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Taiwan wins award for groundbreaking new battery tech

工研院發展突破性電池技術 獲大獎肯定

· 每日跟讀單元 Daily English

The technology for the URABat, an ultrafast rechargeable aluminum battery developed by the Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI), a leading technology research institution in Taiwan, has won a silver medal at the 2017 Edison Awards held in New York on April 20. The URABat was honored in the Energy & Sustainability/Power Source category at the awards.


In the past two years, several private Taiwanese companies have been shortlisted for the awards, which were established in 1987. However this year is the first time that the ITRI has participated in the competition and been recognized with an award.


Developed in collaboration with Stanford University since 2013, the URABat has achieved three breakthroughs, including finding the perfect combination of aluminum and graphite for the battery cell and making a battery cell that can be mass-produced for various needs and to various specifications.


A 48V/1Ah aluminum battery installed in an electric bicycle for road tests acheived a full charge within 6 minutes, 20 times faster than conventional lead-acid batteries. The battery is made of highly stable graphite and aluminum materials and does not combust when damaged.


The development of URABat was published in the journal Nature in 2015, and in 2016 it won the R&D 100 Awards.


“URABat is expected to offer a new power storage alternative that will have a huge impact on the world,” said the head of the ITRI delegation, Dr. Yang Chang-chung, Deputy Division Director of ITRI’s Green Energy and Environment Research Labs.


“There has never been a significant development in battery technology quite like the ITRI,” commented Frank Bonafilia, executive director of the Edison Awards.


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