College Students Create EV That Recharges in 10 Minutes

July 28th, 2009

mit-electric-Mercury_MilanForget Tesla.

Forget Nissan’s ambitious electric vehicle plans.

Mercedes wants to build an electric Gullwing supercar? Let ‘em cater to the super rich.

Take the Chevy Volt’s 40-mile range and laugh in its face.

In fact, forget all the corporate EV hype and overnight-recharging technology.

I’m looking to a group of college students to solve the electric-vehicle conundrum of creating an EV with an extended driving range and a quick recharge.

Check this out: A student-built electric car can fully recharge in just ten minutes, travel 200 miles on a charge, and do the 0-60 run in just 9 seconds. A group from MIT (naturally) took a 2010 Mercury Milan Hybrid and then added 7,905 lithium iron-phosphate batteries to achieve the goal of creating a little something they call rapid recharge. So far, the big manufacturers haven’t been able to do what these college folks did.

Get this technology into mass production, and bingo, we can put a check mark next to the “create electric vehicle” box and move on to the next big innovation. Come on MIT – we want flying cars next!

Should we rely on auto manufacturers to bring us electric vehicles, or should we be open to looking at college campuses, too?

-tgriffith

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  1. Randy
    | #1

    I’m always amazed how the great unwashed fall for this kind of hype. know how much that battery pack costs? Try $75,000. How about an extremely high-current power supply to charge it in 10 minutes? Add another $15,000 along with rewiring your home. Do they charge it in the car? Maybe, but as Tesla found out, you have to keep it cool while charging, and seeing the car (and your garage) go up in flames is a distinct possibility. Now add to all that the lack of any of the usual engineering and safety requirements during development, and you might have a clue as to why “So far, the big manufacturers haven’t been able to do what these college folks did.” Oh, and don’t forget the cost of the car and the electric propulsion systems. Somehow I don’t think a $125,000 Milan is going to be a big seller.

    Actually the big manufacturers can do this kind of thing any time they want to, but they don’t tend to waste their money building something that is completely unsaleable. Believe me, if MIT could develop an economically feasible electric drive train, there would be a long list of companies lining up to license it.

  2. H
    | #2

    Randy,

    We need to explore the path before calling it not feasible. I am sure risks and sticking points similar to what you are trying to make and more were pointed out when the IC engines were made first. Its about spending money to figure out ways to mass produce and then lower the costs and optmize the risks. Chevy EV1 had filled waiting lists of consumers if you may remember.

  3. wazzupdude87
    | #3

    yes chevy ev1 was a great idea… until gm killed it i still dont get why they did it was it because of oil, because they had just recently purchased hummer the ultimate gas guzzler or because some jackass politician was all over there asses

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