Nissan’s solid-state battery ambition has taken an important step forward. The manufacturer has established a prototype facility for making solid-state cells at the Nissan Research Center in Kanagawa Prefecture, Japan.
The plant is an important step in Nissan’s plans to launch a solid-state battery-powered electric vehicle by 2028. Then and now, in FY 2024, a pilot production line will be built at the company’s Yokohama plant.
Engineers will study the materials, design and manufacturing processes used in this line, so that in 2028 the cost per solid-state battery can be reduced by $ 75 per kilowatt and then by $ 65. This, Nissan says, will put the EVs at a price equivalent to their combustion.
Solid-state batteries are seen as an important next step in EV technology. The main difference is the conversion of the liquid-based electrolyte used in conventional EV batteries into a thin solid electrolyte, often made from ceramic or solid polymers.
Compared to lithium-ion battery cells typically found in an EV, solid-state cells are lightweight, potentially cheaper and faster to charge due to the use of less expensive raw materials. It’s easier said than done, but Nissan’s goal is the end of the 2020s. Rival Japanese carmaker Honda already expects to release a solid-state-powered EV in the second half of this decade.
Mercedes-Benz, Stellantis, Hyundai and Kia have looked beyond their own companies for solid-state research, all of which are investing in US-based factory energy. Mercedes expects “a limited number of cars to have solid-state batteries as part of a smaller series over the next five years” while Stellantis aims to have one such battery pack in a car by 2026. Hyundai and Kia have no public target.
Speaking about Nissan’s internal solid-state plan, R & D’s executive vice president Kunio Nakaguro said:
“Nissan has led electrification technology through a wide range of R&D activities ranging from molecular-level battery component research to the development of safe, high-performance EVs.
“The knowledge gained from our experience supports the development of all-solid-state batteries and we have gathered important basic technologies. In the future, our R&D and manufacturing departments will continue to work together to utilize this prototype manufacturing facility and accelerate the practical application of all-solid-state batteries. “
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