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Iron phosphate  (Source: MIT)
The new battery isn't ready for commercial development, but it shows great promise

A new battery material created by researchers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) could lead to much faster recharge times for batteries.

MIT professor Gerbrand Ceder and researcher Byoungwoo Kang said the material can discharge energy and recharge nearly 100 times faster than batteries currently used in mobile phones.  Lithium-ion batteries are widely used in laptops as well, and could allow longer battery life and faster recharge time if a user is away from a power source for long durations of time.

"The ability to charge and discharge batteries in a matter of seconds rather than hours may open up new technological applications and induce lifestyle changes," Ceder and Kang sad in the latest edition of Nature.

The duo created a small battery that normally takes six minutes to charge, but used their new traffic flow to recharge the same battery in just 10 to 20 seconds.

It was widely believed the ions and electrons inside the battery moved too slowly, but the researchers noticed that wasn't the case.  They focused on how ions enter nano-scale tunnels aimed at moving electrons around the battery, and eventually created a lithium phosphate coating that helps push ions to the nano-scale tunnels.

Rechargeable lithium batteries used today have the ability to store high amounts of energy, but don't normally release that power, so they discharge very slowly.    

The battery has been supported with federal research money, and two companies have already licensed the technology, MIT announced.  It'd be possible to start mass producing the batteries in two to three years, the MIT researchers said. 

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RE: Good
By Guspaz on 3/13/2009 8:35:27 AM , Rating: 4
That's a good point; for example, the limitations for charging electric cars comes not from how fast the battery, but how many amps you can supply from your house.

A typical computer battery, using mine as an example, stores 80Wh. Ignoring potential losses and conversions and other such things, charging that in 10 seconds would require you to supply 28.8KW of power. Again ignoring conversion to AC, at 120v you'd need to provide 240 amps. Most circuits in your home are 10 to 20 amps.

RE: Good
By Lord 666 on 3/13/2009 8:54:05 AM , Rating: 2
You forgot to mention the infrastructure and electrical generation method upgrades to make a 240 outlet available in every home.

This is where nuclear power comes in as wind/solar/wishful thinking are not going to power these needs.

RE: Good
By shin0bi272 on 3/13/09, Rating: 0
RE: Good
By StevoLincolnite on 3/13/2009 12:17:38 PM , Rating: 2
Australia uses 240 volts, and without Nuclear Power Generation, Granted it has much smaller consumer demand because of the Population differences, Funny thing is though, I started reading this thread a few hours ago and the Power went out completely across town.

Plus Australia by law will have only Energy Efficient Lighting available, which might help offset energy needs to an extent.
Plus I did hear some talk about the Government upgrading the Power grids so they were all computer controlled so they would have higher efficiency.

RE: Good
By croc on 3/13/2009 6:08:04 PM , Rating: 2
"Plus I did hear some talk about the Government upgrading the Power grids so they were all computer controlled so they would have higher efficiency."

Talk is cheap... Maybe one infrastructure project at a time? Start out with the broadband roll-out, please... Most of our power grid is already on a SCADA system of some sort, but the seperate companies don't have inter-connects between their systems. Not to mention that the loss of a grid, say in Perth, cannot be easily supplemented by a grid in SA. Distance is a factor, but total power generation nation-wide is just barely adequate. Gas fired power could be brought on line faster, but it would still take several hours to get a GFPS on the grid. Power grids are perhaps the most complicated systems of any nation's infrascructure. Very few people really understand just how complicated they truly are.

RE: Good
By StevoLincolnite on 3/14/2009 12:09:44 AM , Rating: 2
The Government isn't building the NBN, hence why they had the tender process to find an ISP that would.

I agree, the power systems are complex, but some upgrades to increase efficiency would be a good way to cut down our carbon foot print and hopefully lower prices.

RE: Good
By TomZ on 3/13/2009 12:30:30 PM , Rating: 1
This is where nuclear power comes in as wind/solar/wishful thinking are not going to power these needs.
Nah, I propose that we move everyone/everything else out of Texas and cover the entire state with Solar cells. How's that for energy independence! See, it can be done.

