Energy Wants Electric Cars to Charge in 15 Minutes or Less

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The department awarded $19 million to 12 different projects focused on faster battery charging.

Electric vehicles are quieter, cheaper to run and friendlier to the environment than their gas-powered counterparts, but while stopping at the pump takes a few minutes, charging a battery can take a few hours.

But that may change soon.

The Energy Department announced Monday it’s investing $19 million in research to let you juice up your ride in a fraction of the time and go further on the road. The funds are divided among twelve different projects in academia, industry and government, each geared toward building batteries capable of “extreme fast charging.”

Funds were awarded by the department’s Vehicle Technologies Office, which invests in early-stage research for eco-friendly transportation tech. The group ultimately aims to build a battery that costs less than $100 per kilowatt-hour with a range over 300 miles and a charge time of 15 minutes or less by 2028.

Electric car owners today need about eight hours to charge their vehicles with a typical at-home power station. Filling an electrode with ions is a naturally slower process than filling a tank with gas, and boosting the charge rate could damage the battery—or even cause explosions.

Nine of the research teams will focus on building advanced batteries that can charge in 10 minutes or less without losing performance over a 10-year lifetime. The other three groups aim to design a home power station capable of charging up to 60 times faster than current models, cutting the typical recharge time to 15 minutes.

Battery technology research teams:

  • University of California San Diego - $650,000
  • Pennsylvania State University - $1,000,000
  • Regents of the University of Michigan - $1,500,000
  • SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory - $1,500,000
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory - $900,000
  • Microvast Inc. - $1,500,000
  • State University of New York at Stony Brook - $800,000
  • University of Tennessee - $720,000
  • Coulometrics, LLC - $1,000,000

Charging infrastructure research teams:

  • Wireless Advanced Vehicle Electrification Inc. - $4,300,000
  • Delta Products Corporation - $3,500,000
  • Oak Ridge National Laboratory - $2,200,000

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