Long road trips can be thrilling, but they can also be anxiety-inducing, especially when you’re driving an electric car. The fear of running out of battery power, commonly known as “range anxiety,” has plagued electric vehicle (EV) owners for years. But thanks to a groundbreaking innovation from researchers at Pohang University of Science & Technology, this fear may soon become a thing of the past.
The underlying issue with current EV batteries lies in the primary source material used for the battery’s anode – graphite. While graphite is commonly used in lithium-ion batteries due to its ability to hold and discharge power, it has limited energy storage capacity. That’s where silicon comes into play. Silicon has a much higher energy storage capacity than graphite, making it an ideal candidate for improving the range of EV batteries.
However, there’s a catch. Silicon has a tendency to expand as it stores energy, which can lead to safety hazards, especially when installed in electric cars. But the innovative professors at Pohang University of Science & Technology found a solution. They created a binding material that prevents silicon from expanding while still allowing it to hold a significant amount of charge. This breakthrough discovery has the potential to increase the energy density of lithium-ion batteries and extend the driving range of electric vehicles.
According to Professor Soojin Park, one of the researchers involved in the project, silicon-based anode materials could potentially increase the driving range of EVs at least tenfold. Imagine driving your Tesla Model S cross country without worrying about recharging until you reach the 3,000-mile mark. This revolutionary innovation has the potential to transform the way we perceive electric cars and make long-distance travel in EVs more appealing than ever before.
But this isn’t the only exciting news in the world of electric vehicles. Kia, known for its commitment to electrification, is set to unveil its three-row 2024 EV9. This midsize SUV combines stunning design with advanced technology, including Level 3 autonomous capabilities and up to 379 horsepower. Kia aims to achieve a range of up to 300 miles with the EV9, further solidifying its position as a key player in the EV market.
In addition to groundbreaking innovations in EV technology, major chains like 7-Eleven and Subway are stepping up their game by installing electric charging stations at their locations across the United States. Charging stations have historically been difficult to find and inconveniently located, leading to frustration among EV owners. However, with these new installations, drivers can charge their vehicles while enjoying a hot dog or a sub. 7-Eleven’s charging network, called 7Charge, offers fast-charging capabilities at select stores and incorporates CHAdeMO and Combined Charging System (CCS) plugs. Subway’s charging network, known as Subway EV Charging Oasis, provides amenities like restrooms, WiFi, playgrounds, and picnic tables while your vehicle charges.
Despite these exciting advancements in electric vehicle technology and infrastructure, a recent study by J.D. Power reveals some challenges that EV owners still face. The study found that overall owner satisfaction with electric vehicles is lower than that of gas-powered cars due to factors such as high recall rates and issues with service advisors’ knowledge. As the electric vehicle segment continues to grow, addressing these challenges and improving customer service will be crucial to ensuring a positive ownership experience.
While there are still drawbacks to consider when switching to an electric car, such as increased electricity prices and slower charging rates at home, the future looks promising for electric vehicles. Revolutionary innovations in battery technology, like the silicon-based anode materials developed by researchers at Pohang University of Science & Technology, have the potential to transform the driving range of EVs and alleviate range anxiety.
With companies like Kia pushing the boundaries of design and technology and major chains like 7-Eleven and Subway investing in electric charging infrastructure, electric cars are becoming more accessible and convenient than ever before. As we continue to embrace the electric revolution, it’s clear that the future of transportation is electric – and it’s revolutionizing the way we drive.