A student accidentally created a rechargeable battery that could last 400 years

"This thing has been cycling 10,000 cycles and it’s still going." ♡️♡️

It's been said that preparation plus opportunity equals luck.

A 2016 finding made by doctorate student Mya Le Thai at the University of California, Irvine is the best illustration of it. She discovered a discovery in the lab while tinkering, and it might result in a 400-year-long rechargeable battery. This translates to fewer lithium ion batteries building up in landfills and more durable computers and cellphones.

After testing nanowires for possible battery applications, a UCI research team discovered that the brittle, thin wires eventually deteriorated and cracked from repeated charging cycles. A battery has a charge cycle when it cycles from fully charged to fully depleted and back to full.

However, one day, Thai wrapped some gold nanowires in manganese dioxide and an electrolyte gel that looked like Plexiglas out of sheer impulse.

The surprise came when Reginald Penner, the chair of the university's chemistry department, said that "she started to cycle these gel capacitors." "This thing has been cycling for 10,000 cycles and it is still going," she claimed. A few days later, she returned and stated, "It's been cycling for 30,000 cycles." That persisted for a whole month."

Given that the typical laptop battery lasts between 300 and 500 charge cycles, this revelation is astounding. In three months, the UCI-developed nanobattery underwent 200,000 cycles. That would add almost 400 years to the lifespan of a typical laptop battery. The ramifications for a battery that lasts hundreds of years are rather shocking, yet the rest of the gadget would have likely failed decades before the battery.

"The big picture is that there may be a very simple way to stabilize nanowires of the type that we studied," Penner stated. "If this turns out to be generally true, it would be a great advance for the community." For playing about in the lab, not too terrible.

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