Friday, December 23, 2016

No. 890: Lithium-ion battery that allows travel distance of 400 km per charge (December 23, 2016)

Hitachi developed a technology of lithium-ion battery that allows an EV to travel about 400 km per charge. The new lithium-ion battery has two times higher capacity than the existing lithium-ion battery and increases the travel distance per charge of an EV by about 40%. Nissan’s Leaf can travel 280 km per charge that is currently the longest travel distance per charge. Hitachi aims to achieve energy density of 320 watts per kg that is about two times higher than the current level.   

Nissan's Leaf
It can travel 280 km per charge

The newly developed battery uses an anode composed mainly of nickel that is two times as thicker than the existing anode. The cathode is composed mainly of silicone instead of carbon-based materials. Hitachi’s research team covered the anode with an oxidized material and added a fluorinated additive to the electrolyte to reduce the generation of membranes. It successfully kept the capacity of the lithium-ion battery at 90% of the initial level even after repeating charge and discharge for more than 100 times. Furthermore, it estimates that the cost of the new lithium-ion battery will not increase greatly.   

New Energy and IndustrialTechnology Development Organization (NEDO) that supports the development activities estimates that the new lithium-ion battery will be put into practical used in 2020. Because the performance of a lithium-ion battery is approaching the limit, NEDO is currently developing a totally new type battery to realize a longer travel distance per charge with a view to translating it into practical applications in 2030.