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Paper Batteries Answered

Has anyone read anything about the up and coming Paper (thin) batteries ? Paper Batteries: A paper battery is a flexible, ultra-thin energy storage and production device formed by combining carbon nanotubes with a conventional sheet of cellulose-based paper.

A paper battery acts as both a high-energy battery and supercapacitor, combining two components that are separate in traditional electronics. This combination allows the battery to provide both long-term, steady power production and bursts of energy. Non-toxic, flexible paper batteries have the potential to power the next generation of electronics, medical devices and hybrid vehicles, allowing for radical new designs and medical technologies.

What do you think? Will it replace these monsters one day?

12 Replies

user
scratchr (author)2010-05-18

I once saw one in a digital camera i took apart. It was a lithium battery.

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Goodhart (author)scratchr2010-05-18

Some cameras and many cordless phones have lithium batteries.

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westfw (author)2008-02-22

This is the latest of a string of "ultra-thin batteries" that have been announced over the years, starting back with the pola-pulse batteries used (mostly) in polaroid sx70 film packs. They've always been relatively expensive, and have never caught on very much. Consider that a "conventional" litium-polymer cell is small enough to make possible blue-tooth headsets and ipods and such; already in danger of being TOO small. Flexibility has never seemed to be important (and frequently disappears as the battery technology goes from lab to store.) They've pretty much always been an interesting bit of technology in seach of an application, IMO.

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chuckr44 (author)2008-02-22

Yes I've heard of them. They are not made of paper fiber, but they are thin and flexible, like paper. If they can get the cost down to, or below, current battery technology it will take off. If not, it will fade into obscurity like many other, ingenious but expensive solutions.

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jtobako (author)chuckr442008-02-22

The link sounded like cellulose fibers, otherwise known as paper, is used to deliver the electrolyte to the carbon fibers, and insulate the two electrodes.

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Goodhart (author)jtobako2008-02-22

One method of manufacture, developed by scientists at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and MIT...(uses) high cellulose content (over 90%) and lack of toxic chemicals in paper batteries makes the device both biocompatible and environmentally friendly, especially when compared to the traditional Lithium Ion battery used in many present-day electronic devices and laptops.

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jtobako (author)Goodhart2008-02-22

Any idea how long it takes a carbon nanotube to break down? Or could they end up as another asbestos problem?

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user
Kiteman (author)jtobako2008-02-22

They'll burn, won't they?

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Goodhart (author)Kiteman2008-02-22

If they really are "carbon", I would think so.

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jtobako (author)Goodhart2008-02-22

Looks like they are NOT biodegradable and toxic if not covered with the right material (here) or manufacturing process (heavy metal contamination) and considering how they are manufactured, I would put their burn-ability somewhere around that of graphite or diamond...

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Goodhart (author)jtobako2008-02-22

Seems as though there are a lot of options in this area:

another nanotube link

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jtobako (author)2008-02-22

No real details, but it sounds like the paper battery would only replace the lead, not the electrolyte, and cost a lot more than the lead. They don't mention if it's rechargeable, or if the 'ionic liquid' needs to be/can be refreshed. I guess that would be the real deal breaker.

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