Meet your 94-year-old new best friend.
His name is John Goodenough and not only is he a professor at the University of Texas, Austin, but he also helped invent the lithium-ion battery that powers all our iPhones, Androids, Macs, Surfaces and Nintendo Switches. He also has the most amazing name for an inventor.
But he's not done. The university said this week a team headed by Goodenough and fellow researcher Maria Helena Braga developed a new battery technology that could lead to faster-charging, longer-lasting and safer batteries.
The type of battery Goodenough and Braga's team created is called an all-solid-state battery, which means it doesn't rely on chemical liquids to work. This is key because the packaging, protection and controlled interactions of those liquids is partly why batteries have the unfortunate habit of exploding.
This new battery also uses other materials that allow it to last longer before heading for the landfill and carry three times more energy in the same size battery we use today.
Don't expect this battery to be announced in the iPhone 8, however. It hasn't even been patented yet. And the time in between when Goodenough helped invent the lithium-ion battery and actually seeing them widely used in our devices was a little over a decade.
Hopefully this time it'll be sooner.
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