Engineers Develop Microengines: The Batteries of the Future

Discussion in 'Current Events' started by Royal Pineapple, Jun 25, 2003.

  1. macrumors 65816

    Royal Pineapple

    #1
    http://www.newscentre.bham.ac.uk/release.htm?releaseId=580&latest=6

    University of Birmingham engineers have developed tiny engines only a few millimetres wide that will soon replace a standard battery.



    These micro-engines have over 300 times more energy than an ordinary battery and are much lighter and smaller. These new power-supplying machines will soon be used to charge mobile phones and lap top computers in a matter of seconds thereby eliminating the need to recharge them frequently.




    Dr Kyle Jiang, lead investigator from the department of Mechanical Engineering, says, ‘These micro-engines will be much more energy efficient than standard batteries. It takes 2000 times more energy to manufacture a battery than the battery dispenses while it is being used. Soon everyone will be able to charge their mobile phones instantly using a shot of cigarette lighter fuel instead of having to find a socket for a charger and wait while the phone charges up’.




    Micro-engines will also be used during military operations for driving micro air vehicles and micro-robots for reconnaissance purposes; communications relays; micro-cameras and other sensor carriers. Other applications will include micro-factories – tiny ‘labs-on-a-chip’ that will be able to make drugs, chemicals or small mechanical components.




    Investigators at the School of Engineering are the first to manufacture these engines in a durable, heat resistant material such as ceramic or silicon carbide.
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    Mr. Anderson

    Joined:
    Nov 1, 2001
    Location:
    VA
    #2
    This is very cool stuff - were you able to see any of the video? I would love to see these things in action.

    Its a very cool hi-tech mechanical approach. I can't even imagine how big this might become....

    D
     
  3. macrumors 65816

    voicegy

    Joined:
    Jan 1, 2002
    Location:
    Sandy Eggo - MacRumors Member since 1-1-2002
    #3
    Looks like there's a video here:

    http://www.research-tv.co.uk/#

    (but it didn't like Safari...it wants IE)

    Was able to see it, though...fascinating!
     

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