A researcher from the University of West Florida has designed an ultracapacitor that maintains a near steady voltage. The novel constant-voltage design may one day help ultracapacitors find new uses in low-voltage electric vehicle circuits and handheld electronics.
Ezzat Bakhoum, a professor of electrical engineering at the University of West Florida has designed an ultracapacitor that maintains a near-constant voltage without a DC-DC converter. The ultracapacitor is fitted with an electromechanical system that can slowly lift the core of the device out of the electrolyte solution as the stored charged is released. As the electrolyte drains away, the device can hold less charge, thus lowering, its capacitance. Since the voltage of the capacitor is related to the ratio of the stored charge to the capacitance, the system maintains a steady voltage as charge is siphoned off.
Bakhoum intends to conduct future research that includes modifying the design of the constant-voltage ultracapacitor system so that it can be installed at any angle. He may also explore whether the same type of constant-voltage approach is suitable for new, high-energy-density ultracapacitors.
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