Next Big Thing – car air batteries

Electric cars with a 500 mile range are just over the horizon, thanks to air batteries

Cars can run on air now?

Not quite. This new battery tech uses carbon instead of metal oxides in the positive electrode, which reacts with oxygen to produce a current.

Uh huh. And in English?

In English this means that you have a battery with a density 1,000 times greater than that of existing Li-ion offerings while simultanesouly being lighter. The result? Electric cars that can chug on for 500 miles instead of the sub-100 mile ranges currently available.

Neat. Will I be alive when this comes out?

Almost certainly, unless the Mayans are right of course. Boffins are currently researching the best electrolyte for the job using supercomputers. They think they've found one but are keeping schtum during testing, so sit tight…

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