Yesterday Envia announced a new Li-ion battery design that provides a density of 400 watt-hours per kilogram and a potential for vehicles with a 300-mile range.
This story hit the business section of my newspaper today. In an article written by Dana Hull of Mercurynews.com, it is stated that “Envia (Systems) was awarded a $4 million grant from ARPA-E in December 2009 to develop advanced lithium-ion batteries for electric cars. It went on to raise $17 million in venture capital from General Motors Ventures, Bay Partners, Redpoint and Pangaea Ventures. In a separate agreement, GM secured the right to use Envia's technology for GM's future electrically driven vehicles.”
An interesting comment in the article was provided by Mike Omososo, a senior auto analyst with LMC Automotive, who said: “It does sound very impressive, but it remains to be seen if it will work outside the lab”. “Since most EV and plug-in makers have already got battery suppliers in place, it may be a few years before we see the Envia batteries in vehicles on the road”.
The article also mentions a statement by Envia that “When commercialized its 400 wh/kg battery, which will provide (an electric vehicle with) a range of 300 miles and cost about $25,000, will slash the price of electric vehicles, making them more affordable for mainstream customers”.
The article concludes with the following statements: “While there's been talk in the industry of moving beyond lithium and using new materials, many expect lithium-ion batteries to remain dominant in the coming decades.” “The rumors of the demise of lithium-ion batteries were greatly exaggerated.” (A quote by Evia's CEO Atul Kapadia.)
The article also mentions that there are "at least two dozen battery start-ups" in the Silicon Valley area.