Honda Makes Breakthrough in New Battery Technology
Honda says that it has made a breakthrough in battery technology. The Japanese automotive manufacturer, in collaboration with the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) and NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), developed a new battery chemistry called fluoride-ion which demonstrates better performance than lithium-ion batteries, which are currently used, while causing less damage to the environment.
More details regarding the fluoride-ion battery chemistry were published in an article published in the journal, Science. Honda says that the fluoride-ion batteries offer energy density that is 10 times greater when compared to lithium-ion batteries. This translates into a greater ability to store more electricity in a given volume, and thus greater range for an electric car. There will be no need to make the battery pack bigger. There is also no risk of overheating and the new technology does not call for the use of rare metals like cobalt and lithium, the cost of which can be extremely volatile.
The high performance of the battery is thanks to the low atomic weight of fluorine, which is the key component of the battery. The one drawback with the use of fluorine-ion batteries was that the batteries needed temperatures of around 150 degrees Celsius (302 degrees Fahrenheit) to work.
Honda’s breakthrough was finding a way to make these batteries work at room temperature by using a new fluoride electrolyte that the researchers developed. Honda says the technology has been tested successfully in the lab, but it still needs to be commercialized successfully.
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