This new aluminium battery can charge your phone in 60 seconds.

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A new rechargeable aluminium battery has been developed by researchers in the US, and they’re saying the prototype can charge a smartphone in 60 seconds, plus it’s more environmentally friendly, durable, and cheaper than anything currently on the market. And it won’t spontaneously burst into flames like certain widely used lithium-ion batteries are capable of…

bec-crewby Bec Crew
“We have developed a rechargeable aluminium battery that may replace existing storage devices, such as alkaline batteries, which are bad for the environment, and lithium-ion batteries, which occasionally burst into flames,” said one of the team, chemist Hongjie Dai from Stanford University, in a press release.

Our new battery won’t catch fire, even if you drill through it.

 The new technology has done something scientists around the world have been chasing for decades – it puts aluminium to good use in the high-demand battery industry. The pros for aluminium are many, including its cheapness, availability, low-flammability, and high-charge storage capacity. But the challenge in building a viable aluminium battery has been in finding a material for the cathode – the device through which the electrical current flows – that can produce enough voltage to sustain it across a whole lot of charges. 

Fortunately for the Stanford team, they found the perfect material… by accident. “People have tried different kinds of materials for the cathode,” said Dai.“We accidentally discovered that a simple solution is to use graphite, which is basically carbon. In our study, we identified a few types of graphite material that give us very good performance.”

The team figured out that if they placed an aluminium anode – the part through which the electrical current enters the device – together with an graphite cathode, in a solution of iconic liquid electrolyte. This arrangement was then placed inside a flexible, polymer-coated pouch, which means it could be installed in a flexible and bendy device.

“The electrolyte is basically a salt that’s liquid at room temperature, so it’s very safe,”said one of the team, graduate student Ming Gong. They tried their prototype out on some smartphones and report that they could fully charge one in 60 seconds – a vast improvement on the several hours it currently takes lithium-ion batteries to charge our phones. Plus the battery lasts for more than 7,500 recharge cycles, while current lithium-ion batteries can only withstand about 1,000 cycles. “This was the first time an ultra-fast aluminium-ion battery was constructed with stability over thousands of cycles,” the team reports.

The battery also offers a safer option for those who are a little uneasy about powering their devices using a potential fire hazard. Case in point – United and Delta airlines have recently decided to ban bulk lithium-battery shipments on passenger planes, because it’s just not worth the risk.

“In our study, we have videos showing that you can drill through the aluminium battery pouch, and it will continue working for a while longer without catching fire,”Dai said. “But lithium batteries can go off in an unpredictable manner – in the air, the car or in your pocket.”

Sounds pretty perfect, right? It’s certainly promising, but before the researchers can think about replacing all the batteries on the market, they first need to get the voltage of their batteries to meet what lithium-ion batteries can achieve.

“Our battery produces about half the voltage of a typical lithium battery,” Dai said in the press release. “But improving the cathode material could eventually increase the voltage and energy density. Otherwise, our battery has everything else you’d dream that a battery should have: inexpensive electrodes, good safety, high-speed charging, flexibility and long cycle life. I see this as a new battery in its early days. It’s quite exciting.”

The battery will be described in an upcoming edition of Nature.

by Bec Crew | 7 APR 2015 | Original Source: "This new aluminium battery can charge your phone in 60 seconds."

WATCH: Here’s why you get allergies every spring

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 – ScienceAlert Springtime.

The season for sneezin’.

allergies-all-offBut why, just because plants want to have a good time and reproduce, do we have to suffer through the sneezes, the watery red eyes, and the runny noses? Don’t blame the flowers for all your super-attractive sniffles, says the latest episode of It’s Okay To Be Smart, because their pollen is actually too heavy to get airborne and into our sinuses anyway. In reality, they get bees to assist them with the, erm, ‘sexy stuff’, so there’s no reason for them to sow their seed into the air.

Trees and grasses, on the other hand, well, sometimes they just get a little too enthusiastic about how much genetic material they need to put on the wind to successfully reproduce. And at the same time, our immune system, which is usually the good guy, goes completely haywire. It wages war against things which are actually harmless, says Joe Hanson in the video above, including dust, pollen, and microscopic pet particles.

One particular antibody produced by our immune system, called IgE, seems to be the main culprit for our allergic reactions. I’ll let Joe explain why above, because he’s so good at that, but let’s just say it’s something about vacuum cleaners, a Mr T cell, and an old school telephone.

Strangely enough, allergies aren’t just common in developed nations, they’re actually increasingly on the rise around the world, particularly when it comes to food. The trend appears to be that as a nation gets richer, its population becomes more allergic, and the scientific reason behind it is fascinating. Watch It’s Okay To Be Smart above to find out.

by Bec Crew 6 | Apr 2015 | Original Source: "Here's why you get allergies every spring."

What is Easter Monday?

FYI For Your Interest (01) feature
"Easter monday countries". Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons -

“Easter monday countries”. Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons –

Easter Monday, also known as:

» Bright Monday

» Renewal Monday

» Wet Monday

» Dyngus Day

… is the Monday immediately after Easter Sunday.
It is observed by many Christian groups, but primarily by the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic traditions. It marks the beginning of Easter Week (Roman Catholic) / Bright Week (Eastern Orthodox).

Different cultures observe Easter Monday very differently. For some, Easter Monday is a solemn remembrance of Christ’s death and resurrection marked by an outdoor procession. For others, there are Easter egg-rolling competitions. For still others, siblings and/or spouses wake each other up by pouring buckets of water on each other (hence the name “Wet Monday”). And others celebrate with a large gathering and a polka festival (Dingus Day).

