Saturday, December 12, 2009

MIT – Project elEVen

  • Radu Gogoana a MIT (Massachusetts Institute of Technology) is leading a team of engineers that are building a prototype EV (electric vehicle) that uses 8000 Li-ion batteries driving a 250bhp motor capable of up to 200 miles. They hope to be able to charge the system in about 10 minutes after final trials using a smaller battery pack. The car weighs circa 2 tons and has a 0-60mph in <9secs. The weight of the motor and batteries alone makes this car non-viable, but the research work will no doubt produce some interesting results
  • MIT are also working on carbon nanotube (capacitive) batteries as an alternative to ‘dirty’ Li-ion/Li-Pol batteries. The environmental impact of these legacy battery technologies outweigh their worth due to the chemical fallout involved in production


  • MIT are also developing virus built batteries, quote:

“To achieve that, the researchers, including MIT Professor Gerbrand Ceder of materials science and Associate Professor Michael Strano of chemical engineering, genetically engineered viruses that first coat themselves with iron phosphate, then grab hold of carbon nanotubes to create a network of highly conductive material.

Because the viruses recognize and bind specifically to certain materials (carbon nanotubes in this case), each iron phosphate nanowire can be electrically "wired" to conducting carbon nanotube networks. Electrons can travel along the carbon nanotube networks, percolating throughout the electrodes to the iron phosphate and transferring energy in a very short time.

The viruses are a common bacteriophage, which infect bacteria but are harmless to humans'”