My watch list
my.chemeurope.com  
Login  

Solar supercapacitor could power future of wearable sensors

23-Jul-2018

A new form of solar-powered supercapacitor could help make future wearable technologies lighter and more energy-efficient, scientists say.‌

Researchers from the University of Glasgow’s Bendable Electronics and Sensing Technologies (BEST) group describe how they have developed a promising new type of graphene supercapacitor, which could be used in the next generation of wearable health sensors.

Currently, wearable systems generally rely on relatively heavy, inflexible batteries, which can be uncomfortable for long-term users. The BEST team, led by Professor Ravinder Dahiya, have built on their previous success in developing flexible sensors by developing a supercapacitor which could power health sensors capable of conforming to wearer’s bodies, offering more comfort and a more consistent contact with skin to better collect health data.

Their new supercapacitor uses layers of flexible, three-dimensional porous foam formed from graphene and silver to produce a device capable of storing and releasing around three times more power than any similar flexible supercapacitor. The team demonstrated the durability of the supercapacitor, showing that it provided power consistently across 25,000 charging and discharging cycles.

They have also found a way to charge the system by integrating it with flexible solar powered skin already developed by the BEST group, effectively creating an entirely self-charging system, as well as a pH sensor which uses wearer’s sweat to monitor their health.

Professor Dahiya said: “We’re very pleased by the progress this new form of solar-powered supercapacitor represents. A flexible, wearable health monitoring system which only requires exposure to sunlight to charge has a lot of obvious commercial appeal, but the underlying technology has a great deal of additional potential.

“This research could take the wearable systems for health monitoring to remote parts of the world where solar power is often the most reliable source of energy, and it could also increase the efficiency of hybrid electric vehicles. We’re already looking at further integrating the technology into flexible synthetic skin which we’re developing for use in advanced prosthetics.”

Facts, background information, dossiers
More about University of Glasgow
  • News

    ‘Chemputer’ promises app-controlled revolution for drug production

    A radical new method of producing drug molecules, which uses downloadable blueprints to easily and reliably synthesise organic chemicals via a programmable ‘chemputer’, could be set to democratise the pharmaceutical industry, scientists say. In a new paper published online in the journal Sc ... more

    Liquid battery could lead to flexible energy storage

    A new type of energy storage system could revolutionise energy storage and drop the charging time of electric cars from hours to seconds. In a new paper, chemists from the University of Glasgow discuss how they developed a flow battery system using a nano-molecule that can store electric p ... more

    Robot chemist discovers new molecules and reactions

    A new type of artificial-intelligence-driven chemistry could revolutionise the way molecules are discovered, scientists claim. Chemists from the University of Glasgow discuss how they have trained an artificially-intelligent organic chemical synthesis robot  to automatically explore a very ... more

  • Videos

    Growing UAVs Through Chemistry

    During this century, scientists and engineers from BAE Systems and The University of Glasgow envisage that small Unmanned Air Vehicles (UAVs) bespoke to military operations, could be 'grown' in large-scale labs through chemistry, speeding up evolutionary processes and creating bespoke aircr ... more

Your browser is not current. Microsoft Internet Explorer 6.0 does not support some functions on Chemie.DE