Fisker Inc., filed patents this week – under a non-publication request – on flexible solid-state battery technology with record-breaking specs. The new batteries deliver 2.5 times the energy density of typical lithium-ion batteries – with the potential of costing one third of the 2020 projected price of those batteries due to advances in materials and manufacturing. The battery will deliver a vehicle range of more than 500 miles on a single charge, and charging times as low as one minute Solid state technology has 25x more surface area.
Fisker Inc. is the new company led by Henrik Fisker who sold the Fisker Karma company which is now Karma Renovo. The Fisker EMotion luxury electric car, set for production in 2019 that will debut at CES 2018 features a longer wheelbase designed for the world’s largest EV battery pack, stretched cabin for more interior space, sloping aerodynamic front-end with panoramic views and carbon rim wheels. The new tech batteries are not expected to available until 2023.
The design team includes the co-founder of solid-state battery technology pioneer, Sakti3 – a first inventor of the seminal patents. The patent includes claims over novel materials and manufacturing processes that are critical in achieving the required energy density, power and cost targets that are paramount for the widespread use of electric vehicles.
Early results show that Fisker’s solid-state technology enables the construction of bulk three-dimensional solid-state electrodes with 25 times more surface area than flat thin-film solid-state electrodes and extremely high electronic and ionic conductivities – enabling fast charging and cold temperature operation. As a result, Fisker’s battery delivers 2.5 times the energy density of typical lithium-ion batteries – with the potential of costing one third of the 2020 projected price of those batteries due to advances in materials and manufacturing.
Several failure modes affect solid-state batteries, including low power and low rate capability due to high contact resistance and low ionic mobility in the layered electrode structures. Delamination issues due to volume changes and residual stresses during charge/discharge processes; dendrite penetration and stability vs. metallic lithium electrodes; and low ionic diffusion, particularly in low temperature climate due to solid-state material limitations, are also roadblocks. With the newly announced technology, Fisker’s scientists are addressing these technical bottlenecks.
Fisker anticipates the technology may be ready for automotive applications post 2023. Such long lead times are due to the lack of supply chains with particular raw materials and appropriate manufacturing tools, as well as established quality procedures for materials repeatability. Once the technology is fully validated, the battery will deliver a vehicle range of more than 500 miles on a single charge, and charging times as low as one minute – allowing technology to bypass the internal combustion engine and push the automobile into mass electrification. Fisker is in active discussions with various industrial groups around potential non-automotive partnerships – with the possibility of battery applications that may be commercialized much earlier than 2023.
Fisker’s flexible solid-state electrode construction will enable batteries with versatile voltage and form factors. They may be wound in cylindrical cells with higher voltage output, allowing usage of current tooling and machinery for battery packs – in addition to lesser cell-to-cell connections, thermal management and safety requirements. This further reduces battery system costs.
Update 11/14/2017 – We had a question from a reader about the battery technology. He was wondering how much power would be needed to charge at such a fast rate.
“Ok, 500 miles recharged in 1 minute…Let’s assume he means 0-80% as is usual in most communication about fast charging. 500 mi is about 50% further than Tesla’s Model S 100D. His battery density is 2.5x better than current li-ion technology. Combining these two I assume his car wil have a 135 kWh battery.80% of 135 is 108 kWh. To charge 108 kWh in one minute it takes an average charging power of about 6.5 MW or 6500 kW. Compare this to Tesla’s 130 kW Supercharger or the future (2019) 350kW CCS ultra fast charger. When somebody suggests to increase charging power by more than an order of magnitude I think that justifies the question: “How do you suggest that power is transferred to the battery?” “Will charging a Fisker black out the whole city?”
Henrik Fisker President and CEO of Fisker Inc. replied:
“Electrification of automobile in general requires utility companies to consider the future growing needs, especially in home AC charging. For fast charging there are several challenges, but the major bottleneck lies in battery technology. If that is resolved, delivery of power can happen with high voltage charging stations. DC ultra-fast charging is most suitable for commercial locations where some infrastructure is already in place and would require upgrading, potentially with local energy storage, should there not be a direct grid connectivity.
For example, at the University of California Riverside there is four megawatts of solar photovoltaic solar panels that generated electricity that was able to charge the TransPower converted big rig electric truck that has 270 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion batteries. Electric big rig trucks like TransPower ElecTruck converted trucks connect at power stations designed for higher power charging at 70kW.
The much-anticipated 2018 launch of the Fisker EMotion luxury electric vehicle at the Consumer Electronics Show will showcase a proprietary battery module with advanced thermal management using 21700 NCM cells from LG Chem. The company has been simultaneously working on proprietary technology that will enable charging for a 127-mile range in nine minutes. Fisker’s solid-state battery and extreme fast charging technologies will be on full display at the vehicle’s launch at CES.
“Our aggressive vision for the entire EV and automotive industry, not just for Fisker Inc., revolves around making the impossible, possible – and this global solid-state battery breakthrough is reflective of our utmost seriousness in making that vision a reality,” said Henrik Fisker, chairman and CEO of Fisker Inc. “It used to be about the efficiency of the gasoline engine. Now, it’s all about who breaks the code and smashes the barriers to future battery technologies that will enable mass market electrification. Our scientists have been working tirelessly to deliver. We’ve done it, and this is just the beginning.”
“This breakthrough marks the beginning of a new era in solid-state materials and manufacturing technologies,” said Dr. Fabio Albano, VP of battery systems at Fisker Inc. “We are addressing all of the hurdles that solid-state batteries have encountered on the path to commercialization, such as performance in cold temperatures; the use of low cost and scalable manufacturing methods; and the ability to form bulk solid-state electrodes with significant thickness and high active material loadings. We are excited to build on this foundation and move the needle in energy storage.”