Longer lasting, higher capacity, and cheaper rechargeable batteries could be in the pipeline as scientists finally figure out exactly what's going on inside, potentially opening the door to increased electric car range and smartphones that spend less time plugged in. The microscopic imaging techniques, developed by researchers at the US Department of Energy's Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, are expected to make it possible to examine what's happening within a live lithium-ion battery, particularly around areas of chemistry which so far power research has struggled to understand and refine for longer-lasting gadgets.
Tesla's Model S has been the subject of note when it comes to electric cars, lately due to a spat of fires that have affected a few of the units. Recently, a garage caught fire containing a Model S that was charging, something Tesla maintains was not caused by the Model S and that the Orange County Fire Authority says was related to the wall-charging system. Following this latest incident, Tesla Motors has pushed out a software update.
Vorson, maker of all sorts of portable and professional batteries for a variety of gadgets, has introduced its latest offering: the Bookmark, said to be the thinnest backup battery ever. As its name suggests (and title confirms), the Bookmark is roughly shaped like a bookmark, and, while not as thin, is still slim enough to be tucked away in a pocket or sleeve. Adding to the features is a touch-activated functionality.
Sekisui Chemical of Japan has taken the wraps off a new battery it has developed, a very thin lithium-ion offering described as being film-like and with a high capacity. The battery has been put through a variety of tests, and once brought to market could be used in a variety of different applications, among them being electric and hybrid cars and solar-powered homes.
A near handful of years ago, some students from MIT revealed a bicycle attachment that converts a bike into a hybrid with electric rear-wheel power, something that is now known as the Copenhagen Wheel. The idea behind the contraption is simple -- it attaches to the rear wheel of a bicycle and utilizes one's own biking efforts to provide assistance on tough terrain.
3D printing has been used for all sorts of research projects over the years to make things like prototype parts and more. Scientists from Harvard have now devised a new ink and tools that allow them to 3D print lithium-ion battery components. The same process can also be used to print other electronic components using 3D printing.
Spending days traveling, going camping over the weekend, or spending several hours in a waiting room all have something in common: high odds of your smartphone or tablet's battery dying before you're ready to bid your gadget farewell. Portable chargers mitigate this issue by providing an on-the-go charging option, and new to the category is the Jackery Fit.
When it comes to getting larger replacement batteries for smartphones, Mugen Power has batteries for lots of the Android devices out there with user replaceable battery packs. Mugen has announced its latest battery pack designed for the Samsung Galaxy Note 3. This battery pack has more than twice the power of the factory battery.
Mugen Power has announced its latest oversized battery to extend runtime of a popular Android smartphone. The company is offering an internal battery that fits inside the Samsung Galaxy S4 Active I9295 and the I537 version of the smartphone for AT&T. The company promises that the battery will last over twice as long as the standard internal battery.
The Microsoft Surface Pro 2 is significantly more battery-efficient than it was when it first launched on Oct. 22, thanks to a firmware update pushed by Microsoft shortly thereafter. It's a whopping 25% more battery-efficient than it was in terms of intense Web browsing, and a noticeable 16% better when running video. Anand Lal Shimpi of AnandTech ran the tests that demonstrated the improvement and ranked the results against various other devices.
Electric vehicles are a fast-growing technology that is ever evolving, and one of the latest contributors to that technological evolution is Volvo. The auto maker has come forward with details about its new battery technology, which, among other things, utilizes the car's body panels and super capacitors. We've got all the details on this tech after the jump.