Scientists develop way to triple battery life in electronics


Lithium-ion batteries are all the rage these days. They power our phones, tablets, laptops, MP3 players, and electric cars. Unfortunately, they have some draw backs. The batteries tend to degrade over time, discharge on their own, and don’t provide quite as much energy as our modern electronics and usage habits seem to require. Enter science. A group of Japanese researchers have developed a new material that could triple the energy capacity of lithium-ion batteries.

The Register reports that Sumitomo Electric Industries has developed a new material called “Aluminum-Celmet,” which can be used to replace the “aluminum foil anode” inside the batteries. The new Aluminum Celmet material is 98 percent porous, much more porous than the foil, allowing more lithium to be put inside the battery. The researchers estimate that an automotive battery pack using their new substance could provide 1.5 to 3 times as much power capacity as a battery that size today. Of course, one could also retain the same capacity and actually reduce the size of the lithium-ion batteries by 1.5 to 3 times as well.

The substance is made from a fancy new procedure that involves applying a conductive coating to a plastic foam, then nickel-plating it, then heating the material to separate the foam and other materials, leaving a foam mesh that has a nice shimmer to it. The Aluminum-Celmet is based on Sumitomo’s nickel Celmet, which is already used to make nickel-cadmium and nickel-metal hydride batteries.

Sumitomo has not mentioned use in personal electronics yet, but we are hopeful that this new substance could lead to great improvements consumer electronics battery life as well since they run off of the same, albiet smaller, batteries. It would be nice to buy a smartphone that doesn’t need to be charged every night.

Product Review

Step aside, Sonos: Riva's Concert is the best smart speaker you can buy

The Riva Concert series speaker is a fantastic, small-profile smart speaker with Alexa integration, truly excellent sound, and great looks, making it the perfect addition to your kitchen, living room, or bedroom.

Snooze soundly anywhere you lay your head with the best sleeping bags

A proper sleeping bag has the ability to make or break a camping or backpacking trip. Here are our picks for the best sleeping bags on the market to help you choose the correct bag for any type of outdoor adventure.

The best Apple Watch deals for December 2018

The Apple Watch has surged to prominence in recent years. If you're in the market for an iOS wearable, we've sniffed out the best Apple Watch deals available right now for all three models of this great smartwatch.
Smart Home

The best washing machines make laundry day a little less of a chore

It takes a special kind of person to love doing laundry, but the right machine can help make this chore a little easier. Check out our picks for the best washing machines on the market right now.
Emerging Tech

Prepare for liftoff: Here are all the important upcoming SpaceX rocket launches

From ISS resupply missions to a host of communication and scientific satellite launches, SpaceX has a busy year ahead. Here's a rundown of some of the company's most important missions slated for the next year.
Emerging Tech

Virgin Galactic’s latest test flight takes it to the edge of space

Sir Richard Branson's Virgin Galactic has successfully carried out its fourth powered flight in Mojave, California. It was the company's most ambitious test flight yet -- and bodes well for the future.
Product Review

This was 3D printed? With the Anycubic Photon, you can't tell

Never mind the fact that the Anycubic Photon 3D printer only costs 500 bucks. In terms of sheer print quality, this printer is on the same level as machines that cost six times as much.
Emerging Tech

We’re going to the Red Planet! All the past, present, and future missions to Mars

SpaceX isn't the only organization pining to visit the Red Planet. Here's a detailed list of all operational and planned missions to Mars, along with explanations of their objectives, spacecraft details, and mission proposals.
Emerging Tech

There’s a giant EMP blaster in New Mexico. Don’t worry, it’s here to protect us

An electromagnetic pulse has the potential to disable virtually all electronics within a large area. To help protect against such a threat is a new, friendly EMP emitter. Here's how it works.
Emerging Tech

There’s a new lab-grown meat startup on the block — and it has a secret weapon

Aleph Farms is developing lab-grown steaks with the same flavor, shape, texture, and structure as the real thing using beef cells isolated from living cows. Coming soon to a store near you?
Smart Home

This A.I.-enabled tech brings cutting-edge automation to grocery stores

Takeoff Technologies is working to make grocery deliveries fast, accurate, and convenient using A.I.-enabled technology to augment robotic grocery orders that can be completed in minutes.
Emerging Tech

The best 3D printers of 2018

On the hunt for a new 3D printer? We've got your back. Whether you're a beginner or a seasoned veteran, this list of the best 3D printers has what you're looking for.
Emerging Tech

Postmates’ to roll out Minion-like autonomous delivery robots in 2019

Postmates is about to employ a cute little robot to work alongside its human delivery personnel. Called Serve, the wheel-based bot can carry items weighing up to 50 pounds and has a range of 30 miles.
Emerging Tech

The best drone photos from around the world

Most of today's drones come equipped with high-end cameras, which are quickly revolutionizing the world of aerial photography as we know it. Here are some of the best drone photos from around the world.