Graphene and its derivatives are materials with exceptional properties such as outstanding electric and thermal conductivity, large specific surface area and a natural adhesiveness. Conventional and prospective battery materials are distinguishably enhanced when functionalized with graphene. These advantages are manifested in several ways in practical batteries
The life time of a battery is linked to the extent of side reactions that occur on the electrode surface at every charge/discharge cycle. The rate of these parasitic processes is directly related to the amount of carbon that is coated on the material or added in the electrodes to achieve the necessary conductivity. Graphene based electrodes are prepared with a fraction of the carbon used in conventional electrodes, leading to an exponentially extended life time.
Semiconducting battery materials prepared using graphene derivates don’t need to be nanosized to achieve the necessary conductivity for all practical applications. Electrodes prepared with larger particles require significantly less additives boasting the packing density and ultimately the practical energy density of the battery. Additionally the ease of material handling and processing is enhanced.
Larger particles are thermally stable and the exceptional thermal conductivity of graphene reduces any local temperature gradients preventing thermal run away in high energy cells. Local heat exclusion on electrode surface also extends the life of batteries.