By on November 29, 2009

Lithium is known as a reliable treatment of depression. A double dose of lithium with a touch of cobalt is now prescribed by Nissan to cure range anxiety and other assorted phobias afflicting owners of plugins. The Nikkei [sub] writes that Nissan “has nearly completed development of a lithium ion battery that can power an electric vehicle for 300km on a single charge, about double the capacity currently possible.”

Nissan hopes to sell cars powered by the Energizer-bunny of all plugins by 2015.

Otaku (nerd) alert:

According to the Nikkei, “lithium ion battery capacity is largely determined by electrode performance. Nissan is raising capacity by improving the positive electrode, specifically, using nickel and cobalt, not only manganese. The new battery can store about twice as much electricity as batteries with positive electrodes made only from manganese. It is robust enough for practical use, able to withstand 1,000 or so charge cycles.”

Nissan  figures the new double-dose battery will cost about the same as conventional lithium ion ones to produce. The amount of (obscenely expensive)  cobalt is negligible, says the Nikkei.

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21 Comments on “New Nissan Battery Keeps Going, and Going, and Going...”


  • avatar
    don1967

    An electric car with 300km range sound very promising, until you imagine all those coal-fired generators struggling to keep the power grid from collapsing.   How is this progress?

    • 0 avatar
      jmo

      Don,
      I assume you have the g/c02 per kilometer and $ per kilometer numbers for both technologies?  Or are you just assuming?  You know what happens when you ass-u-me, right?

  • avatar

    I’ll believe it when it gets tested independently

  • avatar
    Sutures

    Well crap, I can’t even complain about those numbers… 1000 charges and 186mile range means that the battery (or vehicle) would last about 6 years if you only need to drive 90 (or so) miles a day.  That’s actually starting to be… reasonable.
     
    Now, lets see some real price numbers…

  • avatar
    joeaverage

    Hmmm – we continue exporting American dollars for oil or we switch our commuter cars to electric power where able and support their energy needs with American electricity generated by a combination of hydro, nuke, wind and solar. We’ve got how many million rooftops that could make more energy than the structure under that roof consumes??? A $100 per momnth electricity bill can be offset by a 6KWH home solar system. Add a couple more KWH to offset what an electric car consumes. You’d be surprised how little rooftop a solar array like that covers. My 1700 sq ft ranch house would have space for about 20 kwh at current efficiency rates. Then we rely on coal and hydro and nukes or wind to make up the difference.
    Naysayers please consider what your resistance to “progress” could cost us. WWII burned up most of our domestic oil reserves. If we pursued a policy of “drill baby drill” or keep on exporting American dollars for foreign oil what does this do for us long term?
     
    Get a small part of America’s commuter cars on electric power. Let the technology develop and continue to mature. Battery tech will improve once thousands or millions of EVs are being manufactured. Sure there are well entrenched interests who try to make us believe that another century of burning oil while we wait for the mythical hydrogen economy which promises us fuel-cells while really intending to move us to hydrogen fueled internal combustion engines made by the same players and fueled by the same players – i.e. no real progress.
    EVs will continue to go significantly further per KWH of electricity than it takes to refine oil into gasoline or make hydrogen.

    • 0 avatar
      Kendahl

      We’ve got how many million rooftops that could make more energy than the structure under that roof consumes???
       
      I read about a guy in Colorado who did that. Only cost him half a million dollars. This will be practical only when you can replace your roof with solar cells for the same price as shingles.

    • 0 avatar

      Much of your hydrogen information is likely out of date.  Lots of progress has been made on developing hydrogen vehicles and more continues to be made.  http://cafcp.org/progress
      And don’t forget that a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle is a full electric vehicle too!  The technologies of batteries and fuel cells work best together.

  • avatar
    joeaverage

    Can’t seem to edit today with my Linux powered Opera browser. I think the problem is my browser rather than the website.
     
    Anyhow just wanted to add that if we use up all of our own oil how do we fuel our military in some future scenario where we have to defend our borders?

    • 0 avatar
      Tosh

      I also haven’t been able to edit (edit box just ‘loading’ for eternity) for a couple of weeks now (OS 10.5 and Firefox 3.5).
      I’m with you, JoeAvg. Even the military is working on a diesel-electric hybrid platform. I think it’s sad but predictable to read about the resistance to switching over to electric power. What are you people afraid of? If you don’t like it, don’t buy it?

  • avatar
    jmo

    This will be practical only when you can replace your roof with solar cells for the same price as shingles.
    It would be practical when the net present value of the future stream of utility payments and cost savings exceeds the cost of the solar panels.

  • avatar
    porschespeed

    I’ll be interested to see if it works. I have not seen any other research to indicate that cobalt dosing the electrode. But, I have no idea how Nissan did it….

    Ever since the mid 70s I am continuousy amazed at how so many Americans do not understand that every dollar sent to the Middle East and Russia to buy oil is a dollar spent directly against American self interest.

    Continuing demand for oil not only exports American money, but it’s who we’ve been exporting to that’s even more troubling.

