The Breakthrough

A team of researchers from University of California, Riverside has created a lithium-ion battery anode using portabella mushrooms. While normally made with synthetic graphite, the use of the mushrooms is an inexpensive, less tedious, and environmentally safe alternative. The highly porous quality of the mushrooms poses a great opportunity for energy to pass through and improve battery performance.

The Implications

There is a demand for a cheaper and safer alternative to graphite to power cellphones and electric cars at a similar level of efficiency. An estimated six million electric vehicles are expected to be produced by 2020, and the European Union has deemed the production of graphite to be unsustainable, so research into potential alternatives are crucial.

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