Samsung’s “Balls” Battery Charges At 5C, Retains 78.6% Capacity After 500 Cycles

DEC 27 2017 BY MARK KANE 42

Samsung SDI Battery Factory In Hungary

The specs look promising, but we’ll have to wait to find out if it works as described in the real world.

The Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT) has presented promising test results of a new a graphene–silica assembly, called a graphene ball that improves battery performance.

Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology (SAIT) – results of “graphene balls” cell tests

The new concept apparently increases the energy density of the cells to over 400 Wh/kg, as well as cycle life and fast charging capability.

SAIT reports a 78.6% capacity retention after 500 ultra-fast cycles at 5C current (12-minute charging) at a high temperature of 60˚C. The capacity should of course fade slower when charging at lower speeds.

While we are of course concerned about another breakthrough in battery technology that exists only in the lab, this time it’s released by researchets that are connected to giant battery manufacturer Samsung SDI.

Future EVs equipped with these batteries potentially would be both long-range, and have the ability to quick charge in just minutes.

“Improving one property without sacrificing others is challenging for lithium-ion batteries due to the trade-off nature among key parameters. Here we report a chemical vapor deposition process to grow a graphene–silica assembly, called a graphene ball. Its hierarchical three-dimensional structure with the silicon oxide nanoparticle center allows even 1 wt% graphene ball to be uniformly coated onto a nickel-rich layered cathode via scalable Nobilta milling. The graphene-ball coating improves cycle life and fast charging capability by suppressing detrimental side reactions and providing efficient conductive pathways. The graphene ball itself also serves as an anode material with a high specific capacity of 716.2 mAh g−1. A full-cell incorporating graphene balls increases the volumetric energy density by 27.6% compared to a control cell without graphene balls, showing the possibility of achieving 800 Wh L−1 in a commercial cell setting, along with a high cyclability of 78.6% capacity retention after 500 cycles at 5C and 60 °C.

Source: “Graphene balls for lithium rechargeable batteries with fast charging and high volumetric energy densities,” Nature Communications

via Green Car Congress

Categories: Battery Tech


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42 Comments on "Samsung’s “Balls” Battery Charges At 5C, Retains 78.6% Capacity After 500 Cycles"

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So, at less than 80% of original energy after 500 cycles, it is already ‘Dead?’

Let us know what it does after 1,000 full 5C Charge – Discharge Cycles!

What is needed, or at least desired, is 2,000 cycles, with still 85-90% remaining from original, or no worse than 80% of original after 2,000 fully charged and discharged cycles, at not less than 3C Charging, plus limited extreme cold and heat energy losses (very low internal resistance at wide temperatures of -50C to +50C ambient).

EV’s that can work in Alaska, Antarctica, Sahara, and Malaysia type conditions and climates!

Re-read the article; 400wh/kg (potential to 800wh/kg) and 60deg C should stand out for you.

Where do you get the “potential of 800 Wh/kg” umber from? This article or the Green Car Congress source doesn’t mention anything about that. They do however mention 800 Wh/l, which is a different thing than Wh/kg.

I don’t know where this article got the 400 Wh/kg number from either, as the Green Car Congress article they post as the source doesn’t mention anything about Wh/kg.

If your at 400wh/kg then a 400 mile BEV is easy and a 300 mile BEV is now the “cheap” option. 500 cycle with 5C! ultra fast charging is more than people need. Tesla cells crap out at 300 cycles and only 0.6C charge rates and people think the walk on water for some reason.

At that point, just have a 20% buffer, then one full charge from drivers point of view is only 80% to the battery. And from drivers perspective, there is 600 cycles to 80% instead of 500. And due t0 400wH/kg energy density, a battery with 20% buffer still gives 450 miles of usable range, after 20% degradation it still has 390 mile range or so.

“Jake Brake” wrote another off-topic Tesla bashing post:

“Tesla cells crap out at 300 cycles…”

Ignorance is one thing, but this isn’t mere ignorance. This is deliberate FUD from a serial Tesla basher.

Tesla battery packs have been found to last considerably longer than expected; certainly far better than the nominal industry standard of 2000 cycles to an 80% of original capacity.

But this article isn’t about Tesla. It’s about Samsung.

I’ve personally tested them back to back with competitors cells in a lab. 0.6C charge to 4.2V with C/20 cutoff, 10 minute rest, 0.2C discharge down to 3.15V, 10 minute rest, room temperature so roughly 90-95% DOD. This was done on their 3.45Ah 18650 (265 wh/kg). Typical Tesla users don’t charge to 100% every cycle and run it into the ground which is why they last longer in real life. If you don’t want to believe me go buy a tesla module, pull the cells yourself, cycle them and let me know how goes. I’m sorry if this news is inconvenient but let’s keep to the facts.

