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  1. #1

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    HybridCars.com ran this story about lithium ion batteries and what they could mean to hybrids and the auto industry:


    What do you think?

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  3. #2

    Lithium Batteries: What They Mean

    This months issue of Popular Science also talks about a new Lithium Ion Technology by Toshiba using Nanoparticle Batteries (Nano Technology) to allow the batteries to be charges in a matter of minutes (0% to 80% full) instead of the hours normally needed to charge them. The article says that they should appear in factories and cars in the next year. I would think that with the right types of energy recovery systems you should be able to run these types of batteries for much longer if not indefinetly.

  4. #3

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    Too bad whoever wrote the lithium battery article isn't a chemist: "...two enterprising companies...have had better results by replacing cobalt with other metals, such as phosphate."

    Phosphate isn't a metal - it's an ion (technically an anion), which is typically combined with a metal, such as calcium phosphate (the main ingredient of bones) and iron phosphate (what Naval Jelly turns rust into).

    The article also could have mentioned that the Segway Human Transporter uses Saphion lithium batteries from Valence.

  5. #4

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    What do everyone think about the edrive conversion for the Prius. It is supposed to be available in early 2006. I will believe it when I see it. The price is supposedly will be around $12,000 which is high. But that is alot cheaper than the 1 million price tag for a hydrogen car.

    I will believe Edrive is actually going to come out with a commercialy available conversion when it actually happens. Right now their website is very vague.

    Could just be an urban legend.

    And anyone got any comments on why Valence has been in business for 10 years and has yet to turn a profit. I can understand a couple years, but 10 years? They now have a couple of good clients Segway, and now Oxygen Scooters, and maybe the mythical Edrive conversion. So they might be turning it around. But they have negative profit margins. When you sell more you aren't supposed reports more of a loss.

  6. #5

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    The subject here is about battery technology, but battery technology is only part of a bigger underlying subject. The real Holy Grail is our ability to store energy. Batteries currently look like the most likely technology but the bigger goal, it seems, is really energy storage.

    Consumer electronics have driven battery technology to date because they are high-volume products that people are very willing to pay for. But batteries for hybrids, plug-in hybrids and good old electric vehicles have the potential to change the very way we think about and use energy. And as important as transportation is, the bigger accomplishment will not be a world full of hybrids but will be our ability to store and use energy in ways never before accomplished by humans.

    The vehicle is simply the "vehicle" to drive battery technology, or some other electrical storage technology. Any battery capable of transporting people and goods from place to place also has the power to supply a home with its electrical needs. Multiply that powerful battery (or other electrical storage device) by many million and our entire energy system is transformed.

    The grid to vehicle and vehicle to grid concept has been talked about before, but even this advanced concept looks like only part of a bigger picture. As vehicle needs force battery manufacturers to mass produce continually improving, larger capacity products, those products will become ubiquitous. A healthy and highly competitive industry will form in manufacturing, distributing and recycling. Superior batteries (or some other electrical storage systems) will not only greatly improve our vehicles, but also our homes and our businesses. How? Because millions of batteries in our vehicles and our homes have the potential to greatly smooth out our energy usage patterns. By efficiently storing electricity we not only improve the efficiency of our vehicles, we improve the efficiency of all our energy using methods. No one will need to buy a battery backup system for their computers because everyone will have a battery backup system for all their electrical needs. The biggest arguments leveled against wind power and solar power will become moot. Who cares if the wind doesn't blow all the time and who cares if the sun doesn't shine at night if those energies have been collected and safely stored for later use. Huge amounts of energy are currently wasted because of a lack of acceptable storage methods. Schemes such as pumping water back up into reservoirs try to address this issue but cannot compete with the immensity, efficiency and dependability of millions of individual electrical storage systems.

    That's my opinion. Looking forward to holes being shot in it.

  7. #6

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    CalCars.og Tech Lead Ron Gremban's summary from last July at http://autos.groups.yahoo.com/group/...us/message/468 still gives our perspective, which, to summarize, is that "some Li-ion batteries out there already are usable in hybrids and plug-in hybrids (PHEVs)."

