We have lithium ion batteries in most of our home electronics. An article published in Nature Nanotechnology is tending for even faster charging with these kind of batteries. Hopes are that using a porous material we can make batteries that are 100 faster to charge, compared to today.
The original technology that is base for for modern Lithium ion batteries is an extension of the older Nickel Metal Hydride batteries that can be found in regular, rechargable batteries. By using an alloy of multiple metals in the cathode scientists have managed to raise the energy density and durability. A special stage was reached with the entrance of lithium ion rechargable batteries. The technology has a series of advantages, not the least a lot more environmental, but it is also a lot more expensive in relation to the charge it holds. Conventional lithium ion rechargable batteries also has a long recharge cycle that is often measured in hours.
This is something scientists at University of Illinois hope to change. This technology uses a cathode made from a porous material consisting of lithium doped with manganese oxide. The material is claimed to increase the mobility of electrons and ions with the effect that batteries using this technology will charge in minutes. An mobile battery with 1650 mAh capacity takes around 3.5 hour to charge today, with the new technology it will take around 2 minutes.
If and when the end users will get to enjoy this new technology isn’t entirely certain, but what is certain is that we have an ever growing need for more energy on the go; mini-PCs, tablets, smartphones and portable media devices is the future according to many market analysts and the need to supply these with power is growing fast. We charge our smartphones almost every day. It remains to be seen if we will see any further development of the traditional battery cell or if alternative energy storage units, e.g. fuel cells, will save our tomorrows.