Some of these observances have more Christian symbolism in them than others, but none of them are explicitly biblical. The Bible does not say anything about what happened on Easter Monday, the day after Jesus’ resurrection. The Bible does not instruct followers of Jesus Christ to observe Easter Monday, so there is no obligation to celebrate it. As with many holidays, there is nothing wrong with observing some cultural traditions, but it is important to not allow traditions to detract from the message of the gospel.

Easter Monday Calendar:
2015 – April 6
2016 – March 28
2017 – April 17
2018 – April 2
2019 – April 22
2020 – April 13

Original Source:  "Easter Monday"

How Could Job’s 3500 B.C. Description of the Earth Match a Modern Astronaut’s View from Space?

Astronaut View (01)

How could what modern astronauts are seeing from space and what is written in the ancient book of Job perfectly coincide?

earthnorthamericaby Carl Armstrong
The short answer for Christians was given by the Apostle Peter when he wrote: “But know this first of all, that no prophecy of the Scripture is a matter of one’s own interpretation. For no prophecy at any time was produced by the will of man, but holy men moved by the Holy Spirit spoke from God” (2 Pet. 1:20-21).

Yes, the world has many skeptics about the Scriptures—but it totally confounds them to try to explain how Job could have precisely described an earth hanging from nothing in space, circular in nature and having a visible dividing line between day and night.

The adventurous among us eagerly look forward to the day when we can become space tourists and see the earth suspended from nothing. Consider the reaction of Apollo 12 Astronaut Alan Bean’s reactions as chronicled in a 2012 Science Channel presentation entitled NASA’s Unexplained Files. He made these comments about the launch and his first impressions of the earth from space:

“The thought that ran through my head was, ‘I hope the metal in this space ship is strong enough to withstand the vibration. It is more than I ever imagined that machinery could stand and still operate. I looked for the wire that is holding this earth up for a second. You can’t suddenly change from an earthling to a spaceling.'”

So Job wrote the same thing as modern astronauts have observed?

Here is what Job wrote in chapter 26 (highlighting added here for emphasis).


7 He stretches out the north over the void and hangs the earth on nothing.
8 He binds up the waters in his thick clouds, and the cloud is not split open under them.
9 He covers the face of the full moon and spreads over it his cloud.
10 He has inscribed a circle on the face of the waters at the boundary between light and darkness.

Job 26:7-10


7 He stretcheth out the north over the empty place, and hangeth the earth upon nothing.
8 He bindeth up the waters in his thick clouds; and the cloud is not rent under them.
9 He holdeth back the face of his throne, and spreadeth his cloud upon it.
10 He hath compassed the waters with bounds, until the day and night come to an end.

Job 26:7-10


7 He spreads out the northern skies over empty space; he suspends the earth over nothing.
8 He wraps up the waters in his clouds, yet the clouds do not burst under their weight.
9 He covers the face of the full moon, spreading his clouds over it.
10 He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness.

Job 26:7-10


7 He stretches out the north wind over the empty place and hangs the earth upon nothing.
8 He binds up the waters in his thick clouds; and the cloud is not rent under them.
9 He holds back the face of his throne and spreads his cloud upon it.
10 He has compassed the waters with bounds until the end of light and darkness.

Job 26:7-10

From his observations about the earth hanging from nothing, the waters compassing the earth in a circular fashion and the view of the day-night dividing line, Job was certainly far advanced beyond his “flat earth” contemporaries.

2/25/2015 | by Carl Armstrong | Original Source: "How Could Job’s 3500 B.C. Description of the Earth Match a Modern Astronaut’s View from Space?"

World’s Most Dangerous Airlines Named: Worst And Safest Airlines Listed

FYI For Your Interest (01) feature

What are the world’s most dangerous airlines? Nearly 450 airlines were monitored by AirLineRatings, and a published list of which carriers are the worst and the safest has been released.

A rating system based on several factors determined which airlines make up the best and worst on this list from 2014. Factors, such as audits from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO), government, and the airline’s fatality record, are taken into consideration for the reputable source’s list.

The top 10 safest airlines list names Australia’s Qantas Airlines as the number one carrier to fly on. It’s never had a fatality, and is given an additional rating for being the most experienced airline.

AirLine Ratings listed the rest of the world’s safest airlines in alphabetical order.

They are:

Air New Zealand

British Airways

Cathay Pacific Airways


Etihad Airways




Singapore Airlines.

The top 10 safest low-cost carriers are also on the list.

They all passed the “stringent” International Air Transport Association Operation Safety Audit (IOSA) audit and have superior safety records.

Those carriers are again listed in alphabetical order by the website.

They are:

Aer Lingus

Alaska Airlines




Monarch Airlines

Thomas Cook



Finally, the website listed the world’s most dangerous airlines.

The site reveals that 149 out of the 449 airlines studied have the top seven-star safety rating. Fifty have three stars or less.

The ones that have one star or less amount to four carriers total.

Those are:

Kam Air

Nepal Airlines

SCAT Airlines

Tara Air.

As AOL News reports, all four of the most dangerous airlines listed are banned in the European Union Member States and “strongly advised against” in the United States.

For all its problems with two tragic flights in 2014, Malaysia Airlines earned five out of seven stars. The airline was involved in two major crashes last year when Flight MH370 went missing in March 2014 carrying 239 people. That plane is still missing without a trace. The flight is believed to have crashed in the Indian Ocean.

In July 2014, MH17 was hit by a ground-launched BUK missile during its flight over the Ukraine. It killed 298 people on-board. Russia blames Ukraine and vice versa. The devastating crash is still being investigated, but enough evidence may have been tampered with that arriving to a conclusive answer will be difficult.

The world’s most dangerous airlines are few compared to those making the world’s safest airlines lists.

via World’s Most Dangerous Airlines Named: Worst And Safest Airlines Listed.