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Science Saturday: New Batteries Charge 70% in Two Minutes!

This Saturday, I’d like to take a step away from our normal coverage of games, shows, and movies and take a look at one of the latest revelations in the world of science.  This story broke, from several sources, about a week ago – but in case you haven’t been keeping up to date with science news, this might blow your mind.

A brand new lithium-ion battery has emerged from the labs of Nanyang Technological University in Singapore, and its charging capacities are absolutely astonishing.  After tinkering with the substance used as the anode in this battery (changing it from graphite to titanium dioxide), the researchers were able to produce the fastest charging rate we’ve ever seen in batteries – it can recharge up to 70% of its capacity in just TWO minutes!  Not only that, but it can then, reportedly, hold its charge for up to 20 years!

Think of the implications of this!  You would literally never have to charge your cell phone, laptop, or tablet battery during its entire lifespan.  Even better, though, is that this lab intends to continue research on this battery so that it can eventually be used in electric cars.

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Professor Chen of the Nanyang Technological University

Why is this groundbreaking?  Well, two of the main reasons why electric car sales have stalled is that: (a) they have a much higher initial cost than traditional cars, and (b) people are afraid that they might run out of fuel before reaching their destination.  So far, the way to address reason (b) has been to grow the amount of electric car charging stations in America.  The problem is, investors aren’t willing to spend money on electric charging stations, since demand and electric car use is relatively low.  Yet, without the stations, people won’t buy the cars because there’s no fueling guarantee… Well, you can see the problematic cycle that’s taking place here.

This battery could revolutionize the electric car industry by greatly increasing the charge capacity and longevity of cars.  It’d also eliminate the frequency of fueling charges and reduce costs on that front, making the long-term savings outweigh the up-front costs.  The problematic cycle would likely be broken!

We’re excited about the possibilities.  What do you think?

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