The days of relying on mains power to keep our phones charged could be numbered, as a British company has made a working prototype of a hydrogen fuel system that can power an iPhone 6 for up to a week.
As reported by The Telegraph, Intelligent Energy’s system can fit inside a standard iPhone 6, although some vents must be added to allow the release of an imperceptibly small discharge of water vapour. The company said it is exploring ways to bring its system to consumers.
The current prototype uses hydrogen gas, which is refuelled through a modified headphone port. For consumers, the company is planning to produce a disposable cartridge filled with enough hydrogen-releasing powder to power the iPhone for up to a week, after which time it must be ejected and replaced with a new cartridge.
The system would mean the phone no longer needs to be connected to power to charge, although the current fuel cell is small enough to fit in the phone alongside the rechargeable battery, which can be used as a backup.
Intelligent Energy is rumoured to be working with Apple to discuss possible integration of their system in future products, although Intelligent Energy has declined to confirm those rumours. Regardless, the company says the technology is sound and all that remains is to find a way to sell it.
“Our view is that this is a couple of years out”, Mark Lawson-Statham, the company’s corporate finance chief, told The Telegraph, “but really it’s about how quickly does our partner want to press the button and get on with it?”