This is not the first time that this team of researchers led by Professor Jeff Dahn has been talked about. Last year, the Dalhousie University team published an article that referred to a battery with a lifespan of one million kilometers. This report has given rise to multiple speculations, suggesting that Tesla could use such a component to store energy in its future robot taxis. But while the subject is still debated, Dahn has decided to return to the fore with an even more interesting new report.
Up to 15,000 discharge cycles
The said report was presented at a conference attended by researcher Lukas Swan. The event provided an opportunity for Jeff Dahn and his team to release updated results from tests that began about three years ago, equivalent to 10,000 recharge cycles. Researchers now estimate that Tesla’s Li-Ion batteries are capable of supporting 2 million miles (3.2 million kilometers).
In April 2019, the same team said that thanks to new technology based on the NMC 532 cathode, Tesla should be able to produce vehicles with energy storage blocks supporting 1.5 million kilometers. Except that according to their new research, Li-Ion technology could theoretically double this battery life expectancy.
As Electrek notes, lab tests showed the batteries still performed very well after 15,000 cycles. Better yet, the level of degradation would be very low when the discharge rate is between 25 and 50%, which is roughly like how Americans use their electric cars.
A necessary design?
Given that these new results show that the longevity of the battery itself appears to be longer than that of the car, one wonders whether it is really necessary to produce accumulators with so many cycles. For Dahn, this is a need, especially if Tesla plans to implement its V2G (Vehicle-to-grid) concept.
Screenshot of the video conference. Video screenshot: DRES Dalhousie / YouTube
Recall that this is a technique that allows the use of electric vehicles to support the network, as is the case with the Nissan Leaf. Admittedly, Elon Musk still seems reluctant about the effectiveness of this kind of application, but the expert sees enormous potential. V2G could help alleviate the bulk needs of large batteries, he said.