Manufacturers are working on safer li-ion batteries:
Lithium-ion batteries are widely used in laptops, cell phones, and other mobile devices because of their ability to store lots of energy in a small, light package. But with a recent spate of incidents in which these batteries overheated or burst into flames -- prompting recalls of Sony batteries in Apple computers and more than four million Dell laptops -- many experts are questioning their safety.
A solution may be at hand, although it could mean accepting, for now at least, lower battery capacity. Safer materials for lithium-ion batteries already exist and are available in products such as power tools. With some modification, they could be used in laptops, and also help facilitate the widespread use of lithium-ion batteries in hybrid and electric vehicles.