Insufficient Lithium supply inhibits mainstreaming the electric car
Without Lithium, we don’t have enough battery manufacturing capacity to meet projected public demand. Read one researches take on how to increase the lithium hoard.
Tofu on the grill, an electric car in every garage
On a recent Honda hybrid field trip to Davis, California, a vegetable-feed, zero environmental impact, green car world, of shared electric vehicular transportation came to mind, as I pondered the self sustaining possibilities exhibited through Honda’s Davis House Project. After all, I’d lived off the public utility grid for a decade or two, why not take “green” living to the next level?
A solar charged BEV in every garage, drought resistant yard landscaping and recycled gray water to sustain it. One of the many challenges encountered along the path to off-the-grid self sustainability, was a -10% charge capacity rate (per year) of my lead-cell Trojan storage batteries. In practice, I’d lose no less than 10% of my “ charge density” per year, leading to a very expensive replacement of my storage battery bank.
The same challenge that effectively held long-range electric car development back for decades, would be corrected through advanced battery development. Lithium is key to what’s referred to in battery jargon as “charge density,” the same key condition that keeps your latest 4-blade copter drone in the air for minutes, as opposed to seconds between charge cycles. Thanks to Lithium, a smaller battery module retains greater charge density, resulting in a greater driving range between charge cycles, and longer battery life. I take the all new 2017 Chevy Bolt out for a drive.
Here's the problem:There’s simply not enough Lithium in the world (currently) to meet projected demand
Tesla’s projected 500,000 car per year manufacturing goal will consume all the world’s Lithium supply, that’s one manufacturer. With Chevrolet, Hyundai, Honda, Mercedes Benz, Toyota, and all major auto manufacturers embracing battery electric, or hybrid car and SUV development, the lynch-pin in mainstream production and marketing of affordable, electrification, may in practice be the main component required in its battery module manufacturing, Lithium.