Tuesday, May 21, 2013

High School Hottie Solves Civilizations Great Quest

Now here’s the invention that we’ve all been waiting for: A device that instantly charges our cell phones.
So, if you actually go through the video, you'll see that she didn't really power a cell phone with it, but only a singled LED.  It wouldn't be news if they didn't try to oversell it, right?

Still, the chip looks really small, so a stack of them wired together properly might be able to power a cell.  And a cell that charged in 20 seconds would be pretty cool.  Probably take a heavy wire to conduct the power in without overheating, though.

A gadget like this might soon be on its way thanks to a bright 18-year-old from Saratoga, Calif., who was recently honored at an international science fair.

Eesha Khare is the mind behind a super-powerful and tiny gizmo that packs more energy into a small space, delivers a charge more quickly, and holds that charge longer than the typical battery. Khare showed off her so-called super-capacitor last week at the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair in Phoenix, Ariz. In her demonstration, she showed it powering a light-emitting diode, or LED light, but the itty-bitty device could fit inside cell phone batteries, delivering a full charge in 20-30 seconds. It takes several hours for the average cell phone to fully charge.

Khare also pointed out that the super-capacitor “can last for 10,000 charge cycles compared to batteries which are good for only 1,000 cycles.”

Khare’s invention is flexible and could be used in roll-up devices and might even have applications for car batteries.
I can hardly wait until they are available as replacements for boat deep cycle batteries.  Lead-acid batteries have to be one of the biggest drawbacks to boating.  They don't last, they short out and drain themselves in wet environments, the acid eats clothes (and skin, but at least that heals).

The judges at the science fare were wowed by Khare’s brilliant invention and the senior at Lynbrook High School in San Jose received the Intel Foundation Young Scientist Award and $50,000.

“With this money I will be able to pay for my college and also work on making scientific advancements,” Khare told a cheering audience after receiving the prize money.
A couple of years of an unpaid internship filing reprints for some 80 year old physics prof ought to break her spirit and make her more manageable, though. 

Linked at Wombat-Sochos Memorial Day "Rule 5 Monday!"

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