A small, steel-and-silicon sleeve designed to slip over standard alkaline batteries promises to let those disposable cells run up to eight times longer, saving consumers money and frustration.
The Batteriser — Â which will cost $10 for a pack of 4 when it hits shelves this fall — Â appears to be a miniaturized version of a boost converter. Boost converters raise the output voltage of a power source at the expense of current.
Batteriser's developers claim that their device will help consumers tap into the power remaining in standard alkaline batteries once their voltage has fallen below 1.35 volts, which is required by many electronic components. They estimate that as much as 80 percent of a battery's energy potential is left after it is considered "dead," and that energy can still be harvested.
"The Batteriser has boost circuitry that will boost the voltage from 0.6 volts to 1.5 volts and will maintain voltage at 1.5— which is a brand new battery," inventor Bob Roohparvar told PC World. "There's actually no IP [intellectual property] in the boost circuitry. Our technology is really a miniaturization technique that allows us to build the sleeve. We have some IP in some of the IC circuits that are in there, but the key is we've been able to miniaturize the boost circuit to a point that no one else has been able to achieve."
Roohparvar says that the sleeve is small enough to fit in nearly any device that accepts disposable batteries, including Apple's Magic Trackpad and Magic Mouse, notorious power hogs. Apple even sells its own rechargeable battery kit, based on Sanyo's Eneloop technology, to cope with this issue.
Batteriser's claims seem too good to be true, but the company says its results have been independently verified by the physics department of San Jose State University.
"We tested the Batteriser sleeve in our lab and we confirmed that the Batteriser taps into 80 percent of energy that is usually thrown away," SJSU's Dr. Kiumars Parvin said to the publication.