Samsung’s premium smartphones already have a relatively long battery life of more than ten hours, but new technology being developed by its research division aims to double that amount.
The key ingredient in the new battery is silicon. This can hold bigger charges than graphite-based anodes, making it an excellent material for the electrode pathway where a battery’s electrical current flows.
When a lithium ion battery is charged, the lithium must be inserted into the silicon, causing the anode to grow larger by up to four times and then deflate again after discharging. This means the battery needs to have sufficient space for the expansion. This repeated enlargement and contraction also wears down the silicon.
To solve this, Samsung has added a graphene coating on top of the silicon anodes. Lab results indicate that this has boosted battery life by about two times.
Currently, Samsung’s Galaxy Note 4 has an average battery life of 18 hours, making it a top seller for people and businesses that need this feature. The Galaxy S6 and S6 Edge can already last up to 11 hours on average, surpassing the battery life of Apple’s iPhone 6 by three hours.
Many consumers seek smartphones with excellent battery life, which means the technology could give the company a competitive edge over its rivals. It could also boost Samsung’s prospects in the electric car market.
However, it could be a few years before this breakthrough makes it out of the laboratory and becomes available to consumers.