The new energy-storage device uses nanotechnology to deliver high capacity currents that charge devices in seconds
Finding it painful to wait for your smartphone to be fully charged? Relax, as researchers have designed novel energy-storage devices using nanotechnology that can charge your phone in seconds.
Supercapacitors -- energy-storage devices -- are a promising, green alternative to traditional batteries, with benefits including improved safety and reliability, in addition to much faster charging.
However, existing commercial supercapacitors have been limited so far by their relatively low storage capacity. The novel design, detailed in the journal ACS Nano, roughly doubles the amount of electrical energy the rapid-charging devices can hold, helping pave the way for eventual use in everything from smartphones and laptop computers to electric vehicles and high-powered lasers.
“We’re showing record numbers for the energy-storage capacity of supercapacitors,” said lead researcher Michael Pope, Professor at the University of Waterloo in Canada.
“And the more energy-dense we can make them, the more batteries we can start displacing,” Pope added.
To boost the storage capacity, Pope and his team developed a method to coat atomically thin layers of a conductor called graphene with an oily liquid salt in supercapacitor electrodes.
Although these supercapacitors are unlikely to ever attain the full storage capacity of batteries, they have the potential to conveniently and reliably power consumer electronic devices, electric vehicles and systems in remote locations like space, the researchers noted.
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