Publication Detail

"Rechargeable Battery Basics," chapter in Encyclopedia of Automotive Engineering



Sustainable Transportation Energy Pathways (STEPS), Plug-In Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center

Suggested Citation: A. Burke (2014) "Rechargeable Battery Basics" in D. Crolla, D.E. Foster, T. Kobayashi and N. Vaughan (Eds.) Encyclopedia of Automotive Engineering, John Wiley & Sons Ltd: Chichester. DOI: 10.1002/9781118354179.auto062. Published 4/22/2014. 

This chapter discusses the basic concepts related to batteries for automotive applications including hybrid and electric vehicles. The construction and operation of cells are discussed in detail as well as the laboratory testing of the cells and modules. Test data for lithium batteries of several chemistries are given from which it can be seen that the performance of lithium batteries is now suitable for hybrid and electric vehicle applications. In addition, it is shown that lithium batteries can be fast charged in <1 h and that their cycle life can be several thousand deep discharge cycles. The cost ($/kWh) of the lithium batteries varies with cell chemistry, but the projected costs are in the range $300–400/kWh. When these batteries are used in plug-in hybrid (PHEV) and battery electric vehicles (BEV), life cycle vehicle cost analyzes indicate effective break-even gasoline cost to consumers in the range $3–4/gal when the cost of the battery is recovered over the battery lifetime of 10 years.

Keywords: battery chemistry; energy density; power density; testing, cost; cycle life