Battery Paper…Really

Battery Paper…Really


The only thing keeping many CE/imaging product from getting even smaller than they already are is the battery. After all, how small can product designers get when you have to leave room for a rather bulky (by comparison) li-on or AAA battery?

However, what if that battery were as thin as a piece of paper and could be bent or twisted without damaging it? Enter researchers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and their recent prototype battery that is exactly that, an electrolyte-infused piece of paper that is just a few square inches with carbon nanotubes embedded in the paper. The story was first reported in the online edition of the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

While the researchers at Rensselaer were excited enough to fantasize about printing batteries off a press a la newspapers, other researchers claimed the production of carbon nanotubes is very costly. Still, the flexibility of the Rensselaer discovery has researchers there scrambling to take this study to the next level.