Future Mac laptops, iPhones, and iPads could sport a battery with multiple jelly rolls in a single pouch for increased battery life as evidenced by a newly granted Apple patent (number 10,892,512).
In the patent data, Apple notes that rechargeable batteries are presently used to provide power to a wide variety of portable electronic devices, including laptop computers, cell phones, PDAs, digital music players and cordless power tools. The most commonly used type of rechargeable battery is a lithium battery, which can include a lithium-ion or a lithium-polymer battery.
Lithium-polymer batteries often include cells that are packaged in flexible pouches. Such pouches are typically lightweight and inexpensive to manufacture. What’s more, pouches may be tailored to various cell dimensions, allowing lithium-polymer batteries to be used in space-constrained portable electronic devices such as mobile phones, laptop computers, and/or digital cameras. For example, a lithium-polymer battery cell may achieve a packaging efficiency of 90-95% by enclosing a jelly roll and electrolyte in a foil pouch.
Multiple pouches may then be placed side-by-side within a portable electronic device and connected in series and/or in parallel to form a battery for the portable electronic device. Apple says this would mean improvements to the packaging efficiency, capacity, form factor, cost, and/or manufacturing of lithium-polymer battery cells.
Here’s the summary of the invention: “The disclosed embodiments provide a battery cell which includes a set of jelly rolls enclosed in a pouch. Each jelly roll includes layers which are wound together, including a cathode with an active coating, a separator, and an anode with an active coating. The battery cell also includes a first set of conductive tabs and a second set of conductive tabs.
“Each of the first set of conductive tabs is coupled to the cathode of one of the jelly rolls, and each of the second set of conductive tabs is coupled to the anode of one of the jelly rolls. At least one of the first set and one of the second set of conductive tabs extend through seals in the pouch to provide terminals for the battery cell.”