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Innovation

Scientists create high-capacity batteries from algae

Swedish scientists have created lightweight, flexible batteries from a type of algae that's problematic in the Great Lakes but blooms globally.
Written by Andrew Nusca, Contributor on

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

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