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Researchers from the University of British Columbia have created what they’re saying could be the first battery that is both flexible and washable.

John Madden, an electrical and computer engineering professor and director of UBC’s Advanced Materials and Process Engineering Lab, says these batteries are just like alkaline batteries that we’re used to, except they are rechargeable, stretchable and bendable.

“Imagine a battery that’s maybe a little bit larger than a coin cell that you can grab in your hands, stretch to twice its length, twist and throw in the washing machine and it will still work,” Madden told host Gloria Macarenko on CBC’s On The Coast. 

Madden’s team, which included Dr. Ngoc Tan Nguyen, a postdoctoral fellow at UBC’s faculty of applied science and PhD student Bahar Iranpour, had been working with sensor technology and needed a battery that was comfortable, safe and durable. Some of the challenges they encountered when developing this technology was finding a proper case to contain the battery fluids and then making sure the case could stretch and bend.

Source: Canadian Broadcasting Corporation

Date: December 10th, 2021

Link: https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/stretchy-washable-battery-1.6280380

Discussion

  1. In what ways could you put a battery that is “a little bit larger than a coin cell that you can grab in your hands, stretch to twice its length, twist and throw in the washing machine and it will still work” to work?
  2. Why does it matter that we have technology like this?

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