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Last updated April 12, 2019

Cell phones could be recharged in seconds rather than hours if a new device designed by researchers at the University of Illinois in the United States happens.  The device is a 3D nanostructure that could give users the power to recharge cell phones and laptop computers in just a few seconds using high charge lasers and defibrillators, according to a report in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.

Paul Braun, a professor of materials science and engineering who is in charge of the University of Illinois research group behind the project, says the system could recharge cell phones almost instantly without any loss of energy storage capacity.  If the system proves to be viable, it is not just cell phones and laptop computers that could benefit however, but also everything from lasers, electric vehicles and medical devices, among others.  “This system that we have gives you capacitor like power with battery like energy,” Braun claims.  “Most capacitors store very little energy.  They can release it very fast, but they can’t hold much.  Most batteries store a reasonably large amount of energy but they can’t provide or receive energy rapidly.  This does both.”

The group has already been successful in demonstrating the potential of the 3D nanostructure system by showing battery electrodes capable of charging in just a few seconds, up to a hundred times faster than normal batteries used in cell phones and laptop computers, while at the same time functioning in a perfectly normal fashion within those devices.