Solid state batteries: Solid Power substitutes a typical lithium-ion battery’s combustible electrolyte with a sulfide-based solid electrolyte. In light of this, it is anticipated that Solid Power’s all-solid-state battery cells will be safer and more stable throughout a broad temperature range. Furthermore, they will improve energy density compared to Solid Power, further predicting that our all-solid-state batteries will enable less-priced battery pack designs since eliminating expensive and elaborately built battery pack cooling techniques will make it possible. Furthermore, the solid power battery technology is compatible with conventional lithium-ion manufacturing processes, so experts are optimistic that this will hasten the process by which companies bring their products to market and that their cell prices will remain competitive with those of today’s and tomorrow’s advanced-standard lithium-ion battery cells.
What are experts’ opinions on the present battery technology and the future of technology that utilizes solid-state batteries?
The lithium-ion battery cell technology used today and based on a liquid electrolyte has helped introduce the potential of widespread adoption of electric cars. However, 1st-gen technology has reached a practical limit, meaning that further investments into its development will produce diminishing returns due to concerns regarding safety, power density, and stability. This limit was reached because the technology is reaching a point where further development will no longer provide significant benefits. In the absence of future advancements to the performance of electric car battery packs, the demand from consumers for electric vehicles may eventually reach a plateau. To be more specific, we feel that the lithium-ion battery cells that are now available and are based on liquid electrolytes suffer from the following four main difficulties that inhibit the general acceptance of electric vehicles:
- Excessive abuse tolerance. When subjected to conditions that may be considered abusive, the lithium-ion battery cell that uses a liquid electrolyte and is utilized in today’s electric car battery packs has extremely combustible and volatile components that constitute a potential threat to the user’s safety.
- There is a restricted driving range. The current technology for lithium-ion battery cells does not give a sufficient amount of energy density to allow lengthy drives before the need for recharging arises.
- A brief shelf life. According to our best estimates, the battery cells used in today’s electric vehicles will typically have a calendar life (that is, before experiencing significant deterioration) that is shorter than the typical age of a passenger vehicle on the road, which IHS Markit predicted would be 11.9 years in the year 2020. This disparity needs to be addressed so that owners of electric vehicles can keep their vehicles without replacing battery packs for at least as long as they would generally keep their equivalent traditional internal combustion vehicles. This is the minimum amount of time that should be possible.
- The high cost of both the materials and the packaging techniques. Because of their sensitivity to temperature and extremely flammable and volatile components, today’s battery packs increase the cost of producing battery packs.
These challenges can be overcome using solid-state battery cell technology. Many good companies can increase vehicle range, improve interior space and cargo volume, give lower costs and better value and service, and more integrate this kind of solid-state battery cell technology into conventional lithium-ion cell production processes. This is a key barrier to the current battery market. Solid Power has simplified the design of solid-state batteries instead of lithium-ion batteries.
Role of solid-state batteries in the future EV market
Solidstate batteries will have a huge impact on the market for electric vehicles (EVs) when they are eventually commercialized, which according to most projections, will occur between the years 2025 and 2030. This is because solid-state batteries will be able to store more energy, charge more quickly, and be safer than conventional liquid lithium-ion batteries.
Some other advantages of solid-state batteries
A lithium-ion battery makes use of a liquid electrolyte solution, which, when exposed to high temperatures, has the potential to become volatile and combustible. Because of their potential to catch fire in the event of a short circuit or other kinds of physical damage, these batteries are categorized as a safety concern. In addition, the only method to increase the energy density of electric vehicles is to install additional batteries, which wastes valuable space, makes the vehicle heavier, and pushes up the price.
Solid-state batteries use a solid electrolyte, which is more durable, less explosive, and safer than other types of electrolytes. It means the future of solid-state batteries in the EV market is very bright.