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Tesla aims to charge electric cars in five minutes
|Image by Telsa Mortors Web.|
Battery swapping aside:Tesla Motors is pushing the limits of charging technology to make electric vehicles as practical as gasoline.
Electric vehicles take a long time to recharge. However, in an effort to make electric vehicles more practical, Tesla Motors is rapidly reducing charging times. Last September, the company unveiled a network of “super-charge” stations designed exclusively for its Model S and future electric vehicles, which could half charge a battery in 30 minutes.
In May, it announced an update that reduced that time to 20 minutes. Now, Tesla CTO J.B. Straubel says the company could reduce the time it takes to fully charge the battery to as little as five minutes; not much more than it takes to fill a tank of gas when we need to fill any conventional car tank.Straubel does not refer to the swap battery technology recently introduced by Tesla (see Why Tesla Thinks It Can Make Battery Swapping Work ”). That system does not charge the batteries quickly. You simply take out a dead battery and replace it with a fully charged one. Straubel is talking about what might be a more attractive option for drivers: recharging the car battery while waiting.
“It is not going to happen in a year. It will be difficult. But I think we can get to five or 10 minutes, ”Straubel said in an interview with MIT's Technology Review magazine.
One of the challenges for fast charging is that powering the battery too fast can cause it to overheat. To avoid damaging the battery, the external charger must be in communication with the electronic components that monitor the condition of the batteries, including their voltage and temperature, and quickly adjust charge rates accordingly.
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