Cocoa Village Publishing


Thin Film Capacitors, the power storage of science fiction...

Saw a fast link article on google news about new thin film matrial for ultracapacitors on Technology Review.

Why is this future now?

Until recently, chemical batteries are the only practical way to store energy.  So if some device today was unearthed/found decades latter, the battery would not work, maybe if it was able to run totally off a solar cell it could.   However ultracapacitors may be able to hold a charge for decades, or at least be able to recharge decades later from solar cells.  So it is the stuff of science fiction from the last century.  A material that can be used to make devices with electrical storage that will years later work, whereas if it was a convential batter that would not be so!

Interesting Understanding:

  • A capacitor stores charge through separated charged particles.
  • A battery stores charge through chemical changes at the electrodes.
  • In October 1745, Ewald Georg von Kleist of Pomerania in Germany found that charge could be stored by connecting a high voltage electrostatic generator by a wire to a volume of water in a hand-held glass jar.
  • The voltaic pile, invented by Alessandro Volta in 1800, was recognized as the first electric battery. (some think the ancient egyptians and alchemist may have know before that, aka the baghdad battery)

More links about thin film carbon ultracapacitors: