Monday 22 June 2015

Kirigami-Based Stretchable Lithium-Ion Batteries

Battery Created on Origami variant Kirigami

Researchers at the Arizona StateUniversity have developed a battery which can stretch up to around 150%, giving rise to a wide range of potential applications in wearable technology. Created on the origami variant kirigami, the team was capable of transforming a larger battery into various smaller one through chains of folds and cuts.

Associate professor Hanqing Jiang in the School of Engineering of Matter, Transport and Energy, one of ASU’s Ira A, Fulton Schools of Engineering, together with the researchers created the battery utilising slurries of graphite and lithium cobalt dioxide, then coating them on sheets of aluminium foil making positive and negative electrodes, from which they added bends and cuts to begin the patterns. The outcome was a battery that could stretch while still maintaining full functionality.

 The team has stated that regardless of using origami as inspiration by the engineers for foldable batteries which can flex in the past, it marks the first time that a lithium-ion battery has been made stretchable. To test the efficiency of the battery, the kirigami-driven prototype battery, was sewn in an elastic wristband that was attached to a Samsung Gear 2 smartwatch. As the strap was stretched in various ways, the battery was capable of providing power to the watch for its functions inclusive of playing video.

Replace Bulky & Rigid Batteries

Jiang had commented that `this type of battery could potentially be used to replace the bulky and rigid batteries that are limiting the development of compact wearable electronic devices and this type of stretchable batteries could be integrated into fabrics, which include those used for clothing’.In the research journal Scientific Reports, a paper was published on June 11, describing how the team had developed kirigami based lithium-ion batteries with the use of a combination of folds and cuts creating patterns which permitted a significant increase in stretch-ability.

Hongyu Yu, an associate professor in the School of Electrical, Computer and Energy Engineering and the School of Earth and Space Exploration; Zeming Song, a material science doctoral student and Xu Wang, a mechanical engineering doctoral student, are some of the leading members of his ASU research team. Song and Wang have been praised by Jiang for utilising several kirigami patterns and for conducting experiments as well as characterising the properties of the materials that have been utilised in the development of the technology.

In-Depth View in Progress & Obstacles – Origami-Based Lithium-Ion Batteries

Others who have also made their contributions comprise of ASU engineering graduate students Change LV. Yonghao An, Mengbing Liang, Teng Ma and David He, a Pheonix high school student together with Ying-Jie Zheng and Shi-Qing Huang from the MOE Key Lab of Disaster Forecast and Control in engineering at Jinan University, Guangzhou, China.

Jiang together with some of his research team members as well as other colleagues, in an earlier paper in the research journal of Nature Communication, had provided an in-depth view in the progress and obstacles in the development of origami-based lithium-ion batteries where the paper clarified technical challenges in flexible battery progress which Jiang states that the teams’ kirigami based devices are helping to solving.

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