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Power Hardware Technology

Researchers Spray-Paint Batteries Onto Almost Any Surface 92

Warmlight writes "Rice University researchers have created a type of lithium-ion battery that can be spray-painted onto most surfaces. 'Their batteries, outlined in Scientific Reports (abstract), are made up of five separate layers, each with its own recipe — together measuring just 0.5mm thick. To demonstrate the technique, the team painted batteries onto steel, glass, ceramic tile and even a beer stein.' What do you think this will do for future form-factors? Maybe a form-fitting PipBoy-style device that doesn't weigh 30lbs?"
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Researchers Spray-Paint Batteries Onto Almost Any Surface

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  • Re:taggers (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wierd_w ( 1375923 ) on Friday June 29, 2012 @02:09PM (#40496903)

    Now imagine 2 more techs, and tagging will be a sight indeed!

    Just need spraypaint photocells, and spraypaint Oleds.

    Booyah. Neon tagging.

  • by __aaqvdr516 ( 975138 ) on Friday June 29, 2012 @03:06PM (#40497703)

    1. It removes the ability to have a drop in spare (i.e. is not user replaceable.)

    2. The "packaging" they refer to is also a vital part of the mechanical integrity of a battery. Mechanical integrity is kind of important.

    3. Spraying a battery directly to the case of a device ensures that the full force of any mechanical shock is applied to the battery as well.

    All of this together makes me believe that the only use this could have is for relatively small items that you do not intend to move around.

  • Re:Bad idea (Score:4, Interesting)

    by TheSkepticalOptimist ( 898384 ) on Friday June 29, 2012 @03:22PM (#40497937)

    Name 5 things that you can buy today that can remain in use for 20 years through repairs. Even if you can, any of those 5 thing you actually want after 20 years?

    Yeah, I agree, being able to maintain and repair something should be better valued then disposable products but that is not the reality we live in. Even cars have a shelf life these days, whether through component failure or a failure to remain in style.

    Instead there are many, many, many opportunities for companies to recycle and recover components and materials.

    And ultimately, what is wrong with waste?

    Seriously, waste disposable is simply a social issue. Nobody likes waste. They don't want a landfills in their backyards. Municipalities do not want to invest money to build more or maintain existing landfills. They don't want the headache of trying to find more land for a dump. Its probably one of the stupidest social issues in existence because we all generate waste, even the best of us, yet nobody wants to deal with it. So thus we assume waste is bad.

    But I think that in the very near future people are going to look at waste like its a gold mine. Think of all the hydro-carbons locked in a landfill. Think of all the metal and aggregate materials that are locked away in a landfill. It may not be economically viable to "mine" a landfill currently as there are cheaper and easier ways to extract the raw materials we need for our everyday consumption, but one day it will become profitable to delve back into landfills to sort and extract its valuables.

    So municipalities should invest heavily in recycling, recovery, and YES, even landfills regardless of the headaches because there is a huge potential for many cities to be sitting on a goldmine's worth of recoverable materials in the very near future. There are companies already out there that can turn garbage into energy and reclaim metals and aggregate materials using plasmification, and they produce emissions 10 times better then even strict California laws would allow. But the moment a city wants to store a bit of garbage somewhere it becomes this big social headache because of all the greenies thinking the world is going to end when another dump is created.

    So whatever, spray my batteries directly on the device and when I am done, if nobody wants to buy it used, if there are no electronic recyclable programs to take it back, then dump it, period. In all likelihood its going to be reclaimed eventually.

    The era of grabbing a screwdriver to tinker with and fix a broken device is pretty much over with as we head toward more micronization of components and faster automated manufacturing processes. But I don't think we have to worry about more disposable items as I don't believe this is anything more then a social issue arising from unwarranted green guilt because economically and even environmentally its going to be very attractive to recover materials from landfills rather then hunting around the planet looking for scarce raw materials.

  • Re:Bad idea (Score:2, Interesting)

    by pointyhat ( 2649443 ) on Friday June 29, 2012 @03:56PM (#40498389)

    Well it's only June. I don't buy that much, but when I do I make sure I don't buy a hunk of shit that needs replacing every 5 minutes, so 5 things I've bought new in the last 10 years which will still be going in 20 years FROM NOW through repair and replacement:

    1. Land Rover Defender TD5. Definitely want this after 20 years. This replaced my 30 year old one. Repairable.

    2. Maglite LED torch. Definitely want this after 20 years. Repairable.

    3. Aga cooker. Definitely want this after 20 years. Repairable.

    4. Singer 4423 sewing machine. Definitely want this after 20 years. Repairable.

    5. OPL frame dryer. Definitely want this after 20 years. Repairable

    There's not excuse to buy disposable shit.

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