updated 04:55 pm EST, Thu January 15, 2009
Hitachi Maxell batteries
Japan's Hitachi Maxell has introduced an alkaline battery line that is guaranteed against leakage from overcharging and other forms of misuse. The company found the majority of alkaline battery leakage happens as a result of a hydrogen release to prevent them from blowing up. The hydrogen is created by undischarged zinc, and to help prevent this build-up, Hitachi Maxell has developed a new zinc alloy it calls Microzinc α.
The new alloy also extends battery life by five percent compared to last year's Voltage batteries. Another change the company made is a surface modification that allows electrons to pass even when the zinc converts to zinc oxide.
When properly handled, Hitachi Maxell guarantees the batteries to last for five years, replacing them and the device they leaked in, claiming it is the first battery maker to offer such a warranty. The batteries, offered in AA and AAA forms, will be sold under the Voltage brand in Japan starting in April. [via Tech-on]