Yesterday there was also an article about Li-Air cells, so there is certainly a great deal of interest in battery technology. Both articles mentioned capacity but didn't touch on discharge characteristics. Capacity is certainly an important attribute, especially when you see a tear down for a cell phone or tablet, the battery takes up most of the device. As we look to the feasibility of EVs, though, discharge characteristics become very important.
@tekochip - Interesting to see we are looking at improving the batteries we have in the market, especially the ones on our smartphones, tablets, laptop. There are instances where I really run out of power when I really need my smartphone.
Boosting the capacity of lithium-ion is going to be a challenge. Mature battery technologies typically reach about 40% of their theoretical energy and lithium-ion is already there. The addition of dead weight components -- electrolytes, terminals, housings -- boost the mass and reduce the specific energy. That's why so many battery developers have begun to look at lithium-sulfur, lithium-air and other chemistries that are farther out.
With my first cell phone, years ago, I remember taking short trips without packing my charger. Today, that's not possible. I constantly see people hunting for power outlets in airports or desperately borrowing chargers from co-workers.
A higher capacity on lithium-ion batteries would only mean good things for the future of the mobile industry. Smartphones are getting more feature-rich and resource-hungry with each iteration. This is a necessary evolution to cater to such needs, while ensuring lengthier talk times.
The engineers and inventors of the post WWII period turned their attention to advancements in electronics, communication, and entertainment. Breakthrough inventions range from LEGOs and computer gaming to the integrated circuit and Ethernet -- a range of advancements that have little in common except they changed our lives.
Neil Fromer is the executive director of the Resnick Institute, a program for energy and sustainability at the California Institute of Technology, working to develop new ideas and research technologies related to providing a sustainable future. He spoke to us about the severity of the current drought in California and how solar energy can help prevent such situations in the future.
From home enthusiasts to workers on the manufacturing floor, everyone's imagination is captured by the potential of 3D printing. Prototyping, spare parts creation, art delivery, human organ creation, and even mass product production are all being targeted as current and potential uses for the technology.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.