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MIT Building Batteries Using Viruses

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the i've-caught-a-battery dept.

Power 98

thefickler writes "Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are now using viruses to build cathodes for Lithium-Ion batteries. Three years ago these same researchers found they could build an anode using viruses. Creating both the anode and cathode using viruses will make batteries easy to build. This nanoscale battery technology will allow batteries to be lightweight and to 'take the shape of their container' rather than creating containers for the batteries, which could open up new possibilities for car and electronics manufacturers."

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Hope all goes well (4, Funny)

FlyByPC (841016) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452579)

Now there's a whatcouldpossiblygowrong article if I ever saw one...

Re:Hope all goes well (1)

BSAtHome (455370) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452629)

Right, really infectious power. The mutations might cause a new cold fusion discovery real soon now.

But then again, it is kinda neat to get those little bastards doing some handy work for us. However, I am a bit sceptical whether it would be efficient on an industrial scale, like so many other innovations.

Re:Hope all goes well (3, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453043)

cold fusion? this isn't fusion at all. None of the byproducts you need to show that it is fusion exist.

Re:Hope all goes well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27453267)

Woosh.

Re:Hope all goes well (2, Funny)

palegray.net (1195047) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456037)

I assure you, fusion does exist [diytrade.com] , and it's in everyday use in thousands of homes across America.

Re:Hope all goes well (5, Funny)

kkrajewski (1459331) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452925)

(Doctor pulls out voltmeter.) Hold these, please. Yep, you're infected.

Re:Hope all goes well (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27454561)

Just replace voltmeter with sonic-screwdriver, and you've got yourself a pretty realistic situation, other than the fact that this isn't television and there aren't any Time Lords running around out there.

Re:Hope all goes well (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | more than 5 years ago | (#27457947)

With respect to Sun, "the Road is the Battery."

Re:Hope all goes well (1)

interkin3tic (1469267) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452985)

The synthesis takes place at and below room temperature...

Specifically, they manipulated the genes in a laboratory strain of a common virus, making the microbes collect exotic materials -- cobalt oxide and gold...

Indeed, I hope they are careful with these viruses, because if they got infected, and happened to be suffering from hypothermia, the viruses could use up their bodily gold and cobalt oxide, and then they could get shocked! Assuming they had AIDS too that is.

Re:Hope all goes well (1)

Gibbs-Duhem (1058152) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454231)

And lithium ions floating around in their bloodstream.

Re:Hope all goes well (1)

DiamondMX (1147759) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454463)

You don't?

Re:Hope all goes well (1)

Gibbs-Duhem (1058152) | more than 5 years ago | (#27455715)

Alright, I suppose I do.

http://www.webelements.com/lithium/biology.html [webelements.com]

But only 2.7mg... it'd take 20 times that much hydrogen cyanide to kill me (for reference).

=)

Re:Hope all goes well (2, Funny)

krkhan (1071096) | more than 5 years ago | (#27455157)

So, in future, instead of random statistics like "Melissa caushed American business $9.87 billion", we may finally have something authentic (and precise) like "Conficker was at least 14 Mega Joules, it was devastating".

Re:Hope all goes well (4, Insightful)

julesh (229690) | more than 5 years ago | (#27455743)

Now there's a whatcouldpossiblygowrong article if I ever saw one...

Well, yes, the people who use that tag are all reactionary luddites, and this story will appeal to them.

Please, what could go wrong with this? The virus escapes and... err... behaves almost exactly like the virus it was engineered from? Except, you know, in presence of iron phosphate (a rather rare substance) it grows in a different shape. Clearly a danger to the survival of our species, there.

Re:Hope all goes well (2, Insightful)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456767)

Oh no, scary scary viruses! Viruses are super evil and will totally destroy humanity if we dare to meddle with them! Time to break out the torches and pitchforks, or at the very least post smarmy posts on Slashdot!

(Here's a hint: Viruses are probably the most common entities in the biosphere. You are pretty much swimming in them.)

It's red! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452589)

Why is it red on the front page?

