mitchigan scientist kevlar battery

Kevlar Used To Build A More Efficient Rechargeable Lithium Ion Battery

January 27, 2015 - Written By David Steele

We’ve seen some amazing advances in our smartphones in the last five years. We’ve seen high resolution AMOLED and LCD screen technology, camera sensors with over 20 million pixels, more radios than we can shake a fist at and screen sizes grow from under 4.0-inch to 6.0-inch and beyond. We’ve moved from a mobile processor that reached the 1.0 GHz barrier to processors approaching 3.0 GHz across four or more cores. Unfortunately, the laggard of this technology is the humble chemical battery: we have seen very limited chemical improvements applied to batteries, but the main reason why our devices have better battery life in 2015 compared with 2010 is because batteries are physically larger and the electronic components under the skin are more efficient when idle.

The basic make up of a battery is largely the same as it was a decade ago.
We at Android Headlines have reported on a number of rechargeable battery developments and today I’m bringing you news that a team at the University of Michigan have seen some success by using kevlar as part of the battery. This tough material is strong enough for bulletproof clothing and Motorola shells, but the team of researchers at the University have been using kevlar at the nano-scale, using the material to build a high tech, strong membrane designed to insulate the lithium ion battery electrodes. This helps prevent the growth of metal tendrils that cause current leaks; the technology has the ability to improve the internal efficiency of lithium ion batteries and so make the charge go further. Ultimately, this will allow batteries to be thinner for the same capacity or, as I personally hope, to be the same size but contain more energy. I’d rather smartphones keep their current size but have better life, than become even slimmer!

The technology is not yet at the production stage, but should be ready in a little under two years. The scientists already have thirty unnamed companies that have requested samples of the kevlar solution. We don’t know who’s requested the technology but you can be confident that “the establishment” are interested in picking this up for use in their mobile products from 2017 onwards.