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Chinese Scientists Unveil EV Powered by Sodium-Ion Battery

BusinessAutomotiveChinese Scientists Unveil EV Powered by Sodium-Ion Battery

Chinese scientists have made a significant breakthrough in the commercialization of an emerging technology in the electric vehicle (EV) market. They unveiled an electric vehicle powered by a sodium-ion battery on Thursday, marking a major milestone in the field. The five-seater passenger vehicle, called Hua Xianzi (flower fairy), was showcased during the Second Chinese National Conference on Na-ion Batteries. HiNa Battery, a high-tech company affiliated with the Institute of Physics of the Chinese Academy of Sciences, developed the car.

The demonstration car’s battery has an overall energy capacity of 25 kilowatt-hours, and the vehicle can travel up to 250 kilometers per charge. The car’s batteries have an energy density of over 140 watt-hours per kilogram. Although the current generation of sodium-ion batteries has less energy density compared to its lithium-ion counterparts, new innovations and breakthroughs in battery design and materials science are closing the gap.

Sodium-ion batteries have substantial cost, safety, and sustainability advantages over conventional lithium-ion batteries. As China currently imports 70% of its lithium, the scarcity and cost of lithium have been a long-standing challenge in the battery industry. This issue may affect the development of China’s EV industry due to the limited supply of the metal and the recent surge in its price, according to a report by Guotai Junan Securities. As a result, companies worldwide have spent years looking for alternatives, and sodium-ion battery technology has emerged as one of the most promising candidates.

The application of sodium-ion batteries in electric vehicles and electricity storage infrastructures has been on the rise, thanks to HiNa Battery’s recent achievement. Li Shujun, the general manager of HiNa Battery, stated that the company would promote the use of sodium-ion batteries in various electric vehicles and electricity storage infrastructures. This breakthrough in the commercialization of sodium-ion batteries has the potential to revolutionize the battery industry and accelerate the development of more sustainable, cost-effective, and safer energy storage solutions for EVs.

The Chinese government has also been promoting the development of sodium-ion batteries in the country. As part of the country’s 14th Five-Year Plan, China aims to increase its production capacity of advanced batteries, including sodium-ion batteries. The country is also aiming to build a “national team” for sodium-ion battery research and development, promoting collaboration and accelerating the commercialization of the technology.

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