Sakti3 is a seven-year old start-up based at the University of Michigan that last week it announced that it has perfected a solid state lithium-ion battery that costs considerably less than conventional liquid batteries and has double the power density. If true, that could mean that the range of a car like the Tesla Model S would jump from 230 miles to 460 miles.
Solid state batteries have solid electrodes and electrolytes, compared to traditional lithium ion batteries that use a liquid electrolyte. That means solid state batteries are less flammable and are safer to operate as well.
The Holy Grail of battery technology is a device that can be manufactured for $100 per kilowatt hour or less. Sakti3 claims its new battery hits that target. By comparison, Tesla says it presently spends $200 – $300 per kilowatt hour to buy batteries for its Model S, adding substantially to its cost. The Sakti3 battery has a power density per cell of 1100 watt hours per liter – one of the highest ratings of any battery available.
The company is not producing its solid state battery yet but says it has made prototypes using “fully scalable equipment.” As our sister site CleanTechnica reports though, the ramifications of a $100 per kWh battery are massive and industry-altering, so should production really get going, it could change the EV market for the better.
Take the Sakti3 solid state battery, combine it with electrodes made from hemp instead of graphene and you start to see affordable, long range electric vehicles are no longer the stuff of science fiction. As Pogo might say, “We have seen the future and it is here.”