Entries with tag battery technologies.

Prototype Battery Fully Charges in Less Than 30 Seconds

An Israeli start-up is demonstrating a prototype battery able to charge in less than 30 seconds. StoreDot, which showed the battery at this week’s Microsoft Think Next Conference, based it on bio-organic nanocrystals made of peptide molecules. In their demonstration, a Samsung S4 smartphone using the technology went from dead to fully charged in 26 seconds. The item is now roughly the size of a pack of cigarettes. Reducing its size, as well as increasing its energy density, are among the goals of StoreDot, which hopes to commercialize the technology in the next three years, at which time it will likely be twice as expensive as current products. In the past, the researchers have used their peptide-based bio-organic nanocrystals have been used in products such as memory chips and image sensors, and was initially discovered by researchers looking for a cure for Alzheimer’s disease. (BBC)(PC Mag)(Tech Crunch)

Fuel Cell Technology Enables Urine to Charge Phone

University of Bristol and Bristol Robotics Laboratory researchers have created a fuel cell able to convert urine to electricity sufficient to power a cellular phone. The technology uses bacteria, which the researchers grew on carbon fiber anodes. The anodes were put inside ceramic cylinders into which urine was passed. The bacteria broke down the urine, creating a small electrical charge that could be stored on a capacitor. The researchers were able to send an SMS message, web browse, and make a short phone call on a single charge. The proof-of-concept fuel cell they created is the size of a car battery, but they intend to work on shrinking it so it can be portable and fully charge a battery. They also want it to be used for powering other devices in the home and are working to develop a smart toilet. The work was published in the Royal Society of Chemistry journal Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics. (Discovery News)(BBC)(Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics) 

Researchers Create Powerful Microbatteries

A University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign research team has successfully developed new microbatteries that are reportedly the most powerful ever documented. A microbattery is a solid state electrochemical miniaturized power source that could be used in small items such as medical devices or RFID tags. This new technology could be used to create new compact radio-communications and electronics applications such as lasers, sensors, and medical devices. The millimeter-sized batteries provide both high power and high energy, where, with conventional battery technologies, there is a tradeoff between the two. Typically, capacitors release energy very quickly but can only store a small amount of energy while fuel cells and batteries are able to store a great deal of energy, but release or recharge slowly. These high-performance batteries contain a fast-charging cathode with an equally high-performance, microscale anode. Researchers say they can tune the battery such that it has the optimal power and energy capabilities for the specific application. The new technology could be used in transmitters able to broadcast radio signals able 30 times farther than conventional technology, the researchers said. These small batteries could also reportedly recharge 1000 times faster than conventional technologies, they added. The scientists are now working on lowering their batteries’ cost and integrating them with other electronics components. They published their results in the journal Nature Communications. (EurekAlert)(University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign)

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