South Korean researchers have developed a capacitor that can be recharged in 16 seconds and nearly matches the energy capabilities of Li-Ion batteries.

839503849 1378643749 Lightning fast capacitors are ready for electric cars

One of the big problems with electric cars are the impractical charging times. Some vehicles take 12 hours to recharge and then they still have to cope with ridiculously short ranges which are sometimes less than 100km. News out of South Korea however, suggests that this may be a problem of the past, thanks to graphene supercapacitors. These capacitors, which are built from the super thin carbon structure which recently won the Nobel prize, are capable of storing almost as much energy as conventional lithium-ion batteries, but the charging time is a whopping 16 seconds. The supercapacitors have a capacitance of 150 Farrads per gram and can store energy at a density of more than 64 Watt hours per kilogram at a current density of 5 Amps per gram. Compare that to the Li-Ion battery’s 100-200 Watt hours per kilogram.

graphene lattice 1024x819 Lightning fast capacitors are ready for electric cars

Graphene, the carbon-structure that makes the super-capacitor possible

Santhakumar Kannappan and a team of researchers at the Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology in South Korea have developed the capacitors, which are able to charge and discharge over tens of thousands of cycles without wearing out. The secret to the capacitor is its highly porous design: The graphene has been engineered so it has an enormous internal surface area for storing electric charge. The team accomplished this by reducing graphene oxide particles with hydrazine in water and then agitating it using ultrasound. The finished product is then packed into a coin-shaped cell and dried under pressure.

Source Next Big Future