Lithium batteries, which are used for everything from electronics to vehicles, take time to recharge, usually in the realm of hours. But researchers at University of Southern California have developed a new lithium-ion battery that can recharge within 10 minutes and hold three times the amount of energy as other batteries.
The research comes from Chongwu Zhou, professor at USC’s Viterbi School of Engineering. Last year, Zhou’s team experimented with porous silicon nano-wires that helped improve the performance of lithium-ion batteries.
And although the batteries functioned well, the nano-wires were difficult to manufacture in mass quantities.
To solve the problem, Zhou’s team took commercially available nano-particles of silicon spheres and etched them with the same pores as the nano-wires. The particles improved battery performance — allowing a battery to be charged in 10 minutes — and what’s more, can be mass produced. Future electronics and electric vehicles could have such batteries in just two or three years.