No. 85

December 2012

Headline News Innovation and Development

Applied Technology

Basic Science

Exchanges with Taiwan, Hong Kong and Macau

Bioscience International Cooperation Brief News Geoscience
Headline News

China Succeeds in the First Space Test of HTS Devices

A HTS filter designed by the Institute of Physics, CAS / Beijing National Laboratory for Condensed Matter Physics, has been successfully set up on the first Chinese satellite for new technology trail, Practice-9 A Satellite. This is the first space experiment for HTS devices in China. The HTS testing equipment, manufactured by the Institute of Physics, Lanzhou Institute of Physics, and China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation, is one of the payloads of the Practice-9 Satellites. At 11:25am on October 14th 2012, Practice-9 A/B Satellites were boosted by a Long March-2C carrier rocket and sent to the preset orbit. The feedback data indicate that the HTS filter satisfies the preset testing specifications, fulfilling the first-stage targets. The Application Center of Superconducting Technology of the Institute of Physics has been devoted to research on space applications of HTS microwave devices since 2001.

Great Progress on Lithium-Sulfur Batteries

Prof. Guo Yuguo¡¯s group from the CAS Key Laboratory of Molecular Nanostructure and Nanotechnology, Institute of Chemistry, has made great progress on solving the polysulfide dissolution issue and improving the cycling performance of lithium-sulfur battery. The results were published in J. Am. Chem. Soc., (2012, 134, 18510?18513), and highlighted bythe Chemical & Engineering News of American Chemical Society(ACS) entitled ¡°High-Energy Battery Built To Last¡±. Lithium-sulfur battery is a secondary lithium battery consisting of a sulfur (or sulfur-containing compounds) cathode and a lithium anode, which utilizes the chemical reaction between sulfur and lithium to achieve the transformation between chemical energy and electrical energy. Both electrodes hold high theoretical specific capacities, leading to a high theoretical specific energy, higher than 2600 W h/kg, more than 5 times that of today¡¯s lithium-ion batteries. Starting from the structural design of sulfur molecules, researchers from the lab and Bosch Research & Technology Center show that the polysulfide dissolution issue can be effectively diminished by controlling the sulfur as smaller allotropes (S2-4). They have successfully realized the screening and stabilization of metastable sulfur allotropes S2?4 via confining them in conductive carbon micropores. Since the particle size of sulfur falls into the molecular level, the confined small S2?4 molecules exhibit a significantly improved Li electroactivity. A sulfur?carbon composite based on the confinement effect of nanopores exhibits unprecedented electrochemical behaviors with high specific capacity, excellent cycling stability, and superior rate capability. The composite shows a high initial discharge capacity of 1670mA h/g based on the mass of sulfur, close to the theoretical capacity of sulfur (1675mA h/g), and an impressive cycling stability of 1150 mA¡¤h/g after 200 cycles. The discovery of the confined smaller sulfur molecules and their electrochemical properties promises the development of advanced Li?S batteries with superior performances for applications in portable electronics, electric vehicles, and large-scale energy storage systems. With these results, they have filed PCT applications.

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