The smallest nanoscale battery chould get charged in just 12 minutes

The smallest nanoscale battery chould get charged in just 12 minutes


As electronic devices continue to get smaller, one question becomes increasingly pertinent – how will we power them? Well, smaller batteries would seem to be the most obvious answer. With that in mind, researchers at the University of Maryland have succeeded in creating a tiny battery that incorporates even smaller structures, known as nanopores.Imagine a battery made up of billions of nanoscale batteries — the ultimate miniaturization of energy storage.


Researchers in the US have invented a battery that is so small that a billion of them could be crammed into a space the size of a postage stamp.The structure called nanopore was invented by researchers at the University of Maryland in the US and could result in the ultimate miniaturization of energy storage components, the researchers said.A tiny hole in a ceramic sheet holds the electrolyte to carry the electrical charge between nanotube electrodes at either end.The existing device is a test, but the bitsy battery performs well. First author Chanyuan Liu, a student in materials science & engineering, says that it can be fully charged in 12 minutes, and it can be recharged thousands of time, making electric cars more viable in the future.


A team of University of Maryland chemists and materials scientists collaborated on the project: Gary Rubloff, director of the Maryland NanoCenter and a professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and the Institute for Systems Research; Sang Bok Lee, a professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and the Department of Materials Science and Engineering; and seven of their PhD students.

Many millions of these nanopores can be crammed into one larger battery the size of a postage stamp. One of the reasons the researchers think this unit is so successful is because each nanopore is shaped just like the others, which allows them to pack the tiny thin batteries together efficiently.Co-author Eleanor Gillette's modeling shows that the unique design of the nanopore battery is responsible for its success. The space inside the holes is so small that the space they take up, all added together, and would be no more than a grain of sand.

Now that the scientists have the battery working and have demonstrated the concept, they have also identified improvements that could make the next version 10 times more powerful. The next step to commercialization: the inventors have conceived strategies for manufacturing the battery in large batches. The research was funded by the Department of Energy.

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