Cells in a Tesla are never charged to 4,2V either

I doubt that you did any testing and more so, I would not believe you since it is obvious that Tesla is cycling over 1000Xs.

So then if we use Tesla math these SDI cells will “cycle” 3000-4000 times (at a shallow depth of discharge) which is phenomenal AND you can ultra fast charge them all day.

What are you basing “cheap” on? We have no idea what these cells will cost.

Even $1000/kWh is cheap enough for phones (i.e. $10 for the typical 10Wh we see today), and having >2C charging is a killer feature in a phone.

That application is already worth a few billion per year while still being 10x too expensive for 400 mile EVs.

“Tesla cells crap out at 300 cycles “.

Huh. So, only 300 cycles, eh?
So that means that my wife’s MS 85, which gets ~250 mpc, will have a lifetime of 75,000 miles and THEN it dies.
Yet, there are 2013 85s with over 250,000 miles already and still in the 90%. And that means a MINIMUM of 1000+ cycles.
Are the kock bros paying you that well?

Tesla are able to get into high mileage with high “cycle” counts because…

Max charging voltage is limited and typically not charged to 100% on each cycle.

The majority of charging is done at home or work with the on board charger which limits the charge rate to 0.1 to 0.2C. This is a VERY slow relative charge rate for the cells and really easy on them.

The battery isn’t fully discharged every time either, they are typically operated in the sweet spot of 20-80% SOC.

In the Tesla application the cells are babied which is why they can go over 100k miles.

If you moderately fast charge (50kW) or around 0.6C every cycle and drive it to empty the battery will only last about 75k miles. People dont do that in real life however thats how cells are tested for comparison purposes such as IN THIS ARTICLE.

I’m disappointed there are so many people on here who don’t understand how battery cycle testing works and the minute you show up and say something negative about Tesla everyone jumps on you as a Troll, political still, or stock shorter. Get a spec sheet from Panasonic and it will tell you the same thing.

Mr Brake is the issue you are claiming exists by personal testing the reason why sometimes, on Tesla Longevity battery graphs, showing the vast majority of people getting long life, but a few batteries somewhat eerily died way before their time? So then, if you had to ‘attach’ a percentage to it, say for instance you charged an “S” to 100% and then discharged it until the car wouldn’t run any longer, what is the REAL charge and discharge percentages under that scenario?

At 500 miles per cycle, 500 cycles would be 250.000 miles. That would be fine for me.

And even then you could still replace the battery. And 80% capacity of a huge battery is still a ton of range anyway.


I don’t know about other people…but I don’t need a car battery to be able to operate in Antartica, Alaska, Sahara and Malasya…let’s leave this “huge markets” for fuel cells or “efficient ICEs” while we get cheap electric cars (say Toyota Corolla price range) with 200 mile range

If you have the time to read the original article:
you’ll learn more. A lot of technical snacks, with a lot of extra links too.

Future looks bright for EVs, powertools and portable electronics for sure 🙂

I’d pay extra for this technology in my phone, laptop, pad and powertool too.
A good battery for a powertool is very expensive. With this technology they may even be worth the price..

The graphs seem to show that the capacity loss is much lower at 25C. So, not a good idea to skimp on the thermal management system.

I think it’s showing that at lower temperatures, you get much less capacity out of the battery. That’s intuitive, but it’s also disconcerting that after many cycles that ability to extract capacity at lower temperature (which really aren’t that low) fades off way more than at 60C

Imagine freezing temperatures. 🙁

Q: What’s the magic word?
A: Graphene.

Add it to the list of amazing cells.

Normally I’d roll my eyes and click to the next article when it comes to “battery breakthroughs” but I tend to give this one some credit if it comes from Samsung. Because A) They are already creating quality automotive batteries. And B) they have a vested interest in this market and thus I wouldn’t think they are trying to scare people away from buying an EV today because a breakthrough is “just around the corner” like so many are trying to do.

At 60 degrees Celsius! This is perfect for Nissan. 🙂

My Leaf battery rarely (less than 1% of its operating life) exceeds 40 degrees Celsius.

“So pefect for Nissan”, I can still CAN’T notice more than 1% battery degradation, after 2+ years from its 30kWh build date, it’s almost at 14K miles driven. 50/50 charging between L3/L2 with no L1.
( LeafSpyPro @ 80.32 AHr / 101.06 SOH )

Well ok so far so good, but more progress is needed toward longevity.

