Gallery: An Ordinary Cotton T-Shirt Could Someday Charge Your Cellphone

University of South Caroline, nanotechnology, wearable technology, Xiaodong Li, clean energy, renewable energy,  eco-fashion, sustainable fashion, green fashion, ethical fashion, sustainable style, smart textiles

Photo by Shutterstock

That Hanes Beefy-T you’re wearing could someday power your mobile device—that is, if researchers at the University of South Carolina have anything to do with it. Xiaodong Li, a professor of mechanical engineering, and Lihong Bao, a postdoctoral associate, transformed an ordinary cotton tee into a supercapacitor by soaking it in fluoride solution and baking it at high temperatures. The process didn’t just convert the cellulose fibers into activated carbon, however; it also allowed the material to flex without breaking.

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