Battery Technology for Electric Vehicles
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Battery Technology for Electric Vehicles

Battery Technology for Electric Vehicles Public science and private innovation by Albert N. Link, Alan C. O’Connor, and Troy J. Scott | PDF Free Download.

Battery Technology Contents

  • Introduction 
  • Public/private research partnerships 
  • The adoption of battery technology in EDVs
  • Measurement of economic and energy benefits 
  • Measurement of environmental health and energy security benefits
  • Comparison of benefits and costs of VTO’s R&D investments
  • Conclusions

Introduction to Battery Technology for Electric Vehicles PDF

At the time of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) oil embargo, the only U.S. government agency related to energy was the Atomic Energy Commission (AEC).1,2 In response to the OPEC oil embargo,

President Nixon launched Project Independence on November 7, 1973; the goal of the project was to achieve energy independence by 1980.

In his State of the Union Address on January 30, 1974, President Nixon remarked (Nixon, 1974): Let it be our national goal:

At the end of this decade, in the year 1980, the United States will not be dependent on any other country for the energy we need to provide our jobs, to heat our homes, and to keep our transportation moving.

Others at that time also editorialized about the importance of the oil embargo on the future direction of U.S. energy policy (Dooley 2008, p. 9):

The [OPEC] Oil Embargo which began on October 19, 1973, sparked a fundamental reassessment of the nation’s vulnerability to imported energy and also forced a reassessment of the role that energy R&D could play in helping secure the nation against hostile acts like the Oil Embargo.

The United States’ heightened interest in alternative energy sources led in 1975 to the replacement of the AEC by the Energy Research and Development Administration (ERDA) in an effort to unify the federal government’s energy R&D activities.

Congress charged ERDA to sponsor research and development (R&D) related to electric and hybrid vehicles through the passage of the Electric and Hybrid Vehicle Research, Development, and Demonstration Act of 1976, Public Law 94-413. Therein:

The Congress finds and declares that:

  1. the Nation’s dependence on foreign sources of petroleum must be reduced, as such dependence jeopardizes national security, inhibits foreign policy, and undermines economic well-being; 
  2. the Nation’s balance of payments is threatened by the need to import oil for the production of liquid fuel for gasoline-powered vehicles;
  3. the single largest use of petroleum supplies is in the field of transportation, for gasoline- and diesel-powered motor vehicles;
  4. the expeditious introduction of electric and hybrid vehicles into the Nation’s transportation fleet would substantially reduce such use and dependence.

On August 4, 1977, President Carter signed the Department of Energy Reorganization Act of 1977, Public Law 95-91, transferring the mission of ERDA to the newly formed Department of Energy (DOE).

As stated in the Act, Congress finds that:

  • the United States faces an increasing shortage of nonrenewable energy resources;
  • this energy shortage and our increasing dependence on foreign energy supplies present a serious threat to the national security of the United States and to the health, safety, and welfare of its citizens; 
  • a strong national energy program is needed to meet the present and future energy needs of the Nation consistent with overall national economic, environmental, and social goals; 
  • responsibility for energy policy, regulation, and research, development, and demonstration is fragmented in many departments and agencies and thus does not allow for the comprehensive, centralized focus necessary for effective coordination of energy supply and conservation programs; and 
  • formulation and implementation of a national energy program require the integration of major Federal energy functions into a single department in the executive branch

By this act, Congress declared that the establishment of a Department of Energy in the Executive Branch is in the public interest and will promote the general welfare by assuring coordinated and effective administration of Federal energy policies and programs.

DOE will: carry out the planning, coordination, support, and management of a balanced and comprehensive energy research and development program, including (A) assessing the requirements for energy research and development;

(B)  developing priorities necessary to meet those requirements;

(C) undertaking programs for the optimal development of the various forms of energy production and conservation, and (D) disseminating information resulting from such programs.

Motivated by the Electric and Hybrid Vehicle Research, Development, and Demonstration Act of 1976, and the subsequent availability of public funding, Chrysler (now Chrysler Group LLC), Ford Motor Company,

and General Motors (GM) established in early 1991 the U.S. Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC) to accelerate the development of batteries for electric drive vehicles (EDVs).

The term ‘EDV’ refers to all types of electric drive vehicles including:

  • hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs), which use gasoline to charge the battery and part of the time to power the vehicle (e.g., the first-generation Prius); 
  • electric vehicles (EVs), which are powered exclusively by a battery and must be plugged into an electrical outlet to recharge (e.g., the Tesla Model S, Nissan Leaf); and 
  • plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV), which can either use gasoline to recharge the battery and power the vehicle or be plugged in to recharge the battery (e.g., the Chevrolet Volt).

The creation of the USABC was also motivated, in part, by the recent California Air Resources Board’s (CARB’s) 1990 regulations for low-emission vehicles and its clean fuel standards for emissions that were to be applied to new classes of vehicles not later than 1994.

USABC’s purpose was to: work with advanced battery developers and companies that will conduct research and development (R&D) on advanced batteries to provide increased range and improved performance for electric vehicles in the latter part of the 1990s.

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