The M1, based on the same lithium-ion technology used in your cell phone and laptop, is the first product from MIT spinoff A123 Systems. Cofounder Yet-Ming Chiang, a materials science professor, succeeded in shrinking to nanoscale the particles that coat the battery's electrodes and store and discharge energy. The results are electrifying: Power density doubles, peak energy jumps fivefold (the cells pack more punch than a standard 110-volt wall outlet), and recharging time plummets.Sounds pretty good. Doubling of power would be great. I would think obvious applications would include laptops, iPods and cellphones. But they don't mention them on their list of possible applications. So, I wonder what is up with that. Also curious as to how much these will cost. Appears to be a big step forward for battery technology which is key for the mobile electronics and plugin hybrids.
A123's real target, however, is your car. Chiang says A123's cells could lighten a Toyota Prius' 100-pound battery by as much as 80 percent and help boost any hybrid's performance. The quick recharging time - the M1 takes five minutes to reach 90 percent capacity - plus high peak power also would be ideal for plug-in versions of gas-electric vehicles.