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Student Accidentally Invents A Battery That Can Last For 400 Years

Ever heard of a smartphone battery that can be used by your children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren?
by Tanya Umali | Dec 1, 2016
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Forget about batteries that can charge quickly or those that can last up to three months. A new smartphone battery was accidentally invented by a student that can apparently keep its power for 400 years. 

Mya Le Thai, a student at the University of California who is currently taking her PhD, was playing around in the lab one day with her team. They were actually trying to design better nanowires which they could use for rechargable smartphone batteries, but instead were able to produce a thin strip that was able to withstand 200,000 charge cycles in three months. The amazing thing is that it did not deteriorate or even lose its quality. 

Basically, the battery is made of golden nanowires, which act as an excellent conductor due to its surface area and ability to hold a large number of electrons. However, it tends to give out easily after a few charging cycles, which is why the batteries that we have today are made of lithium ion.

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What the research team did was encase the golden nanowire material in a special electrolyte gel to protect it from any wear and tear. The result was a durable piece of nanowire battery. 


"Usually these batteries decline rapidly after only five or six thousand cycles, seven thousand at the most," according to Reginald Penner, leader of the chemistry faculty of the University of California. 

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So, what does this mean for us? First, if the material is mass-produced, there will no longer be a need for charging cables and powerbanks. Second, it would cut the production cost of companies producing batteries which means a better environment for us to live in. Third, you wouldn't have to spend a lot of cash just to buy a replacement for your charger with a broken wire. Fourth would be less electricity consumption because you wouldn't have to charge your devices over and over again. And lastly, no more explosions, because the material is encased in a gel-like substance. If you were listening to your teacher in your elementary science class, gel isn't really a good conductor of heat and electricity. 

Just imagine it, your children's children's children could still use the same battery you used in your smartphone. That would be a cool heirloom. 

As of the moment, don't throw out your chargers just yet because the battery won't go into production anytime soon. Since gold is so expensive, the scientists at the University of California are looking for a cheaper alternative material so you wouldn't have to go broke just to buy one battery. 

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