User Name Password    
CleanMPG, Learn to raise fuel economy and lower emissions in whatever you drive.  
• What is hypermiling? •
CleanMPG to AAA:
• Hypermiling Rebuttal •
• Home
• CleanMPG Staff
• Articles
• Fuel Economy Forums
      • Register
Go Hypermiling!

   Car Reviews:

2013 Elantra GT

2013 Elantra Coupe

2013 Lexus ES 300h

2013 Mazda CX-5

2013 Lexus GS 450h

2012 Prius c

2013 Malibu Eco

2012 Hyundai Accent
   Bike and Gear Reviews:

HTC Thunderbolt

2010 R 1200 GS (A)

Kawasaki KLX250SF

Zero S

Aerostich Darien

Shoei Hornet DS

Honda CRF230L

Yamaha XT250

• More Reviews
• Gallery
• Mileage Logs
• CleanMPG Store
• Calendar
• Glossary
• Garage
• Files
• Research
• Related Sites
• Archives
• Arcade
• Monthly Fuel Efficient •
Vehicle Sales Figures

ScanGauge with X-Gauge: $159.95

Pre-programming, a CleanMPG laser cut decal, and shipping included!

Even better value for members only is available in the latest SG-II w/ X-Gauge Group Buy purchase thread.

While we strive to provide only the highest quality information through our members' offerings, if you find the information provided valuable, please consider a donation so that we can offer an even better experience for the membership and guests well into the future.

Thank you

-Wayne Gerdes

Home Fuel Economy Forums Gallery Mileage Logs

Register FAQ Members List Search Today's Posts Mark Forums Read

Go Back   CleanMPG Forums » Information » In the News

In the News News items that may be of interest. These show up on the front page.
Only Moderators may start threads, but anyone can respond to them.

Welcome to the CleanMPG forums.

Some posts may describe situations which may in some cases be unsafe or illegal in some jurisdictions. Please use common sense and consult your local laws to make sure you do not hurt yourself or others or break any laws.

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest which gives you limited access to view discussions, articles and access our other features. By joining our community you will have access to post topics, communicate privately with other members (PM), respond to polls, upload your own photos and access many other special features. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free so please, join our community today!

If you have any problems with the registration process or your account login, please contact contact support.

Battery tech starts catching up to high tech.

Thread Tools Display Modes
  #1   Submit to Clesto Submit to Digg Submit to Reddit Submit to Furl Submit to Submit to Spurl
Old 03-15-2007, 05:07 PM
xcel's Avatar
xcel xcel is online now
PZEV, there's nothing like it :)
Join Date: Feb 2006
Vehicles: Accord, Ranger, and anything else ;)
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 46,867
Battery tech starts catching up to high tech.

Nanotechnology is giving batteries, often considered a weak link in electronics, a much-needed boost.
Tom A. Peter - The Christian Science Monitor - Mar. 15, 2007

By Tom Peter, courtesy Christian Science Monitor. MORE POWER: Yet-Ming Chiang holds a cordless drill that uses his new battery.

WATERTOWN, MASS. - Standing at the base of a gym's climbing rope, Nathan Ball checks his harness and prepares to live every gym student's dream. He flicks a switch on his "rope ascender" and zips up to the 45-foot ceiling in less than five seconds. The 15-pound battery-powered device, designed by Mr. Ball and three fellow Massachusetts Institute of Technology students, can hoist 250 pounds at 10 feet per second (about 7 miles per hour).

"You need an insane amount of power to do that at that speed, with that weight load," explains Ball.

Enter the nanotechnological battery, the new lightweight and powerful engine of high-tech dreams, making everything possible from Ball's rope ascender to hybrid vehicles capable of getting 150 miles per gallon to battery-powered fabrics that will let soldiers plug electronic devices into their uniforms.

Recent advances in nanotechnology – the science that alters elements at the atomic level – have allowed the battery industry to begin to catch up to the electronics industry. For a long time, the battery industry was "sort of the afterthought of the electronics industry," says Steve Simon, executive vice president of research and development at mPhase Technologies, a company trying to build a better battery.

Every year the portable electronics industry packs more into smaller spaces – iPods, cellphones, and laptops. Microprocessors, the core component of personal computers, have doubled in speed nearly every 18 months since the late 1960s, Mr. Simon says. By comparison, he adds, batteries have seen 3 to 4 percent increases in performance over the past 20 years.

Responding to this, Reno, Nev.-based Altair Nanotechnologies developed nanomaterials that resulted in safer, more powerful batteries. By early 2005, battery manufacturers had shown little interest, so Altair assembled its own battery development team.

Lithium-ion batteries, commonly used in laptops and cellphones, have a relatively short life span because they use graphite, which wears out quickly in normal usage. The Altair team substituted a nanomaterial called lithium titanate that lasts much longer.

Better, safer battery for laptops – and motorcycles

The change lengthened the life of a lithium-ion battery from 750 recharges to between 10,000 and 15,000 recharges. It also made the battery safer. Graphite can cause shorts that create fires, like those that caused Dell and Apple to recall laptop batteries last summer.

