Recent announcements from solid-state battery developers have suggested deployments by automotive in electric vehicles will begin in the near-term. However, the latest Strategy Analytics Electric Vehicle Service (EVS) report, Can Solid-State Batteries Reach Mass Production? suggest delays to deployments in battery electric vehicles to 2030.
Toyota has announced that the first deployment of its solid-state battery cells will be in hybrid models, not battery electric, in 2025. The technology trial was originally planned to take place during the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games, but that development was delayed by technical challenges as well as the COVID-19 pandemic. Toyota’s solid electrolyte is sulfide-based, which requires a moisture-free production environment that would otherwise be prone to generate hydrogen sulfide gas, which threatens the performance of the battery cell.
“Other solid electrolytes have challenges in conducting lithium ions between electrodes,” noted Kevin Mak, principal analyst in the Global Automotive Practice (GAP). “Then there are challenges in producing these electrolytes, including the need for high temperatures and complicated processes, that are presently limiting the ability to achieve volume production and keeping costs high. Additionally, the solid structure and fused components in solid-state battery cells are susceptible to delamination when using a silicon anode and pose a challenge to recycling. The dendrite issue doesn’t go away either as minute cracks in the solid electrolyte can occur.”
With the higher cost, the first deployments will be limited to premium models until technology breakthroughs and production maturity enable volume production for battery electric vehicles in the 2030s timeframe. Prior to this, semi-solid-state cells and implementation in hybrid models will provide the test beds for true solid-state battery technology.
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