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Advances in Materials for Electrochemical Energy Applications 2023

A special issue of Energies (ISSN 1996-1073). This special issue belongs to the section "D2: Electrochem: Batteries, Fuel Cells, Capacitors".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 May 2024 | Viewed by 5302

Special Issue Editor


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Guest Editor
Department of Engineering for Innovation, University of Salento, Via Monteroni, 73100 Lecce, Italy
Interests: degradation of materials for batteries; Zn-air batteries; corrosion; electrochemical applications; spectroelectrochemistry
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Sustainable and environmentally friendly energy storage and conversion technologies are essential to satisfy the dramatically increasing global energy demand and to reduce the dependence on non-renewable fossil fuels. The development of novel materials plays a key role in improving the properties and performance of devices in a wide range of electrochemical energy applications including batteries, supercapacitors, flow batteries, fuel cells, hydrogen storage, photocatalysis and thermal energy storage.

The aim of this Special Issue is to present the recent advances in materials used in all electrochemical forms of sustainable energy harvesting, conversion, storage and utilization, including but not limited to:

  • Batteries;
  • Supercapacitors;
  • Flow batteries;
  • Fuel cells;
  • Electrocatalysis and electrocatalysts for energy conversion and storage;
  • Photocatalysis and photocatalysts for water splitting;
  • Hydrogen production and storage;
  • Thermochemical, piezoelectric and thermoelectric materials and devices;
  • Flexible, self-powered and integrated energy devices/systems.

It is our pleasure to invite you to submit a manuscript for this Special Issue. Full papers, communications and reviews are all welcome.

Dr. Claudio Mele
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All submissions that pass pre-check are peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Energies is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2600 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • batteries
  • supercapacitors
  • flow batteries
  • fuel cells

Published Papers (5 papers)

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Research

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19 pages, 10190 KiB  
Article
Magnesium–Air Battery with Increased Power Using Commercial Alloy Anodes
by Andrey Zhuk, Grigory Belyaev, Tatiana Borodina, Elena Kiseleva, Eugeny Shkolnikov, Viktor Tuganov, Georgy Valiano and Viktor Zakharov
Energies 2024, 17(2), 400; https://doi.org/10.3390/en17020400 - 13 Jan 2024
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 605
Abstract
Mg–air batteries have high theoretical energy density and cell voltage. Their use of environmentally friendly salt electrolyte and commercially available magnesium materials determines their acceptable technical and economic efficiency, safety, and ease of operation. However, the practical applicationsof Mg–air batteries arevery limited due [...] Read more.
Mg–air batteries have high theoretical energy density and cell voltage. Their use of environmentally friendly salt electrolyte and commercially available magnesium materials determines their acceptable technical and economic efficiency, safety, and ease of operation. However, the practical applicationsof Mg–air batteries arevery limited due to the polarization of magnesium anodes and the batteries’ low Faraday efficiency. In this study, we considered the possibility of designingan Mg–air battery withincreased power by adapting engineering solutions developed for an Al–air battery with alkaline electrolytes. To increase the specific power of the battery, it was proposed that the internal resistance of the battery maybe reduced using a concentrated salt electrolyte. We investigated the discharge performance of a commercial alloy of AZ31 type in 15 wt.% NaCl electrolyte at current densities of 40–120 mA/cm2. The influence of a small addition of sulfosalicylic acid into the electrolyte on the discharge performance of the anode alloy was studied as well. The estimated values of the energy characteristics of the 0.5 kW Mg–air battery were compared with those of an Al–air battery with an alkaline electrolyte. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Materials for Electrochemical Energy Applications 2023)
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12 pages, 4279 KiB  
Article
Designing Sustainable Ethanol Oxidation Catalysts: The Role of Graphene Oxide in NiCuGO Composite Material
by Marta Wala-Kapica, Magdalena Szewczyk and Wojciech Simka
Energies 2024, 17(2), 288; https://doi.org/10.3390/en17020288 - 05 Jan 2024
Viewed by 456
Abstract
The growing world population with the growth of civilization is causing the demand for electric energy to increase every year. For this reason, new energy sources such as fuel cells are becoming more and more needed, especially when they can use renewable fuel [...] Read more.
The growing world population with the growth of civilization is causing the demand for electric energy to increase every year. For this reason, new energy sources such as fuel cells are becoming more and more needed, especially when they can use renewable fuel such as ethanol. This simple organic alcohol can be easily produced in a fermentation process using organic waste. Its oxidation might be used as a source for electricity; however, due to the lack of proper electrocatalytic materials, such a solution is not popular. A simple method of NiCuGO composite preparation via electrodeposition from a water-based solution containing graphene oxide suspension is proposed. The activity of the prepared material is proven, with higher current densities observed for the composite powder. The highest peak current density is observed for NiCuGO deposited with a higher current density. The observed ipA of 8.6 mA cm−2 has been higher than that reported by other researchers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Materials for Electrochemical Energy Applications 2023)
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15 pages, 6521 KiB  
Article
Stability Studies of Highly Active Cobalt Catalyst for the Ammonia Synthesis Process
by Magdalena Zybert, Hubert Ronduda, Wojciech Patkowski, Weronika Rybińska, Andrzej Ostrowski, Kamil Sobczak and Wioletta Raróg-Pilecka
Energies 2023, 16(23), 7787; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16237787 - 27 Nov 2023
Viewed by 731
Abstract
Ammonia is currently considered a promising compound for the chemical storage of hydrogen and as an energy carrier. However, large-scale ammonia production is not possible without an active and stable catalyst enabling efficient, long-term work without the need for its replacement. In this [...] Read more.
Ammonia is currently considered a promising compound for the chemical storage of hydrogen and as an energy carrier. However, large-scale ammonia production is not possible without an active and stable catalyst enabling efficient, long-term work without the need for its replacement. In this paper, the extended stability studies of the highly active promoted cobalt catalyst for ammonia synthesis were carried out. The long-term activity measurements in NH3 synthesis reaction under conditions close to the industrial ones (400–470 °C, 6.3 MPa, H2/N2 = 3) were compiled with the characterization of catalyst properties on different stages of its work using N2 physisorption, XRPD, STEM-EDX, and H2-TPD. The accelerated aging method was used to simulate the deterioration of catalyst performance during industrial operation. Textural and structural characteristics revealed that the tested catalyst is highly resistant to high temperatures. The lack of significant changes in the specific surface area, morphology of the catalyst particles, surface distribution of elements, and chemisorption properties of cobalt surface during long-term heating (436 h) at 600 °C suggests that stable operation of the catalyst is possible in an ammonia synthesis reactor in the temperature range of 400–470 °C without the risk of losing its beneficial catalytic properties over time. The decline in catalyst activity during the long-term stability test was less than 10%. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Materials for Electrochemical Energy Applications 2023)
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17 pages, 4934 KiB  
Article
Studies on Water–Aluminum Scrap Reaction Kinetics in Two Steps and the Efficiency of Green Hydrogen Production
by Ansis Mezulis, Christiaan Richter, Peteris Lesnicenoks, Ainars Knoks, Sarunas Varnagiris, Marius Urbonavicius, Darius Milcius and Janis Kleperis
Energies 2023, 16(14), 5554; https://doi.org/10.3390/en16145554 - 22 Jul 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1546
Abstract
This work aims to explain aluminum hydrolysis reaction kinetics based on a properly chosen theoretical model with machined aluminum waste chips as well as alkali solutions up to 1M as a promoter and to estimate the overall reaction profit. The purpose of this [...] Read more.
This work aims to explain aluminum hydrolysis reaction kinetics based on a properly chosen theoretical model with machined aluminum waste chips as well as alkali solutions up to 1M as a promoter and to estimate the overall reaction profit. The purpose of this work is to assess the optimal alkali concentration in the production of small- and medium-scale green hydrogen. To obtain results with better accuracy, we worked with flat Al waste chips, because a flat surface is preferable to maximally increase the time for the created hydrogen bubbles to reach the critical gas pressure. Describing the reaction kinetics, a flat shape allows for the use of a planar one-dimensional shrinking core model instead of a much more complicated polydisperse spheric shrinking core model. We analyzed the surface chemical reaction and mass transfer rate steps to obtain the first-order rate constant for the surface reaction and the diffusion coefficient of the aqueous reactant in the byproduct layer, respectively. We noted that measurements of the diffusion coefficient in the byproduct layer performed and discussed in this paper are rare to find in publications at alkali concentrations below 1M. With our reactor, we achieved a H2 yield of 1145 mL per 1 g of Al with 1M NaOH, which is 92% of the theoretical maximum. In the estimation of profit, the authors’ novelty is in paying great attention to the loss in alkali and finding a crucial dependence on its price. Nevertheless, in terms of consumed and originated materials for sale, the conversion of aluminum waste material into green hydrogen with properly chosen reaction parameters has positive profit even when consuming an alkali of a chemical grade. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Materials for Electrochemical Energy Applications 2023)
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Review