A123 Systems, maker of the battery in Ball's rope ascender, used a different nanomaterial to improve the lithium-ion battery. Researchers developed nanophosphate, phosphate in particles a few billionths of a meter in size. Most safety issues in batteries occur during charging, and nanophosphate is much less prone to such problems. So A123 replaced the cobalt oxide in lithium-ion cells with nanophosphate.

"The fact that it's safe is not enough to make a compelling new application," says Yet-Ming Chiang, founder of A123 and a materials-chemistry professor at MIT. "The other critical performance attribute is that nanophosphate can deliver extraordinarily high power while being safe."

Bill Dubι, a member of the KillaCycle electric motorcycle drag-racing team, used A123 batteries to create an electric motorcycle that goes from zero to 60 in 1.4 seconds.

On a more practical level, DeWalt used A123 batteries in a new line of cordless power tools. They are twice as strong as their corded counterparts and five times as strong as the battery-powered ones they replaced. The battery lasts for 2,000 recharges.

The number of recharges is of particular interest to the auto industry. Unlike personal electronics, which are expected to last only a few years before consumers upgrade to the next- generation gadget, cars must last at least a decade. With high numbers of recharges a prominent feature of both A123 and Altair's batteries, both companies have begun working to develop better hybrid and electric options.

Conversion kit makes a hybrid car even better

A123 created a conversion kit (yet to hit the market) that turns normal hybrids into plug-in hybrids capable of getting 150 m.p.g. in city driving. Plug-ins require an overnight charge from a normal wall socket to get the extra mileage. According to 2007 Environmental Protection Agency estimates, the Toyota Prius gets 60 m.p.g. General Motors also contracted A123 to help produce the Saturn Green Line Vue, a plug-in hybrid.

Addressing another challenge facing the battery industry, mPhase created a battery with an indefinite shelf life. Traditional batteries, like AAs, gradually lose power even when they're not being used. Some can lose up to half of their charge over five years in storage.

Using nanomaterials and basic physics principles, mPhase kept the chemicals inside the battery from mixing – the cause of gradual power leakage – until it was used. Such batteries could be used for emergency lighting systems, for example, that might not be used for 10 years, but would require full power when needed.

While current battery innovations offer exciting opportunities, science fiction-like possibilities beckon.

Prof. Angela Belcher, a biomolecular materials chemist at MIT, is trying to use biological methods, such as viruses, to assemble batteries. "The goal is to have biology make things in an environmentally friendly way," says Professor Belcher.

Belcher's virus-assembled batteries are thin, transparent sheets that look like plastic wrap. They could be used to create smart credit cards or lightweight hearing-aid batteries. Eventually, Belcher hopes to weave battery cells into textile fibers to create battery-powered fabrics. Soldiers might plug night-vision goggles into their uniforms, for example, instead of traditional batteries.

Professor Chiang, who also researches self-assembling batteries, imagines an ink-like substance that would allow one to "paint" a battery onto a device.

As far-fetched as it seems, Chiang is optimistic that such advances are within reach. "We're not talking about something that's going to take 20 or 30 years, within the next decade it could very well happen," he says.
Reply With Quote
Sponsored Links
  #2   Submit to Clesto Submit to Digg Submit to Reddit Submit to Furl Submit to Submit to Spurl
Old 03-15-2007, 09:42 PM
TonyPSchaefer's Avatar
TonyPSchaefer TonyPSchaefer is offline
Senior Member
Join Date: Jul 2006
Vehicles: 2004 Toyota Prius
Location: Far-North Chicagoland
Posts: 310
Re: Battery tech starts catching up to high tech.

One word: Cool!
Proud father of Priapus: the '04 Tideland BC9 with an OEM EV button and sense of self-rightiousness
Current Mileage

First one to save the planet wins!
Reply With Quote
  #3   Submit to Clesto Submit to Digg Submit to Reddit Submit to Furl Submit to Submit to Spurl
Old 03-15-2007, 10:06 PM
xcel's Avatar
xcel xcel is online now
PZEV, there's nothing like it :)
Join Date: Feb 2006
Vehicles: Accord, Ranger, and anything else ;)
Location: Northern Illinois
Posts: 46,867
Re: Battery tech starts catching up to high tech.

Hi Tony:

___You saw the highlighted section too, right I wonder where this places HyMotion as they use the A123 pack in their Prius-II - PHEV-20 conversion right now? Either way, I can tell you will be consuming a lot less fuel in 2 to 3 years once the A123 PHEV conversion kits come down to reasonable prices. I have no idea what the price is currently but it cannot be anywhere near the $10K discussed for the EnergyCS/HyMotion conversions given A123 will both make and supply the Li-Ion packs in the kit?

___Good Luck

Reply With Quote

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Hypermiling the Ford Escape Hybrid ... GaryG Ford Hybrids 146 12-02-2011 07:56 PM
Idea-Warming The HV Battery GaryG Ford Hybrids 13 11-10-2006 07:48 PM
FEH HV Battery Conditioning GaryG Ford Hybrids 0 09-22-2006 08:17 PM
U.S. automakers join lithium-ion battery project. xcel In the News 2 09-07-2006 11:51 PM
U.S. Battery Consortium Awards Li-Ion Hybrid contract to ENER1. xcel In the News 0 06-07-2006 05:23 PM

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 07:10 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.6.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2015, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright ©2006 - 2013, Clean MPG LLC. All Rights Reserved.