I agree with everything you said.. but I think the root of the "problem" is much simpler. People hear "Lithium battery" and think it requires alot of "Lithium" without even knowing what it is... so they just associate it with everything related to Lithium batteries. They assume we dont have tons of Lithium batteries for EVs and that they're expensive because of Lithium.
Haha...I am reminded of LED and LCD TVs. Most people don't understand that they are both LCD TVs, just an LED TV uses LEDs as the light source....but then there's OLED....I'll stop
I blame mostly marketing, deliberate misinformation and deliberate withholding of information. When I talk to people that aren't familiar with the technology I try to always keep things simple by just saying 'Lithium Battery' or 'Lithium Ion Battery' rather than 'Lithium Cobalt Oxide', 'Lithium Sulpher' or 'Lithium Iron Phosphate' etc. Not that any of these titles accurately describe everything that goes into a battery. In a way, this also contributes so I share some of the blame. It can just be too much for a lot of people to grasp. Eventually, this won't be the case and all this EV stuff will seep into the mainstream consciousness. People will forget about gallons and mpg and kWh and Wh/mi will just roll off tongues. We've got a ways to go
According to Battery University a $10,000 Lithium battery only has about $100 of Lithium.
IIRC it's also highly recyclable. All those spent lithium batteries can go right back to the refinery to be reused, just like aluminum cans.
Good point. Once we have isolated the Lithium from some source, be it ores, brines or seawater, it's ours forever! My precious...
In the end, I think diversity is key. Lithium by itself can't do it all. Neither can Aluminum, Sodium, etc. We need different solutions for different problems. The best battery for your car can look different than the best battery for your laptop, which can be different than the best battery for an implanted heart monitor and something totally different for the grid.
One thing I feel very confident in saying...we will never find one battery to rule them all...and that's a good thing. Same can be said on the generation side of the house. Having more than one way to generate electricity is good.
Yeah I wasnt paying enough attention to the professors chart I guess in terms of economies of scale, aluminum is going to be cheaper than lithium for grid storage. Youre right about noncompeting technologies for EV and Grid, however, there is a trade off in terms of tech advancement by not having a standardized battery tech. But the grid mostly runs on coal right now, and ICE's run on petroleum and costs intervene when taking transportation into consideration. So 20 years in the future, grid storage could use aluminum and EVs could run on Lithium or Magnesium or whatever, and the costs of both can be interdependent like coal and petroleum are now, Ill be it far cheaper and more eco friendly.
I think it's too early to do too much standardization of batteries. Form, fit, function...sure. But I would hate to see us get entrenched in a specific chemistry before we have gotten a lot closer to the theoretical potentials. Then again...that's what we're good at. Exhibit A: Gasoline. Exhibit B: Coal.
In any case, I truly do believe we will get there eventually....hopefully sooner rather than later.....and I hope this guy's batteries are a hit with the grid storage crowd.