by Bennett Daviss
If you’re a skilled and careful driver, your electric vehicle’s battery bank might go 300,000 or even 400,000 miles before you need to part with $5,000 or more to replace it.
But now car companies and battery makers are about to keep that money in your bank account for another 600,000 miles or more.
General Motors says it’s “almost there” in finalizing the design of a million-mile battery bank. Tesla is developing its own version. Contemporary Amperex Technology, a Chinese battery company, claims it’s ready to produce an EV battery pack that can last 1.24 million miles.
Of course, no one has yet driven these new batteries a million miles; the projected life expectancy is based on complex calculations that extrapolate from the batteries’ shorter-term performance, combined with factors such as how much capacity is lost after a certain number of charge cycles.
Also, the number of miles a battery bank can take a vehicle can depend on whether the vehicle is used to supply power to the grid or a home when it’s not on the road – a use common in visions of our future energy ecosystem.
The performance of any battery bank degrades with time, so some engineers have suggested a million-mile battery pack might change hands over the course of its life: it could spend its first 100,000 miles in a vehicle needing speed and power, then be transplanted to an urban taxi for its next 400,000 miles, and spend its golden years storing power made by solar panels or the utility grid.
TRENDPOST: Long-lived batteries, coupled with a recycling infrastructure to reclaim rare-earth metals and other battery components, will become commonplace within 20 years.

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