Menu

Blog

Archive for the ‘energy’ category: Page 131

Sep 21, 2015

This new battery charges to 70% in two minutes, and lasts for 20 years

Posted by in categories: energy, mobile phones

Sick of waiting an hour for your phone to charge before you leave the house? Researchers at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore have come up with the best solution yet — a lithium ion battery that charges to 70 percent in just two minutes.

Even better, it also lasts for 20 years, and will reportedly be available to the public within two years.

Rechargeable lithium ion batteries are already common in our mobile phones, tablets and laptops — but most only last around 500 recharge cycles, which is around two to three years of typical use. And at the moment batteries take around two hours to fully charge.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

The one (gesture control) ring to rule them all

Posted by in categories: electronics, energy

While many companies are tinkering with lasers, ultrasound and even arm muscles for touchless gesture control on portable devices and desktop PCs, Japan’s 16Lab just wants to put a pretty ring on you. The yet-to-be-named titanium wearable is designed by the award-winning Manabu Tago, and it features ALPS Electric’s tiny module (5.05 x 5.65 x 2.5 mm) that somehow manages to pack Bluetooth Smart radio, movement sensor, environment sensor plus antennas — there’s a video demo after the break. Despite its custom-made 10mAh lithium polymer cell, 16Lab is aiming for at least 20 hours of battery life. This is possible mainly because you have to place your thumb on the top pad (with the ring’s wedge pointing away from the user) to enable the sensors — upon which point the ring vibrates to confirm that it’s active. It’s then just a matter of waving and tilting your hand until you’re done.

Gallery | 13 Photos.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

Elliptic Labs powers up ultrasound for touchless gesturing

Posted by in categories: energy, entertainment, mobile phones

Touchless gestures powered by ultrasound has become a mark of distinction for Elliptic Labs. The company has new “Multi Layer Interaction” technology designed to bring users intuitive device interactions.

Without touching the , the person’s hand moves towards the smartphone, the screen lights up and information is displayed. As the person continues moving the hand closer, different information is revealed. With users constantly, frequently, eagerly reaching for their devices throughout the day, Elliptic Labs aims to make a difference in its easy and fast way to get information, from playing games to navigating maps, to using social media, to watching videos. A promotional video says the user can interact above, in front, underneath, double-tapping anywhere around the device, easily turning the device on and off as well. There is an SDK kit for applications. How it works: Ultrasound signals sent through the air from speakers integrated in smartphones and tablets bounce against the hand and are recorded by microphones integrated in the devices. As such, the recognizes and uses them to move objects on the screen, similar to how bats use echolocation to navigate.

Continue reading “Elliptic Labs powers up ultrasound for touchless gesturing” »

Sep 21, 2015

German Scientists Create Lithium Ion Battery that Can Charge an Electric Car for 27 Years

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

German scientists have developed technology that makes lithium-ion batteries last for 10,000 charging and discharging cycles while still retaining 85% of their original capacity.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

Intel wireless charging in a bowl coming sooner than later

Posted by in categories: electronics, energy, mobile phones

When vendors send out announcements of long battery life and juicing strategies for electronic gadgets, interest is assured; the bad news is that interest is assured because consumers are still eagerly looking for less bother and less time needed to keep their smartphones and other mobile gadgets up and running. Intel is aware of the challenge, what with wearables on tap in an assortment of form factors. To be sure, Intel would like to be in the frontlines of technology giants providing the buying public with finer solutions.

“What’s New with Wireless Charging?” Intel asked in July. Intel’s answer, “If you’ve been keeping up with trade shows and tech blogs, you might think that some new breakthrough in wireless energy transfer has taken place in the past year. It hasn’t.” Nikola Tesla worked on before the turn of the 20th century; his inductive charging techniques would see a renaissance some five decades after his death in 1943, said Intel. That has not stopped technologists, however, from asking what comes next. Today, said Intel, the idea and the technology is gaining momentum.

