Has Volvo Found a Way to Turn Carbon Fiber into Batteries?
Based on a recent announcement, Volvo may have rewritten the book on battery technology and packaging. Geely-owned Volvo has stated that it has developed a nanotechnology that allows for battery storage packets to be packaged into carbon fiber body panels. If this is the real-deal, it absolutely changes the electric car and hybrid game.
According to a recent announcement by Volvo, nanotechnology would allow portions of the carbon fiber to be positively or negatively charged, effectively making part of the frame or body the battery itself. This could considerably lower weight and open up all new space and packaging options.
Traditional batteries take up space. Just look at the trunk of a car like the Toyota Camry Hybrid, with the large box sticking out of the seatback. This tech would negate the need for such bulky components, and it would still be able to be charged by a wall plug.
Volvo claims that it could lower the weight of an electric vehicle by 15 percent, but it brings up an interesting issue. Back here in the States, Tesla recently announced plans to incorporate replaceable battery packs into future vehicle. The Tesla plan allows drivers to travel long distances without waiting hours to charge. What would be more advantageous as an EV user- an electric Volvo with more space, or a Tesla that could receive a new battery in minutes? As we move forward with these technologies, these are the decisions that engineers and buyers will eventually be forced to make.