Improving Battery Technology

April 27th, 2012

Have you ever needed your smartphone only to find that the battery has died and you’re nowhere near an outlet? It’s irritating, but in a couple of years, it could be a thing of the past.

A Better Battery on the Way?

Fortunately, a better battery might soon be on the way, thanks to the hard work of a team of engineers at Chicago’s Northwestern University. A recent story reports that researchers at this Big 10 university are trying to create a battery that lasts longer and can recharge itself in just minutes. Smartphone users across the country should be grateful.

According to the article, Northwestern’s researchers have found a means to extend the charge-life of a new lithium-ion battery by a factor of 10. Even after 150 charges—which researchers say represents a year or more of operation—this new battery would still be five times more efficient than the today’s lithium-ion batteries.

A Charged Battery for a Week

Ultimately, this new cell phone battery could stay charged for an entire week, despite all the apps we use daily. And the charging time? Below 15 minutes. That will sure make our lives easier, but more than this, this new battery technology may lead to smaller and more efficient batteries for electric cars.  This could consequently, have a dramatic effect on our reliance on fossil fuels.

Batteries Powering Technological Change

While this new battery technology will have a massive impact on many aspects of our life, it will not be offered to the general public for three to five years, says Northwestern researchers. Batteries are often over looked when we think of advanced technologies, but the more we rely on mobile devices the more important they become.  Advancements in battery technology may in reality hold the key to an even greater technological revolution.

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