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Chemistry
  

Building Better Batteries

BOULDER, CO (Ivanhoe Newswire) --Everyone knows the frustration of having a battery die right when you need it. Now researchers have created a new battery with more power, so you can talk, type, or even drive longer. We report on why it really is the battery that keeps going and going, and going./p>

They power our phones, our computers, even our cars. But batteries have one big downside, they die! And it’s usually way to soon and at the worst possible time. Chemist Amy Prieto and her colleagues at Colorado State University are working to change that.

"If you could make one really good battery, you could put it into a bunch of different areas and really impact people's lives,” Amy Prieto, a chemist at Colorado State University told Ivanhoe.

That's just what Prieto did. Calculations predict this prototype battery has a 1,000 higher power density, lasts 10 times longer, can be charged an unlimited amount of times and is a third of the cost of current lithium ion batteries.

"The key to our battery is it's very high surface area,” Prieto said.

A high surface area means it will charge faster. The battery is made up of three main parts: an anode-made of tiny copper nanowires, a cathode-made from a rubber-like material, and an electrolyte-made of plastic that separates the anode from the cathode. Nanowires increase the battery’s performance and are so small that 25 million of them can fit on the surface of a penny.

"So, they're really tiny, that surface area is about 10,000-times higher, so that's where you get this power from,” Prieto explained.

Researchers will first test the battery on electric bikes then smart phones, and one day everything from pacemakers to electric cars.

"A battery could really revolutionize a lot of areas,” Prieto concluded.

It’s an invention that could be on the market and available to you by next year.

Prieto says they are sending out prototypes of the battery to be tested in the next six months. Then they will try to get it on the market quickly. She also points out that this new battery is less toxic than current models and is better on the environment.

The American Physical Society contributed to the information contained in the TV portion of this report.

Click here to Go Inside This Science and View Video or contact:

Amy Prieto
Assistant Professor
Department of Chemistry
Colorado State University
alprieto@lamar.colostate.edu


This Month's TV Reports
Snow-Wing: UFO Or Cloud?

23,000 planes take off and land each day in the U.S. New science reveals how each one of those flights could impact our weather.

 

Hurricanes: Predicting the Strength Of The Storm

Hurricane season ends November 30th. Meteorologist need to keep watch this month as there have been 57 named hurricanes in November. Now there’s a new, more accurate way to find out just how powerful they will be.

 

Mission to Jupiter

Right now a rocket is headed to the biggest planet in our solar system. We’ll show you what makes this mission special and how it could impact all of our lives.

 

‘Grass’ Oline: The Fuel Of The Future?

New research is focusing on bio-energy. We’ll show you how grass could replace coal, corn, even manure as the fuel of the future.

 

Building Better Batteries

It’s a battery that lasts ten times longer than anything you can buy today. We talk to the scientist who has created a better battery that could keep you talking, typing, and even driving longer than ever before.

 

Cleaning Up Our Seafood—Saving Lives

Each year dozens of people die from bad oysters. A new, simple and cheap process could take the risk out of diving in and eating raw oysters.

 

Saving Our Seas

Each year millions of gallons of sewage, chemicals and oil end up in our oceans. Now, finding pollutants in the water just got quicker, easier and cheaper!

 

Stop Suffering: Quick Cure For Sinusitis

A 30-minute doctor’s office visit could help millions of people breathe easier. We’ll show you how it works.

 

Predicting Heart Failure with A Blood Test

5.7 million Americans have heart failure. It kills more than 300,000 each year. Now a simple blood test could save lives.

 

Tennis: The Secret To A Perfect Game

The best players slam a ball at over 125 mph. Now we go inside their game to find out how they ‘see’ things differently.

 

The Feeling of Sound?

You hear with your ears and feel with your fingers, right? Look and listen to this unique experiment that shows just how much we still don’t know about the human brain.

 

Power Pen: Lighting Up The Room

The ink pen has been around for a century and now, it’s taking a dramatic turn! We’ll show you a pen that can be used to light up a room.

 

Prior Reports
A joint production of Ivanhoe Broadcast News and the American Institute of Physics.
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