Paper Fuel Cells May Replace Button Cells

- Mar 05, 2018-

Juan Pablo Esquivel, an electronics engineer at the national electronics centre at the autonomous university of Barcelona, has developed a miniature paper battery that USES bodily fluids for fuel and can power equipment when simple diagnosis is made.

Different from common rechargeable batteries, fuel cells by REDOX reactions convert the chemical energy of fuel into electricity, since there is no high temperature combustion process, almost no emissions of nitrogen and sulfur oxides, the environmental pollution is small.

Esquivel says that home testing kits, such as electronic pregnancy tests, blood glucose meters and urine tests, are disposable and cannot be replaced with a button lithium battery, which is discarded when the battery is less than 1%.And their tiny paper batteries, which can be used to test samples with body fluids, give them the power they need.The miniature paper battery is mainly made of paper, and then it USES the printed electronic technology to integrate paper and other electronic components to form a closed electrochemical system.The battery is small, cheap and pollution-free, and will not pollute the environment after being thrown away, says Esquivel.

Esquivel, who was named one of the most innovative Mexican researchers by the Massachusetts institute of technology in 2013, has focused on developing batteries that use hydrogen, methanol and ethanol as fuel.In 2015, his peace research with two partners Fuelium founded the company, at present, the company has five employees, mainly rely on government funding and their personal investment to maintain operations, has now signed an order.

Earlier, Finland Enfucell environmental paper battery company had developed the flexible paper battery, battery is 1.5 v, the thickness of only 0.5 mm, can be in a certain range of temperature and moderate an electrical current at a constant speed, easily adsorbed on the surface of paper or fabric, can cut, can be bent.This flexible paper battery can be used in radio frequency identification (RFID), micro-label display, electronic card, cosmetics and other fields, and many enterprises have cooperated with Enfucell.

In 2015, the United States ham university researchers developed a paper flexible battery power, can use bacteria as matchbox size, cost only 5 cents, can provide the appropriate amount for a small LED light.In addition to the mini paper battery, fuel cell car many car manufacturers are trying to do, by a hydrogen fuel cell reactor to recharge the battery, Toyota and Honda future already on sale to the user, but due to the technology cost is high, the price is higher than average family car, also in 400000 yuan.