PS First post?

So can hookers now be considered (1, Funny)

antifoidulus (807088) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452607)

mines? You definitely want to strap on a helmet before going in.....

"take the shape of their containers..." (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452673)

...HUMAN containers!!!

"The Matrix", with its human Duracell (product placement!) batteries, is here!

[Oh, this is too cool: The captcha word for me to post this comment is: "unplug"! LOL!]

It's a creative use for conficker (1)

mysidia (191772) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452707)

Since it doesn't actually do anything else of note, why not use it as an energy source?

Now we just need a /.-comment powered battery, that takes in comments from /. and converts them to pure energy.

This is scarier in the case of biological viruses though... imagine a battery breaking open and leaking HIV or Influenza all over the place..

This gives the warning: "battery contains toxic materials" a whole new meaning.

Re:It's a creative use for conficker (3, Interesting)

interstellar_donkey (200782) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453231)

Well, presumably they wouldn't build the battery with the HIV or influenza virus in it. Unless, of course, Energizer is feeling especially cruel.

Re:It's a creative use for conficker (3, Funny)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454365)

Well, presumably they wouldn't build the battery with the HIV or influenza virus in it. Unless, of course, Energizer is feeling especially cruel.

Would that be "It keeps going... and going... and going..." or "New Energizer! Oy!"

What kind of virus (3, Funny)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452717)

will power your vibrator? Herpes? You just scratch it to recharge?

Re:What kind of virus (2, Funny)

iminplaya (723125) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453235)

Flamebait -- Heheh, I get it.

Re:What kind of virus (2, Funny)

Vectronic (1221470) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453361)

Couldn't find a sex device, but Eco Drive [wikipedia.org] could work. Not quite the same, but better than nothing kinda thing.

Not sure why there aren't more (any?) MP3 players that use it, think there used to be some jogging radios that used kinetic energy to power, or help power them though. Phones, would probably last much longer as well. Kinetic from walking/etc, temperature from holding it, solar from having it on the desk/dash/etc...

A little editorial work might be good (1, Interesting)

thered2001 (1257950) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452733)

The body of this one could use some serious work. Cool tech, though.

Re:A little editorial work might be good (1)

esocid (946821) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454565)

is this turning into digg? Dupes [slashdot.org] for every other submission.

Re:A little editorial work might be good (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456689)

You linked to a submission from Firehose, not a story.

If infected, that will redefine.... (2, Funny)

hwyhobo (1420503) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452749)

...bipolar

And a new super-hero is born! (3, Funny)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452779)

After an accidental viral infection at MIT labs, the new hero can now do things that only batteries could do before! His given name, Melvin C. Cooper emerges now as "D u r a M e l !"

Re:And a new pokemon is born! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452849)

After an accidental viral infection at MIT labs, a lowly test rat can now do things that only batteries could do before! Now the adorable electric rodent has been named "P I K A C H U"

Fixed.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452851)

He has a capacity for courage!
His potential is unlimited!

I only wish I could be there to view his inductance into the Justice Hall(effect)!

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

Ragzouken (943900) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452957)

He's positively empowering!

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452971)

I think you mean Copper, not Cooper.

He is "The Copper Top", after all.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453155)

Sorry to break this to you but the name "Cooper" is derived from the word copper...a person who makes buckets and tubs... usually made of...? You got it! Copper... among other things.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

Sir Groane (1226610) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453715)

Err, don't think so. A Cooper made beer barrels, from wood with iron rings. Now if the virus was actually yeast and you could brew a battery the size of a barrel... excellent.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27462903)

Actually no, a cooper makes wooden barrels and tubs. Think "chicken coop" for a word still in widespread use.

From the Latin "cupa", meaning tub or cask, possibly based on a earlier word (from where, I don't remember) for cup, valley, or ravine.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27463615)

Wow.
So wrong.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#27463919)

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27477419)

You googled til your googler was dry, raw, and exhausted, and your evidence comes from thinkbabynames.com?

