(p. B6) TOKYO–Toyota Motor Corp. believes it has mastered the technology and production process for a new lithium-ion battery that could slash charging time and double the range of electric vehicles, according to U.S. patent filings and one of the inventors.
On Tuesday [July 25, 2017] Toyota said that by the early 2020s it planned to sell cars equipped with solid-state batteries, which replace the damp electrolyte used to transport lithium ions inside today’s batteries with a solid glass-like plate.
Behind Toyota’s brief statement lay years of research aimed at solving issues that have long bedeviled batteries for electric cars. Current lithium-ion batteries can’t be packed too tightly together because of fire risk. That is one reason electric cars tend to have limited range compared with traditional gasoline-powered cars.
With the solid-state battery, “you can improve the output and reduce the charge time–hopefully,” said Ryoji Kanno, a professor at the Tokyo Institute of Technology. Prof. Kanno led a team including Toyota scientists that discovered the materials for the glass-like electrolyte.
For the full story, see:
McLain, Sean. “Toyota: Battery Can Make Electric Cars Go Farther.” The Wall Street Journal (Fri., July 28, 2017): B6.
(Note: bracketed date, added.)
(Note: the online version of the story has the date July 27, 2017, and has the title “Toyota’s Cure for Electric-Vehicle Range Anxiety: A Better Battery.”)