Cobalt Technologies and Rhodia jointly to develop bagasse-based bio n-butanol market in Latin America
SAIC-GM-Wuling is China’s first vehicle manufacturer to reach 1M units in sales in 2011

Report: Toyota looking to commercialize solid state Li-ion battery in 2015-2020

The Nikkei reports that Toyota Motor Corp. and its partners the Tokyo Institute of Technology and the High Energy Accelerator Research Organization have devised a prototype solid-state Li-ion storage battery and aim to improve and then commercialize it in the 2015-2020 timeframe.

Since the battery can easily be processed into sheet form, it can store several times the amount of electricity, volume for volume, than the current generation of electric vehicle batteries, according to the developers. This added capacity may extend the maximum driving distance per charge for compact EVs to around 1,000 km [621 miles] from the 200km or so for existing vehicles.

Currently, Li-ion batteries with high energy and power densities use organic liquid electrolytes; these, however, require relatively stringent safety precautions, making large-scale systems more complicated and expensive. The use of solid electrolytes—which would address many of those issues associated with the liquid electrolytes—is currently limited by their conductivities.

Toyota and its partners earlier this year published a paper in the journal Nature Materials describing the development of a lithium superionic conductor Li10GeP2S12 that has a new three-dimensional framework structure. Kamaya et al. reported that the new material exhibits an extremely high lithium ionic conductivity of 12 mS cm−1 at room temperature, representing the highest conductivity achieved in a solid electrolyte, exceeding even those of liquid organic electrolytes.

The new solid-state battery electrolyte has many advantages in terms of device fabrication (facile shaping, patterning and integration); stability (non-volatile); safety (non-explosive); and excellent electrochemical properties (high conductivity and wide potential window).


  • Noriaki Kamaya, Kenji Homma, Yuichiro Yamakawa, Masaaki Hirayama, Ryoji Kanno, Masao Yonemura, Takashi Kamiyama, Yuki Kato, Shigenori Hama, Koji Kawamoto and Akio Mitsui (2011) A lithium superionic conductor. Nat Mat. 10, 682–686 (2011) DOI: 10.1038/nmat3066



That is the battery (or equivalent) required to launch 1,000,000,000 + competitive extended range BEVs in a 15 year period and put an end to most ICE vehicles by 2035 or so. A range of 1000 Km would mean one full charge per month for many users.

Meanwhile, more effective new battery technologies, e-ancillaries, roof top energy capture devices and e-drive trains will be developed. ICE development will not be able to keep up.


In case 1000 BEV would be created ICE range extender could become obsolete. Very seldom someone could drive more than 1000 km per day.
Another issue would be accelerated night charging (10 kW). Europe has three phase 0,4 kV standard.


Sure if it was discovered 20 years ago there wouldn't be anymore ICE around, but the history tell us the opposite that battery development can't keep pace with ICE development. Will this claim change that fact ? will see, but even coming from Toyota it looks like hot air to me, such a claim with not evidence to back it up sounds weird to me. I think they just want to show that they take EV seriously. If they had found the perfect electrolyte they would be more secretive about it...


Toyota is usually very cautious with statements like this. They are not exactly EESTOR.

I believe they have some very strong cards in their hands considering this statement.

The timeframe is very narrow so they may be at avery advanced stage.


Toyota has been actively working on Solid States batteries for almost 10 years and it is fair to believe that they may have found ways to do it. It would be in Toyota's interest to mass produce this improved battery in time for their very first extended range BEV in 2015 or shortly thereafter.

Others will certainly arrive at the same results close to the same time frame.

Toyota is much more believable and reliable than ESStor.


We will see an increasing number of new, high tech energy storage and production announcement over the next 24 months. This will be due to the far more disruptive announcement of excess heat energy arriving from a wide variety of atomic H and lattice metal cells.

Can any new battery chemistry compete with low temperature fusion energy - over unity? Doubtful. But there are billions invested in chemistry, combustion, PV and various alternatives. IF batteries with high power density plummet in cost - they may be able to compete. But we're talking about on-demand electric energy available at $0.002/kWh.

Roger Pham

The ICE won't go away in LDV just because battery can supply 600-mi range:

1) In the winter, when the ICE is used in heat-lead mode, when cabin and windshield defrosting is needed, then the thermal efficiency of the ICE is nearly 100%.
2) In long trips, people often drive 1000 miles/day. The longer charging time of a 600-mi battery vs. the quicker refill time in a few minutes for a 600-mi fuel tank means that a PHEV will still be more preferred by most consumers
3) Battery has calendar life issue, meaning that even if not used, battery capacity still deteriorates with time. Have a bigger battery than the daily driving requirement meaning wasting money on excessive battery capacity that will deteriorate with time. Have a smaller battery in a PHEV, but replace it every 5 years to get a spanking new battery with improved performance makes more sense.


Sure Toyota is not EESTOR, we can give more credit to what they say, though they are not beyond vague promises either. They promised a lot of things in different directions lately...but there is certainly some truth in it.


Batteries that can be recharged 5400+ times and expand e-range to 1000 Km at an affordable price would certainly but an end to most if not all engines burning various feed stocks. The ICE era would end progressively but quickly enough.

As soon as such batteries are mass produced, many countries will start banning ICE, not only to reduce oil and liquid fuels imports but to reduce harmful pollution, to increase productivity, to reduce manufacturing cost, to reduce absenteeism, to reduce associated health care cost, to increase exports, to reduce unemployment, to reduce current deficits etc etc.


typing mistake in line two...but an end.... should read put an end...