Look at the people laughing at you, telling you what a cooper is.

define:cooper (wtf @ dino crisis reference)

# United States industrialist who built the first American locomotive; founded Cooper Union in New York City to offer free courses in the arts and ...
# United States film actor noted for his portrayals of strong silent heroes (1901-1961)
# United States novelist noted for his stories of American Indians and the frontier life (1789-1851)

# make barrels and casks
# a craftsman who makes or repairs wooden barrels or tubs
wordnet.princeton.edu/perl/webwn

# Traditionally, a cooper is someone who makes wooden staved vessels of a conical form, of greater length than breadth, bound together with hoops and possessing flat ends or heads. ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(profession)

# Cooper is an English surname meaning maker of barrels and may refer to many people.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(surname)

# Bobby Jack Brand is a brand of clothing created by Han L. Lee and sold in the United States since 2002; the brand is headquartered in Bell ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(Bobby_Jack_Brand)

# Klubbheads is a team of dance music producers and DJs from the Netherlands. They have more than 35 aliases for their recordings, including Hi_Tack ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(producers)

# This is a list of characters in the American animated television series Ben 10 and its sequel ''''. This list only includes characters which have appeared in more than one episode.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(Ben_10)

# The Cooper Car Company was founded in 1946 by Charles Cooper and his son John Cooper. Together with John's boyhood friend, Eric Brandon, they began by building racing cars in Charles' small garage in Surbiton, Surrey, England in 1946. ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(car)

# Cooper is a lunar crater that is located in the northern hemisphere on the far side of the Moon. It lies to the east of the large D'Alembert walled plain, and west-southwest of Chappell crater.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(crater)

# COOPER (Bryan Cooper, born 1976, the artist legally changed his name to one word in all capital letters in 1993) is an American artist best known for his strange sculptures and assemblages that exist as meditations on death, manâ(TM)s emotional capacities and struggles for power. ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(artist)

# Dino Crisis is a survival horror game developed and published by Capcom that was released for the Sony Playstation on July 1, 1999. It was later ported for the Sega Dreamcast and for Microsoft Windows in 2000. It was produced and directed by Resident Evil creator Shinji Mikami.
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(video_game_character)

# Cooper was a brand of off-road motorcycles made in Mexico using engine parts made in Italy and later, engines made by Sachs. ...
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cooper_(motorcycles)

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#27477715)

You only need to google "name origins cooper."

Keep in mind that English is a conglomerate language that is largely Germanic. For an English name to have a Germanic origin or root is far from uncommon. Cooper comes from copper.

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27481819)

No, it doesn't.

A cooper is someone who makes casks and barrels.
They don't use copper.

Surnames are largely derived by occupation.

You are wrong.
The internet has beaten you.

I will not visit thinkbabynames.com

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 5 years ago | (#27482189)

My goodness. You have proven you are quite closed minded and unavailable for new information. Incapable of learning or just unwilling? Refusing to review evidence makes you seem... what's the word? Prideful?

Re:And a new super-hero is born! (1)

jslarve (1193417) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453843)

Unfortunately, he was into yoga and shorted out.

"Taking shape of the container" (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452783)

I bet Steve Jobs is already rubbing his hands gleefully, as he is pondering the design of the iPhone 3.0. It will be impossible to replace the battery, so you have to let yourself be ripped off at the nearby Apple store.

Re:"Taking shape of the container" (1)

MobileTatsu-NJG (946591) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454155)

Yeah cos people are buying 5 or 6 iPhones a month now because of the irreplacable battery.

http://deschaines.mybrute.com (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452787)

http://deschaines.mybrute.com

Re:http://deschaines.mybrute.com (1, Informative)

sexconker (1179573) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452983)

This shit was retarded when it was in French.
Its still completely random and completely retarded.

It's harmless. (5, Informative)

mail2345 (1201389) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452793)

According to the article, these virii only infect bacteria. Unless they mutate. I'm fairly certain that they have controls to prevent that kind of thing. Plus, phage based medications turned out to not to have a high chance of fatalities.

