Toyota Reports On Significant Advancement In Electrolytes For High-Energy Magnesium Batteries

JUN 17 2015 BY MARK KANE 15

Toyota i-Road

Toyota i-Road

Toyota is one of those carmakers who is trying to develop its own batteries of the future (besides hydrogen fuel cells).

In the case of Toyota, the automaker is working on magnesium (Mg) batteries, which in theory could be much better than lithium-ion.

Toyota Research Institute of North America (TRINA) recently announced a critical advancement in the the development of electrolytes for Mg batteries.

According to the article, researchers at TRINA developed the first highly stable electrolyte and now can move forward with works on anode, cathode and ultimately full cells.

“The researchers, led by Dr. Rana Mohtadi, Principal Scientist at TRINA, developed an electrolyte based on a simple-type magnesium monocarborane salt (MMC) that is compatible with Mg metal (> 99 % coulombic efficiency); possesses high anodic stability (3.8 V vs. Mg); and is non-corrosive. By contrast, state-of-the-art Mg electrolyte systems are complex, halogen-based, and corrosive.

The properties of the new electrolyte, coupled with its “inert and benign character”, make MMC-based electrolytes well-suited for future Mg batteries, the scientists said. The development of this non-corrosive electrolyte enabled the first demonstration of a high voltage coin cell battery, previously prohibited using all known systems. “This achievement is a turning point in the research and development of Mg electrolytes that has deep implications on realizing practical rechargeable Mg batteries,” the scientists wrote.”

Sadly, work on Mg batteries are still at least several years away from commercialization. Everybody who counts on revolution from some new chemistry must be patient.

Source: Green Car Congress

Categories: Battery Tech, Toyota


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15 Comments on "Toyota Reports On Significant Advancement In Electrolytes For High-Energy Magnesium Batteries"

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I thought Toyota was giving up on EVs and going with Hydrogen? Is this a change of heart for them?

BEVs, FCEVs and hybrids all require batteries.

…and quadricycles, trikes, and personal “vehicles” strongly imply batteries, not fuel cells, as you go down in size class. The Toyota i-Road makes more sense as a BEV; the Toyota Winglet only makes sense as a BEV.

Now that China is mandating the EV route and the fact that there is no way that fuel cell cars are going to be anything other than an engineering exercise they have to do something.

I think the hydrogen is only a matter of prestige at this point for Toyota. They have put so much effort into hydrogen that they simply have to show some sort of result by now to save their faces.

Toyota has admitted they can’t make more than 1000 FCEVs per year without a breakthrough in manufacturing the fuel cell stacks.

Despite all the hype and bluster, Toyota knows perfectly well that “fool cell” cars are a dead-end technology.

So they have electrolyte but not:
management system


Very impressive turning point! 😉
(last 3 items may not be essential if battery is stable in wide range of temperature, but it will help in extending range and/or decrease charge time anyway!)

This is more of their delaying tactics… This just in from the land of Yota: Fuel Cells… nice but not quite ready for prime time. Oh… and don’t buy the next gen of electrics because in 5 years (same as infinity in the tech world) we will have a better battery. Great work Toyota… show me a Prius with a 100 mile electric range and a 200 mile extender ICE that runs on Flex Fuel or biodiesel and I will be truly impressed. This is sad bluster from the former leader of green car tech.

Toyota sets the ground work for a face-saving flip-flop back to plug-ins.

Lets take a car whose only exaust is water. Put in bateries made of Magnesium. The only metal that burns when it hits water. Make the whole thing out of Carbon fiber, because unlike metal carbon fiber burns.

Seems like the lesson Toyota learned from all the recalls was leave no evidence behind.

I think you are confusing magnesium with sodium.

Actually all the metals in that class, which includes lithium, sodium, and magnesium, combust in water. All good for making batteries.

“Everybody who counts on revolution from some new chemistry must be patient.”

Yeah, but I’ve been patient for some decades now, waiting for EVs to make the gas guzzler obsolete, and as I get older and crankier, my patience is beginning to wear somewhat thin.

Yeah, that’s the thing about research. What you are looking for may or may not exist. And even if it does exist, who knows how long it will take to find.

I think battery research stagnated for a long time since the conventional batteries that existed did the jobs for what we needed (auto starters, flashlights, radios, etc.) But when the laptops, cellphones, MP3 players, and other digital electronics market hit, having better batteries became really important. So they worked really hard and came up with rechargeable lithium batteries.

And the chemistry has been refined ever since. And it may continue to get better . . . and it probably will. But it might not. We may be at a diminishing returns stage (I hope not).

Well thank goodness they are working on batteries and not just the fuel cell crap which will hopefully soon fail as concept.