Making batteries with Portabella Mushrooms

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Portabella Mushrooms are so delicious when grilled! The Portabella’s natural woodsy flavour becomes stronger with cooking. They’re thick and meaty – almost just like a steak. Aside from being extremely tasty, researchers also believe that the mushroom can make efficient batteries too.

Researchers at the University of California, Riverside Bourns College of Engineering have created a new type of lithium-ion battery anode using Portabella Mushrooms, which are inexpensive, environmentally friendly and easy to produce.

The current battery manufacturing industry standard for rechargeable lithium-ion battery anodes is synthetic graphite, which comes with a high cost of manufacturing because it requires tedious purification and preparation processes that are also harmful to the environment, according to Science Daily.

Thanks to the Portabella’s highly porous biomass, the small spaces for liquid and air naturally creates more space for the storage and transfer of energy, a critical component to improving battery performance. Also, the high potassium salt concentration in mushrooms allows for increased electrolyte-active material over time by activating more pores, gradually increasing the battery’s capacity.

Researchers believe the nanocarbon architectures derived from biological materials such as mushrooms can be considered a green and sustainable alternative to graphite-based anodes in batteries.

Journal Reference:

  1. Brennan Campbell, Robert Ionescu, Zachary Favors, Cengiz S. Ozkan, Mihrimah Ozkan. Bio-Derived, Binderless, Hierarchically Porous Carbon Anodes for Li-ion Batteries. Scientific Reports, 2015; 5: 14575 DOI: 10.1038/srep14575
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SUSAN WONG

Susan Wong is the Editor of Capital Lifestyle, a resident photographer, an award-winning journalist, radio presenter, full-time adventurer, long-time admirer of anything edible, and a spicy food athlete at Capital FM.

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