Re:It's harmless. (1)

thered2001 (1257950) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452879)

Would it help if one kept these batteries in the refrigerator? Or would that make things worse?

Re:It's harmless. (1)

compro01 (777531) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452919)

I believe I remember similar work being done with the tobacco mosaic virus at the university of Maryland.

Re:It's harmless. (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27453019)

"According to the article, these virii only infect bacteria."

Good thing you don't have any of THOSE in ya.

Re:It's harmless. (3, Informative)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453025)

It's bad enough when people in IT show there ignorance by using the term virii when talking about computer programs.
This is actual wet science, so use the correct singular and plural.

viÂrus (vÄ'rÉ(TM)s) Pronunciation Key
n. pl. viÂrusÂes

      1.
                  1. Any of various simple submicroscopic parasites of plants, animals, and bacteria that often cause disease and that consist essentially of a core of RNA or DNA surrounded by a protein coat. Unable to replicate without a host cell, viruses are typically not considered living organisms.
                  2. A disease caused by a virus.
      2. Something that poisons one's soul or mind: the pernicious virus of racism.
      3. Computer Science A computer virus.

Re:It's harmless. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27453089)

From Latin virus (Toxin, poison); Nom./Acc. Pler. viri...

Re:It's harmless. (1)

WillKemp (1338605) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456333)

We're talking English, not Latin - and the plural of 'virus' in English is 'viruses'.

Re:It's harmless. (4, Funny)

mattack2 (1165421) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453095)

It's also bad enough when people apparently don't use the "Preview" button first.

Re:It's harmless. (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27453739)

The Real WT^W^W^WIt's even worse that SourceForge doesn't give a fuck about making Slashdot support Unicode.

Re:It's harmless. (4, Insightful)

derGoldstein (1494129) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453931)

It's bad enough when people in IT show there ignorance

"there" ignorance, huh?...

Re:It's harmless. (4, Informative)

syousef (465911) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454291)

It's bad enough when people in IT show there ignorance by using the term virii when talking about computer programs.

First of all, it has already been pointed out you used the wrong word "there" instead of "their" which is just brilliant irony.

Secondly both words "virii" and "viruses" have been used widely. Quoting a single source (poorly without previewing) to single one out as the "correct" one is just silly. At the very least if you're going to point out the mistake, point to some relevant information on why "viruses" is the correct pluralisation. Here I'll do it for you: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Plural_of_virus#Use_of_the_form_virii [wikipedia.org]

Thirdly, why do you quote the rest of the definition of the word virus? I didn't realise this was some obscure and unknown word that needed to be explained.

In summary, pipe down you arrogant jackass. Correct your own mistakes before trolling over other people's.

Re:It's harmless. (2, Insightful)

Emerssso (865009) | more than 5 years ago | (#27459347)

Technically speaking, as a linguist, *both* are acceptable plurals of the word 'virus'. They both meet the broad definition of morphological variants, namely that at least some English speakers use both /virii/ and /viruses/ and nearly all speakers of the language can understand the content the speaker is attempting to convey. Furthermore, both use morphological pluralization rules found in other words in the language (for example, /cacti/ and /foxes/. From a linguistic standpoint, it doesn't really matter whether or not this would be correct in Latin, as we are discussing English. The point I'm trying to make is that it may be the case that from a traditional lexicographical standpoint, only one is correct, most modern linguists would accept both as valid plurals, and neither as superior over the other. Remember, the sounds we make are ultimately arbitrary representations. As long as the are consistently intelligible within a community, it doesn't matter what they are.

Re:It's harmless. (3, Informative)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453435)

do you know how many percent of the cells in our body are actually bacteria?
without that bacteria, you would:
- get infected with every crap bacteria you touch (your whole skin is coated in good bacteria, to keep the bad away)
- not be able to digest your food (your intestines are full of them, doing good work for you)
- and even change your way of thinking (because bacteria interact with the communication of neurons. complicated stuff. can't find the article now.)

you wouldn't even be able to survive without them!

