MIT adds tunnels to Li-ion batteries, now charge in mere seconds

Lithium ion batteries are in all kinds of consumer gadgetry, from digital cameras to video game controllers. They're also in cars, but the time it takes to charge an electric automobile — several hours at least — hasn't really swayed folks who spend ten minutes at a pump.

MIT has a new revamped version of the Li-ion batteries we know and love that could change all that. It uses the same lithium iron material, but the researchers have bored tunnels through the surface, giving lithium ions an expressway of sorts. This allows the batteries to be charged in a matter of seconds, and release energy just as fast. That doesn't mean that your battery will fizzle out in the blink of an eye — instead, they're more powerful and can handle the kind of strain an electric automobile, such as the Chevy Volt pictured above, demands. With the new batteries, you could charge your car just as fast as it'd take to fill it up with gas.

The new holy batteries also don't degrade as quickly as their tunnel-less cousins. Prototypes have already been made, and the team says that we could see the new batteries in products in as little as two to three years.

Via TG Daily