Longevity of sensors and portable devices are severely limited by temperature, chemical instability, and electrolyte leakage issues associated with conventional electrochemical batteries. Batteries undergo self-discharge and permanent loss of capacity at high temperatures, exhibit lower voltage and capacity at low temperatures, and leak electrolyte shortening operating lives, corrosion of nearby electronics, and potential safety hazards in the form of burns and poisoning. Instabilities in lithium types often short resulting explosions, fire, and venting of hazardous gasses. Betavoltaics do not have these problems and can operate in a wide temperature range without permanent degradation and loss of capacity, will not explode, and be made safe. Betavoltaic technology is maturing with advances in radioisotope sources, semiconductor materials, and developments in low-power applications, and has been identified by Department of Defense as a disruptive technology that is needed and should be pursued. This study presents experimental and modeling research on the leading betavoltaic technology, recent developments and proposed advancements. The next generation 100 microwatt betavoltaic is introduced along with projected voltage, current, and power characteristics.

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