Roger. I agree. I would still rather have a modest battery and a fuel cell RE.
This battery hits around 500wh/kg if it is 5 times as energy dense as at present.
The main weight of a hydrogen fuel cell is in the carbon fibre tank, which gives you around 2kwh/kg.
You loose some of that in the energy losses in the fuel cell, but given modest progress by the time this battery is available we should be able to hit something like this 4:1 ratio, or at least 3:1 in energy to weight ratio compared to a battery only solution.
Using the weight of the Nissan fuel cell as a guide a 17kw RE should weigh around 10kg.

A really decent 40 mile all battery range would allow normal daily use not to go over 80% of the battery without even breaking into the topping up capabilities of the RE, and only use around 25kgs of battery.

Ideally we would be talking about a methanol fuel cell, so even the tank would be very light!


I like light!


Germanium is rare (US reserves : only 500 tonnes) and expensive, more than $1000/kg. There is on atom Of Ge per molecule of the electrolyte, i dont know how it translates to grams Ge per kg of battery, but anyway, forget it for large scale use !

Roger Pham

Good point, Davemart.
A modest-size fuel cell stack (under 50kW) can substitute for the ICE, and may even be lighter. An advanced adsorptive H2 fuel tank will be needed to keep the size of the tank reasonable for a 250-300-mi range at under 350 bar (5000 psi) pressure. In the winters and long trips, the FC will be used more often, while daily commute can use the 40-mi-range battery that can be charged at night.
For those who are too lazy to plug in their PHEV's at nite, fork out extra money to buy a FCV with a 100-kW FC stack.


'A battery built with the material showed stable performance, but the authors only took it through eight charge/discharge cycles, so it's difficult to say whether this really has what it takes to power anything electronic.'

This battery is miles away from production


You wouldn't need 50kw in an RE. 30kw at most, as the battery is there to handle power surges for acceleration and it just needs to keep the battery topped up.

Carbon fibre tanks can contain 6kg of hydrogen in a total weight of 125kg, and are getting lighter.
Adsorption would be nice, but we can manage without;


I agree that a 1000 km range is well beyond the "sweet spot" for a pure electric vehicle (which I think would be around 200-300 miles for an American BEV). The question would be whether they have the power density with these solid electrolyte cells to make a car with decent performance and a smaller pack. Based on the statement that the ion conductivity of the solid electrolyte exceeds that of an organic electrolyte, I would think they would definitely be able to get the required power density. PHEVs will certainly continue to be the more flexible option unless charge times can come down to a couple minutes (incidentally, I know of a current "production" battery that can do this, but the energy density is far too low for anything that uses a plug), and capable charging stations are commonplace.

I want to address the statement about thermal efficiency of an ICE engine vehicle in the winter, since no one else seems to have done so. In a co-generation situation where an ICE is installed in a building, and most of the waste heat can be captured and used, thermal efficiency can indeed approach 100% of the fuel energy utilized. But there is currently no production vehicle (of which I am aware) that captures any of the 30%+ of the fuel energy that goes out the exhaust as heat, and the 30%+ that goes to coolant is only partly used to heat the cabin and defrost the windshield. If you think about it, using 60%+ of the fuel energy from an efficient 100 kW (mechanical output) ICE to heat the cabin would be almost 200 kW at peak load! At low load, a more significant percentage of the coolant heat will go to the cabin, but then the base thermal efficiency of an ICE at low load operation is much lower as well. I doubt you will much over 50% combined thermal efficiency in anything but an extreme condition (like -50°C), or a transient (like starting the engine from cold).


Im interrested to buy, this is awesome. The range is great and practical. Forget limp batteries like the one in the leaf. Even taxis can use that and save tons of money on fuel costs. Also this battery can store electricity from solar panels and/or windmills for free fuel . This was a breakthru i was waiting for. I still believe in hydrogen fuelcell but i think that this battery will cost less and be more practical overall.

Roger Pham

The Prius III has exhaust heat recuperation in addition to coolant heat, stored in the coolant thermos bottle, allowing longer period of cabin heating without running the engine, and faster engine warmup, thereby saving more fuel in cold weather.

Don't give up on Hydrogen just yet. More good things to come! H2 and battery is just the right combination.



The better the battery the less the need for H2...because H2 is just an inefficient (from well to wheels) way of storing Kilowatt hours. If this solid state battery is so conductive, I would imagine a 50% recharge could be done pretty quickly on a long drive. Most people driving more than 200-300 miles will take some breaks so it's not affecting user experience too much. Consequently the cost, weight, and volume of an H2 FC and H2 tanks is a price that need not be paid to gain that extra range.

Ask 10 people, "If you had a $30,000 electric car that could go 250 miles on a charge, but would go an extra 300 miles for an extra $20,000 would you pay the extra $20,000 or would you just take extra long rest stops (~40 minutes recharging/100 miles after the first 250 miles) on really long drives?

I bet most people who make long drives infrequently would believe that those 30-60 minute breaks would be very well worth saving the tens of thousands of dollars extra a FC system would cost. They'd also get a roomier, sportier car by avoiding the FC system.


80% NA commuters drive 40M or less daily.

Actually it is H + Ni = enough heat to drive a Stirling engine to spin a genset that powers traction motors. Perhaps 50% of the heat energy will be lost "well to wheels," but non-combustive 6X energy costs next to nothing - making such a power train 200-300% efficient.

Or you can build this battery (eventually) and charge it with $0.002kWh electricity.

The comments to this entry are closed.