Researchers at the University of California, Irvine claim to have discovered by accident a laptop battery that could last for centuries without packing up.
In fact, the new nanobattery managed to carry on after 200,000 charge cycles over three months in testing. Normally, a laptop battery will only be able to handle up to 500 charges from zero before hitting serious problems.
The team who invented the UCI nanobattery say that during the extensive testing period it worked with “94-96% Coulombic efficiency”. This basically means that is was functioning almost like a completely new battery even after so many uses.
Coated Gold Nanowires Did the Trick
Mya Le Thai is a doctoral candidate at UCI and she was the person who made the exciting discovery by accident. She did this when she coated some gold nanowires in manganese dioxide and then followed that up with an electrolyte gel coating.
This concoction stopped the nanowires from breaking down after a relatively short period of time in the way that they would normally do. They then just kept on going through charge after charge without hardly losing any strength.
We shouldn’t expect this new battery to appear in laptops soon, though. It is still being developed and it could be some time before it gets used on a commercial basis.
However, if it does eventually get used in mainstream laptops then it will change the way we view batteries forever.
Do you think that it is time for laptop batteries to offer a lot more life than they currently do?