Your smartphone's days of being tethered to a power source for two hours to get a full charge could be numbered.
Demonstrated for the first time at Microsoft's Think Next symposium on Monday, a new fast-charging battery uses something called nanodots and is the brainchild of Israeli company StoreDot.
Described by its makers as cost-effective and environmentally friendly, a nanodot battery uses bio-organic materials that boost electrode capacity and electrolyte performance. The bio-organic components are peptide molecules that form short chains of amino acids. (If you remember biology class, this is how proteins are made.)
Until now, creating fast-charging batteries along the same scientific principles required using heavy metals such as cadmium, which are both toxic and expensive.
The result is a safer, easier to mass-produce battery that is fully charged in minutes instead of hours but which, once charged, behaves like a typical lithium ion cell in the way that it holds and depletes its charge. As well as smartphones, the revolutionary power source could be used in a host of other devices, from tablets to cameras and beyond.
The technology behind the battery is so new that StoreDot is still in the process of patenting it. However, the company aims to begin mass production within the next two years, with an eye on the electric car market as well as on consumer electronics.
If the technology can charge a car battery in a minute or so, its impact on greener motoring will be hard to quantify. But for that to happen, the company will have to ensure that it can create batteries that can support multiple chains of these amino acids and capable of holding a higher charge.
"The fast-charge battery is the result of our focus on commercializing the materials we have discovered. We're particularly pleased that this innovative nanotechnology, inspired by nature, not only changes the rules of mobile device capabilities, but is also environmentally friendly," said Dr. Doron Myersdorf, CEO of StoreDot.