Thin-Film Energy Storage Device DevelopedCategory: Science & Technology
Posted: April 30, 2014 07:17AM
Some believe that the future of technology will involve flexible devices that could potentially be built into clothing. Reaching that future has been proving difficult though, in part because traditional energy storage systems remain rigid and bulky. Researchers at Rice University however have developed a thin-film device that combines the best of two energy storage systems, while being flexible and scalable.
We are all familiar with the batteries that power our many portable devices, which can supply power for many hours, but can also take hours to fully charge. Supercapacitors are less common and are the reverse of batteries, with the ability to charge very rapidly, but they also only supply power for a short amount of time. The device the Rice researchers created though can be made to behave like either, depending on the application. The device itself consists of nanoporous nickel-flouride electrodes with a solid electrolyte between them.
When tested, the researchers found their device was able to store 76% of its original capacity after 10,000 charging cycles and 1000 bending cycles. By increasing the device's size or by adding layers, it can be made to store more energy, which should make it very interesting to the companies the researchers are already speaking with.
Source: Rice University