mattnyc99 writes: We looked at Popular Mechanics' reporting from MIT last week but missed the coolest breakthrough of all, something scientists have been working on quietly as Detroit spends money elsewhere: the Lab for Electromagnetic and Electronic Systems has been doing some mega-efficient work with ultracapacitors, which store drastically less energy than a battery but have essentially none of the drawbacks—especially via carbon nanotube arrays. Automotive experts say the new research is enough to start replacing batteries in hybrid cars, and plug-in vehicles might not be far behind. From the scientist who thinks ultracpacitors are potential competitors for the pack in his Toyota Prius: "I try to contain myself, because it hasn't been proven yet, but it could be a real paradigm change."
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