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Researchers develop foldable energy storage

Posted: 07 Oct 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:energy storage? battery? capacitor?

Researchers from NUS Nanoscience and Nanotechnology Initiative (NUSNNI) have a developed a soft, foldable energy storage membrane that used a polystyrene-based polymer. When placed between and charged by two graphite plates, the material can store 0.2F/cm2, exceeding the typical upper limit of 1?F/cm2 for a standard capacitor.

The cost involved in energy storage is drastically cut with this invention from about $7 to store each farad using existing technologies based on liquid electrolytes to about $0.62, said Xie Xian Ning, who led the team that also included Wang Yuzhan and Wang Qian.

energy-storage membrane

NUS researchers developed a cost-effective and environmentally-friendly energy-storage membrane.

"Compared to rechargeable batteries and supercapacitors, the proprietary membrane allows for very simple device configuration and low fabrication cost. Moreover, the performance of the membrane surpasses those of rechargeable batteries, such as lithium ion and lead-acid batteries, and supercapacitors," Xie noted.

Supported by grants from the Singapore-MIT Alliance for Research & Technology (SMART) and the National Research Foundation, the research took about one and a half years to reach its status and the team has successfully filed a U.S. patent for this invention.

"With the advent of our novel membrane, energy storage technology will be more accessible, affordable and producible on a large scale. It is also environmentally-friendly and could change the current status of energy technology," stated Xie.

Going forward, the team will explore more applications for the energy storage solution. It is also looking into opportunities to work with venture capitalists to commercialize the invention.

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