British scientists have found a new way for these microscopic critters to become a power source.
That’s right, the mobile phone battery of the future might be powered by bacteria. Colonies of bacteria will activate what have been described as microscopic “windfarms”. This could provide an entirely new source of power for smartphones, tablets and other mobile gadgets.
The idea of biologically driven power plants for small and yet powerful mobile gadgets is promising.
At the moment, this mobile phone battery concept remains in the computer simulation phase. Still, it is highly promising and looks to have some considerable potential. Within the simulations, the British researchers were able to prove that the “chaotic swarming” of bacteria could be converted into an organized process. This would let the bacteria turn cylindrical rotors. With the bacteria driving the rotors, a steady power source would result.
According to Oxford University physicist, Dr. Tyler Shendruk, “Many of society’s energy challenges are on the gigawatt scale, but some are downright microscopic.” Dr. Shendruk added “One potential way to generate tiny amounts of power for micro machines might be to harvest it directly from biological systems such as bacteria suspensions.”
Though this mobile phone battery technology is not yet available, it provides a glimpse into the future.
At the moment, smartphone batteries fall short of the needs of many consumers. Moreover, forgetting to recharge a smartphone overnight can be detrimental to the next day. Many people swear by the use of high capacity battery packs. These portable mobile chargers make it possible for smartphones to be recharged in a bag or pocket.
However, as handy as those mobile gadgets are, the ideal would be to have improved built-in batteries in the first place. For this reason, scientists are looking to transform the rechargeable battery world through new and unique discoveries and technologies.
In this case, swimming bacteria typically swarming in disorganized living flows can achieve more orderly movement. Using a lattice of 64 symmetric microscopic rotors, bacteria was found to naturally and spontaneously organize so their swarm would spin in an opposite direction to an adjacent one. The research was published in the Science Advances journal.