The two main questions that are always surrounding electric cars or EVs are 1) how far can you travel in one, and 2) how fast can you charge the battery. The answer? Further and faster as we head deeper into the future. Congrats, Sherlock Holmes. You for sure cracked the case on this one.
Anyway, a new age of lithium-ion batteries with silicon anodes is currently being tested in the world of EVs. According to those who are heavily invested in it, silicon-anode lithium-ion batteries can apparently be charged from 0-100% in less than 10 minutes.
*Image credit: Enovix
Silicon-anode lithium-ion batteries – fast-charging batteries?
Enovix, one of the leaders in advanced silicon-anode lithium-ion battery development and production, is currently very invested in this very tech. Their test units are said to be able to maintain 93% of their overall capacity even after exceeding 1,000 charges as well as months of testing at elevated temperatures.
Enovix’s battery tech has already been implemented in products like smartwatches (but they did not specify for which brand or company). Plus, they were also able to come up with this silicon-anode lithium-ion batteries in different sizes. The possibilities are seemingly endless for this, especially in BEVs.
*Image credit: Tesla
What’s good about silicon anode?
Compared to graphite, the usual suspect and material for anode usage, using silicon as an alternative offers bigger energy storage capacity as well as faster charging speeds. On the downside, silicon’s main problems lie in its technical issues like swelling, which is the reason why graphite was chosen in the first place.
With that being said, Enovix also claims that its ‘BrakeFlow’ tech is able to negate that major issue which increases the overall abuse tolerance in lithium-ion batteries. If this is true, then EV batteries with silicon anodes are indeed destined for the future of electric mobility.
*Image credit: Enovix
Who else is working on this new EV tech?
Apart from Enovix, the US Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC) is also invested in other companies like Amprius and Nanoramic who are working on silicon-anode battery tech for EVs.
Another company called Enevate is working on a different type of silicon anode with several EV manufacturers for some juicy 2024 models from the likes of Renault, Nissan, and Mitsubishi. They claim that their battery tech can travel up to 400km with only a five-minute charge (no mention of kW rate or battery capacity, unfortunately).