Yet another fantastic use for graphene

Schematic diagram for aqueous hybrid capacitors.
Iamge credit: KAIST

Renewable energy is a big focus area for industry these days. But to make full use of the potential of renewable energy, we need efficient energy storage technologies. Enter the aqueous storage device.

A research team from the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) has developed a new hybrid energy storage device that uses aqueous electrolytes and can be charged in less than a half-minute.

The fact that the device uses water-based solutions instead of flammable organic solvents also makes it both environmentally friendly and safe.

Although not a new the concept, previous similar devices have suffered from low power and short working lives. Now, these scientists have modified the way that an aqueous hybrid capacitor (AHC) – essentially a mix of battery and capacitor – is constructed, replacing traditional metallic conductors with graphene-based polymers to overcome AHC’s the shortfalls.

This makes for a far more efficient way of transferring electrons into the aqueous solution, allowing for batteries with more than 100 times the power density of previous devices that can sustain capacity for over 100 000 charges. And the entire device can go from zero to fully charged in just 20 seconds.



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