About Zinc-Air Batteries

Based on low cost, reliable, century-old zinc-air battery chemistry, the unique MetAir® Ranger PPS technology offers high energy densities that are extremely safe and relatively inexpensive to produce.  QSI has several patents issued and applications pending covering key aspects of this technology.

Unlike other common battery chemistries, such as lithium-ion, nickel metal hydride and lead acid, zinc-air batteries are electro-chemical batteries powered by exposing zinc metal to oxygen from the air to generate an electrical current.  The user literally pulls a tab to break the seal, thereby activating airflow into the battery and generating an electrical current. Once activated, the oxygen from the air slowly turns the zinc into zinc-oxide. Then, when the activated battery has been fully utilized, it is safe for disposal in the normal waste stream. This technology is similar to the hundreds of millions of small zinc-air button cell batteries consumed annually around the world in hearing aids and other small electronic devices.



How Zinc-Air Chemistry Works

Batteries of all types have two main components; anodes and cathodes along with other key ingredients such as an active catalyst and electrolyte to connect and activate them.  For zinc-air battery operation, the fuel for the cathode is simply oxygen from the air we breathe and the fuel for the anode is zinc metal powder. Inside the battery, a mass of zinc particles form a porous anode, which is saturated with an electrolyte to make it electrically conductive.  Oxygen causes a reaction that forms hydroxyl ions, which in turn forms zincate, thereby releasing electrons to travel to the cathode.  QSI’s patented nanotechnology production processes create the high surface area advanced catalysts that facilitate this electrochemical reaction with greater efficiencies, resulting in higher energy densities within the zinc-air battery.

Unlike a conventional battery that contains both cathode and anode material, oxygen from the atmosphere is one of the battery reactants and is not packaged within the battery.  So a cell can contain more zinc fuel in the anode to provide more capacity, or run time, than a conventional battery.  As a result, the MetAir® Ranger PPS has higher energy capacity-to-volume (and weight) ratio than any other commercially available battery.

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