I agree, William K. Stretch and release of the material would be key. Maybe it's a little too early to ask this question, but I do wonder what the elastic properties of this material are like. Also, if it's bent at a right angle, would it be subject to strain hardening? Those may sound like little details, but they would bear on the battery's ability to be useful throughout the life of a product.
That's a good point. Fabric memory (or retention) is important.
I doubt that this would be placed on the body at a joint (elbow, knee, hip, etc). Proper placement, at the forearm or shin for example, would help increase the lifecycle. 3x stretch isn't very much for a textile. From what I can see, the construction has a "bounce" to it that allows the give in the fabric without compromising the metal.
This technology is ALL well and good. But what about Micro-shorting in the Lithium-ion Battery. I don't believe many have seen the result of a micro-shorted Lithium-ion Battery. Would be VERY BAD if all of a sudden your pants EXPLODED. Just something to consider is all.
It looks like the stretchable battery would have a lifetime limited by the wear between the different materials as it is stretched and released. That may not be a problem for some uses, but it must absoletely be considered as the product is developed. I have seen a few membrane keypads that have just worn away and no longer function on some keys, and so it is clear that wherever there is motion there is wear. There are ways to extend the time until that wear causes failures, but the fixes only can help if they are included. So while there is a solution it is not automatic, it would need to be intentionally included.
But now the whole concept and realization of an actual stretchable battery is certainly a great achievement, no doubt about that.
Now researchers from Northwestern University and the University of Illinois have revealed work on a lithium-ion battery that can stretch up to three times its original size.
Its a great technology that lithium-ion batteries can be stretched. As mentioned that batteries can be stretched up-to three times, is this stretching operation is reversible? Is there a limit on number of times battery can be stretched?
This technology reminds me of some of the technology imagined in the movie Vanilla Sky -- where everything had a skin of personal interactive advertising. I would imagine there is a wide range of applications for this flexible technology.