Toyota will unveil a prototype equipped with an advanced solid-state battery pack in 2021 and plans to begin producing solid state batteries in the early 2020s.
It is claimed that the electric vehicles being developed by Toyota with solid-state battery technology will have a range more than double that of an EV with a traditional lithium-ion battery. What’s more, it could take as little as 10 minutes to charge an EV with a solid-state battery. Solid-state batteries also have a reduced risk of fire compared with lithium-ion alternatives.
Nikkei Asia reports that Toyota has over 1,000 patents involving solid-state batteries and is leading the race to bring an EV with a solid-state battery to the market.
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To prepare for the influx of solid-state batteries, auto material manufacturers in Japan are establishing new infrastructure. For example, Mitsui Mining and Smelting, will start up a pilot facility that’s set to make solid electrolytes for the batteries. Other companies including oil firm Idemitsu Kosan and Sumitomo Chemical are also developing solid electrolytes.
The Japanese government has been actively supporting the domestic development of solid-state batteries and is currently putting together a 2 trillion yen ($19.2 billion) fund to support decarbonization technology. The ultimate goal is to support the development of the necessary mass-production infrastructure. The government will also assist in procuring the materials needed for solid-state batteries, including lithium.
Other car manufacturers are developing solid-state batteries, including Volkswagen that plans to produce the advanced batteries as soon as 2025 with a U.S. joint venture.