Teslas, in the future, may have a century of battery life if Tesla’s research group in Canada can turn their recent research paper into reality. Dr. Jeff Dahn and his team at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada have been working exclusively with Tesla since 2015 to develop new Li-ion batteries.
Tesla described the partnership in 2015 as, “Jeff Dahn is helping to develop Li-ion batteries with improved lifetime, increased energy density, and lower cost. This collaboration is a natural fit.” While it remains to be seen if the research team’s dream will be developed into a working production battery, the partnership appears to have paid off.
Tesla recently renewed their contract with Dahn’s team, ensuring a partnership through 2026. In addition, Dahn has added Dr. Chongyin Yang and Dr. Michael Metzger to his team in order to further enhance the research group’s ability to file for battery patents on behalf of Tesla. Dr. Yang is actually Tesla Canada’s Research Chair. He’s worked in energy storage and conversion for over thirteen years, having come from the University of Maryland in the United States. Dr. Metzger, a former Bosch scientist, brings an interesting background in battery design with an emphasis in desalination uses.
The team recently wrote a research paper called “Li[Ni0.5Mn0.3Co0.2]O2 as a Superior Alternative to LiFePO4 for Long-Lived Low Voltage Li-Ion Cells” in the Journal of the Electrochemical Society. The paper focuses on using a nickel-based battery (NMC) to allow for a greater number of charging cycles. The researchers specifically state, “NMC cells, particularly those balanced and charged to 3.8 V, show better coulombic efficiency, less capacity fade and higher energy density compared to LFP cells and are projected to yield lifetimes approaching a century at 25 °C.”
Maintaining a temperature of 25 °C (77 °F) may be unrealistic in real-world conditions. But, Teslas do have the best battery thermal management systems currently available on the market. It has long been known that relatively stable temperatures result in a prolonged battery life expectancy.
Many prospective EV owners wonder about the life expectancy of Tesla batteries, noting that the replacement cost for a car’s battery pack can range from $12,000 - $22,000. There isn’t a consistent answer to the life expectancy question.
Current Tesla battery life can be affected by factors including temperature, discharge activity, Fast Charger use, and driving habits. It is believed that Tesla batteries typically last approximately 1,500 charge cycles. If Tesla’s research team can implement the new battery design in the future, Tesla battery life expectancy would indeed increase (becoming an heirloom for us to pass on to our children’s children.)
Tesla drivers will now know when a Supercharge station is congested and will have the option to change their route to reduce their total travel time.
Not only does Tesla know exactly how many vehicles are charging at each location. It also knows the charge level of each vehicle and it could estimate the wait time for a Supercharger based on how many Teslas are nearby with a low state of charge.
Based on all of this information Tesla can come up with great suggestions on the best place to charge to reduce your overall trip time.
Tesla’s Supercharger rerouting feature will be useful, especially as Tesla starts opening its Supercharger sites to non-Tesla vehicles.
Tesla Model 3 is in the Top 10 best selling cars of 2021
Tesla’s Model 3 has landed a spot as the ninth best-selling car in the world for 2021, which is up 40% from 2020, according to Fiat Group World. The Model 3 accounted for 508,000 unit sales in 2021.
According to the data provided by Fiat Group World, the Toyota RAV4/Wildlander came in at number one, which is up from the second spot in 2020. The Ford F-150 pickup truck landed at number seven, down from the number 6 spot in 2020.
Toyota and Honda have four vehicles in the top 11 spots, while Nissan, Ford, and Tesla only have one spot.
Fiat Group World notes that the Tesla Model 3 continues to rise within the list and is expected to rank in the top five by the end of this year.
Additionally, the author adds that the Model Y is expected to outsell the Model 3 by the end of 2022, which means both the Model 3 and Model Y would both sit in the top five spots. The Model Y currently sits at the 19th spot on the list, which means the Model Y accounted for 392,000 sales in 2021. It rose from the 262nd spot, or 412%, from 2020.
It’s worth noting that the Model Y began its deliveries in 2020, which explains the significant jump in 2021. Earlier this year, it won U.S. News’ Best Luxury Electric SUV award.
Of the 110 vehicles included, the Model S and Model X did not make the cut. This is most likely due to their higher price tag.
With this data available and Fiat Group World’s insights, it’s entirely possible for the Model Y to overtake the Model 3 this year. And with Tesla constantly adding new features and bringing back ‘Enhanced Autopilot,’ consumers will likely jump on-board.
Tesla is currently battling global supply chain restraints, and Musk said at Bloomberg’s Qatar Economic Forum that these restraints are a bigger issue than competition from other competitive automakers.
“Our constraints are much. More in raw materials and being able to scale up productions,” Musk says.
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