Researchers around the world are developing the batteries of the future. Efficiency increases, autonomy indicators improve. The new development was reported by domestic scientists who created a compact atomic battery. The power supply is capable of operating for 20 years without recharging, has high energy efficiency and is cheaper than foreign analogues. Unfortunately, it won’t work for smartphones.
The miniature atomic battery was developed by NUST MISIS scientists. Its design is based on a patented 3D microchannel structure of a nickel beta-voltaic cell. But Russian researchers applied a radioactive element on both sides of the so-called planar pn junction, which made it possible to simplify the cell manufacturing technology by keeping the reverse current under control, which reduces the battery power.
A special microchannel structure was also used, providing an increase in the effective conversion area of beta radiation by 14 times, which resulted in an overall increase in current.
“The design allows an order of magnitude to increase the efficiency of converting the energy released during the decay of a β-source into electricity, which in the future will reduce the cost of the source by about 50% due to the rational use of an expensive radioisotope,” the researchers share the results of the development.
An important factor is called an increase in power density by more than 10 times, which makes it possible to reduce weight and dimensions three times without losing efficiency. As the creators note, their battery can be used as an emergency power supply and temperature sensor in devices used at extreme temperatures and in hard-to-reach places: in space, under water, in high mountain areas.
The technology is now in the process of obtaining international patents. At the same time, foreign scientists have already evaluated the new battery. In particular, in the review of the international marketing research agency Research and Markets, NUST MISIS was named one of the key players in the global betavoltaic batteries market.