Battery technology promises twice the range

Battery technology promises twice the range

By eeNews Europe

Bosch will use its knowledge along with high financial funds to achieve the breakthrough of electromobility, said Bosch CEO Volkmar Denner. In this context, Denner called the acquisition of the Californian start-up company a “contribution”. “Along with our in-house developments, Bosch now disposes of decisive expertise and related patents in the field of innovative solid-state cells for lithium-ion batteries,” he said, adding that “the solid-state lithium-ion battery cell could well be the decisive technology to achieve a breakthrough”, because “a disruptive start-up technology is meeting the broad system expertise and the funding of a global enterprise.” According to Denner, the technology has the potential to more than double the energy density in the batteries by 2020, based on the Seeo technology. This would translate into twice the driving range for battery-electric cars: A vehicle that today can drive 150 km without recharging could then cover 300 km – at lower cost.

The Seeo acquisition is in line with Bosch’s electromobility strategy. The company has already implemented some 30 series projects. At the same time, researchers and developers in Bosch’s lab (and likewise elsewhere) are busy to further develop the battery technology and bring electric driving to series maturity. The company believes that by 2025, about 15 percent of all new cars will have an electric powertrain, in Europe even 33 percent (including hybrid powertrains).

Hitherto, Bosch developed batteries in a joint venture with GS Yuasa and Mitsubishi. Seeo’s technology will now complement this collaboration.

There are multiple approaches to increase the power content of a battery. For instance, the cell chemistry of the cathode and anode material plays a significant role. Current lithium-ion batteries are limited in their capacity because the anode consists widely of graphite. The solid-state technology enables manufacturers to exclusively use lithium for this electrode, which greatly increases the energy storage capability. In addition, the cells in such batteries do it without liquid electrolytes and thus are not flammable – currently another weakness of electric drives.

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