Nanotechnology pushes battery life to eternity

Wednesday 22 June 2011

A simple tap from your finger may be enough to charge your portable device thanks to a discovery made at RMIT University and ANU.

Dr Simon Ruffell from the ANU Research School of Physics and Engineering and Dr Madhu Bhaskaran and Dr Sharath Sriram from RMIT University have used nanotechnology to convert mechanical pressure into electricity.

The breakthrough was made by combining piezoelectrics, materials capable of turning pressure into electricity, with thin film technology, the basis of microchip manufacturing.

The use of piezoelectrics means that portable devices with touch screens like iPads and iPhones could be recharged through everyday activities like typing. It also means that in future pacemakers could be powered by an individual wearer’s blood pressure.

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