Friday, 26 October 2012

Software Could Double Charging Speed

New battery charge estimation algorithms developed by engineers at the University of California (UC), San Diego, are on the verge of vastly improve the capabilities of current lithium-ion batteries.

The changes center around improving charging times, potentially allowing for batteries that charge twice as fast as those currently available.

Researchers believe that current lithium-ion batteries are over-designed and over-sized.

Existing technology uses fairly crude ways to measure the behavior and health of a battery pack, based solely on voltage and current. Batteries have to be over-engineered to provide a margin of error during charging or discharging, to prevent the packs from prematurely failing or losing capacity.

The new algorithms make the process of monitoring battery packs much more sophisticated, not only allowing the over-engineering to be reduced, but improving the efficiency of charging too.

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