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14 pages, 4060 KiB  
Review
Review of the Chosen Methods of Producing Front Contacts to Transparent Conductive Oxides Layers in Photovoltaic Structures
by Małgorzata Musztyfaga-Staszuk, Artur Czupryński and Rossen Radev
Energies 2022, 15(23), 9026; https://doi.org/10.3390/en15239026 - 29 Nov 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1354
Abstract
It is well known that PV thin films can be deposited by an extensive range of more or less expensive and complicated techniques (such as sputtering, chemical vapor deposition (CVD), physical vapor deposition (PVD), pulsed laser deposition, atomic layer deposition (ALD)). The present [...] Read more.
It is well known that PV thin films can be deposited by an extensive range of more or less expensive and complicated techniques (such as sputtering, chemical vapor deposition (CVD), physical vapor deposition (PVD), pulsed laser deposition, atomic layer deposition (ALD)). The present paper focuses on TCO layers applied by chosen techniques, including mainly the ALD and CVD methods. Thin layers of transparent conductive oxides constitute a well-known group of materials with unique properties. Oxides such as ZnO, SnO2, and In2O3 are the most significant materials of this type; some of them are discussed in the paper. From the application point of view in the photovoltaic industry, the goal is to apply a method that will provide the highest value of electric charge conductivity while maintaining the minimum value of absorption in the layer and a reduced value of the reflection coefficient. The implementation of significant achievements in the coming decade is for developing guidelines for metallization processes and TCO layers deposited by the ALD method. The work contains chosen engineering processes, including the fabrication of transparent conductive oxides (TCO) thin films applied to silicon substrates by ALD and CVD for application as emitter conductive coatings in photovoltaic structures and the fabrication front metallization of solar cell using different techniques, including among others laser techniques. Moreover, the work also contains predictions about solar cells, which will be among the most prevalent solar cells in mass production using thin- and thick-film technology. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in Materials for Electrochemical Energy Applications 2023)
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