Swedish scientists have created lightweight, flexible batteries from a type of algae that's problematic in the Great Lakes but blooms globally.
Scientists at Uppsala University were studying Cladophora algae's potential as a thickening agent for pharmaceutical uses when they discovered that its unique nanostructure was ideal for energy storage.
By coated algal cellulose with a conducting polymer, the scientists managed promising storage capacity and reasonable charge times.
Algae batteries have been thought to pack similar storage capacity to lithium-ion batteries.
The work opens up new possibilities for inexpensive, environmentally friendly, and lightweight energy storage systems, Uppsala nanotech professor Maria Strømme said in a statement.
Cladophora algae is found worldwide and has been particularly problematic in the Great Lakes, where it is considered a nuisance for its potent odor of decay.
Reusing the algae for better use? Now that's smart.
The interdisciplinary group published their findings in the September 9 issue of Nano Letters.
This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com