Panasonic, Intel tie on battery research

Matsushita Battery Industrial Coporation of America, part of the Japanese group better known by its Panasonic brand name, will work with Intel Corp. to improve battery technology, the two companies announced last week.

The work with Intel is focused on improving current lithium-ion battery technology to the point where a notebook computer will be able to run for eight hours on a single charge.

Matsushita is already working on a new battery that should be available in April 2006 and could help extend the lifetime of notebook computers and other devices such as cell phones and digital still cameras, the company said in a statement.

The new battery will have a capacity of 2.9Ah (amphere hours), which is about 30% more than mainstream batteries today, according to the company. Like current batteries, it will reach a voltage of 4.2 volts when fully charged but continue discharging down to 2.5V. Current batteries stop discharging power at around 3V so the new battery should last longer, the company said.

Matsushita said it will work with Intel on using this battery in notebook computer applications.

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