A firm based in Israel claims it has invented technology that can charge a smartphone in mere seconds and an electric car in minutes. This breakthrough could dramatically change two of the worlds most dynamic consumer industries.
StoreDot, based in Tel-Aviv, says it has used nano-technology to develop a battery that acts like a sponge, soaking up power and retaining it. This means it can store a much higher charge more rapidly.
The current prototype of the device is too large for proper commercial energy use but the company believes that it will be able to place a design on the market by 2016. They plan on making a slimmer version that will be able to deliver a day’s worth of battery life into a phone in just 30 seconds.
The new design is based around something created by StoreDot known as “nanodots”. These are bio-organic peptide molecules that allow the rapid uptake, and most importantly, storage of power.
So far the company has raised $48 million for the project through two rounds of funding, including investments from a leading Asian mobile phone company and from Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich.
The number of smartphone users is set to reach 1.75 billion this year, and StoreDot thinks it is on to a winner with this huge potential market.
Zack Weisfeld, who has worked with new ventures in the mobile phone sector around the world, said: “People are constantly chasing a power outlet. StoreDot has the potential to solve this real big problem.” He added that the company still needs to solve the problems of size and the limited number of recharges the battery can withstand.
The founder and chief executive of StoreDot, Doron Myersdorf, said that in the future a “fast-charge” phone would cost around $100–$150 more than a normal phone and would be able to be recharged roughly 1,500 times, giving it a life of about three years.
He also said the company hopes to use its technology to reduce the charge time of electric vehicles down to minutes, instead of the overnight charge time currently required by most electric cars.