Overnight smartphone charges may soon become a thing of the past thanks to a new invention by 18-year old high school student Eesha Khare.
The California resident received the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award of $50,000 for the invention of a tiny energy-storage device called the “supercapacitor”.
With the potential to charge a smartphone in just 20 or 30 seconds and offering 10,000 charge/recharge cycles (10 times more than a standard rechargeable battery), it could remove the power bottleneck that has seen smartphone fans tied to their chargers over the past few years as mobile technology becomes increasingly more energy-hungry.
“My cellphone battery always dies,” Khare told NBC News, revealing the inspiration behind her work. The project allowed her to focus on her interest in nanochemistry — “really working at the nanoscale to make significant advances in many different fields.”
“It is also flexible, so it can be used in rollup displays and clothing and fabric,” Khare added.
“It has a lot of different applications and advantages over batteries in that sense.”
So far Khare has used the supercapacitor to power an LED, though all involved see the potential application within smartphone power sources.
And all at just 18! I’m pretty sure I was just sitting in my pants all day playing PlayStation at that age. Good on her.