    We fund/ed governments in the UAE,  Iraq, Iran, and oh yeah, the former USSR/current Russia. The list goes on and on. 

    The really sad part is that we have the tech to drastically reduce energy use around the country, across homes and businesses. But there are too many entrenched interests that continue to hold things back. 

    No miracles, no smoke and mirrors. Simple, proven, tech.

     

    • 0 avatar
      dejal

      And buying Porsches doesn’t hurt the US?  $50,000 and up leaving the country everytime one is bought.  With a screen name of porschespeed you must be on board with that.    I guess Porsches run on unicorn farts.

  • avatar
    Carlson Fan

    “Sure there are well entrenched interests who try to make us believe that another century of burning oil while we wait for the mythical hydrogen economy which promises us fuel-cells while really intending to move us to hydrogen fueled internal combustion engines made by the same players and fueled by the same players – i.e. no real progress.”

    What a joke that is.  Hydrogen cars may make sense in the future but currently it is electric cars that we should be focusing on.  Essentially a hydrogen car is nothing more than an electric car with a fuel cell/hydrogen tank instead of a a battery. So lets work towards that with the huge task of developing the infrastucture to support it versus an electric car where that infrastucture and technology  is already in place.  Almost all re-chargarging would be done at night when power grid demand is the lowest meaning current sytems would easily handle it without any modifications. Or just replace all the incadescent light bulbs in your home with fluorescents to off-set charging your electric car.   

  • avatar
    lprocter1982

    You guys do realize that a large portion of your oil comes from Canada. In fact, Canada is the 2nd highest exporter of oil in the world, after Saudi Arabia, and almost all of that goes to the States. So, thanks for that, US of A.  Keep driving your SUVs and sucking up Canadian  fossil fuels, and we’ll gladly let you. More money in our pckets.

  • avatar
    porschespeed

    And buying Porsches doesn’t hurt the US?  $50,000 and up leaving the country everytime one is bought.  With a screen name of porschespeed you must be on board with that.    I guess Porsches run on unicorn farts.

    Fair enough, with the caveat that the total value of all Porsches ever sold in the US is a tiny drop in the bucket. But yeah, fair enough.

    I get 20 mpg on the car and ride a KLR650 @ 50mpg to balance that off. 

    I’m not suggesting that everyone stop driving. Quite the contrary, if we quit wasting in other areas, we will have more leftover to drive with – sorta.  And will save us a ton of money by defunding some bad actors.

    Hydrogen is at best a storage medium, at worst, a complete maguffin.  Beyond that, the amount of hydrogen that would be released refuling millions of hydrogen vehicles would cause even worse greenhouse issues. (Though few want to talk about that…)

  • avatar
    Robert.Walter

    People speak of H2 as if it is some easy to exploit universal panacea.  To the best of my knowledge, H2, in the form we can use it, comes from two sources: 1) electrolysis (i.e. more electrical generating capacity will have to be brought on-line), and/or b) as a by-product of refining petroleum.

    I will be interested to see how many others are identified by the B&B in response to this post.

    • 0 avatar

      Hydrogen is not generated as a byproduct of refining petroleum.  It is used TO REFINE petroleum and make fuels cleaner, like removing the sulfur from diesel.  This of course is in addition to hydrogen which is used for making peanut butter, steel, light bulbs, fertilizer, cooling power generators and fueling devices like fuel cells which can power your laptop, home or car.
      Using hydrogen and electricity to transform the way we power our cars both have their challenges and whe used together, the most progress will be made.  Battery cars need hydrogen fuel cells to make family-sized, long range vehicles and hydrogen fuel cell vehicles need batteries to capture energy from braking and deceleration.  They work best together.

  • avatar
    folkdancer

    An electric car with 300km range sound very promising, until you imagine all those coal-fired generators struggling to keep the power grid from collapsing.   How is this progress?

    Every time someone mentions electric cars someone jumps in with the above comment. How many times do we have to explain how electric power generating companies work?

    OK here goes for the umpteenth time. Power companies can not shut off or slow down their huge coal, oil, or water generators at night when less power is needed. That is why most power companies lower their rates at night. The huge generators have to run at a level to meet peak demand and can’t be slowed down for non-peak times. We would be doing the power companies a favor and ourselves a favor if we could find uses for power at night like recharging our cars.

    • 0 avatar
      Daanii2

      That’s not exactly how power companies work. They can, and do, slow down power generation from non-peak times. Certainly there is late-night power available at a small marginal cost. But I think it’s a little different from what you describe.

  • avatar

    What Folkdancer is saying is exactly why the Electric Power Research Institute supports development of electric cars. (Please note: I’m going to be one of the last people to buy an electric car unless ICE becomes unaffordable for me. I love ICE, and I love it straight, like my bourbon.)
    Other sources of H2 would include from alcohol, or natural gas. It would be a good storage medium for electricity from wind and solar, although it would be considerably more efficient to store in batteries, if decent batteries can be developed. (Watch this site 20-25 years from now imo.)

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