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Battery Breakthrough Drops Charging Time


Imagine a lithium-ion cell phone battery that would take only eight minutes to charge.  Imagine a set of lithium-ion car batteries that would take only eight minutes to charge.  Would an eight-minute charge time for an electric car get you to consider buying one?  You would no longer experience range anxiety with your electric car if you could charge it in eight minutes.  You could even drive it across country with out worrying about where you would need to pull in for the night for an eight hour re-charge.  After five years of research, scientists at Northwestern University have made a breakthrough in battery technology that allows a lithium-ion battery to last ten times longer and charge ten times faster than was previously possible.  Combining two methods the scientists have created a new battery approach.  Conventional lithium-ion batteries charge in a chemical reaction that sends lithium ions between the two ends of the battery — the anode and the cathode. By sandwiching a layer of silicone between the grapheme sheets traditionally used to construct the anode, the battery can reliably hold far more lithium ions, increasing the battery’s capacity.  And by making tiny holes in the grapheme sheets, the scientists allowed the ions to travel back to the anode more quickly, drastically reducing the recharging time.  The researchers claim that the commercial application of this technology is three to five years away, and they are looking for investors to help jump-start the process.  I would think that the U.S. automotive industry would be all over this one.


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