So you better care for your bacterial friends, or other not no nice forms may soon replace them. :)

Re:It's harmless. (2, Interesting)

InfoJunkie777 (1435969) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454173)

Actually I now do. This from Google Answers : http://answers.google.com/answers/threadview/id/208733.html [google.com] Q: What I'm curious about tonight is what percentage of an average person's body weight is accounted for by bacteria? A. It appears that the average human bacterial load is approximately 2 to 9 pounds, depending upon which reference source is consulted. Below you'll find a variety of sources from which to choose. "Within every human being is a flourishing, living colony of approximately four pounds of bacteria. Most of these bacteria reside in the human digestive tract although some are found elsewhere (i.e. the oral cavity, throat, etc.)"

Re:It's harmless. (1)

hedwards (940851) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454559)

Indeed, and don't forget about the toxic byproducts from common antibacterial soaps and the tendency of MRSA to be spread via sanitizing products.

Re:It's harmless. (1)

martas (1439879) | more than 5 years ago | (#27455665)

oh come on, do you have any idea how many times you come into contact with viruses (or virii... who gives a fuck which) every day? i know it's fun to predict doom, but don't get so serious about it.

Re:It's harmless. (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456613)

I do know this.
The skin is so massively successful in protecting the body, that scientists hat extreme problems getting any medicamentation to get trough it. For virii it's the same thing.
But you can destroy your protection by other means than cutting yourself. Some stuff destroys protective layers/cells. Some stuff opens pores for everything to get in.

This also was my point.

Re:It's harmless. (2, Informative)

Gibbs-Duhem (1058152) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454255)

The virus they're using has been approved for use in the human body by the FDA, if I recall correctly.

But even then, the virus is obliterated after forming the materials, isn't it? I mean, don't they heat treat it at pretty high temperatures to burn out the residual organics?

Re:It's harmless. (1)

FatdogHaiku (978357) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454311)

According to the article, these virii only infect bacteria.

Well crap, there goes my idea to make some ground breaking changes to Sexually Transmitted Disease detection and treatment... Mutate the diseases and make them easier to find and treat. I already had the first TV spot plotted out:

Embarrassing Testicle Arcing? Try "Sparks Away" Today!

Re:I'm fairly certain that they have controls (1)

tchdab1 (164848) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456221)

Yes, "I'm fairly certain that they have controls to prevent that kind of thing. "

Add this to the list of potential epitaphs.

Black Jack 21 (1)

Aladrin (926209) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452997)

Coincidentally, I just finished watching the anime series 'Black Jack 21' and the plot revolves around a virus used as a battery and all the problems it causes.

Re:Black Jack 21 (1)

masshuu (1260516) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453115)

Black Jack is a deeply shady character; a heavily-scarred and black-wearing unlicensed surgeon who charges extortionate fees, he cuts a sinister figure. Children fear him, and the medical establishment despises him. He lives on the edge of town, speaking to only a few people, and he comes and goes as he wishes. When a serious attempt is made on Black Jack's life, destroying his cliff-top residence in the process, Black Jack swings into action to find the culprit. His only clue is a faded sepia photograph, showing his mentor and benefactor, Dr. Honma, alongside other mystery figures. Traveling around the world and facing great dangers, Black Jack seeks to find out the truth behind the organization which wants him dead!

source [anime-planet.com]

am i missing something or does that description fail to mention a battery

Technical progress, but unfortunately... (2, Interesting)

franois-do (547649) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453203)

"will allow batteries (...) to 'take the shape of their container' rather than creating containers for the batteries"

Wonderful ! Now, instead of having some standard battery sizes (AA, AAA and so on), we are going tu have as many different shapes of batteries as there are products, not only between manufacturers but within the line of the same manufacturer (for the same reason that Gillette has 10 different shapes of blades, or than portables PCs have 200+ type of batteries, or that we hare 20 or so different AC/DC transformers at home), so you will have to buy every time a given manufacturer's battery and throw it away rather than reuse it on a later apparatus.

