New Battery Breakthrough Drastically Increases Battery Life and Charge Time

Written by John Ponio    Thursday, 17 November 2011 17:52

iPhone 4 Battery image credit

Researchers at Northwestern University have made a breakthrough in battery technology. By replacing sheets of silicon with small clusters, and by using a chemical oxidation process to make tiny (20-40 nanometer tiny) holes in the sheets of graphene, charge times can be reduced to just about 15 minutes, and the amount of charge the battery can hold can be increased by ten times. The less silicon means there is more room for lithium ions, and the holes in the graphene make places where the ions stay more accessible. Prof Harold Kung, lead scientist from the chemical and biological engineering department at Northwestern, said, "Even after 150 charges, which would be one year or more of operation, the battery is still five times more effective than lithium-ion batteries on the market today." That's the biggest drawback that this technology brings: only 150 charge cycles. The research team expects to overcome this hurdle and have batteries using this technology on the market within five years. You can read more here.