Limited range is one of the biggest current deterrents to owning an electric vehicle, but technology heavyweight IBM is hoping to help change that.
In 2009, IBM researchers set out to develop lithium-air battery technology that would allow an electric vehicle to have a range of around 500 miles on a single charge, making them more comparable to a gas-burning car. The idea is that a lithium-air battery would borrow oxygen from the air as a vehicle is being driven, creating an air-breathing battery.
Not only does this result in a lighter battery, but one with high energy density that removes the use of heavy metal oxides. The project is now known as the Battery 500 Project and IBM announced two new partners to help make it all a reality. Scientists from Japanese chemical company Asahi Kasei and electrolyte lithium-ion battery maker, Central Glass, will now join IBM researchers in the initiative. With the new minds at work, the company hopes to have a working prototype by the end of next year.
The only major question now is whether or not IBM can make the technology affordable, another reason why EVs demand a premium, though that could be changing.
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