Researchers at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, New York have created a nano-engineered battery that is lightweight, ultra thin, and completely flexible. What sounds like a fantasy wish list for a stripper could actually be the power supply for a future iPhone model…or, for that matter, any other outlandish futuristic gadget.
These diminutive dynamos are formed from paper and a solid electrolyte. The benefit of a solid electrolyte is an ability to perform well under wild temperature extremes. Not willing to leave well enough alone, though, these researchers went on to further demonstrate “that naturally occurring electrolytes in human sweat, blood, and urine can be used to activate the battery device.” OK, maybe ‘blood, sweat, and tears,’ but who’s going to buy a battery that smells like wee-wee? Not me-me.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.