Accelerating battery charging speed, Stanford research uses AI as magic key. 2020-04-14

The key to the popularity of electric vehicles lies in whether the charging speed of batteries can be improved, which can gradually make charging as convenient as fuel charging. Both battery and electric vehicle manufacturers are committed to the research and development of fast-charging technology. A team from Stanford University, Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Toyota Research Institute published a new study in Nature, revealed how artificial intelligence could speed up the testing process required for novel charging techniques.

The problem of battery fast charging is that under the condition of fast charging, the degradation rate of battery will be accelerated, and even the risk of overheating and fire. However, to evaluate the impact of different charging methods on the battery, hundreds of charging and discharging cycles must be carried out until the battery fails to test the battery life. Every new battery composition or every new charging method can only make out the results after such a long charge discharge cycle, and then it can be improved by waiting for hundreds of charging and discharging cycles to see how the new results are. It is conceivable that the speed of R & D is bound to be greatly encumberd.

The research team applied artificial intelligence to solve the problem of time-consuming experiment. The research started in 2017 when Toyota Research Institute invested 35 million US dollars for research on artificial intelligence auxiliary battery, the original goal is to develop new battery materials. In 2019, the research team changed to use artificial intelligence to assist the computer to simulate the battery charging and discharging cycles. It only needs 9% of the actual charging and discharging test time, so it can evaluate 224 possible high-cycle-life charging processes in just over two weeks. Undoubtedly, this will greatly increase the research and development speed of fast charging.

With the development of battery technology and charging technology, the service life is getting longer and longer. The time from charging and discharging cycle to the end of service life will be longer and longer. Computer simulation will be a compromise solution. First, find out the best possible technology through computer simulation, and then conduct field test, which can greatly reduce the time of trial error.

Artificial intelligence is not only applied in the research stage, but also in the Canadian new business, GBatteries, uses artificial intelligence directly to accelerate the charging speed. When fast-charging, artificial intelligence can evaluate the battery condition at any time. Once it may cause battery damage, suspend charging to avoid irreversible damage to the battery. It can avoid damaging the battery and charge at the fastest possible speed. GBatteries technology is currently only applied to small batteries. When it is used in electric tools, the charging time can be reduced from 30-60 minutes to 11 minutes. However, it will take some time to expand its application to large batteries such as electric vehicle batteries.

The four most important issues for electric vehicle buyers are price, endurance, popularity of charging seat and charging speed. Although charging speed is not the top three considerations, it is also one of the issues that customers attach great importance to. If the fast-charging technology can be more mature, it will generate considerable thrust for the development of electric vehicles.


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