Technology Behind the Batteries for Electric Cars
Electric powered cars are becoming more popular with each passing year. However, do you know how they actually work? Here, we’ll look at the technology behind the batteries of electric cars.
Understanding the different types of batteries
Did you know there are actually several types of batteries which can be used in electric cars? The one thing they all have in common is that they are rechargeable. The three types of electric car batteries include:
- Nickel Metal Hydride (NiMH)
- Lithium Ion (Li-ion)
Lead acid batteries were the first to be used in cars, developed in 1859. They’re still used in electric cars today and are pretty cheap to produce. The trouble is, when they’re in use, they release dangerous gases and pose an explosion risk if they are recharged. Nickel Metal Hydride batteries are compact, easy to recycle and they don’t contain toxic materials. However, they are the lesser common battery used in today’s electric cars.
Finally, Lithium Ion batteries are the newest type of battery to be used in the industry. They don’t tend to lose as much charge when they aren’t in use and many scientists rate them as the perfect rechargeable battery.
How do they work?
Electric cars have an electrically powered motor instead of a combustion engine. A traction battery pack is used to store the electricity, power the motor and turn the car’s wheels. Once the electricity has drained from the battery, it needs to be recharged.
There are hundreds of electric car charging points situated throughout the country. Some are even capable of charging a car fully within 3 hours. However, if there aren’t any charging points near you, you can also use your home’s electricity. If you do need to charge it at home, you may need to invest in an AC to DC converter. These are easy to pick up from stores such as XP Power.
Charging the battery
As mentioned above, charging the battery at home is generally the best option. However, it’s important to note that it will take a lot longer than the power charge outlets situated throughout the country. You’ll typically need to leave it charging overnight. Work is being done to develop charging outlets capable of recharging an electric car battery within just 10 minutes. However, at the moment 3 hours is typically the least amount of time it will take.
New developments are constantly being made within the electric battery industry. So, in the next few years it’s likely we’ll see further improvements and lighter, more powerful and recyclable batteries.