This week’s news headlines of Intel saying its charging bowl will be available by the end of this year will no doubt interest readers and will please those who saw the bowl earlier this year at the Consumer Electronics show, and kept sending e-mails to Intel asking when it will be ready. Earlier this year, it was clear that Intel was working on a day not too distant in the future when people in PC environments could enjoy docking and charging activities as a wire-free experience. Intel revealed at the Computex trade show in Taipei, via an Intel demonstration by Kirk Skaugen, Intel’s senior vice president and general manager of the PC Client Group, that the chipmaker was in fact working on wireless technologies to help deliver a new normal. Skaugen demonstrated how wireless technology could be integrated into a table that could simultaneously charge a laptop, phone, headset and tablet. In January, the company had really whetted appetites for changes in showing a wireless charging bowl at CES. The bowl looks like the standard bowl one might place on a table at home to hold keys, loose coins, or other items.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

‘Cool-Burning’ Space Flames Could Make Greener Cars

Posted by in categories: energy, space, transportation

Astronauts typically try to avoid starting fires in space, but new research on the behavior of flames in orbit could have benefits closer to home. In fact, this fiery research could lead to more-efficient car engines that contribute less pollution to the environment, according to a new study.

A series of experiments aboard the orbiting complex is investigating “cool-burning” flames in space — a type of fire that burns at lower temperatures than ordinary flames on Earth. Blazes on this planet typically burn at between 2,240 degrees and 3,140 degrees Fahrenheit (1,225 degrees and 1,725 degrees Celsius). Cooler flames produced in microgravity burn at temperatures of between 440 degrees and 980 degrees Fahrenheit (227 degrees and 527 degrees Celsius).

In the space station experiments, researchers ignited droplets of heptane fuel. These types of fires are possible on Earth, but they are typically short-lived, flickering out almost immediately, the researchers said. In microgravity, though, the flames burned for several minutes. [7 Everyday Things that Happen Strangely In Space].

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

Laser ‘Lightning rods’ channel electricity through thin air

Posted by in category: energy

By zapping the air with a pair of powerful laser bursts, researchers at the University of Arizona have created highly focused pathways that can channel electricity through the atmosphere.

The new technique can potentially direct an electrical discharge up to 10 meters (33 feet) away or more, shattering previous distance records for transmitting through . It also raises the intriguing possibility of one day channeling lightning with laser power.

Described in a paper published in The Optical Society’s new open-access journal Optica, the current system may have near-term, lifesaving applications in areas such as the remote detonation of land mines, the researchers speculate. The laser system could easily pinpoint an active land mine and then carry an electric pulse strong enough to safely discharge harmful explosives from afar.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

Kickstarter campaign bringing magnetic charging to iPhone

Posted by in categories: energy, mobile phones

If you’ve got an iPhone, there is a good chance you also have a MacBook. The MagSafe charger on Apple’s laptop offerings is easy to use, leading some to want an iPhone with the same functionality. A recently funded Kickstarter is attempting to bring it to us, and even slaps in a battery pack for good measure.

The draw for Cabin is twofold: the magnetic charging, and the battery pack. The battery pack slips onto the rear of the device, much like we see with the Case+ lineup from Logitech. Aluminum, Cabin is relying on your sensitivity to style for the battery pack. At 2200mAh, it’ll charge you up more than once, too.

The magnetic charging is a bit more adapter than anything else. By taking a lightning connector and working a pinned magnetic charger on the end, we get simple, easy, and (hopefully) effective charging. What you won’t be able to do is use your MacBook charger. Cabin includes a Lightning adapter and dock (if you spend a touch more), though.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

Here’s why your phone and laptop batteries degrade so fast

Posted by in categories: energy, mobile phones, transportation

Researchers in the US have identified the two main culprits in rechargeable battery degradation, which could lead to longer-lasting phone, laptop and electric car batteries.

Read more

Sep 21, 2015

BMW and Mercedes team on wireless car charging

Posted by in categories: energy, transportation

BMW and Mercedes-Benz are teaming up on wireless car charging, pushing a super-efficient way of refueling EVs like the BMW i8 and the Mercedes S500 Plug-In Hybrid simply by parking over a certain spot on your driveway. The system, which the two German marques hope to get accepted as the de-facto standard for wireless car recharging, promises a cut in charge times without the hassle of having to regularly plug in: BMW says the batteries in its i8 supercar, for instance, can be topped up in under two hours.

As with other such systems we’ve seen, Mercedes-Benz and BMW use a pair of coils to transmit power wirelessly. A primary coil is mounted in a floor plate, and connects with a secondary coil in the vehicle floor: an alternating magnetic field is created by the former and tracked by the latter.

However, the new system uses a circular coil which the two companies claim makes for a more productive magnetic field, with more than 90-percent efficiency. The charging rate is initially 3.6 kW, but could be ramped up to as much as 7 kW, in preparation for the next generation of higher-powered EV drivetrains car firms envisage.

Read more