New Electric Car Battery Lasts For 200 Miles And Charges In 6 Minutes
The battery has always been the ‘Achilles heel’ for electric cars. They didn’t offer such a great range of travel, and it usually took them a long time to charge. Arguably, the batteries were the main reason for why electric cars haven’t yet taken off among drivers. Many well-established car manufacturers have announced their plans to enter the electric car market in force, as well as may other new manufacturers have made their presence heard. But the problem of inefficient batteries still remained – until now.
In 2008, the Japanese company Toshiba pioneered the SCiB rechargeable battery cells, and now they claim that they’ve improved on the previous model, capable now of offering EVs a 320 km range (approx 200 miles) and a fast charge speed of just six minutes. The secret behind this improvement is the material used in the anodes – the part of batteries through which the electrons pass. In the previous 2008 model, Toshiba used a lithium titanium oxide. This time, however, they use titanium niobium oxide – which Toshiba says that can maintain 90% of its efficiency even after 5,000 chargings.
Now, even though Toshiba’s new batteries can definitely improve an EVs lifespan and performance, they don’t specifically say how much power they actually offer. A Tesla Supercharger, for instance, is capable of producing as much as 135 kW of energy – while its Model S has an 85 kWh battery and a 426 km (265-mile) range.
When it comes to the range, Samsung has also developed some EV batteries that have 600 to 700 km (372- to 435-mile) ranges. As a base for comparison, an average gas-powered car has a median range of about 663 km (412 miles). Nevertheless, neither battery designs mentioned above can compare to the high-speed charge rate of Toshiba’s latest design.
“We are very excited by the potential of the new titanium niobium oxide anode and the next-generation SCiB,” Osamu Hori, director of Toshiba’s Corporate Research & Development Center, said in the press release.
“Rather than an incremental improvement, this is a game-changing advance that will make a significant difference to the range and performance of EV,” he added. “We will continue to improve the battery’s performance and aim to put the next-generation SCiBTM into practical application in fiscal year 2019.”