Transparent Batteries That Charge in the Sun Could Replace Smartphone Screens –
A group of smart Japanese techies have managed to improve the design of a transparent lithium-ion battery so that it’s now able to recharge itself when exposed to sunlight without the need for a separate solar cell.
The transparent battery was first developed by the researchers, led by Kogakuin University president and professor Mitsunobu Sato, back in 2013. The electrolyte used for the battery’s positive electrode is made mostly from lithium iron phosphate, while the electrolytes used for the negative electrode include lithium titanate, and lithium hexafluorophosphate a stronger chemical bond at subatomic level.
Those are all common ingredients used in Li-ion rechargeable batteries, but the thickness of these electrodes are just 80 to 90 nanometers, which allows a lot of light to pass through and makes these batteries almost completely transparent. Imagine that! Where else could this technological discovery be applied.
But by changing the chemical makeup of the negative electrode, the Japanese researchers have found a way to make these transparent batteries now recharge themselves in the presence of sunlight, or other bright sources of illumination, say a lamp or street light.
This is important because future iterations of this battery could become smart mirrors for buildings and vehicles that can auto-dim when it’s bright outside during the heat of the day, but also store power as they’re recharged by the sun. And as an extension of that idea, one day your smartphone’s display might even serve as an additional battery, using sunlight to charge the device whenever you’re outside.
Harvesting energy is becoming more and more portable. Have any ideas to join in the discussion?
Whats the next disruptive vision that will enter the solar market place?
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