StoreDot promises 30 second phone charging by 2016

by: Bogdan PetrovanApril 7, 2014

StoreDot Flash-Battery Demo - YouTube 02 001285

Phone makers have increased battery capacities over the last few years, but the rise of Full HD displays and other power hungry components means that battery life is still a daily concern for most of us.

If you can’t increase battery capacity, the next best option is to speed up the charging rate, and that’s exactly what Israel-based startup StoreDot is hoping to do.

StoreDot is developing a technology that could bring breakthroughs in battery design, but also in storage and display manufacturing. The startup is working with tiny particles of an organic material called peptides, which are molecules of amino acids, the building blocks of all life. (In fact, StoreDot’s research is based on discoveries made by scientists at the Tel Aviv University that were studying Alzheimer’s disease.) Peptides self-assemble in tiny spheres of about 2 nanometers in diameter that exhibit some remarkable properties, including the ability to store a lot of energy for a brief period.

StoreDot essentially found an affordable and efficient way to create organic quantum dots. You may already be familiar with quantum dots from Sony’s Triluminos technology present on the Xperia Z Ultra, Z1, and Z2, which allows the display to show richer color compared to regular LCD. But Sony’s inorganic quantum dots are toxic, expensive, and hard to manufacture. StoreDot doesn’t have the same drawbacks.

What StoreDot did is create a battery made of alternating layers of organic quantum dots and conventional lithium electrodes. Acting like a supercapacitor, the organic layers are able to store energy in as little as 30 seconds, and then slowly release it to the lithium layers. From there, the device draws the energy it needs from the lithium layers, just like on a regular battery.

StoreDot Flash-Battery Demo - YouTube 59 001286

Currently, the technology is limited in terms of capacity and size. A modified Galaxy S4 can charge in just 30 seconds, but the battery is the size of a laptop power adapter. However, StoreDot is confident that, in as little as three years, it will be able to create flash-charging batteries of capacities and sizes that are comparable to today’s conventional units. This will make it possible to charge our smartphones, tablets, or laptops in minutes, rather than hours. And the technology is not prohibitively expensive – StoreDot batteries would cost about twice the cost of a regular smartphone battery, which is currently $30.

News of breakthrough battery technologies surfaces regularly, but in most cases, commercial deployment is years away, if any timeline is given at all. We hope that’s not the case with StoreDot, which seems an extremely promising development. The company is currently looking for investors, and Samsung is rumored to have offered strategic funding in 2013.

  • ehndrew

    no…freakin…way…you convinced me in 30 seconds, ill take few

  • wollac11

    If these work as quickly as they show in this video couldn’t they sell them as external battery chargers where them being a bit larger wouldn’t be as much of an issue. Having an extra battery you could charge really quickly would still be very handy. You could then charge or run your phone from this battery at normal charge rate when you need it.

  • Professor Hubert J. Farnsworth

    Hopefully it licenses this tech out to all OEMs in the future, instead of one having exclusivity by either some special license or the company being bought out by someone like Apple or Samsung.

    • Deveron

      I just want to say.
      You will have been such an inspiration to so many.
      Mad scientists the world round can’t wait.

  • Shark Bait

    2 years ???????
    ( isntert noooo meme here )

  • Tommy Crosby

    I would seriously pay twice the cost for this capability. This isn’t a problem.
    I just hope this time this tech get actually released.

    BTW, “A modified Galaxy S4 can charge in just 30 seconds” that’s a S3.

  • Enrico Conca

    Yes, but what about the size of the charger? I mean, let’s even assume that they’re talking about charging the equivalent of 3.7V 500mAh (so, about 2Wh) in 30 seconds (anything less would be pretty disappointing). That leads to 7200J of energy in 30 seconds = 240W of power. A 240W “wall plug” would be about the size of a small computer PSU. And if we were talking about fully charging a flagship device battery, we would have to quadruple the power – up to a kilowatt. That’s a serious power supply, and needs some serious, high power, heavy duty power plugs, definitely nothing that resembles a microUSB (in the video they are using RC power connectors that should be good for a few hundreds Amps, and you can clearly see how big they are and how tight the fit to give low contact resistance). I don’t quite think such a fast charging rate would be practical, if then you have to carry a laptop-sized PSU, and a godzilla size smartphone to fit the plugs.

  • Andrew White

    Can’t see it happening in 2 years as the technology would not just effect mobile devices but energy storage worldwide.

  • Jonathan Sosa

    shut up and take my money!

  • beez1717

    I’d love this ability even it it were laptop charger sized!