Implantable medical devices powered by batteries only exist in a few spheres of clinical practice. It is partly because most batteries are made of nasty things that have to be safely contained inside a strong metal case, making impractical a lot of what is actually possible.
Researchers at the Fudan University in Shanghai have just reported on a new type of battery that relies on electrolytes that are commonly used in medicine and research, including saline solution and cell-culture medium. Being sodium-ion batteries, since they’re not relying on toxic or corrosive substances to operate, makes them fundamentally safe and compatible with the body.
The batteries are also flexible and can be made in different shapes and sizes, and the researchers report “excellent electrochemical performance” in their published research in journal Chem. Apparently they hold more charge than wearable lithium-ion batteries.