Virus Will Be Building Batteries…In Future

In Clean Talk, Electric Mobility, Environment, Innovations, News, Products, Renewable Energy, Technology
Viruses

MIT bioengineering professor Angela Belcher has been working with millions of zombie viruses on a battery-building technology for a decade now.

Belcher first manipulates genetically engineered bacteriophages to infect a bacterium, thereby creating millions of copies of themselves — and coercing them into creating a usable material in the process, such as a thin cobalt oxide nanowire that could later be used inside a battery electrode.

She’s made viruses that can work with over 150 different materials and demonstrated that her technique can be used to manufacture other materials like solar cells.

This technique could eventually be used to extend a battery’s charge and discharge rate by forcing the millions of viruses to create a highly ordered electrode structure, with shortcuts for ions moving through electrodes.

It will likely be a while until we see the technology make it to market. Scaling up the tech to a point where it can compete with conventional batteries is proving extremely difficult.

Belcher’s dream of zipping around in a “virus-powered car” still hasn’t come true, but after years of work she and her colleagues at MIT are on the cusp of taking the technology out of the lab and into the real world.

Reference- Wired, MIT News, Futurism

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