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Futuristic electric vehicle battery takes just five minutes to charge

Image credit: Dreamstime

A firm that develops batteries for electric vehicles has unveiled one that can fully charge in just five minutes, potentially eliminating range anxiety.

A rapid transition to electric vehicles is needed globally in order to tackle climate change, but detractors are concerned about how long they take to charge, which prevents longer trips compared to conventional vehicles whose tanks can be filled with petrol in a matter of seconds.

Israeli firm StoreDot says it has now demonstrated “the commercial viability” of extreme fast charging battery technology that utilises “nano-scale metalloids and proprietary compounds”.

The firm has demonstrated how its battery can be charged to full in just five minutes and also believes it will be easy to mass manufacture.

First-generation engineering samples have been made available to automakers in the hope they will decide to partner for future vehicles.

StoreDot said it use of metalloid nano-particles proved to be a key breakthrough in overcoming major issues in safety, battery cycle life and swelling.

The batteries are designed to be produced on existing lithium-ion production lines and the samples are compliant with UN 38.3, which ensures the safety of batteries during shipping.

“Our team of top scientists has overcome inherent challenges of XFC (extreme fast charging) such as safety, cycle life and swelling by harnessing innovative materials and cell design,” StoreDot CEO Doron Myersdorf said.

“Today’s announcement marks an important milestone, moving XFC for the first time beyond innovation in the lab to a commercially-viable product that is scalable for mass production.

“This paves the way for the launch of our second-generation, silicon-dominant anode prototype battery for electric vehicles later this year.”

Another team of Penn State engineers have also been researching lithium iron phosphate batteries that have a range of 250 miles with the ability to charge in 10 minutes.

Lead researcher Chao-Yang Wang said: “We developed a pretty clever battery for mass-market electric vehicles with cost parity with combustion engine vehicles. There is no more range anxiety and this battery is affordable.”

Their battery works by quickly heating it up to 60 degrees C which allows for faster charging, but it uses different materials to stop the battery life degradation that normally occurs at higher temperatures.

While these new batteries point towards a promising future for electric vehicles, the charging infrastructure is still lacking in many countries including the UK

Furthermore, many public chargers lack fast-charging capabilities as they do not have a high enough power output, a problem that requires significant energy infrastructure upgrades to achieve.

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