Gold Aids 'Virus Battery' Development
Source: World Gold Council (4/3/09)
"Gold has been used in the development of new batteries that can harness the power of genetically engineered viruses."
Researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology employed the precious metal in research that led to the development of new fuel cells that could be used to power hybrid cars and other electronic devices.
Team leader Angela Belcher discovered that viruses could create an anode by coating themselves with cobalt oxide and the precious metal in order to form a nanowire and new developments have led to the creation of a high-powered cathode to pair with the anode.
The completed battery has already been demonstrated to U.S. President Barack Obama and Ms. Belcher noted that while the fuel cells can withstand fewer charge cycles than their lithium-ion counterparts, they are expected to last for "much longer" periods of time.