Lithium-ion is, by far, the most common form of rechargeable battery found in today's mobile devices. However, a shift towards silver zinc may be looming on the horizon thanks to a new product in development by ZPower, Inc. Ross E. Dueber, president and CEO of the company is scheduled to address attendees at the Batteries 2008 conference in Nice, France starting tomorrow, where he will tout the advantages of his silver-zinc technology scheduled to launch in "a major notebook computer in 2009." Whether we will find out the identity of this "major notebook" in the coming days remains to be seen, but the impending release does offer some hope for consumers frustrated by the battery life of their precious portable gadgets.
First and foremost, silver-zinc can offer up to 40 percent more battery life than traditional lithium-ion batteries and 200 + cycles at 100% discharge. ZPower claims that their product contains no toxic chemicals and is up to 95% recyclable—which I would assume means that they have addressed the problem of mercury leakage that plagues silver-zinc batteries at the end of their life-cycle. They also noted that the batteries feature a water-based chemistry that is completely non-flammable (unlike lithium-ion that has a reputation for the occasional explosion). The one major drawback of silver-zinc is the cost of the silver itself, but word is that ZPower is planning on a trade-in recycle policy that will help to offset costs. Sounds good, but we will have to wait and see if the notebook coming out next year will be important enough and affordable enough to drive sales.
Dr. Ross Dueber to Discuss First Silver-Zinc Battery
for Mobile Consumer Devices at Batteries 2008 in Nice
CAMARILLO, October 7, 2008 – Dr. Ross E. Dueber, president and CEO of ZPower, Inc., will discuss the industry’s first silver-zinc battery technology for consumer electronics at the Batteries 2008 conference in Nice, France, starting October 8th. His presentation will address the performance, environmental, and safety advantages inherent within ZPowerTM silver-zinc batteries, scheduled to launch in a major notebook computer in 2009. The annual event will be held at the Acropolis Convention Centre on October 8, 9, and 10. Batteries 2008 is a worldwide exhibition focused on power supply, with more than 400 attendees.
Dr. Dueber will discuss the next replacement for lithium-ion rechargeable batteries and what power source can take mobility into the future. “At the heart of the $55 billion global battery market is the chemical conundrum of power supply,” said Dueber. “Today’s consumer has the ability to watch an entire movie on a palm-sized device—but portable power technology has not kept up. Engineers admit that they are hitting the wall on lithium polymer and lithium-ion performance. Unstable lithium-ion batteries have resulted in a high number of product recalls by manufacturers of notebook computers. These market trends are creating a pressing need for a better battery.”
Silver-zinc battery chemistry is currently poised to move into the commercial marketplace for use in consumer electronics. This new silver-zinc battery chemistry uses the latest in advanced polymers, nano-technology, power electronics and processing methods to create a battery that surpasses other rechargeable batteries for notebook computers, mobile phone and consumer electronics applications.
The advantages of silver-zinc batteries can be summed up as follows:
High Performance – Up to 40% more run time than traditional lithium-ion batteries. And with recent improvements in battery cycle life, silver-zinc batteries achieve 200 + cycles at 100% discharge and thousands of cycles at intermediate discharge.
Clean Technology – Over 95% of key battery elements can be recycled and reused. The raw materials recovered in the recycling process of silver-zinc batteries are the same quality as those that went into the creation of the battery. Environmental impact is lessened since the need to mine for new materials is minimized.
Safe – Silver-zinc batteries contain no lithium and are inherently safe. They are not subject to the recent FAA air travel restrictions now placed on lithium-ion batteries. Silver-zinc batteries feature a water-based chemistry that is not flammable. The battery is therefore free from the problems of thermal runaway and fire.