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The 2011 Giant Twist ebike has a claimed maximum range of almost 100 miles

Remember when the Segway was launched in 2001? The company proclaimed that it was going to revolutionize personal transportation, but... well, although Segways are still around, they’re hardly a common sight. What could soon be a common sight, however, are electric bicycles. While a variety of styles were on display at this year’s Eurobike show, commuting ebikes were by far the most common. An electric drive makes sense on a commuter – you still get some exercise and don’t have to register it as a scooter, yet you also don’t arrive at your destination all hot and sweaty. As with all electric vehicles, however, range is always an issue. That is now being addressed, however, with ebikes that can travel up to 160 kilometers (99.4 miles) on one charge. If your commute is longer than that, you really might want to consider, you know... driving.  Read More

Sanyo is about to add some new additions to its eneloop universe series of portable power ...

Since introducing its eneloop rechargeable battery technology in 2005, Sanyo is reported to have shipped over 130 million cells. Now the company has announced some new additions to its eneloop universe series which provide a power boost to a host of mobile devices including Apple's iPad, Sony's Xperia smartphone and Nintendo's DS series portable gaming devices.  Read More

Soldiers' loads could be lightened by several pounds through the use of batteries that are...

Scientists from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have created a virus in order to design rechargeable lithium-ion batteries that could be woven into clothing to power portable electronic devices. Not only could these batteries be incorporated into fabric, but they could also be poured or sprayed into containers of any size or shape, thus allowing the shells or other parts of devices to double as their power source. MIT believes such batteries would be particularly beneficial to soldiers, who commonly have to carry several pounds of batteries to run their various gizmos. This development is reminiscent of the University of California’s nanogenerator-enabled clothing that harnesses power from the wearer’s movements, and could perhaps even be combined with such technology.  Read More

Drexel University's Dr. Yury Gogotsi (right) and colleagues have developed an ultrahigh-po...

Supercapacitors, also called electric double layer capacitors (EDLCs) or ultracapacitors, are electrochemical capacitors that have an unusually high energy density when compared to common capacitors. They bridge the gap between batteries, which offer high energy densities but are slow, and “conventional” electrolytic capacitors, which are fast but have low energy densities. An international team of researchers are reporting the development of a mirco-supercapacitor with remarkable properties that has the potential to power mobile electronics, wireless sensor networks, biomedical implants, RFID tags and embedded microsensors, among other devices.  Read More

Tiny flakes of lithium manganese phosphate can serve as electrodes for batteries (Image: D...

Rechargeable lithium ion batteries are used in everything from mobile phones to cars. Most of the batteries available today are designed with an oxide of metal such as cobalt, nickel, or manganese, which adds to their cost. Researchers looking for lower-priced alternatives to existing lithium ion-metal oxide batteries have discovered that a little wax and soap can help build electrodes and will allow battery developers to explore lower-priced alternatives to the lithium ion-metal oxide batteries currently on the market.  Read More

The RaceAbout, at last weekend's Finals stage of the Automotive X PRIZE

The purpose of the Automotive X PRIZE is to stimulate development of real-world, practical environmentally-friendly vehicles and the resulting designs make for a wildly varied collection. Of the 12 vehicles currently left in the competition, some look like they rolled straight out of Blade Runner while others – like the RaceAbout – would hardly raise an eyebrow in today's car showrooms. But despite its mainstream looks, this thing definitely makes a strong visual – and technological – statement.  Read More

MIT researchers have made an important step toward producing a lithium-ion battery that de...

Researchers at MIT have found that using specially treated thin layers of carbon nanotubes in batteries can boost the amount of power delivered per unit of weight by up to ten times. While the technology still needs improving, its full development and large-scale employment would certainly revolutionize the way we use any electronic devices, from an iPod to an electric car.  Read More

Microsoft InstaLoad lets you insert batteries in any direction

For batteries to work, they need to go in the right way. It's one of those fundamental rules that we all pick up from an early age, but Microsoft has just announced an innovation that turns all that on its head – literally. Known as "InstaLoad" battery installation, the technology allows you to insert a battery without having to worry about positive and negative polarity. That's idiot-proofing of the highest order!  Read More

Jump your way to better health and recharge your batteries at the same time with the E Rop...

When reporting on the BunBun human-powered flashlight back in March, Gizmag's Rick Martin mused on the potential for putting a similar charging mechanism into skipping rope handles... which is just what Kyung Guk Lee has done with this design concept. The e-rope lets you recharge your AA batteries while you skip your way to better health.  Read More

Members of Purdue University's hydrothermolysis research team (Prof. Varma at left)

Fuel cell cars have come one step closer to practicality with researchers from Indiana’s Purdue University announcing a new process for the generation and storage of hydrogen. The process is called hydrothermolysis, and is a combination of hydrolysis and thermolysis – the two prevalent methods of hydrogen generation that some scientists consider impractical for use in automobiles. The new process utilizes powdered ammonia borane, a chemical that has one of the highest hydrogen yields of any solid substance.  Read More

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