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Samsung says 85 percent of U.S. Note7 devices have been replaced

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The raging dumpster fire that is the Samsung Galaxy Note7 has been, for the most part, extinguished. But the company is so worried about stubborn users who won’t return the device that it continues to deliver public status updates on the situation. 

The latest came this Friday in a note on the Samsung U.S. website, where the company claimed that, “85 percent of all recalled Galaxy Note7 devices have been replaced through the U.S. Note7 Refund and Exchange Program.”

Samsung’s post goes on to claim that the majority of those who used its U.S. refund and exchange program to return the Note7 opted to choose another Samsung brand smartphone. However, based on the exceedingly unusual way that Samsung has handled this entire debacle, it’s difficult not to take such claims without a certain dose of skepticism.  Read more…

More about Iphone 7, Iphone, Samsung Galaxy Note7, Note7, and Note 7
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Existing EV batteries could be recharged five times faster

Lithium-ion batteries have massively improved in the last half-decade, but there are still issues. The biggest, especially for EVs, is that charging takes too long to make them as useful as regular cars for highway driving. Researchers from the University of Warwick (WMG) have discovered that we may not need to be so patient, though. They developed a new type of sensor that measures internal battery temperatures and discovered that we can probably recharge them up to five times quicker without overheating problems.

Overcharging a lithium-ion battery anode can lead to lithium buildup, which can break through a battery's separator, create a short-circuit and cause catastrophic failure. That can cause the electrolyte to emit gases and literally blow up the battery, so manufacturers impose strict charging power limits to prevent it.

Those limits are based on hard-to-measure internal temperatures, however, which is where the WMG probe comes in. It's a fiber optic sensor, protected by a chemical layer that can be directly inserted into a lithium-ion cell to give highly precise thermal measurements without affecting its performance.

The team tested the sensor on standard 18650 li-ion cells, used in Tesla's Model S and X, among other EVs. They discovered that they can be charged five times faster than previously thought without damage. Such speeds would reduce battery life, but if used judiciously, the impact would be minimized, said lead researcher Dr. Tazdin Amietszajew.

Faster charging as always comes at the expense of overall battery life but many consumers would welcome the ability to charge a vehicle battery quickly when short journey times are required and then to switch to standard charge periods at other times.

There's still some work to do. While the research showed the li-ion cells can support higher temperatures, EVs and charging systems would have to have "precisely tuned profiles/limits" to prevent problems. It's also not clear how battery makers would install the sensors in the cells.

Nevertheless, it shows a lot of promise for much faster charging speeds in the near future. Even if battery capacities stayed the same, charging in 5 minutes instead of 25 could flip a lot of drivers over to the green side.

Via: Clean Technica

Source: University of Warwick

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