Xiaomi working on improved lithium-ion batteries for future smartphones

Why it issues: It could not appear to be it, however lithium-ion battery tech is getting higher with each passing yr. Silicon-doped anodes are the following frontier, and corporations like Xiaomi have been working with battery producers to extend vitality density whereas maintaining the bodily dimension the identical.

Earlier this yr, an MIT examine revealed the value of lithium-ion batteries has fallen by greater than 97 p.c since their business introduction in 1991. This dramatic lower in value has been a boon for the cell and electrical automobile industries, and has additionally made residential solar energy methods extra sensible and inexpensive. However whereas the vitality density of lithium-ion cells has greater than tripled over the identical interval, the speed of enchancment has been comparatively slower, and now hovers at 5 p.c per yr.

Within the case of telephones, producers have used the enchantment of bigger telephones to include greater batteries that may stretch the time you possibly can keep away from a wall outlet. On the similar time, battery makers have began including increasingly silicon to the anode of lithium-ion batteries. This improves their vitality density but in addition will increase the fee and complexity of the ultimate battery cell design, which is why producers are nonetheless reluctant to extend the silicon doping quantity past 10 p.c.

Xiaomi says it’s engaged on a brand new battery expertise for its upcoming telephones that may have as much as 10 p.c increased capability whereas sustaining the identical quantity. To that finish, the Chinese language firm is utilizing silicon doping which is thrice increased than what is often used at this time, which is three to 5 p.c. The brand new battery can even use a so-called “Gas Gauge” chip and improved packaging to make sure protected operation, as silicon-doped anodes are likely to broaden throughout charging and contract throughout discharging.

It could not sound like a lot, however Xiaomi says battery life will probably be elevated by 100 minutes with the brand new cell design, though this can rely on the selection of cell chipset, customary or excessive refresh price display, and different elements. At this level, it is not clear whether or not this new battery will probably be suitable with the corporate’s HyperCharge tech.

Xiaomi plans to start out mass producing the brand new battery within the second half of 2022, so we’ll probably see it debut in new units in early 2023.

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