I am afraid that while technically we have a progress here, our production organization wil make it a regression; it something that happens from time to time.

Re:Technical progress, but unfortunately... (1)

willoughby (1367773) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454123)

The Polaroid SX70 was the first "instant picture" camera to produce the sealed photographs everyone today thinks of when you mention that type of camera. Prior to that model, the print ejected from the camera had to be wiped with chemicals to fix & preserve the image.

When the Polaroid SX70 was introduced there was quite a fuss raised (at least in photography magazines) about the many new technologies used in the new camera. The film, of course; chrome plated plastic; the manufacturing method for the lens assemblies; and the battery.

The battery was flat & made of layers, was thin enough to be included in every film pack, and was flexible.

There were many predictions at the time of this new battery type being adapted to new uses and devices, but I never saw this technology used anywhere else. Perhaps someone here knows more about it.

Re:Technical progress, but unfortunately... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27455315)

There was a "Pola-Pulse" model rocket ignition device from Estes that used one of these Polaroid batteries. It was marketed at least as late as 1988.

Re:Technical progress, but unfortunately... (2, Insightful)

julesh (229690) | more than 5 years ago | (#27455785)

Wonderful ! Now, instead of having some standard battery sizes (AA, AAA and so on), we are going tu have as many different shapes of batteries as there are products

I have non-standard batteries in my cell phone, my laptop, my electric bike, my portable media player, my bluetooth headset and my digital camera. I have standard size batteries in... err... actually, I can't remember anything I own that uses standard batteries. Oh, the digital scales in my kitchen, which take 2xCR2032s.

Standard sized batteries are already on their way out. Manufacturer-specific rechargeables are the new standards.

Re:Technical progress, but unfortunately... (1)

franois-do (547649) | more than 5 years ago | (#27464171)

Standard sized batteries are already on their way out. Manufacturer-specific rechargeables are the new standards.

Maybe... or maybe not. Progress is seldom linear, and tomorrow is not specially supposed to me just "more of today". It may on the contrary be very different, and even opposite to some respect (think of the automobile or computer products from 1950 to 1970 and try to extrapolate that to 2010, you get very strange results ;-)

The key to many things is scale economy. If you can offer the same service at 30% less manufacturing and storing cost by having 10x longer series, you win. By the way, this is what ensured success of the Ford T and the VW Bug at a time. The Renault/Dacia Logan seems to be a success too in Europe with its "non-nonsense" approach, as well as Netbooks have been in 2008. Future is almost never "more of the same thing". That is incidentally why the Wii was such a sucess too. See aloso this :

http://www.computerworld.com/action/article.do?command=viewArticleBasic&articleId=9131098 [computerworld.com]

http://www.arm.com/events/presentations/Robin's%20Semico06%20Keynote%20Speech_FINAL06Mar06.pdf [arm.com]

... and extrapolate that to any other movement, like batteries :-)

cool (1)

poached (1123673) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453275)

market it as sustainable, green, and battling climate change it will sell! Did I miss any other catch-phrases?

Re:cool (1)

Gibbs-Duhem (1058152) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454267)

perhaps you could call it a bio-fuel?

Playing with viruses (1)

telomerewhythere (1493937) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453493)

Here is where you really might be worried. From Tom's Hardware site.

"The advantage of using genetics is that things can be made better and better," Belcher said. "You are not stuck with a particular material; you have selection and evolution on your side because it can be genetically engineered."

I personally don't know about if/how a bacteriophage can attack other living things, but...

like another poster said we have bacteria that are inside us...

and they are more numerous than our cells.

It won't work on a Mac (1, Funny)

fitash (1368347) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453639)

No virus, no battery

authors (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27453825)

The MIT release listed the paper authors as a group of Korean principals, but the three interviewees are rather caucasian in appearance.

