The next generation of BMW electric vehicles promises up to 620 miles of range, 30 percent quicker charging, and a cheaper production process that cuts significantly down on carbon emissions – all with lithium-ion EV batteries like the rest of the automotive industry. «From an energy density point of view, I would say that we’re facing the optimum lithium-ion cell chemistry in an industrialized application» for large markets, said Simon Erhard, the head of energy, performance, and lifetime for BMW’s forthcoming Gen6 batteries. Additionally, BMW, along with Ford, is one of two primary investors in Colorado-based Solid Power, which aims to be the first company to commercialize this technology – meaning the first solid-state batteries in a production automotive application could be in Fords or BMWs. In the coming years, BMW will undertake its biggest electric push yet, with a range of new models on a dedicated EV platform powered by its sixth-generation batteries that use cylindrical cells and are produced in an assortment of factories worldwide.
But these Gen6 batteries will use lithium-ion cells, and BMW doesn’t see that changing anytime very soon. Solid-state batteries are a long-promised but long-delayed technology that could bring significantly greater energy density to a smaller package than lithium-ion batteries, meaning cars could potentially be built with less weight and less of a battery footprint taking up space in the chassis or battery. In short, they use a solid material as an electrolyte inside the battery cell, not a liquid one like conventional lithium-ion batteries. With such benefits, solid-state batteries are sometimes described as the «Holy Grail,» but the quest to secure them has proved equally challenging.
Date; Dec 05, 2022