium-ion tech. The only drawback? They have a lifespan of about a month, in part because both oxygen and metallic lithium are pretty reactive and in part because air offers a lot of things other than oxygen that can react.

Now, a team of researchers has figured out a way to protect against many of these reactions and showed that the resulting battery can survive hundreds of charge/discharge cycles in an air-like atmosphere. Which probably means the researchers are ready to figure out what goes wrong when this material meets actual air. The hope is that will be an easier issue to solve.

« In an air-like atmosphere » : une précision de taille, qui laisse à penser que les résultats seraient beaucoup moins convaincants si les chercheurs avaient utilisé… de l’air. Il n’en demeure pas moins que la recherche avance : on peut commencer à parler de batteries lithium-air, et plus seulement de batteries lithium-oxygène, et espérer qu’elles finissent par être commercialisables.