Some times miracles happen out if ordinary doings. We do something so silly and it turns out be so splendid without even us noticing it. A same situtaion happened recently in UCI (University of California Irvine), when Mya was playing around in the lab with a lithium ion battery. And she found something ground breaking out of the blue. A Lifetime capacity Battery!
We are already in the world of nano technology, if you havent noticed it yet. The every day devices we use like computers, smartphones, e-devices were all engineered by nano technology. Nano wires which are thinner than hair, highly conductive and with a larger surface area are best for conduction of electricity in such smaller devices. But the probelm is, these nano wires break after a saturation point of recharging the device evry now and then.
They slowly expand and become brittle leading to crack. This capacity is usually measured in Cycles. Like, a typical battery would sustain for 7000 cycles and after that, it can no more be recharged. You have to change the battery. But, not anymore if this new 200000 cycles Battery technology comes into existence soon.
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What did she do to the Battery?
Mya Le Thai is the head of the researchers studying mechanical properties of Lithium ion batteries in UCI. She playfully coated a gold nanowire with manganese dioxide and encased it in an electrolyte made of a Plexiglas-like gel called propylene carbonate, just to know what would happen.
And then she started to charge and discharge it. To her utter dis-belief, she found that the battery cycled for hundreds of thousands of times over a period of three months without losing its capacity or power or cracking of nano wires. “This combination is highly reliable and resistant to failure. This proves these kind of batteries have a longer lifetime and can be made reality” said Mya.
They have even published a paper on this battery technology in American Chemical Society’s Energy Letters. When asked how soon it would come to commercial usage, the reasearchers said they have to study it more further. To test it with various other gels and oxides and combinations.
The researchers believe the gel plasticizes the metal oxide in the battery and gives it flexibility, preventing from cracking. They should know how exactly the mechanical properties of the oxide coated wires are getting changed by using the gels. And if there is any other better gel they can use to enhance the capability more.
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Anyways, If this finding is further enhanced and brought into the market, we could use batteries that can last a lifetime in computers, smartphones. You dont have worry about changing the batteris ever again. One battery. A life time.
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