Seeing as we don't yet have ultracapacitors in our electric cars that can recharge themselves in seconds or minutes that would make refueling comparable to gasoline, the only reliable way to get a hot n' fresh stack of batts looks to be these robotic battery swapping stations.
By converting some of the wires inside memory chips into carbon nanotubes, researchers say that they could boost the battery life of cell phones and laptops and other mobile electronics by a factor of 100.
It used to be that the idea of, say, a flexible, morphing phone was just something explored by concept designers. The technology for bendy gadgetry is steadily falling into place, however, and here's another puzzle piece figured out thanks to South Korea: the batteries.
Some gadgets still require you to use AA batteries, like a Wii or Xbox 360 controller or a cheap digital camera. Wouldn't it be handy to not have to pop rechargeable batteries into a charger and wait for it to juice up? A new battery design concept would eliminate the wait time by letting you wind up the battery to recharge it.
By turning powders into fibers using carbon nanotube webs, researchers at the University of Texas have managed to make yarn that can clean itself and work as a battery. It also happens to be a superconductor, but most importantly, it's machine-washable.
Every year, IBM decides what five technologies it thinks are going to make it big in the next five years, based on their research and emerging trends. Some of it is dull and more or less already here, but some of it - like walking holograms - is crazy and awesome.
The tobacco mosaic virus makes its living by munching on tobacco plants and other vegetables. Researchers have somehow figured out that by slathering the virus onto battery electrodes, it can increase battery capacity by a factor of ten.
A company called Ioxus has announced the first generation of an ultracapacitor-equipped battery that sounds absolutely game-changing: it's billed as lasting twice as long as your average ultracapacitor, and it charges in mere seconds. There's a catch, though — and isn't there always?
Brother, a company you may know for its sewing machines, is looking to shake up the battery world quite literally. The company is showing off vibration-powered generators that would allow you to charge your gadgets anywhere just by giving it a good shake.
What if you could use carbon fiber as a battery? That's the idea scientists at the Imperial College of London are working on, aiming to build a car out of carbon fiber material that would not only function as a battery, but will be a strong and light substitute for the sheet metal on cars today.