Last year, Peng Bai, assistant professor of energy, environmental &chemical engineering, published research findings in which he discovered that one of the main roadblocks to building smaller lithium ion batteries was actually three, separate, roadblocks.

Now Bai has received a $397,214 grant from the National Science Foundation to generate a better understanding of these roadblocks, which can cause short circuits and loss in energy capacity.

The combined experimental and theoretical research will be used to guide the holistic design of stable alkali metal anodes.

The project will also benefit the education of graduate, undergraduate and K-12 students. A summer program will be established, working with underrepresented high school age students and high school teachers using engineering concepts of metal-based batteries.

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