RE: Good
By FITCamaro on 3/13/09, Rating: 0
RE: Good
By s12033722 on 3/13/2009 1:42:00 PM , Rating: 2
240 V outlets are available in just about every home. You just use 2 120 V lines at opposite phases. How do you think most ovens and dryers run?

RE: Good
By JediJeb on 3/13/2009 2:27:30 PM , Rating: 2
I was thinking the same thing, but noticed in the original post it mentioned 240A not volts. Most 240V outlets only have at best 30A breakers in most homes. To run at 240A would require a cable over an inch in diameter I imagine. With amperage that high any crack in the insulation of the wire would be very dangerous and the heat generated when pulling a load on it would be very high I think.

RE: Good
By mindless1 on 3/14/2009 12:31:33 AM , Rating: 2
Most households only have 100A, sometimes 200A total service. Total. The entire grid would need redone from one end to the other to support everyone rapid charging cars.

Cracks in wire insulation are not dangerous because of current, they are dangerous because of voltage. If the wire is the appropriate gauge, the thermal density will be no higher than any other wiring in your home. Of course the total heat produced is higher, but it is not much of a factor unless someone tries to cheat codes and put too small a capacity run in with an oversized breaker trying to get more juice to their car.

RE: Good
By Marlonsm on 3/13/2009 4:08:01 PM , Rating: 2
That's a good point

But how about putting one battery like that on your house, so it'd be slowly recharged during the day(maybe even using solar panels also) and when you need to recharge you laptop, or even your car, all those amps would come from that battery.

This way the infrastructure wouldn't need big changes.

RE: Good
By mindless1 on 3/14/2009 12:36:18 AM , Rating: 2
Then you're paying twice as much for costly batteries, both of which having to be replaced in a few years. It would be more energy friendly to just make both batteries the same with a quick-disconnect modular cartridge design, and a lift swaps one battery pack with another, instead of suffering the loss in inefficiency to discharge one to charge the other.

However for practical purposes electric cars already cost too much because of the battery, a reasonable target is batteries that charge at up to 30A @ 220V input as that will allow use of the existing infrastructure.

RE: Good
By Integral9 on 3/13/2009 9:43:11 AM , Rating: 2
Ok, but your battery is probably only producing somewhere near 12volts, not 120. So I think you need to produce 240A @ 12 volts. Which shouldn't be that hard to do from a standard wall outlet. The problem I think is going to be providing enough "bandwidth" for the Amps to flow through. You need a pretty wide path to get 240A @ only 12V.

RE: Good
By emboss on 3/13/2009 10:59:34 AM , Rating: 2
Guspaz is correct. He's simply using the 80 Wh battery capacity (voltage doesn't matter), and calculating how much power would be needed to recharge that in 10 seconds = 10/3600 hours. Simply dividing 80 Wh by (10/3600) hours gives 28800 W of power for 10 seconds. Regardless of the voltage anywhere.

However, you've got 120 V at the wall, so to pull 28.8 kW out of the wall socket you're going to need 28.8 kW / 120 V = 240 A. Note that this assumes no losses anywhere between the socket and the battery, whereas in real life these would be significant (requiring more than 240 A from the socket).

RE: Good
By Integral9 on 3/13/2009 1:08:55 PM , Rating: 2
(voltage doesn't matter)
Ahh. Thanks. I guess what I was trying to say was that you could take advantage of a voltage drop to produce more current. It would take longer to charge the battery, but at least you wouldn't have to decide between running your house or charging a battery in 10 sec.

RE: Good
By mindless1 on 3/14/2009 12:47:34 AM , Rating: 2
Ok, but it still wouldn't work. 12V*240A=2880W. 2880W/120V=24A. 24A*90% Switching PSU Efficiency = 27A. A typical household AC outlet is only rated for 15A.

Granted, you could wire up a different outlet.

