Feeds

MIT profs produce 'Ring of Fire' nanotube superbatteries

Electron-furtling boffins claim 100x li-ion energy

SANS - Survey on application security programs

MIT boffins say they have discovered a radical new source of portable energy, powered by a burning ring of fire, which can hold a hundred times as much juice as a li-ion battery.

The key, of course, is nanotubes. As you do, the boffins at MIT decided to coat some of these amazing cylindrical carbon molecules with "a layer of reactive fuel" which was then ignited at one end.

According to a statement issued by MIT, the resulting "ring of heat speeds along the tube 10,000 times faster than the normal spread of this chemical reaction". The heat pulse screaming down the nanotube also makes electrons move along it - far more than the MIT researchers had expected.

"Lo and behold, we were really surprised by the size of the resulting voltage peak," says Michael Strano, chemical engineering prof.

It seems that the extra power over and above what thermo-electric calculations had predicted arises from electrons or "electron holes" being picked up and pushed along by the ring-o-fire thermal wave in the same fashion as a surfer carried by an ocean roller.

“We call it electron entrainment, since part of the current appears to scale with wave velocity," says Strano.

The researchers say that their new firepowered battery tech holds a hundred times as much energy, weight for weight, as the same weight of lithium ion batteries.

However they don't seem certain that it will scale up into the realm of gadgetry, let alone cars or VTOL pod-copters etc. Rather, Strano and his colleagues prefer to talk of grain-of-rice sized miniature medical implants, or dust-mote sized airborne sensor networks.

There's also some mildly worrying talk of "a great deal of power being given off as heat and light", hinting at a possible worsening of that well-known modern scourge the gadget-related trouser inferno in any future where MIT Ring-O-Fire™ batteries became widespread.

There's no doubt a lot of work to be done before then.

Strano and the team's research, lead-authored by PhD student Wonjoon Choi, is published in Nature Materials. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Most Americans doubt Big Bang, not too sure about evolution, climate change – survey
Science no match for religion, politics, business interests
So, just how do you say 'the mutt's nuts' in French?
Vital linguistic question interrupts LOHAN spaceplane mission
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
LOHAN and the amazing technicolor spaceplane
Our Vulture 2 livery is wrapped, and it's les noix du mutt
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
STEALTHY NANOROBOTS dress up as viruses, prepare to sneak into YOUR BODY
Cloaking techniques nicked from viruses tackle roadblocks on way to medical frontier
prev story

Whitepapers

Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.