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28 PCB007 MAGAZINE I FEBRUARY 2019 way we interact, a successful sales strategy continues to be rooted in building connec- tions and genuinely being interested in what is important to a customer. Once that is estab- lished, moving forward with the complexities of a new opportunity, solving an issue, and simple daily communication are much more effective. Each small success will build on the next. PCB007 Tara Dunn is the president of Omni PCB, a manufacturer's rep firm spe- cializing in the printed circuit board industry. To read past columns or contact Dunn, click here. ing connections. Our Geek-a-Palooza event is hosted specifically to provide a venue for people in the electronics industry to gather to- gether, interact face to face, and make a per- sonal connection that email communication just can't replace. Looking at the people I feel have a successful sales strategy in the PCB in- dustry, one trait that most have in common is an ability to relate to their customers on a per- sonal level. That may be knowing their kids and family, hobbies and causes that are im- portant, and of course, knowing what things are most important for their customers to be successful in the job they are doing. So, while I think the digital world and our swiftly changing industry has changed the Scientists believe that silicon could be the answer to your battery woes with the potential for a charge capac- ity 10 times larger than current lithium-ion batteries. But while promising, silicon has the tendency to fracture and break with numerous charge and discharge cycles due to volume expansion and contraction as silicon absorbs and releases lithium ions. Now, University of Alberta chemists have published re- search that takes a critical step in solving this problem, studying the effect of nanostructuring the silicon within lithium-ion batteries to understand the importance of size. "We wanted to test how different sizes of silicon nanoparticles could affect fracturing inside these bat- teries," explained Jillian Buriak, professor in the depart- ment of chemistry and Canada Research Chair in Nano- materials for Energy. "As the particles get smaller, we found they are better able to manage the strain that oc- curs as the silicon 'breathes' upon alloying and dealloying with lithium upon cycling." In their research, the researchers examined silicon nanoparticles of four different sizes within highly conduc- tive graphene aerogels. The results show that the smaller the particle, the less likely it is to crack or fracture upon lithiation. "Imagine a car with the same size battery as a Tesla that could travel 10 times farther, charge 10 times less fre- quently, or had a battery that was 10 times lighter. The po- tential applications here are anything that relies upon en- ergy storage using a battery," said Jonathan Veinot, pro- fessor of chemistry and co-author on the study. The next steps, Veinot explained, are to develop tech- nology for creating silicon nanoparticles in a faster and less expensive way, making these tools more accessible for industry and technology developers. The paper was published in Chemistry of Materials. (Source: University of Alberta) Tiny Silicon Nanoparticles Cement New Era for Ultra-high Capacity Batteries

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