Energy storage is one field studied extensively today. While other areas of electronics have been rapidly advancing over the last few decades, there has always been an issue with storing energy that is not in used. A lot of discussions are ongoing on the best means of saving energy in electronics. The solution to this problem is developing an efficient power element that can hold a sufficient amount of energy. The component should also be able to charge quickly and retain a substantial amount of energy over a long period. These two characteristics are very significant in the study of energy storage.
These energy solutions are developing at a very slow rate with materials that currently used to manufacture capacitors. Scientists are studying graphene to see a possibility of developing supercapacitors that can be charged quickly, yet also have the ability to store a large amount of energy. Scientists are predicting use of tiny graphene-based supercapacitors in low energy applications such as portable computing devices and Smartphone, in the next 5-10 years.
Graphene can also be used to enhance lithium ion batteries. These batteries are used in high energy applications such as electrically powered vehicles. Lithium batteries are also currently used in Smartphone, tablets, PCs and laptops. Graphene based batteries are going to be of significantly lower levels of weight and size.
The scientists are working on enhancing the capabilities of lithium batteries by incorporating graphene as an anode. This development is likely to offer significant storage capacity with better longevity and high charge rate.
The new graphene based supercapacitors developed have an energy density of about 60Waths per litre. This is similar to the lead-acid car batteries. This will make them the smallest and lightest superconductors made by man.
Since the batteries store charge rather than generating current through chemical reaction, they last longer than the existing batteries.