I think ~80% capacity left after 500 5C quick charges is very good giving most will charge at home at 1C or less.

The specifications look good, and I agree that Samsung adds credibility. The big question in my mind is cost; chemical vapor deposition sounds expensive. It may take a long time to find out how cheaply they can be made.

Fast charging is great, but 400 Wh/kg is just brilliant! It means less weight, better range and better performance! And it seems they using NCM 613 cells, which according to this article should lead to even less cost:

I really hope it come true!

There are battery announcements almost every week now. It shows that when there is a huge potential market to be had a lot of people are willing to put down significant resources to make it happen. Capitalism wins again!
Sure not all of these announcements will lead to a finished product but at least a few will and that’s all that’s needed.
We are looking at significantly better EVs in the near future. Before too long even the cheap 20k ones will push 200 miles and high end will be over 400 miles.

You can thank “capitalist” China for making these manufacturers inovate. “Free market” for the win…lol.

I like to think it’s Elon pushing the envelope.

I love Tesla…but let’s be realistic…Tesla 2017 sales..close to 100k cars…China…close to 700k cars and growing at 60%/year…that means (provided same growth numbers) they’d pontecially be selling 19M cars/year only 7 years from now…They are leading the EV revolution for sure. Will the world be able to produce batteries for 19 million cars in just 7 years..I doubt it…but the market potential for efficient/cheap/easy to manufacture batteries is HUGUE

Yes indeed. China is not a full on socialist country. While they do have a one-party system, they do not control the market directly. The party points out the direction they want to go in in their 5 year plans and influence the market with subsidies but there is plenty of competition between companies.
Even so, most of the battery development is done outside of China so your point is moot in every way. China is good at manufacturing stuff at a low cost but a lot of it is developed elsewhere.

The specs look promising…

No, they do not. “78.6% capacity after 500 cycles” is significantly below industry standard, which for EVs is 80% capacity after 2000 cycles.

Yes, I understand that this is for 12 minute charging, which is significantly faster than current industry standard. But the standard which battery makers should be striving for is a 5-10 minute charge, not a 12 minute charge.

And if solid state batteries don’t have any more fade than is typical for electronics — for example, capacitors can be cycled 10,000 times with insignificant, barely measurable fade — then nobody is going to care about this halfway measure.

Capacitors are probably not the best example to bring into this particular automotive energy storage comparison cycle charging solution.

Yes, it is promising. I’ve seen no better cells demonstrated.

Of course, I’d like to see even higher energy density, and I’m sure some technology will eventually surpass this. If it takes long enough that will still leave an opening for these. Even at this early stage their life in a car should reach 100,000 miles, although at least initially I expect the market to be cell phones and laptops.

Charging in under ten minutes gets expensive. Someday, maybe, but I see no hurry to get there.

“which for EVs is 80% capacity after 2000 cycles.”

No you are mixing up the numbers. An NCA battery is expected to last 2000 cycles with a 80% depth of discharge, i.e. in every charge cycle you only charge it to 80%. When you charge NCA cells to 100% per cycle they last much shorter, on the order of a couple of hundred cycles. That is also assuming that you don’t push them too hard, NCA is recommended to not go over 0.7C

This is why EV manufacturers overprovision batteries, to lower C-rate and DoD.

You constantly advise people of spreading FUD, maybe you should hold yourself to higher standards than this?

Please give your source that 2000 cycles to 80% at 5C is “the industry standard” for EVs. This is complete bollocks that you made up on the spot! And don’t even pretend you didn’t know 5C was key in this – we all know you know better.

I bet you can’t even show a source even remotely backing up 80% capacity after 2000 cycles as anything resembling a standard, even at 0.5C – one tenth the rate under consideration here.

Nor is it true that Tesla outperforms your made-up “standard”. Not even close. With 300 miles per cycle 2000 cycles is 600,000 miles for crying out loud. What data has been shown on Tesla shows an average drop to ~90% remaining after less than 50,000 miles. Only some of the charging involved in that data is fast charging, and none of it exceeding 1.5C, with much of it level 2 at 0.1C or less.


at 400Wh/kg and 800Wh/L this stuff is good news for battery electric motorcycles and aircraft!

Quote: “The new concept apparently increases the energy density of the cells to over 400 Wh/kg”

How did you come up with the over 400 number?
The Green Car Congress article you link to as the source doesn’t mention anything about Wh/kg.

Do you know the weight for 25kw?