Nov
08
2007

Nanotechnology increases energy capacity

We couldn’t get the rights to a photo of a nano-ultra-capacitor, so here’s a picture of some cute baby ducks.: Photo by Mattay from Flickr.com
We couldn’t get the rights to a photo of a nano-ultra-capacitor, so here’s a picture of some cute baby ducks.: Photo by Mattay from Flickr.com

Many devices need to use stored energy. The most common storage devices are batteries and capacitors.

Batteries produce energy through chemical reactions in their mass, and release it at a slow and steady rate. Batteries can store a lot of energy, but they’re difficult to recharge.

Capacitors store energy on their surface, release it all in a burst, and then can be easily recharged. Many devices use capacitors – cellphones, computer memory, even some trucks and buses. But the amount of energy capacitors can store is limited – only one-millionth the power in a battery of the same size.

But perhaps not for long. A team of researchers at MIT is using nanotechnology to improve the storage capacity of capacitors. Working with materials just a few atoms thick, they can build very complicated shapes with lots of surface area to hold electrical charge. Test show these devices can hold up to 50% of the energy a battery holds, and yet still maintain the advantages of quick release and easy recharge. The researchers predict this next generation of capacitors could someday help power electric cars or store energy from renewable sources.

Your Comments, Thoughts, Questions, Ideas

mdr's picture
mdr says:

What species of ducks are those?

posted on Thu, 11/08/2007 - 9:33am
Gene's picture
Gene says:

They are little ducks.
Tiiiiiiny ducks.
Nano ducks.

I love little nano ducks, old pickup trucks, slow-movin' trains, and rain...

posted on Thu, 11/08/2007 - 11:05pm
ARTiFactor's picture
ARTiFactor says:

There are some photos from the MIT ultracapacitor research team in Liza's Buzz blog post about ultracapacitors.

posted on Thu, 11/08/2007 - 10:05am
apey1997's picture
apey1997 says:

i say they are cute

posted on Thu, 11/15/2007 - 7:48pm
SLC's picture
SLC says:

Those ducks are really cute. How are they increase energy by having these ducklings pictures on the side?

posted on Mon, 12/08/2008 - 1:06pm

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
  • Allowed HTML tags: <a> <h3> <h4> <em> <i> <strong> <b> <span> <ul> <ol> <li> <blockquote> <object> <embed> <param> <sub> <sup>
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.
  • You may embed videos from the following providers vimeo, youtube. Just add the video URL to your textarea in the place where you would like the video to appear, i.e. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pw0jmvdh.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Images can be added to this post.

More information about formatting options