Earlier this year, LG detailed its project involving the creation of unbreakable, flexible OLED displays. Although the display probably won't be ready for at least another year, it looks like another group of Korean researchers have brought us one step closer to flexible electronics. Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) have created what may be the world's first high density, flexible battery.
Although the battery is still under heavy research, the progress made puts us one giant step forward when it comes to the creation of flexible gadgets. With a stable high-performance flexible lithium-ion battery, the doors to flexible, bendable, wearable gadgets are wide open. We may be well on our way to seeing a fully-functional bendable tablet or smartphone in the coming years.
While bending the battery does have an adverse effect on its performance, the effect isn't enough to be a dealbreaker. The researchers tested the battery with a constant bend at a radius of sixteen millimeters, showing a drop in discharge capacity by about seven percent after 100 cycles, compared to a three percent drop while the battery is unbent.
The project still has a few hurdles to overcome, but the research is certainly promising. The leader of the research team, Prof. Keon Jae Lee told Gizmag, "There is no performance difference in energy density, capacity, and cycle life between our flexible battery and bulk batteries. On the contrary, performance is improved by about 10 percent because of the stress release effect."
No word on when we'll see this technology in our gadgets, but we're guessing it won't be too long until we see some flexible prototype gadgets on the loose.