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What is Paper Battery ?

A paper battery is an electric battery engineered to use a spacer formed largely of cellulose. It incorporates the structures to act as high surface-area electrodes to improve conductivity.

In addition to being unusually thin, paper batteries are flexible and environmentally-friendly,allowing integration into a wide range of products. Their functioning is similar to conventional chemical batteries with the important difference that they are non-corrosive and do not require extensive housing.

Structure of a Paper Battery

Paper Battery Construction and Working. A paper battery is basically a device which can act both as a capacitor and as a battery. It is a flexible, light weight device made up of carbon nano tubes emboldened on paper (cellulose). It is basically formed by combination of cellulose with carbon nanotubes.

Advantages of paper battery

The composition of these batteries is what sets them apart from traditional batteries. Paper is abundant and self-sustaining, which makes paper cheap.

Disposing of paper is also inexpensive since paper is combustible as well as biodegradable. Using paper gives the battery a great degree of flexibility. 

The battery can be bent or wrapped around objects instead of requiring a fixed casing. Also, being a thin, flat sheet, the paper battery can easily fit into tight places, reducing the size and weight of the device it powers.

The use of paper increases the electron flow which is well suited for high performance applications.

 Paper allows for capillary action so fluids in batteries, such as electrolytes, can be moved without the use of an external pump.

 Using paper in batteries increases the surface area that can be used integrate reagents. The paper used in paper batteries can be supplemented to improve its performance characteristics. 

Patterning techniques such as photolithography, wax printing, and laser micromachining are used to create hydrophobic and hydrophilic sections on the paper to create a pathway to direct the capillary action of the fluids used in batteries.

Disadvantages of Paper Battery

1.Prone to tearing.

2.Nanotubes made from carbon are expensive due to use of procedures like electrolysis and laser ablation.

3.Should not be inhaled, as they can damage lungs

Where can Paper Batteries be Used ?

Paper battery can actually prove beneficial for applications where portability and size is the main requirement. Modern day electronic equipments like smart cards, digital watches facilitate the requirement of thin batteries which are long lasting and non toxic.

Wearable Computers – One of the latest real time examples of wearable computers is Google Glass.  It actually is a normal spectacle with an optical head mounted display and Glass is a computer in the form of a pair of eyeglasses and includes an optical head-mounted display which allows the user to use a smart phone.

It can also be used for low power devices like calculators, wrist watches and wireless communication devices like mouse, Bluetooth headphones, keypads etc.

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