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South Korean team ups lithium battery life by 8X

updated 04:50 pm EST, Tue November 11, 2008

Team doubles battery life

A team of South Korean researchers has found a way to make lithium batteries 90 percent more efficient than current batteries. A Tuesday report says an applied chemistry professor at Hanyang University, Cho Jae-phil, leads the team of researchers, and claims that the new technology will allow the batteries in notebook PCs and cellphones to last eight times longer than conventional batteries. The significant capacity boost was made possible thanks to using three-dimensional porous silicon particles made of silica and hydrogen fluoride instead of graphite in the negative electrode.

While scientists already knew about the benefits of the new material, they were faced with the challenge of silicon expanding when put into contact with lithium. The research team reports that it was able to overcome this problem by using porous particles.

The researchers have already applied for four basic technology patents in South Korea, the United States and the European Union. Cho says commercial production of the new, high-capacity batteries could begin as soon as four years. Currently, the team is working on incorporating the technology to work with solar panels.

by MacNN Staff



  1. WiseWeasel

    Joined: Dec 1969



    This is a pretty huge breakthrough. Maybe we'll see future iPhones shed a few more grams and boost their usage time to something with a bit more breathing room. On the down side, you just know Apple will use this advancement as an excuse to seal in the batteries on all their notebook computers from now on. If I can really get 25-30 hours of battery life out of them however, I guess I'll just have to deal with it...

  1. desarc

    Joined: Dec 1969


    think bigger

    nevermind laptops and cellphones, this is huge for electric vehicles.

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Apple's $25 billion

    cash reserve could be well spent on funding technology like this. If Apple could get some exclusive contract for a couple of years with this sort of technology, they would just kill the competition. I thought of at least doubling reserve capacity would be fine, but this 8X is extremely huge. Since Apple is so bent on making computers and cellphones so darn thin, they might at well go for this type of battery.

  1. winterspan

    Joined: Dec 1969



    Yeah, I say s**** consumer electronics.. could you imagine the possibilities for this in electric vehicles! The energy density in these packs would be insane! It could allow plug-in hybrids to easily run 100 miles without using fuel while simultaneously slashing the total costs and weight of the battery pack! With that level of energy density, you could run an electric car with a battery pack the size of a case of Diet Coke!

  1. Tralthamidor

    Joined: Dec 1969


    8x ?

    Before everyone gets too excited we need to figure out how 90% more (1.9) efficient became 8X longer battery life. ?? It certainly never said 8X in the original article this was lifted from. I guess if you are a 'journalist' math skills are pesky inconvenience.

  1. Guest

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Not News

    Yi Cui of Stamford has been performing research into using silicon in Li-ion batteries for the past year that is much more promising than this. His design will increase Li-ion energy density ten fold. Using porous silicon particles is a bad idea because they swell as they absorb lithium - causing them to damage themselves and adjacent particles. Also, electrons have a harder time finding their way out of the substrate to the collector. Using silicon nanowires overcomes all of that. However, in fairness, it will likely prove to be more expensive than Jae-phil's design.

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