The Global Energy Prize laureate 2013
EVERYTHING THAT MOVES
Due to Akira Yoshino’s batteries, the phone became mobile and the computer could fit into a pocket
Everything that moves and works should have a power source. In order to move far and operate long, this power source should be, on the one hand, energy-intensive, and, on the other hand, small and light-weight, so that it should work for a person without preventing him from moving, and ideally, should be almost imperceptible. Lithium-ion batteries became such a source. The first lithium-ion battery was produced by the Sony Corporation in 1991. Opinions about what was first, a chicken or an egg, always differ! Either the batteries caused the telecommunication boom and the communication technology development, or the boom brought them to life, but now lithium-ion batteries are almost irreplaceable in these devices. Thanks to them, computers, smartphones, telephones and cameras become more and more light, compact and convenient, and that is why they have become so customary and popular in the world. Each invention is made by a person. The father of this new unique power source became Akira Yoshino, a Japanese scientist. For “the research and development of lithium-ion batteries for information and communication devices, electric and hybrid vehicles” he received the Global Energy Prize in 2013. Akira Yoshino is called “an outstanding inventor and chemist”, however, after many years he will continue to say, that “we live in a society flooded with information, and young scientists find it difficult to understand that there are still very many areas where unknown things are waiting to be discovered”. Therefore, he advises not to confine oneself to one field of research, because in fact there are many of them! For a person who is willing to make an effort, opportunities are endless. “As far as I am concerned”, – added the father of one of the technological inventions of the century, – “I intend to remain at the forefront of research dealing with problems in new areas”.