This is some exciting news. Honda and some guys at NASA were messing around with some Fluorine in a laboratory and discovered a way to make batteries that are better in almost every way than modern batteries, such as Lithium, Nickle, and Lead ions.
Why reinvent the battery? Well most batteries today are Lithium Ion batteries that are heavy, slow, and have a short lifespan and low energy capacity. They do just fine in our every day devices, but are tricky to power cars. Also Lithium is in very high demand right now, and at the rate of production will be a depleted natural resource in 100 years. That being said, it is necessary for scientists to explore other elements that we can use for powering our energy expenses.
Honda is working on this technology as you are reading this, and they just came one big step closer to revolutionizing the world of batteries and energy storage. This is bigger than automobiles. If they make this work, they could literally change the way everything uses energy. Houses, cities, boats, robots, electronics, literally almost anything could be powered by batteries.
So a brief explanation of how a battery cell works:
Batteries consist of an anode and a cathode, positioned to conduct electricity via an electrolyte solution, think of two metal prongs stuck in a conductive substance, such as battery acid.
Here is the catch: in this case, Fluoride Ion batteries only operate in a liquid state at temperatures above 300 degrees Fahrenheit, which is quite a setback. In order to get around this problem, scientists are trying to use solid fluoride salt crystals in a fluoride-ion ether hybrid mixture that allows the electrolyte solution to be operative at room temperatures. The problem is, the less fluoride, the less these advantages come to be true, and the more complications come in manufacturing. The other struggle is finding an anode and cathode that does not dissolve in this fluoride solution.
So maybe the technology is not there, but a huge step was made, maybe we have found a viable answer to electric transportation!