Science

Researchers create tiny battery that recharges 1,000x faster than current tech

My capacity for patience is quite low when it comes to waiting on my smartphone or tablet to charge. And I doubt I’m the only one.

But the next generation of devices will fix that issue, thanks to a new lithium-ion micro-battery developed by researchers at the University of Illinois. The new batteries will not only be smaller, but they’ll also charge 1,000 times faster than what’s currently used in most devices.

“This is a whole new way to think about batteries,” said professor of mechanical science and engineering William P. King in a statement. “A battery can deliver far more power than anybody ever thought. In recent decades, electronics have gotten small. The thinking parts of computers have gotten small. And the battery has lagged far behind. This is a microtechnology that could change all of that.”

Basically, that means device makers will no longer have to chose between making something powerful or something that can run for a long time without needing a new charge. As for smartphones, King said the new batteries will enable us to start making devices that are about 30 times smaller and radio signal range that’s 30 times longer.

But it still could be a while before you start to see this new battery technology pop up in devices you can buy. The research team is currently working on integrating the new batteries with electronic components and figuring our how to keep costs low for manufacturers — something that might be just as important as the technology itself.

Photo credit: University of Illinois; Via Engadget