Is there a biodegradable battery?

Paper-thin biodegradable batteries could power future wearablesImage credit: Nanyang Technological University (NTU), SingaporeBy E&T editorial staffPublished Wednesday, Decembe

Is there a biodegradable battery?
paper thin batteries

Paper-thin biodegradable batteries could power future wearables

Image credit: Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore

By E&T editorial staff

Published Wednesday, December 15, 2021

Scientists have developed paper-thin zinc batteries that could become an environmentally sustainable option for powering flexible and wearable electronic systems.

The team from Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore developed the batteries from electrodes that have been screen-printed on to both sides of a piece of cellulose paper which is then reinforced with hydrogel.

Once the battery has been expended, it can be buried in soil, where it breaks down completely within a month.

In a proof-of-concept experiment, a 4cm x 4cm square of printed paper battery was used to power a small electric fan for 45 minutes. Bending or twisting the battery did not interrupt the power supply.

In another experiment using a 4cm x 4cm battery to power an LED, the scientists showed that despite cutting away parts of the paper battery, the LED remained lit.

The scientists think their printed battery could be integrated into flexible electronics such as foldable smart phones that are already on the market, or biomedical sensors for health monitoring.

Professor Fan Hongjin, the studys co-lead author, said: Traditional batteries come in a variety of models and sizes, and choosing the right type for your device could be a cumbersome process.

Through our study, we showed a simpler, cheaper way of manufacturing batteries, by developing a single large piece of battery that can be cut to desired shapes and sizes without loss of efficiency. These features make our paper batteries ideal for integration in the sorts of flexible electronics that are gradually being developed.

Assistant Professor Lee Seok Woo, who also co-authored the study, said: We believe the paper battery we have developed could potentially help with the electronic waste problem, given that our printed paper battery is non-toxic and does not require aluminium or plastic casings to encapsulate the battery components.

Avoiding the packaging layers also enables our battery to store a higher amount of energy, and thus power, within a smaller system.

Last month, another team demonstrated a new technology using electrochemistry to efficiently separate and recover the metals in spent lithium-ion batteries  potentially making them more recyclable.

  • batteries
  • wearable technology
  • research and innovation
  • flexible electronics

Sign up to the E&T News e-mail to get great stories like this delivered to your inbox every day.

E&T

Device provides 5G signal and wireless power to IoT devices simultaneously

E&T

Comment

View from Brussels: Ukraines brightest get EU windfall

E&T

Real-time remote control of smart factory achieved between Korea and Finland

E&T

Plastic-eating worms offer solution to waste crisis

E&T

Scientists give robots living human skin

E&T

Nasa launches scientific study into UFOs

E&T

Zero-emissions hydrofoil uses minimal energy by floating above the water

E&T

UK government acquires its first quantum computer

E&T

Artificial leaf devices can produce clean hydrogen from water

Senior Data Engineer

Poznan (PL)

RF Systems Architect - Space Systems

Guildford, London, Great Baddow

E&T

Injectable gel used as scaffold to repair damaged heart

Recent articles

E&T

The carbon cure: how to cut our waste emissions

E&T

Digital Strategy published; UK must embrace new technologies to grow

E&T

Worlds largest companies lack credibility in their net zero plans

E&T

Device provides 5G signal and wireless power to IoT devices simultaneously

E&T

CBI calls for more government investment in businesses amid grim economic forecast

E&T

Mining the bonepile of precious rubbish

E&T

The problem with packaging

E&T

Comment

After All: brazen, innovative, and sure as Eigg is Eigg

E&T

Comment

View from India: Conserve the soil for a better tomorrow

E&T

Comment

View from Brussels: Ukraines brightest get EU windfall

E&T

Comment

Bizarre Tech: MyndHub, Garbage Can Fly Trap and ReadySip

Video liên quan