Metal/air batteries: the zinc/air case
Fundamentals and Survey of Systems
Fuel cell principles, systems and applications
Published Online: 15 DEC 2010
Copyright © John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. All rights reserved.
Handbook of Fuel Cells
How to Cite
Haas, O., Holzer, F., Müller, K. and Müller, S. 2010. Metal/air batteries: the zinc/air case. Handbook of Fuel Cells.
- Published Online: 15 DEC 2010
Metal/air batteries provide high specific energy and consist of inexpensive and environmentally benign materials. They have begun to penetrate the market of portable power sources and offer great promise for transportation applications. In this review, we first discuss the basic aspects of metal/air batteries, then concentrate on the Zn/air system as the most promising metal/air battery. The Zn/air systems have important advantages due to the excellent electrochemical properties of metallic zinc, which include a high overpotential towards hydrogen evolution. This implies that Zn/air batteries with aqueous electrolytes can be electrically recharged, that zinc from spent batteries can be regenerated by electrolysis in aqueous systems, and that mechanically rechargeable Zn/air batteries (arrangements resembling fuel cells) can be realized with aqueous electrolytes.
Advances in the development of Zn/air battery components are reviewed and the state of the art of electrically and mechanically rechargeable Zn/air systems is described in detail. An overview of industrial developments in zinc/air battery systems and the nominal performance of available products is included. Practical specific energies in the range of 90–120 Wh kg−1 have been reported for electrically rechargeable Zn/air batteries, about twice as much for mechanically rechargeable systems. Significant progress has been made concerning the cyclability of the electrically rechargeable Zn/air system, by utilizing pasted zinc electrodes and graphitized carbon for the bifunctional oxygen diffusion electrodes. Cycle lives in the range of 200–450 cycles have been achieved.
- metal/air batteries;
- zinc/air batteries;
- zinc electrodes;
- pasted zinc electrodes;
- zinc slurry electrodes;
- oxygen electrodes;
- oxygen diffusion electrodes;
- bifunctional oxygen electrodes;
- catalysts/ oxygen electrodes;