For most people, switching to an electric vehicle comes with a small number of valid concerns. Perhaps chief among them is the charging problem. Currently, charging is a slow process — slower than filling your gas tank, at least. Plus there are still way more gas stations dotting the country than there are charging stations. The charging infrastructure absolutely has to improve in order for EVs to truly become commonplace. Now, new battery tech from StoreDot may help battery charging take a huge leap forward.
According to The Guardian, StoreDot has developed a lithium-ion battery that can be full charged in just five minutes. It’s not a one-off prototype, either. They have been mass producing them in their Chinese factory. StoreDot has previously sold fast-charging batteries for other devices, like drones, scooters, and mobile phones. One of StoreDot’s largest investors is Daimler AG, parent company of Mercedes and dozens of other auto brands.
Unfortunately, there is also some bad news to go along with this technological achievement. The StoreDot batteries require a higher-powered charging station to achieve their five-minute charges. The same five minutes would only deliver about 100 miles worth of range using current charging stations.
No More Range Anxiety?
“The number one barrier to the adoption of electric vehicles is no longer cost, it is range anxiety,” said Doron Myersdorf, CEO of StoreDot. “You’re either afraid that you’re going to get stuck on the highway or you’re going to need to sit in a charging station for two hours. But if the experience of the driver is exactly like fuelling [a petrol car], this whole anxiety goes away.”
“A five-minute charging lithium-ion battery was considered to be impossible,” he said. “But we are not releasing a lab prototype, we are releasing engineering samples from a mass production line. This demonstrates it is feasible and it’s commercially ready.”
StoreDot isn’t the only company focusing on battery technology. Tesla recently devoted a whole day to revealing their battery advances. It’s an arms race, as auto companies strive to offer potential EV owners the longest range and the quickest, most convenient charging solutions. Traditional automakers like GM are also betting heavy on battery technology. Many car companies are either investing in their own research, or partnering with other technology companies in order to improve EV batteries.