11.10.2011 Nissan develops 10 minute EV charger
Other than 'range anxiety', probably the next largest drawback of today's electric vehicles is the amount of time it takes to charge up the batteries – even a DC rapid charger takes 30 minutes to deliver an 80% charge.
However, Nissan and Japan's Kansai University have announced that they have developed super-rapid charging system that could charge up an electric vehicle in just 10 minutes – which could be a game changer for the industry.
The new charge station will be more compact than existing units and is expected to cost less than half that of today's DC chargers. The advanced processes and materials used will mean that they aren't likely to be found at your local shop anytime soon, and will still cost around $13,000.
The breakthrough has been made possible due to the creation of a new capacitor electrode that is made from tungsten oxide and vanadium oxide rather than the usual carbon electrodes. The capacitor electrode is able to hold more power and reduce charge times considerably. Nissan claim that, theoretically, the technology could be applied to design a charger that could charge an electric vehicle up in just 3 minutes.
There is a lot of investment and time spent on improving charging units, as many see it as a weakness in adopting a widespread electric vehicle market. Nissan have recently revealed a slim-line DC rapid charging station that will retail for far less than current bulkier units – they expect to sell 5,000 of them by March 2016.
There are already over 30 DC rapid chargers installed across the UK that can charge electric cars such as the Nissan LEAF ot Mitsubishi's i-MiEV in around half an hour – to see where the UK charging points are then use Next Green Car's Zap-Map.
What do you consider to be the greatest drawback to today's electric vehicle technologies? Is it battery capacity and vehicle range or long charging times? Leave your comments below...
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