Batteries for Efficient Energy Extraction from a Water Salinity Difference

Fabio La Mantia, Mauro Pasta, Heather D. Deshazer, Bruce E. Logan, Yi Cui

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

250 Scopus citations

Abstract

The salinity difference between seawater and river water is a renewable source of enormous entropic energy, but extracting it efficiently as a form of useful energy remains a challenge. Here we demonstrate a device called "mixing entropy battery", which can extract and store it as useful electrochemical energy. The battery, containing a Na2-xMn 5O10 nanorod electrode, was shown to extract energy from real seawater and river water and can be applied to a variety of salt waters. We demonstrated energy extraction efficiencies of up to 74%. Considering the flow rate of river water into oceans as the limiting factor, the renewable energy production could potentially reach 2 TW, or ∼13% of the current world energy consumption. The mixing entropy battery is simple to fabricate and could contribute significantly to renewable energy in the future. © 2011 American Chemical Society.
Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1810-1813
Number of pages4
JournalNano Letters
Volume11
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 13 2011
Externally publishedYes

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