Nobel Prize in Chemistry Honours Breakthroughs in Lithium-Ion Batteries

Nobel Prize in Chemistry Honours Breakthroughs in Lithium-Ion Batteries

(Left to right) John B. Goodenough, M. Stanley Whittingham, and Akira Yoshino

If you’re reading this on a cellphone or laptop computer, you might thank the three winners of this year’s Nobel Prize in chemistry for their work on lithium-ion batteries.

The batteries power cellphones, laptops, electric cars and countless other devices of modern life, and could become the foundation for a greener future. Batteries that economically store energy from renewable sources like the wind and sun open up new possibilities to curb global warming.

“This is a highly charged story of tremendous potential,” quipped Olof Ramstrom of the Nobel committee for chemistry.

The prize announced Wednesday went to John B. Goodenough, 97, an engineering professor at the University of Texas; M. Stanley Whittingham, 77, a chemistry professor at the State University of New York at Binghamton; and Akira Yoshino, 71, of chemical company Asahi Kasei and Meijo University in Japan