New Type of EV Battery Extends Range With Over 120 Miles on a Single Charge

New type of lithium-sulfur battery can improve the range of EVs up to 310 miles 6 photos
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We’re clearly transitioning towards electric vehicles, as a more sustainable means of transportation. And while this is indeed good news, the process of switching to greener vehicles isn’t going as fast as needed. The main problem remains the battery and all its limitations. But the Japanese might help us speed things along.
The problem with lithium-ion batteries, which are what you can find in any rechargeable device nowadays, is that they don’t store as much energy as we’d want to, especially when it comes to electric cars. According to Japanese researcher Hui Zhang, of the Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology, an EV that runs on this type of battery can drive an average of 186 miles (300 km) on a single charge.

But this energy storage can be improved with lithium-sulfur batteries, which can store enough energy to offer EVs ranges of up to 310 miles (500 km) before they need to be recharged. However, there’s a reason why lithium-sulfur batteries are not seen as a valid replacement for lithium-ion. Yet.

The reason why they’re not commercializing them is the fact that they’re not durable enough, as their components deteriorate quickly. You’ve got the sulfur and the lithium that will chemically react and form a product called lithium polysulfide.

Our current lithium-sulfur batteries take the process even further with lithium polysulfides quickly dissolving into polysulfides. In easier-to-understand terms, this means your battery will have a short lifespan and quickly become impaired. If, however, the lithium polysulfide converts into lithium sulfide or lithium persulfide as quickly as possible, you’ve got yourself a perfect lithium-sulfur battery, more stable and with a considerably improved range.

And that’s what the Japanese managed to do, using some spongy materials that speed up the process and they are also cost-effective and easy to apply. Not to mention the new battery recharges in a shorter time than its lithium-ion counterpart.

Scientists tested the battery, ran it for 200 cycles, and concluded that its efficiency was almost the same. For now, researchers are still working to further improving the performance of their new lithium-sulfur battery, and that’s all we know so far.
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About the author: Cristina Mircea
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Cristina’s always found writing more comfortable to do than speaking, which is why she chose print over broadcast media in college. When she’s not typing, she also loves riding non-motorized two-wheelers, going on hikes with her dog, and rocking her electric guitars.
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