Micro-nuclear power coming RSN

Posted by Nigel Constantine

US scientists have come up with a battery which, if it goes wrong, will probably be a bit more annoying than replacing one in an iPhone.


The micro-nuclear battery is about the size of a penny and creates power from the natural radioactive decay of isotopes such as plutonium-238.


Jae Kwon, an electrical and computer engineer at the University of Missouri, said that the battery is a lot more expensive than the current lithium variety, but the trade off is that it lasts longer and can provide six times more power.


Kwon has a cunning plan to miniaturize such batteries to power micro-devices and nanotech systems. He said that it does not mean that if your iPhone explodes you could face a nuclear winter.


old hat


Kwon said that engineers do face a challenge in preventing the radioactive decay from damaging sensitive parts of the batteries.  We assume that also means the radioactivity leaking into your groin while the computer is on your lap taking X-Rays of your pelvis.


Kwon hopes to get around that problem by using a liquid semiconductor rather than a solid semiconductor. Eventually, we could end up with a battery thinner than a human hair.


Assuming you have any hair left.