|20Ah SCiB cell. Click to enlarge.|
Honda selected Toshiba Corporation’s SCiB rechargeable Li-ion battery to power the Fit EV. (Earlier post.) Toshiba will supply battery modules for the new car, which Honda will launch in summer 2012 in Japan and the US.
In 2010, Toshiba announced that it was working with Mitsubishi Motors Corporation to bring the SCiB battery (earlier post) to electric vehicles (EVs). (Earlier post.) Toshiba developed the SCiB module for the FIT EV with Honda; the module was supplied to Honda in December 2010 for evaluation in real-world verification testing of next-generation personal mobility products that the company conducted with Saitama and Kumamoto prefectures.
Honda selected the SCiB module for the FIT EV after a comprehensive evaluation program that tested the battery’s performance under diverse and demanding conditions.
The SCiB cells use lithium titanate oxide in the battery anode, enabling rapid charge times and a long battery life, with stable power discharge in a wide range of environments. In extremely cold conditions as low as -30°C the SCiB is less likely to experience lithium metal deposition, which enhances the risk of internal short circuiting and battery degradation, and at high temperature, even above 40°C, the impact on battery degradation is lower than in conventional lithium-ion batteries, according to Toshiba.
The characteristics of the SCiB battery cell enable longer range for electric vehicles; the SCiB is able to use a wider state of charge window than a conventional lithium-ion battery, and the SCiB also achieves efficient regenerative charging (using kinetic energy from braking and slowing down to charge the battery) that adds to performance.
The SCiB charges in about half the time of a typical Li-ion battery, Toshiba says. An SCiB 20Ah cell charged with an 80Ah current will reach 80% of capacity in 15 minutes and 95% in an additional 3 minutes. The SCiB generates little heat even during this fast recharging, eliminating the need for power to cool the battery module. Moreover, the full charge-discharge cycle for SCiB is 4,000 times, more than 2.5 times that of other Li-ion batteries. This long life could also contribute to the reuse of the battery.
Toshiba says that it will take full advantage of Honda’s selection of the SCiBT to promote its further application in electric vehicles. The company will also promote use of the battery in other areas, including as a stationary power storage device in smart grids.