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Power Hardware Science

Nanotech Ink Turns Paper Into a Low-Cost Battery 129

jangel writes "Stanford University researchers have demonstrated a way to turn ordinary paper into a battery, which may be crumpled or pressed into any form. It's said the technology promises greater durability, higher efficiency, and faster energy transfer than traditional batteries. The technique uses special ink made of carbon nanotubes and silver nanowires. Thanks to the small diameters of these materials, the ink sticks strongly to the fibrous paper, allowing the battery to be extremely durable. The paper battery could last through 40,000 charge-discharge cycles — at least an order of magnitude more than lithium batteries. According to the researchers, the paper batteries will be low-cost, may be crumpled or folded, and can even be soaked in acidic or basic solutions, yet their performance does not degrade. 'We just haven't tested what happens when you burn it,' one of the researchers quipped." This is the same Stanford research team, lead by Yi Cui, whose work with nanotechnology for battery applications we have discussed before. We've also delved into alternate routes to the holy grail of the ultra-thin battery.
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Nanotech Ink Turns Paper Into a Low-Cost Battery

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  • Nice, but... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Ralph Spoilsport ( 673134 ) on Saturday December 12, 2009 @03:31PM (#30416304) Journal
    What's the power density? If you need a dozen phonebooks worth of paper to store 100wH, never mind...

    What's the ink made of? Oil? If so: never mind.

    How fast an you charge it without it bursting into flames?

    If it can charge faster and has equal power density to LiON batteries, and the ink isn't made out of oil, and the entire thing can be built outside of a petroleum context, I think we might have a winner...


  • similar principle (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wizardforce ( 1005805 ) on Saturday December 12, 2009 @03:32PM (#30416312) Journal

    These paper based batteries appear to function in a very similar fashion to the algae derived cellulose batteries mentioned on Slashdot a while ago. The paper probably acts as a support just as the algae cellulose particles did in the previously mentioned design.

  • Cost of silver (Score:4, Interesting)

    by BlueParrot ( 965239 ) on Saturday December 12, 2009 @03:43PM (#30416432)
    How much silver is actually sued in these batteries? Will availability be an issue? Does it work with other conductive materials like copper or aluminum? Intuitively I suspect the problem here will be energy density for the simple reason it is the one thing they did not promise would be awesome. That said with the tesla beating 500km recently these batteries coudl eprform well even if they had half of Li-Ion energy density.
  • Re:fancy ink (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Twinbee ( 767046 ) on Saturday December 12, 2009 @04:24PM (#30416816) Homepage

    Why is laser ink so much cheaper than inkjet?

  • Re:Very cool (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 12, 2009 @04:54PM (#30417146)

    So again, where is the equality? Why was it whites who travelled the globe and discovered primitive blacks? Why wasn't it blacks who travelled the globe and discovered primitive whites? If you want to make your case I am listening.

    Raise a black child in a white family and he'll act white. Show me a single black child adopted by white parents that turned out to be a thug and then you can make your case that skin color is relevant. I'm waiting.

  • Re:Very cool (Score:0, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Saturday December 12, 2009 @05:22PM (#30417360)

    Not to mention the fact that firearms were invented by the Chiness, as was the idea of a magnetic compass. . . and oh the US Constitution had many ideas taken from the Iroquois Confederacy. . .

    I think you can find far more examples of white people being uncivilized idiots banging the metaphorical rocks together. . . seems like whites are best at stealing other peoples ideas, and lands. . . oh and finding better ways to slaughter people.

  • Blood (Score:3, Interesting)

    by handy_vandal ( 606174 ) on Saturday December 12, 2009 @06:45PM (#30418004) Homepage Journal

    Like all new technology, you can safely say that it wasn't invented by black people. Or by women.


    Charles Richard Drew [] (3 June 1904 – 1 April 1950) was an African American physician and medical researcher. He researched in the field of blood transfusions, developing improved techniques for blood storage, and applied his expert knowledge in developing large-scale blood banks early in World War II, saving thousands of lives of the Allied forces.

    They say that "one drop of black blood" makes you black -- therefore we are all black [].

    In the words of Jesus: "Love ... thy neighbor as thyself." [] I'm pretty sure he included your dark-skinned -- yet identically red-blooded -- neighbors in that assertion.

    As for why Europeans conquered the world, see Guns, Germs, and Steel [] by Jared Diamond. (Short answer: environmental factors.)

To write good code is a worthy challenge, and a source of civilized delight. -- stolen and paraphrased from William Safire