Soon, you will no more fret about not having carried your smartphone charger when your gadget runs out of power. With Nanotechnology taking the lead, a new solution is being developed, with the help of which your jacket could be converted into a battery.
Scientists at the University of Central Florida are conducting trials of the new 'in-cloth' energy storage system, and claim that the entire process of having to carry around a separate charger could be eliminated, if the new technology gains public acceptance and becomes commercially viable.
Professor Jayan Thomas and research student Zenan Yu of the Central University of Florida said with the help of nanotechnology, a supercapacitor can be made which would store and conduct energy through minute copper wires and certain scientifically designed threads.
Specifically designed nanostructures, also called nanowhiskers, can store energy in fibres which can be wound into the clothing fabric, according to Thomas. This system acts as an electrode and enables fabrics to store charges which can then be harnessed and transferred to gadgets.
Users who want to charge gadgets could use a more formal connector and plug in to their jackets or overalls.
The immediate commercial availability of fabrics that can work as batteries has been ruled out as the technology is at its nascent levels.
But, with material science making rapid advancement, we could soon see more immediate nanotechnology applications such as various ultra-thin battery systems which could replace the conventional power storage units that require specially made rooms for storage and operation.
Another future enhancement could be the use of portable solar cells and lightweight copper wires in the designing of fabrics that can exclusively be used to supply energy to various devices.
External gadget battery chargers could eventually give way to more efficient systems in future. By 2025, people with 'charging jackets' would not be a startling rarity after all.