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CATL to supply LFP batteries with Cell-to-Pack technology to Solaris

CATL will supply lithium iron phosphate (LFP) batteries equipped with novel Cell-to-Pack (CTP) technology to Solaris to power its bus models in a bid to facilitate bus electrification.

CATL’s LFP battery system features exceptionally long battery life and high thermal stability. By removing the conventional module packaging, the CTP technology increases the battery energy density and payload of the e-bus, making it a good option for sustainable city transportation.

CATL’s CTP technology has increased the volumetric utilization efficiency of the battery pack, which has increased from 55% for the first-generation CTP battery to 67% for the third generation, or Qilin battery. The energy density of NMC Qilin battery can reach 250 Wh/kg, while that of LFP Qilin battery can reach 160 Wh/kg.

Headquartered in Bolechowo, Poland, Solaris is one of the leading European bus and trolleybus manufacturers. It ranked first in the zero-emission bus market in 2021 in Europe. Starting co-operation with CATL, Solaris will extend its offer by new battery solutions available in its vehicles.

This co-operation will extend CATL’s global commercial vehicle electrification network and accelerate the electrification transition of commercial vehicles worldwide.



OK, so we are seeing a move from NMC batteries to LFP with a reduction of 1/3 in energy density by weight. That is OK if you know the mileage you require.
IMO, what they should pair this with is a trolleybus style power pickup that can be used at the start and end of each route (in the suburban ends of the routes).
This would use machine vision and simple robotics to hook the poles up to the wired and the buses could charge up (say) on the the last and first 1/6 - 1.4 of the route.
This would have the dual advantage of lower stationary charging times and increased route length with no increase in battery size (maybe a decrease).
Initially, you could manually hook the poles on and off (at covered bus stops), and it she system was successful in operation, then automate the process (to de-risk it).

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