Solid state battery is small enough for medical implants

April 10, 2019 //By Nick Flaherty
Solid state battery is small enough for medical implants
UK battery maker Ilika has officially launched its millimetre scale solid state battery for medical implants, including smart contact lenses.

The Stereax M50 battery cells were first nnounced in 2018 and are built on standard semiconductor industry wafers using Ilika's proprietary vacuum deposition technique at its plant in Southampton. The cells are etched from the materials deposited on the wafer using standard industry back-end processing techniques to get the small size. 

Implantable batteries need to be small enough to be unobtrusive, enabling implantable devices to be charged in a way that does not restrict a patient and have as long a life-span as possible, avoiding the risks of repeated surgical intervention. They also need to be biocompatible so that they do not pose a risk of leakage, and each device application may require different sizes and form factors, which can now be accommodated with the customisable battery sizes and shapes enabled by the smaller versions of the Stereax M50.  

 “The implantable medical device industry has a growing need for miniaturized, long-life power sources to enable wireless data transfer from increasingly sophisticated devices that are improving patients’ lives” said Mike Nagy, Chief Technology Officer, Endotronix.

The M50 cells have life spans of up to 10 years (up to 5x longer) and lower leakage currents (10x smaller), making them suitable for low power wireless charging.   They can also be integrated with other electronic components enabling the end medical device to be kept as small as possible. 

“The Stereax product family continues to grow, addressing a wide range of end applications.   Medical applications are some of the most demanding environments for battery technology”, said Graeme Purdy, CEO, Ilika.   ”The Stereax M50 is a smaller, safer and longer lasting battery, opening up the opportunities of life enhancing medical devices.”

www.ilika.com

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