2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry :
The most decorated prize in the field of science and innovation was recently announced by ‘The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences’ on 9th October for the development of Lithium-ion batteries.
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has decided to award the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry to the 3 researchers.
> M. Stanley Whittingham
> John B. Goodenough
> Akira Yoshino
They are responsible for the rechargeable world.
2019 Nobel Prize is awarded to these researchers to reward their excellence in Science that has changed our world’s perspective on energy consumption by developing the Lithium-ion batteries.
Professor Goran K. Hansson, Secretary-General of the Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences announced the 2019 Nobel Laureates in Chemistry on 9th October.
2019 Nobel Laureates in Chemistry :
Stanley Whittingham, John B. Goodenough, Akira Yoshino were awarded the 2019 Nobel Prize for developing the phenomenal and fantastic Li-ion battery that changed the world.
1. M. Stanley Whittingham :
Dr. M. Stanley Whittingham was born in 1941, UK. He is a British-American Chemist, distinguished Professor of Chemistry, Materials Science and Engineering at Binghamton University. He is also a member of the National Academy of Engineering.
Dr. Whittingham’s concept of intercalation electrodes in the 1970s is the spine concept of developing Lithium-ion batteries.
2. John B. Goodenough :
Mr. Goodenough was born in 1922, Jena, Germany. Mr. John B. Goodenough is an American Physicist and a Professor. He currently works as the Virginia H. Cockrell Centennial Chairperson of Engineering in the Cockrell School of Engineering at UT Austin.
Interesting Fact: John B. Goodenough is the oldest Nobel laureate ever awarded the prize.
3. Akira Yoshino :
Akira Yoshima is awarded the 2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for creating the 1st safe and production-variable Li-ion batteries that have revolutionized the portable-gadget world.
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2019 Nobel Prize in Chemistry awarded for Creating a Revival World :
These Nobel Laureates are awarded for developing the game-changing energy-portable devices that changed the perception of energy consumption of the world.
Lithium-ion batteries are well-working and most-efficient of all batteries that power today’s wireless generation.
Every gadget that is available in the market [i.e AA Battery, Cellphones, Tabs, Laptops, Trimmer, etc…] are powered by Li-ion batteries. Li-ion battery is now the bridge to wireless, portable technology that has made day-to-day lives better than ever before.
They are also the power-source of long-range electric vehicles and can also store energy from renewable sources like solar and wind energy.
With a vision to create a fossil-fuel-free society, these 3 scientists created a strong-base to make the vision come true.
During the 1970’s oil crisis, Dr. Whittingham laid a firm foundation for the rechargeable world. He worked on Li-ion battery developing methods. During the battery development phase, he discovered a highly energy-rich material that can be used in superconductors. With this material, he was able to create an innovative cathode in a Li-ion battery. He used Titanium disulfide which has spaces that can hold the intercalated Li-ions at a molecular level.
The anode of the battery was partially made from metallic Lithium that has a strong tendency to free the electrons in it. As a result, a battery with over 2 volts was created.
But the drawback of the battery was :
> Metallic Lithium is highly reactive.
> The battery was highly explosive to be viable.
With a strong laid foundation to the Li-ion battery, John B. Goodenough estimated that using a metal oxide instead of metal sulfide in the cathode would greatly increase the potential.
In 1980, after numerous researches, Prof. Goodenough showed that cobalt oxide with intercalated Li-ions can give up to 4 volts. It was a milestone achievement that paved the way to create more powerful batteries.
With Goodenough’s breakthrough that doubled the potential, Akira Yoshino with rigorous researching used petroleum coke, a carbon material than can more efficiently intercalate lithium ions instead of using reactive lithium in the anode and in 1985 he created the 1st ever commercially viable Li-ion battery.
The outcome was a portable, lightweight, hard-wearing battery that could be charged 100’s of times before it’s performance is completely degraded. By taming the reactive element the advantage of the Lithium-ion battery is that it can be handled to make Li-ions travel in a controlled manner.
The commercial introduction of Lithium-ion batteries in 1991 is definitely worthy of the 2019 Nobel Prize as it has revolutionized the lives of humankind and laid a firm foundation for a rechargeable fossil fuel-free society and wireless generation.
It serves a greater benefit in making our planet greener by putting a lid on fossil fuel usage completely.