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At present, most electric vehicles use lithium-ion batteries as energy storage devices. However, because lithium-ion batteries contain cobalt, the rare metal, the battery manufacturing cost remains high, which indirectly leads to the rise of the whole cost of electric vehicles, which is not conducive to the promotion and popularization of electric vehicles.
How to reduce the manufacturing cost of batteries has become a difficult problem faced by battery and vehicle companies. To this end, non-governmental research institutions and universities are also actively involved.
Recently, Washington state university (WashingtonStateUniversity) announced together with the Pacific northwest national laboratory (PNNL) developed a sodium ion batteries, the energy storage capability and chemical properties and some commercial lithium ion battery.
At the same time, the sodium-ion battery contains almost no precious metals such as lithium and cobalt, and sodium ions are ubiquitous, which makes the overall battery manufacturing cost drop sharply, helping to reduce the overall manufacturing cost of batteries and electric vehicles.
In addition to high energy density, the on-board power lithium battery also has a long cycle life. After testing, the team found that the sodium-ion battery is similar to some lithium-ion batteries and retains more than 80 percent of its capacity after 1,000 charge-discharge cycles.
Meanwhile, the team developed a layered metal oxide cathode and a liquid electrolyte containing extra sodium ions to promote the continuous movement of the internal sodium ions and ensure the discharge efficiency, in response to the inherent weakness of the sodium ion battery, which does not store as much energy as the lithium ion battery.
At present, the sodium ion battery is in the practical verification stage, for the future large-scale production preparation. This also provides a feasible idea for the future research on lithium - and cobalt-free batteries.