eli5: Why does it take a long time to charge electronics? Why can’t there just be a surge of electricity sent to the battery to instantly recharge it?

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eli5: Why does it take a long time to charge electronics? Why can’t there just be a surge of electricity sent to the battery to instantly recharge it?

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If you send too much electricity into a battery, it gets hot. Getting hot means energy is being wasted, which is bad. And getting too hot too often reduces battery lifespan (as in “less years”), which is also bad. So, maybe it could be done, but you’d have useless batteries faster.

Chemical reactions that allow batteries to store and release energy create heat. If the charging or discharging current is too high, the battery overheats and destroys itself. For this reason, all battery chargers limit their charge current rate.

Creates too much heat. This is why there is a big push to discover super capacitors and super conductors that work at room temperature. So that you can have a quick surge that will charge a battery in seconds.

Batteries work by transferring electrons between two metals via an electrolyte. This is a chemical process that generates heat as the electrons flow between the materials. If the flow happens too quickly, the battery will catch fire.

When you charge a battery, you are pushing the electrons back from where they came, but heat is still generated. So if you charge a battery too quickly, you cause too much heat and the battery catches fire.

If you need something that can charge and discharge much faster you can use a capacitor instead of a battery. The down side is they don’t hold energy as long.