The researchers have also tackled the manufacturing hurdle by depositing the
nanotubes on silicon much in the same way current silicon parts are made making
mass production more feasible than in the past. One
major difference, however, is that the nanotube on silicon batteries actually
act more like capacitors then traditional batteries. Capacitors, unlike
batteries store less energy and discharge rapidly however can be recharged
quickly. The team speculates that if they are able to make a large enough
capacitor that it will function much like current batteries do.
Not surprisingly, there are some dissenters to the new
technology. A Researcher from the
University of California at Davis has his doubts about the feasibility of such technology and doesn't see it making any significant inroads on existing
Andrew Burke, research
engineer at the Institute of Transportation Studies at the University of
California at Davis, said that the new capacitors would have to be many times
more powerful than any previously created. "I have a lot of respect for those
guys, but I have not seen any data," Burke said. "Until I see the data,
I'm inclined to be skeptical." Even if Schindall's capacitors work, he
doubts they'll transform the electronics industry overnight. Companies have too
much invested in today's battery systems, and it would take years before carbon
nanotube capacitors could be mass-produced.
quote: unlike current batteries, which maintain a pretty flat discharge voltage until they're about to die.