Brown Builds a Better Battery

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Researchers at Brown University in Providence Rhode Island have come up with a new battery technology based on plastics, rather than metals. The new battery combines the best qualities of conventional batteries with capacitors in that it can store a lot of energy in a small space, and when required, deliver a big blast of power.

The battery is based on a chemical compound called polypyrrole; early prototypes consist of thin strips of plastic, coated in gold. The component’s conductivity is altered when coated with polypyrrole and when another strip, using a different plastic material is sandwiched together with the first one it behaves like a hybrid battery and capacitor, able to store and deliver an electrical charge over a long period of time.

The new batteries can be made extremely thin and could be used to form the cases of electronic devices like cellphones and laptops; it might even be possible to turn the composite material into a fabric. It’s some way from being a commercial product and there are still a few problems to be sorted, like a relatively short life, so it looks as though we’ll be stuck with exploding lithium ion packs for a while yet…

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One thought on “Brown Builds a Better Battery

  • Probably the idea behind might be making it lighter than the traditional battery which are generally heavier. Btw two things comes in mind-first about the price and second is it rechargible?

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