Apple files a patent that discloses new non-rectangular stacked terraced batteries. This new battery design will facilitate the efficient use of space in laptops and smartphones.
Up to this date, a product designer isn’t able to design what he wants. He is a slave of the battery. To be more precise, he is a slave of the ‘size and shape of a battery’.
Why it is so, you asked?
Because every time he designs a particular product, he tweaks the design around the battery. He can’t let his imagination run wild. As the battery uses to be in a rectangular shape, he is caged to draw a rectangle that could house it.
But I’ve good news. Apple is breaking free the product designer from this battery cage. They have filed for a patent that discloses a non-rectangular battery design. The invention is coming from table of Bradley Spare , a Sr. Product Engineer at Apple’s Cupertino Office.
The Design of Stacked Terraced Battery:
The battery will consist of multiple electrode sheets of same thickness but varying sizes. The electrode sheet may have a thickness of around 20 microns, reads one embodiment of the patent.
These different-sized sheets will then be stacked on top of one another to form terraced shaped batteries. These could take any shape among a toroidal design, an L-shaped design, a triangular design, a pie-shaped design, a cone-shaped design, and/or a pyramidal design.
Examples of pie shaped and ellipsoidal shaped terraced battery are reproduced below.
The dependent claim 41 and 42 enthralls me. Have a look:
41. The electronic device of claim 40, wherein the enclosure has a scalloped outline.
42. The electronic device of claim 41, wherein multiple layers of the battery are configured to accommodate the scalloped outline of the enclosure.
So, is it safe to say that we are going to have batteries with scalloped edges? Moreover, one type of terraced batteries has already seen the light of day. The new MacBook shows off this new battery technology. See the below pic.
The Benefits of Apple’s Terraced Battery:
These non-rectangular terraced batteries will give wings to the curiosity of a product designer. He can design the product first, and then can decide what size and shape of the battery will suit his design best.
Unused space is one major problem with the rectangular batteries, when placed in curved enclosure. The custom shapes of the terraced battery will utilize every millimeter of a device. The result would be more capacity and an enhanced battery life.
Is the terraced battery design a breakthrough invention? Or is it only a clever design hack? What do you think?