Materials Science and Engineering

Stanford scientists create a 'smart' lithium-ion battery that warns of potential fire hazards

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Stanford's Yi Cui and colleagues have created a lithium-ion battery that alerts users to potential overheating and fire.

Slug: 
Battery Warns of Fire Hazards
Short Dek: 
Stanford's Yi Cui and colleagues have created a lithium-ion battery that alerts users to potential overheating.

Stanford University scientists have developed a "smart" lithium-ion battery that gives ample warning before it overheats and bursts into flames.

The new technology is designed for conventional lithium-ion batteries now used in billions of cellphones, laptops and other electronic devices, as well as a growing number of cars and airplanes.

Last modified Mon, 13 Oct, 2014 at 12:21

Stanford team invents sensor that uses radio waves to detect subtle changes in pressure

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Device is used to monitor brain pressure in lab mice as prelude to possible use with human patients; future applications of this pressure-sensing technology could lead to touch-sensitive “skin” for prosthetic devices.

Slug: 
Wireless sensor measures pressure
Short Dek: 
Sensor uses radio waves to detect subtle changes in pressure

Stanford engineers have invented a wireless pressure sensor that has already been used to measure brain pressure in lab mice with brain injuries.

The underlying technology has such broad potential that it could one day be used to create skin-like materials that can sense pressure, leading to prosthetic devices with the electronic equivalent of a sense of touch.

Last modified Fri, 10 Oct, 2014 at 10:14

Stanford's GCEP awards $10.5 million for research on renewable energy

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Stanford scientists and an international research group receive funding to advance solar cells, batteries, renewable fuels and bioenergy.

Slug: 
Multiple energy projects receive grants
Short Dek: 
GCEP awards foster continued research into renewable energy

The Global Climate and Energy Project (GCEP) at Stanford University has awarded $10.5 million for seven research projects designed to advance a broad range of renewable energy technologies. The funding will be shared by six Stanford research teams and an international group from the United States and Europe.

Last modified Wed, 8 Oct, 2014 at 13:47

Stanford team developing gel-like padding that could help cells survive injection and heal spinal cord injuries

Print view
Type: 
Research News

A team of engineers and scientists is developing a gel to help protect cells from the trauma of being injected into an injury site. The work could help speed cell-based therapies for spinal cord injuries and other types of damage.

Slug: 
Helping Cells Survive Injection
Short Dek: 
Engineers and scientists develop a gel to help protect cells from the trauma of being injected into an injury site.

It is a turbulent and sometimes deadly life for cells injected to heal injuries. The act of being squirted through a thin needle into the site of an injury jostles the delicate cells against each other and against the needle walls. Then, once in the site of injury, they face a biological war zone of chemicals. It's no wonder, then, that treating spinal cord injuries and other damage with injected cells has been a challenge.

Last modified Wed, 17 Sep, 2014 at 12:54

Rapid charging and draining doesn’t damage lithium ion battery electrodes as much as thought.

Print view
Type: 
Research News

A team including Stanford engineers discovers that the benefits of slow draining and charging may have been overestimated.

Slug: 
New View on Battery "Supercharging"
Short Dek: 
Rapid charging and draining doesn’t damage lithium ion battery electrodes as much as thought.

A comprehensive look at how tiny particles in a lithium ion battery electrode behave shows that rapid-charging the battery and using it to do high-power, rapidly draining work may not be as damaging as researchers had thought – and that the benefits of slow draining and charging may have been overestimated.

Last modified Tue, 16 Sep, 2014 at 8:37

Paul McIntyre named chair of Materials Science and Engineering

Print view
Type: 
Research News

The professor is an expert on developing inorganic nanostructures for semiconductor and energy applications.

Slug: 
McIntyre to lead Materials Science
Short Dek: 
Professor Paul McIntyre is an expert on developing inorganic nanostructures for semiconductor and energy applications.

Professor Paul McIntyre, an expert on developing inorganic nanostructures for semiconductor and energy applications, has become chair of the Materials Science and Engineering Department at Stanford University.

Last modified Thu, 18 Sep, 2014 at 9:32

Stanford Team Achieves 'Holy Grail' of Battery Design: A Stable Lithium Anode

Print view
Type: 
Research News

The development could lead to smaller, cheaper and more efficient rechargeable batteries.

Slug: 
'Holy Grail' of Battery Design
Short Dek: 
Stanford Team Develops a Stable Lithium Anode

Engineers across the globe have been racing to design smaller, cheaper and more efficient rechargeable batteries to meet the power storage needs of everything from handheld gadgets to electric cars.

In a paper published today in the journal Nature Nanotechnology, researchers at Stanford University report that they have taken a big step toward accomplishing what battery designers have been trying to do for decades – design a pure lithium anode.

Last modified Tue, 29 Jul, 2014 at 9:41

Stanford team aims to improve storage in batteries used in cellphones, iPods, more

Print view
Type: 
Research News

A team led by Yi Cui, an associate professor of Materials Science and Engineering and at SLAC, is working to make a better battery by making the cathode of sulfur instead of today's lithium-cobalt oxide.

Slug: 
Engineer Leads Search for Better Batteries
Short Dek: 
Sulfur cathode experiments test chemistry beyond conventional lithium-ion.

Tucked in a small laboratory at SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory, a team of engineers and scientists from the Stanford Institute for Materials and Energy Sciences (SIMES) is making and testing new types of lithium-ion batteries. Their goal: move beyond today's lithium-ion to create a battery five times better than those we use now.

Last modified Thu, 17 Jul, 2014 at 12:39

Researchers led by Stanford engineer figure out how to make more efficient fuel cells

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Using high-brilliance X-rays, researchers track the process that fuel cells use to produce electricity, knowledge that will help make large-scale alternative energy power systems more practical and reliable.

Slug: 
'Defects' Improve Fuel Cell
Short Dek: 
Researchers find that atomic irregularities boost fuel cell efficiency.

Solar power and other sources of renewable energy can help combat global warming, but they have a drawback: they don't produce energy as predictably as plants powered by oil, coal or natural gas. Solar panels only produce electricity when the sun is shining, and wind turbines are only productive when the wind is brisk.

Ideally, alternative energy sources would be complemented with massive systems to store and dispense power – think batteries on steroids. Reversible fuel cells have been envisioned as one such storage solution.

Last modified Thu, 17 Jul, 2014 at 14:22

Stanford engineers envision an electronic switch just three atoms thick

Print view
Type: 
Research News

Computer simulation shows how to make a crystal that would toggle like a light switch between conductive and non-conductive structures. This could lead to flexible electronic materials and, for instance, enable a cell phone to be woven into a shirt.

Slug: 
An Electronic Switch 3 Atoms Thick
Short Dek: 
Computer simulation shows how to make a crystal that would toggle like a light switch between conductive and non-conductive structures.

Do not fold, spindle or mutilate. Those instructions were once printed on punch cards that fed data to mainframe computers. Today’s smart phones process more data, but they still weren’t built for being shoved into back pockets.

In the quest to build gadgets that can survive such abuse, engineers have been testing electronic systems based on new materials that are both flexible and switchable – that is, capable of toggling between two electrical states: on-off, one-zero, the binary commands that can program all things digital.

Last modified Mon, 7 Jul, 2014 at 15:26