    Car makers that say lithium is 3-5 years away are probably testing them right now -- we wish they'd tell us more about that! While CalCars is working on a project with Electro Energy Inc to show that the long-proven nickel-metal hydride batteries that car makers already use in hybrids could work for plug-in hybrids, we're also planning to put some of the newer li-ion batteries into cars as soon as possible.

    The DaimlerChrysler/Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) program is using Li-Ion in some of its Sprinter PHEV prototypes and is busy collecting and analyzing early data. EPRI will soon publish an Update on Advanced Batteries for Hybrid Electric Vehicles. Meanwhile, Bob Graham, EPRI's Director of Electric Transportation, in September summarized to me their views on the readiness and cost trends of batteries for PHEVs.

    "EPRI comments publicly, which are based on our review of the current state of the advanced battery technology and our meetings with SAFT and VARTA the two suppliers to the PHEV Sprinter program, that advanced batteries will meet the requirements that we have established for a vehicle with 30 miles of all electric range. We are aware of no technical issues that would prevent advanced batteries from meeting PHEV operational needs. The major issue that must be overcome is the battery cost which our information shows is an issue of production volume.
    Major corporations such as Johnson Control and Chevron Texaco are active in the development of advanced batteries plus if one looks at the ability of the battery industry to meet the competitive and cost requirements of the computer and cell phone market, one can expect batteries for high volume transportation applications to also come down dramatically in cost."

  8. #7

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    don't know any more than the next person, but perhaps I can connect the dots that may have led Toyota to engineer a PHEV. This March Toshiba announced that it had developed a new lithium-ion battery technology, and, as stated in the press release, http://www.toshiba.co.jp/about/press/2005_03/pr2901.htm that:

    Toshiba will bring the new rechargeable battery to commercial products in 2006. Initial applications will be in the automotive and industrial sectors, where the slim, small-sized battery will deliver large amounts of energy while requiring only a minute to recharge. For example, the battery's advantages in size, weight and safety highly suit it for a role as an alternative power source for hybrid electric vehicles.

    If Toshiba is on track commercially with this innovation in battery technology, then it seems to be an obvious fit for a PHEV to be built by Toyota. Indeed, it appears to be a rather compelling use-case.

  9. #8

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean


    Agree on your approach for renewable
    way based use of (solar) energy in (hopefully
    near) future for transportation, household
    energy supply and industrial production.
    Holes are being shot while you are reading.
    Most human (economical) activities are
    performing the opposite.

    I will name only one example:
    Massive production of 'old' cars for and in the
    republice of China by European and
    American car companies:
    Chinees government 'tries' to have more
    small cars being built.(with an effort?)
    They are crying for hybrids;
    Prius will be built there.....(of course)

    It hurts

  10. #9

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    The article is rather careless. In addition to the previously pointed out error in re phosphate, the caption under the periodic table snippet is misleading in at least two ways. First it says truly that hydrogen doesn't naturally exist on its own, then introduces lithium as something different without making the necessary point that in this respect it's exactly the same, also requiring a large input of energy, somewhat larger than the energy it will yield.

    Also, lithium cannot simply be carried around; it reacts at room temperature with water, releasing hydrogen and forming the corrosive substance LiOH, similar to NaOH (lye, short for alkali. LiOH and NaOH are both alkalis; the metals in them are alkali metals). So someone who innocently tried to do a portage with a chunk of metallic lithium would soon drop it, probably with a loud outcry.

    It doesn't seem right for such an article to omit any mention of AC Propulsion
    (http://www.acpropulsion.com ), either.

    --- Graham Cowan, former hydrogen fan
    boron as energy carrier: real-car range, nuclear cachet

  11. #10

    Lithium Batteries & What They Mean

    Lee Dekker: The battery or energy storage device you describe is a staple of science fiction. Whether it's a Shipstone (Friday - Robert Heinlein) or a Dilithium crystal (Star Trek), compact energy storage devices are usually not described in great detail - they're just quietly there.

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