We’ve been hearing about the benefits of graphene for years now. Especially intriguing is the promise held for batteries.
“Graphene is an amazing material, and it’s particularly amazing as a material for batteries,” Chip Breitenkamp, a polymer scientist and VP of business development at the graphene battery company NanoGraf, told Futurism. The tech, he said, can “make batteries charge faster and dissipate heat more effectively. This has big implications. It means power tools don’t overheat as quickly. It means home appliances serve families better, longer. And it eventually means [electric cars] can charge faster.”
The rapid charging isn’t the only selling point. In the lab, NanoGraf says its graphene batteries show a 50 percent increase in run time compared to conventional lithium-ion ones, a 25 percent drop in carbon footprint, and half of weight needed to provide the same output…
Nanograf isn’t the only startup that says it’s homing in on a practical graphene battery. Samuel Gong, the CEO of competitor Real Graphene, told Futurism that he believes his company’s tech could charge a car in well under an hour…
Long story short, [Christos Athanasiou, an engineer at Brown University who’s published research on graphene batteries] said, scientists can make really good prototypes in the lab — but moving into the mass production of finished products is an entirely separate challenge. “What I can tell you is that the science is there,” Athanasiou said. “However, technology-wise, it’s not ready yet. We know how to make these nanocomposite silicon graphenes, but how we can make them reproducible — that’s a big challenge.”
MacDailyNews Take: As we wrote in 2015:
Every battery story starts out so promising and then ends in exactly the same way: Wah-wah.
Hopefully, further studies proven valuable and the technology can progress as quickly as possible out of the lab and into real-life use. Batteries are the killer bottleneck of mobile technology.