"Lithium ion batteries are considered as the most potential candidates for energy storage devices"

A native speaker who reviewed this sentence asked me to change "potential" to "promising". I couldn't get it because I can see in oxford dictionary that "potential" is also used as an adjective like in the following examples:

**Many supermarkets now provide free buses to carry potential customers into their premises.’

‘Instead the study was just a process to find out the potential capacity for new homes.’**

Is the change requested by him valid? Can anyone explain please?

  • There is nothing wrong with the original sentence per se, but it's strange and likely not what you had meant to say. Also, the edit is correcting the wrong thing. Lithium ion batteries are energy storage devices—so calling them candidates (or potential candidates) makes no sense in the first place. – Jason Bassford Feb 8 at 5:32

Yes, his edit is valid. As an adjective "potential" means "possible." "Candidate," when referring to a thing, basically means "possible choice." So the sentence as you wrote it basically says "Batteries are the most possible possible choice."

Additionally, though it is quite common to see the noun form of potential modified by "most," (ex: that student had the most potential for greatness her teacher had ever seen) I've almost never seen those words paired when potential is used as an adjective.

By replacing "potential" with "promising," your editor is asking you to replace a redundant word with one that adds meaning--"most promising candidate" means that this is the choice that has the best chance of succeeding.

  • This explanation is really helpful. Thank you so much – Aaron Feb 8 at 5:12

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