Turn Your Home into a Battery Through Paintable Batteries

Author: Usman Zafar Paracha
Published: June 30, 2012 at 5:11 am
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Lithium ion batteries, usually found in a number of electronics, have become the part of paints, so that they can be sprayed easily on a variety of surfaces from glass slides to stainless steel to glazed ceramic tiles and make them to work like a battery.

This research has been done by Neelam Singh from Department of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science, Rice University, Houston, and collaborators and published online in the June 28 issue of the journal Scientific Reports.

“This means traditional packaging for batteries has given way to a much more flexible approach that allows all kinds of new design and integration possibilities for storage devices,” said Ajayan, Rice’s Benjamin M. and Mary Greenwood Anderson Professor in Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science and of chemistry. “There has been lot of interest in recent times in creating power sources with an improved form factor, and this is a big step forward in that direction.”

Researchers worked on the separate components of the battery and looked at materials as diverse as carbon nanotubes and ultrafine graphite powders. They painted these ingredients in layers in the proper order on the different surfaces to make batteries.

As a demonstration, researchers printed batteries on nine ceramic bathroom tiles and give energy to 40 red LED lights showing the word “RICE” for six hours. One of the battery tiles was supported with solar power cell helping to charge the batteries. The batteries provided steady 2.4 volts.

Researchers have found that the materials on which these paints can be sprayed have little or no effect on the working of the batteries. This suggests that these paints could be used on a large number of materials to make them the batteries without any difficulty.

"You could turn your home into a battery," Singh said.

“Spray painting is already an industrial process, so it would be very easy to incorporate this into industry,” Singh added.

The researchers have filed to patent the technique.

Source: Rice University

Image Credit: Jeff Fitlow/Rice University

 
 

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Article Author: Usman Zafar Paracha

Usman Zafar Paracha has been blogging in science and technology for more than 6 years. He is CEO of SayPeople.com. Email: uzparacha@yahoo.com Twitter: @jeepakistan

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