ZapGo Ltd’s proprietary Carbon-Ion (C-Ion) platform technology, the basis of a new type of battery that is safer and less expensive than existing battery technologies, offers the prospect of charging electric vehicles in five minutes and providing a 350-mile (500 km) range, comparable to traditional combustion engine vehicles.
“Our eventual goal is making EVs available that perform the same as petrol and diesel vehicles, not only in requiring the same time to recharge as it does to fill a tank with fuel, but also in offering the same showroom sticker price as conventional vehicles,” said Stephen Voller, CEO and Founder of ZapGo. “Because of the safety risks involved with lithium batteries, it would be difficult for them to achieve the same milestones. Even the new type of solid-state lithium batteries require packaging, cooling and safety engineering that will always make EVs more expensive.”
Voller added, “While the advantages of our C-Ion platform technology will eventually impact the EV market, another goal involves the mobile phone market, so that these phones can be charged in a few seconds and then last all day. Utilising C-Ion in this way would be a special benefit to airline passengers, who have long been warned about the fire risk of carrying difficult-to-recycle lithium batteries in their luggage.”
Developed by ZapGo in Oxford, UK, the solid-state C-Ion cells contain no lithium or cobalt, ensuring relative lower cost and safety. Using only an advanced form of carbon combined with a new type of ionic electrolyte, C-Ion cells cannot catch fire because there is nothing inside that will burn, while the ionic electrolytes act as a fire suppressant. The advanced materials inside can also be recycled at the end of life.
C-Ion cells can be packaged into a vehicle’s structural components such as the chassis and panels, allowing the vehicle to safely accept charge at this rate. ZapGo has already demonstrated this technology on an autonomous vehicle that is charged in just 35 seconds, which is 100 times faster than existing EVs can charge. Originally developed for grid energy storage, C-Ion technology can also be used to boost and buffer the electric grid, supporting a new range of chargers operating in the 350kW to 1,500kW (1.5MW) range, 10 times faster than existing superchargers.