Over the last two decades, Toyota has put a lot of effort into understanding and making the best use of alternative fuels and ways of powering cars. From hydrogen and Polymer electrolyte fuel cells to further development in the life span and output of the current industry standard battery tech, lithium-ion. Toyota really has been one of the biggest manufacturers making the push to a greener future.
We have long known that Toyota is working on solid state battery, as have many other research companies and manufacturers, but there has never seemed to be much headroom made in the matter, until now. At CES 2022 Toyota lead scientist, Gill Pratt, confirmed Toyota’s intention to have its first solid state battery equipped vehicle for sale at your local dealership by 2025.
While Toyota may currently hold the lead in this game changing technology, they are far from the only manufacturer to be pushing towards solid state batteries. BMW, Ford, Hyundai, General Motors, Kia, Mitsubishi and Volkswagen have all been making investments and strides to the furthering of solid state battery technology. Reports say other auto manufacturers are investigating the technology as well, however, there is no set proof to show that this is actually the case.
What Is Solid State
Solid state batteries are batteries that use solid electrodes and solid electrolyte, where batteries like lithium-ion make use of a polymer gel electrolyte. It may seem like solid state batteries are at the cusp of technological progress, but they have been around for a good while already. Pacemakers have been using solid state batteries for many years, and in more recent times they can be found in RFID devices and smartwatches.
The problem with solid state batteries is the issue of scale. Up until now, nobody has been successfully able to scale up a solid state battery to a point where it could be used in a car. There have just been too many complications caused by the solid electrolyte.
Solid State Versus Lithium-Ion
As lithium-ion is the current industry norm for electric cars and the most power dense battery chemistry used in the motor industry today, it makes sense to compare solid state to lithium to understand how solid state can change the future of electric motoring.
- Charge rate – Quantum scape has been recently showing off their new solid state battery technology having a fast-charging feature, like that of modern lithium-ion. A charge from 10% to 80% will take a solid state battery only 5 to 7 minutes, where a lithium-ion takes on average 30 minutes for the same charge amount. These figures are said to be for batteries with simulate capacity, meaning a huge change for real world charging time.
- Density – When it comes to weight and size, solid state again makes remarkable improvements over lithium, with an average of 50% savings of size and weight for a similar capacity.
- Cost – The first solid state batteries will likely be expensive as production techniques will not have been refined or at mass scale. When looking at the raw materials and components used, there is a good chance that solid state batteries will be cheaper than lithium when produced at large scale.
- Life – all batteries degrade with charge cycles. Solid state batteries are said to have a life span of up to 5 times longer than lithium, meaning the average car will never need a battery replacement in its lifetime.
There is no doubt that solid state batteries will offer an incredible improvement over lithium-ion, just like black Lotus Casino bonus codes improve your online gaming experience. The only thing that remains to be seen is if solid state batteries are going to make it to market in the timeframe that has been suggested.