RE: Good
By MrPoletski on 3/16/2009 7:16:26 AM , Rating: 2
I don't see any reason why these 12v batteries cannot be hooked up in series for charging, so you can shunt 240v into 20 cells at once. (12v each)

RE: Good
By SublimeSimplicity on 3/13/2009 10:55:58 AM , Rating: 2
If you're going to recharge at home, two hours is probably more than acceptable. Considering the Tesla has a 53kWh battery pack, a 2 hour charge, with a 220v outlet would be 120A. That's within the realm of possibilities... an electrician (or homeowner with a fully paid life insurance policy) could install the additional circuit panel and outlet in the garage for this.

Where this tech would come into play would be the electric equivalent of gas station. Where a 5-10 minute recharge is required. Since these haven't been built and flowing these levels of charge would be their sole business model, the expense of the equipment wouldn't be as much of a factor.

RE: Good
By rcc on 3/13/2009 12:49:25 PM , Rating: 2
It's only money. Just install a second fixed 60kWH battery with a slightly higher voltage in your garage and charge it all day at a lower rate. Pull in, hook up, and do your 10 second transfer. Oh, and stand clear of the heat sinks. : )

RE: Good
By sdoorex on 3/13/2009 2:11:48 PM , Rating: 2
If the system requires a second battery, why not just save the second and wholly unneeded transfer cycle and just make the batteries swappable. Maybe make some special parking apparatus that when you park, it lowers the discharged battery out of the truck moves it to a charging dock and raises the charged battery into the truck. This would save on the lifespan of the batteries, plus you would have all that wasted thermal energy from the transfer and as such would be cheaper in the long run. Not to mention, this would make a battery leasing system very easy. Just have the stations have the same apparatus but in a drive-over fashion and you pay a monthly plan to be able you use the batteries. As for charging for the energy used, you could have a plan based upon either the number of swaps or you monitor how much energy is used to recharge each battery.

This plan is already being worked on in France by a group called Project Better Place and Renalt. Quoted from :
Project Better Place has begun in October 2007 and is working with Renault on development of exchangeable batteries (battery swapping)

RE: Good
By FITCamaro on 3/13/09, Rating: -1
RE: Good
By Bubbacub on 3/13/2009 4:20:53 PM , Rating: 5
dude you seriously need to chillout

your 'party' lost 4-5 months ago. get over it. why anyone would get so wound up supporting one group of politician scummers over another is beyond me.

RE: Good
By FITCamaro on 3/15/2009 12:08:06 AM , Rating: 2
My "party" is anyone who values their ability to live their lives in peace and without the government telling them what they can and cannot own.

I could care less about Republicans and Democrats.

RE: Good
By MrPoletski on 3/16/2009 7:20:38 AM , Rating: 2
My "party" is anyone who values their ability to live their lives in peace

Can Iraqis vote for your party so you can leave them in peace?

Yeah the party that masterminds the invasion of two countries and spearheads the marginalisation and provocation of a couple more is the party all about peace.

Or am I wrong and you're not a stereotypical republican?

Ron Paul 2012!

RE: Good
By sdoorex on 3/23/2009 1:33:13 PM , Rating: 1
The idea isn't to do it at every home or parking spot but at service stations. Home charging would be done much the same as it is now, you just plug into the wall. Much like gas stations as now. This would not be as extremely expensive as you are saying and would be very economical as the stations and operators could make a lot of money. This would also git rid of the range argument against EVs.

As to the government rant, I said nothing about the government doing anything other than that certain governments are looking into supporting it. I also don't support any party in particular since they only look out for their own interests, not the interest of the people, and as such would appreciate some respect as to refrain from politicizing the thread.

Sorry for taking so long to reply, I was out away from civilization for a week and a half.

RE: Good
By mindless1 on 3/14/2009 12:53:59 AM , Rating: 2
You're overlooking that many homes only have 100A in TOTAL service, and either way, at peak times like in the evening the grid just won't handle that. The last stretch of wiring from the breaker box to the outlet in the garage is the least of the issues, easier, quicker, cheaper, than any other factor.

"Intel is investing heavily (think gazillions of dollars and bazillions of engineering man hours) in resources to create an Intel host controllers spec in order to speed time to market of the USB 3.0 technology." -- Intel blogger Nick Knupffer

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