One of the downsides of the massive batteries we are using in our cars, appliances and household power storage is that they are made from Lithium, which has a problematic supply chain.
Imagine if we could replace the lithium with a compound that has up to 10 times more power density, the potential to deliver energy almost instantly – useful in high-draw environments like electric vehicles – and can be manufactured from recycled plastics and bio waste.
The PowerCap Hybrid Graphene battery is the brainchild of Ahmed El Safty of Zero Emissions Developments and a team of post-doctoral researchers. It is a battery made from Graphene – a compound, discovered in 2004, made up of a single layer of carbon atoms which can be bound in a hexagonal honeycomb lattice to make it 200 times stronger than steel. It conducts heat and electricity more effectively than copper and silver, and is the thinnest and strongest compound known.
The Hybrid Graphene Battery uses a hybrid of electro-static and electro-chemical architecture and composition to make it ideal for both mobile and portable applications.
“Australia is a major supplier of energy to world markets but unfortunately that is predominately coal, oil, gas and uranium. Now with PowerCap technology, we have a clean, safe and sustainable power source to offer the world,” said El Safty.
“This technology literally uses waste to create a clean energy storage device without harming the planet.”
The company claims that its batteries are longer lasting than lithium batteries; that they’re safer, cleaner, more affordable, and are also 100 per cent recyclable at the end of their lives.
ZED says the PowerCap is intended to capture renewable energy and store it for later use – ideal for collecting solar power on a building during the day and using it at night, for example.
Domestic batteries can also be used to smooth grid peaks and troughs, can provide power to a home through a blackout and reduce, or even eliminate, power bills and environmental impact from electricity generation.
The technology is being adapted for electric road vehicles, boats, solar golf carts and for storage at wind and solar farms and some military uses.