Fresh Battery Could Power Electrified Cars six hundred twenty Miles on Single Charge

Fresh Battery Could Power Electrified Cars six hundred twenty Miles on Single Charge

The average American drives about thirty miles (48 kilometers) per day, according to AAA, yet many people are still reluctant to buy electrified cars that can travel three times that distance on a single charge. This so-called range anxiety is one reason gasoline-powered vehicles still rule the road, but a team of scientists is working to ease those fears.

Mareike Wolter, Project Manager of Mobile Energy Storage Systems at Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft in Dresden, Germany, is working with a team on a fresh battery that would give electrified cars a range of about six hundred twenty miles (1,000 km) on a single charge.

Wolter said the project began about three years ago when researchers from Fraunhofer as well as ThyssenKrupp System Engineering and IAV Automotive Engineering began brainstorming about how they could improve the energy density of automotive lithium batteries. They turned to the popular all-electric car, the Tesla, as a beginning point. [Hyperloop, Jetpacks & More: nine Futuristic Transit Ideas]

Tesla`s latest vehicle, the Model S 100D has a 100-kilowatt-hour battery pack, which reportedly gives it a range of three hundred thirty five miles (540 km). The pack is large, about sixteen feet long, six feet broad and four inches thick. It contains more than 8,000 lithium-ion battery cells, each one individually packaged inwards a cylinder housing that measures about two to three inches (6 to seven centimeters) high and about 0.8 inches (Two cm) across.

“We thought if we could use the same space as the battery in the Tesla, but improve the energy density and eventually drive 1,000 km, this would be nice,” Wolter told Live Science.

One way of doing this would be to refine the materials inwards the battery so that it could store more energy, she said. But another way would be to improve the system’s design as a entire, Wolter said. [Infographic: An Inwards Look at How Batteries Work]

Almost fifty percent of each cell is dedicated to components such as the housing, the anode (the battery’s negative terminal), the cathode (the battery’s positive terminal) and the electrolyte, the liquid that transports the charged particles. Extra space is needed inwards the car to wire the battery packs to the vehicle’s electrical system.

“It’s a lot of wasted space,” Wolter said. “You have a lot of inactive components in the system, and that’s a problem from our point of view.”

The scientists determined to reimagine the entire design, they said.

To do so, they got rid of the housings that encase individual batteries and turned to a lean, sheet-like design instead of a cylinder. Their metallic sheet is glazed with an energy-storage material made from powdered ceramic mixed with a polymer binder. One side serves as the cathode, and other side serves as the anode.

The researchers stacked several of these so-called bipolar electrodes one on top of the other, like sheets of paper in a ream, separating the electrodes by skinny layers of electrolyte and a material that prevents electrical charges from shorting out the entire system.

The “ream” is sealed within a package measuring about ten square feet (1square meter), and contacts on the top and bottom connect to the car’s electrical system.

The purpose is to build a battery system that fits in the same space as the one used by Tesla’s vehicles or other electrified vehicles, the researchers said.

“We can put more electrodes storing the energy in the same space,” Wolter said.

She added that the researchers aim to have such a system ready to test in cars by 2020.

Related movie:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *