Toshiba had to recall 100.000 Panasonic lithium-ion battery used in its laptops. The reason? The lithium-ion battery packs can potentially overheat and pose fire hazard. The firm has indeed received four reports of battery packs overheating and melting (no injuries have been reported).
This problem only concern North America (USA, Canada). Panasonic has also recalled its own cells used in some of its mass-market electronic devices.
Solar Impulse, a groundbreaking experimental plane who is running thanks to rechargeable batteries and 17 000 photovoltaïc cells just landed in California after a flight over the Pacific. A huge success after a 10-months stay in Hawai because its batteries were seriously damaged due to overheating.
Talking about the feat, the Russian pilot André Borschberg said : «in 10 years, electric planes will be able to carry fifty people ». A dream shared by the RS2E team but that will only become reality through cutting-edge, worlwide and realistic researches in the energy storage field.
Source: [Solar Impulse]
Apple wants to boast of significantly longer battery life in its electronic devices. That's why the compagny is currently researching new types of batteries. In order to stay innovative, Apple focuses on new technologies in anodes, cathodes and electrolytes. It seems like ceramic has been choosen to be the electrolyte, because of its fast charging abilities and its improved safatey.
During the last two months, the american compagny has posted jobs ads to hire scientists specialized in battery development. Those announcements are mainly targeting materials scientists or electrolytes specialists. Those jobs are about evaluating and testing new materials beyond current lithium-ion batteries. But some of them are focused on taking the new batteries from the lab to commercialization.
All the clues are pointing toward Apple developing a solid-state battery, for which it already has a patent.
Source: [PC World]
As part of his work on supercapacitators, Christophe Lethien (from the IEMN lab, a member of RS2E) was interviewed by the RTBF (Belgian TV). The interview follows a publication in Science, with Patrice Simon's group (from the CIRIMAT lab). Supercapacitators are an energy storage device complementary to batteries, e.g. in the case of electric vehicles. The video is available here.
With three awards during his 3-years PhD, Matteo Bianchini embodies a new generation of excellence in the field of energy storage. A few days before his PhD defense (23rd October), he has received the Student of the Year Award from the Electrochemical Society!
The award distinguishes his work at the Laue Langevin Institute in Grenoble (E. Suard) in collaboration with ICMCB* in Bordeaux (L. Croguennec) and LRCS* in Amiens (C. Masquelier and JB Leriche). His researches include the study of the structural mechanisms of insertion/extraction of Li+ in battery materials, using neutron diffraction: a world premiere. He has also been awarded in 2014 the Silver Medal of the Materials Research Society and the "PANalytical Award 2014".
* ICMCB and LRCS are founding laboratories and heavily involved in RS2E since its inception. Matteo's work is a perfect example of the collaborations happening within network.