New battery breakthrough could double the range of electric vehicles
It’s been a while since there was news about the Ann Arbor-based startup, Sakti3. The startup has apparently been hard at work developing a high performance “solid-state” lithium-ion battery which, the startup announced yesterday, could double the usage time of consumer electronics, or more impressively, double the range of electric vehicles.
Not only is the University of Michigan spinoff claiming that its new lithium-ion battery technology twice as efficient has the batteries in Tesla’s Model S, Sakti3 also claims that its batteries can be produced commercially for somewhere around $100 per kilowatt hour, well below the current average. For comparison, Tesla’s lithium-ion batteries cost somewhere between $200 and $300 per kilowatt hour.
Solid-state batteries have solid electrodes and electrolytes, compared to traditional lithium-ion batteries that use a liquid electrolyte, which makes solid-state batteries not only less flammable, but much safer to operate. Even when hot soldering material was dropped onto the cell, as Sakti3 demonstrated in a video, the cell continued to operate in a safe temperature range.
More importantly, solid-state batteries are also capable of having a higher energy density, ehich is the amount of energy stored for a set volume. According to Sakti3, the energy density for this latest battery cell is 1100 watt hours per liter, which can power about nine hours of usage for something like a smartwatch, compared to the usual 3.5 hours, or a 480 mile electric car range, compared to Tesla’s 256 mile range.
Read more about the story at Scientific America.