The Koreans must have been out for kimchi when the reporters showed up ;-)

Correct me if I'm wrong... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27454197)

But couldn't someone make a battery by using two types of bacteria? Have the first bacteria feed off of chemical A, while producing chemical B as waste. Have the second chemical feed off of chemical B while producing chemical A as waste. Make the fuel cell feed off of either chemical, and you've got a very long lasting mobile energy source.

Re:Correct me if I'm wrong... (1)

Gibbs-Duhem (1058152) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454443)

This is not a battery, it is a perpetual motion machine.

mo[d 3own (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27454215)

Said. 'Screaming a BSD oVer other argued by Eric the project as a so that their so that you don't Users. This is FreeBSD had long We need to address Arithmetic, Then disappeared God, let's fucking at least.' Nobody fear the reaper incompatibilities politics openly. with process and be a lot slower which allows of OpenBSD versus OR CHAIR, RETURN dying. Everyone what provides the rules to follow Faster, cheaper, smells worse than a shit-filled, previously thought the public eye: How is the GNAA posts. Due to the you to join the or chair, return gawker At most one common goal - can connect to only way to go: Shall we? OK!

Re:mo[d 3own (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27455197)

Where can I find some of what you're smoking?

2 second charges were better (2, Funny)

heroine (1220) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454369)

Last month's battery which could recharge in 2 seconds was way better than this.

Re:2 second charges were better (1)

julesh (229690) | more than 5 years ago | (#27455765)

Seriously, this is a useless battery. It's based on the Li-FePO4 chemistry, the same as the fast charging one the parent mentions, but it (1) doesn't have the fast charging capability and (2) is only suitable for 100 recharge cycles. Li-FePO4 is a lower power-density variant of lithium ion that is used primarily because it can usually last for about 3000 recharge cycles rather than the 1000 that's typical for traditional lithium ion cells. So the only advantage of this tech: it might be cheap to make. But probably not cheap to market, considering MIT will want quite a bit for the patent licenses.

I doubt we'll ever see these marketed successfully.

Shocking. (1)

scorpivs (1408651) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454483)

Nothing further. Or, is this about intestinal fortitude...

Conficker Preloaded (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27454569)

Cool, so now I can get a Windows box with conficker preloaded.

Aw, man! This sucks! (2, Funny)

icannotthinkofaname (1480543) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454637)

You mean the next time my computer catches a virus, it could infect me as well? And this virus will work even if I run Linux?

Everything I know is a lie!!!! >_

Someone stop this thing before it infects 12 million PCs!

Matrix (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27455051)

For some reason I remembered the movie "The Matrix" now.

The authors of the paper (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 5 years ago | (#27456167)

"Lead authors of the Science paper are Yun Jung Lee and Hyunjung Yi, graduate students in materials science and engineering. Other authors are Woo-Jae Kim, postdoctoral fellow in chemical engineering; Kisuk Kang, recent MIT PhD recipient in materials science and engineering; and Dong Soo Yun, research engineer in materials science and engineering."

LOL.

Guess where you're going to be buying all your batteries from when you replace oil with electricity.

 

Re:The authors of the paper (1)

BoothbyTCD (713107) | more than 5 years ago | (#27476919)

Umm here, where they go to school? Or are you implying that Korea will become battery capital of the planet?

oh great (1)

sorak (246725) | more than 5 years ago | (#27457275)

So I guess the battery will start in the gas tank, wrap itself around the radiator, and plug directly into the back of the radio.

I'm pretty sure that in ten years time, I'll have to take my car to the dealer to get the battery changed.

Get off my lawn!

well, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27457483)

this sounds like good news for windows notebooks. mahahahaha!

Future Conversations (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27457491)

Honey, could you take the batteries to the doctor this morning? I think they might have a virus.

Re:Future Conversations (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27457545)

Mechanic: "Lady, I think I know why your car won't start. Some idiot's connected the Hepatitis A cable to the Hepatitis B terminal!"

Re:Future Conversations (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27457777)

Nurse: Sir! What do you think you are doing?
Man: Sorry Miss, but my car just died and i think I might need a jump!

Re: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27467261)

I for one, welcome our Lithium Virus (tm) overloards.

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