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So I was thinking

certified_jerk

New Member
Oct 20, 2019
1
2
Tampa
Now that we have viable elec cars, and more variety in the way, we need to solve the charging/range issue. I remember reading about the limiting factor that earlier battery tech was, and even though it's much improved it's still the biggest hurdle. Current battery tech is sufficient for most average drivers but long road trips and extended use are still impossible unless carefully planned around charging.

I love grilling and probably use my grill as much as my stove if not more. A few days ago I needed to buy more propane so I drive to the neighborhood grocery store and exchange my propane cylinder for a fresh one full of fuel. Once or twice a week the propane sends a truck to pick up the empty cylinders and they refill them and make them ready for the next exchange. This is what we should be doing with elec. car battery packs, at least in part. Existing gas stations would happily incorporate battery exchange into their business for all the same reasons they sale gas. The battery packs are heavy and special equipment would need to be developed to remove and replace battery packs for customers. Standard materials handling equip.that's already on the market could be adapted immediatly with no R&D costs. While we don't have the tech to store more energy or make charge times as short as the time it takes to fill a gas tank we can swap batteries and put elec. cars back on the road fully charged in just a few mins. using this method. I'm not sure how practical it would be to retrofit existing Teslas, but they should be able to redesign the batteries to be removable or at least partially removable so drivers can partially recharge if nothing else. With a system like this in place thers no reason a Tesla owner couldn't hop in their car and take a last min road trip without crafting their journey around finding and waiting for a charge.
 

jjrandorin

Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums
Nov 28, 2018
10,714
12,408
Riverside Co. CA
one of the many problems with "pack swapping" is the same one that exists with tank swapping. I dont use propane backyard grills anymore, but when I did, one thing that always annoyed me was, once you take your "new, nice" tank and do a tank swap, you normally end up with a tank thats somewhat "beat up" and worn.

I would never (ever ever ever ever) "battery swap" my battery in my CAR at some sort of battery swap station, because there is no guarantee how that battery has been taken care of. Maybe I never supercharge my car, but the battery pack that is swapped into my car has exclusively supercharged (as an example).

Since "most" charging would be done locally, and you theoretically would swap "on a road trip", there is the very real possibility that the battery YOU end up with is worse than the one you started with, especially if you are one who spent time "taking care of" your battery.

The answer is already there... Faster charging and more places to charge. Most people dont "road trip" every day, and the number of people who will be willing to swap out their 7-10k battery pack for one of unknown usage has got to be very small. The only people who would be in a rush to do this are people who think they have an issue with their battery pack and would see this as an easy way to "get another one".

No thanks, at least not for me.
 

doggy1

Member
Oct 15, 2019
67
50
Sydney, Australia
I have a Renault Zoe. They have been around since 2012 in Europe (then 22kWhr battery) and currently have a 45kWhr (41 usable) battery going to 51kW usable next year. Initially the batteries were leased, rather than being bought as an integral part of the car. The Zoes were designed with the idea of quick battery exchange. Just like gas cylinders.

However, that idea did not work out and died. I know that the battery exchange could not be done in minutes- it was more like an hour (or more). There just was not going to be enough time saving versus charging. Deploying batteries and personnel was not going to work logistically.

No way in the world can I see the manufacturers all agreeing on a common battery. The types and shapes of cars and requirements for different battery sizes are too great. Most cars have a battery that is moulded to the car shape so as to maximise available space, reduce centre of gravity and pack in the maximum number of cells. I think the advent of fast DC charging also totally killed any ideas of battery changing.
Cheers,
Dave
 

JohnSnowNW

Active Member
Feb 13, 2015
2,654
2,945
Minnesota
I don't think charging during long distance trips is a problem. Even using v1 Superchargers, our entire family can make a 600+ mile journey in a day...with minimal planning. Now that we have v2 and v3 Supercharging, and 350Kw capable chargers, it's going to be even more of a non-issue.

That said, I think battery swap can work for things like scooters/motorcycles...but isn't really the way to go for other vehicles.
 

PhantomX

Member
Sep 29, 2016
473
430
Irvine
I don't think charging during long distance trips is a problem. Even using v1 Superchargers, our entire family can make a 600+ mile journey in a day...with minimal planning. Now that we have v2 and v3 Supercharging, and 350Kw capable chargers, it's going to be even more of a non-issue.

That said, I think battery swap can work for things like scooters/motorcycles...but isn't really the way to go for other vehicles.

It's not the speed of a single car that's the problem, it's the accordion effect as result of charging speed that could become a big issue. One scenario came across my mind recently. Take LA to Vegas commute for example. For most Tesla's, an one way non-stop trip would get uncomfortably close to the full battery capacity given the average speed and the hilly conditions of the 15 FWY. This means most would want to charge at either Barstow, Primm, or Baker, similar to typical stops for gas cars. Let's say EV gets very popular and 30% of the cars on this route become EV, what would the necessary charging infrastructure needed at either of these 3 locations to make commute feasible for large volume of EV? I think there will need at least same number of charging stations as there are gas pumps at these places, or likely more since no EV can yet replenish range at speed of a gas car. I think this is the biggest challenge for EV and its charging speed.
 

Watts_Up

Active Member
Mar 4, 2019
3,706
2,682
In a galaxy far, far away
Now that we have viable elec cars, and more variety in the way, we need to solve the charging/range issue. I remember reading about the limiting factor that earlier battery tech was, and even though it's much improved it's still the biggest hurdle. Current battery tech is sufficient for most average drivers but long road trips and extended use are still impossible unless carefully planned around charging.

I love grilling and probably use my grill as much as my stove if not more. A few days ago I needed to buy more propane so I drive to the neighborhood grocery store and exchange my propane cylinder for a fresh one full of fuel. Once or twice a week the propane sends a truck to pick up the empty cylinders and they refill them and make them ready for the next exchange. This is what we should be doing with elec. car battery packs, at least in part. Existing gas stations would happily incorporate battery exchange into their business for all the same reasons they sale gas. The battery packs are heavy and special equipment would need to be developed to remove and replace battery packs for customers. Standard materials handling equip.that's already on the market could be adapted immediatly with no R&D costs. While we don't have the tech to store more energy or make charge times as short as the time it takes to fill a gas tank we can swap batteries and put elec. cars back on the road fully charged in just a few mins. using this method. I'm not sure how practical it would be to retrofit existing Teslas, but they should be able to redesign the batteries to be removable or at least partially removable so drivers can partially recharge if nothing else. With a system like this in place thers no reason a Tesla owner couldn't hop in their car and take a last min road trip without crafting their journey around finding and waiting for a charge.
This seems similar to the SparkCharge new modular charging system

sparkcharge-modular-fast-charging-system_100708361_h.jpg
 

Uncle Paul

Well-Known Member
Nov 1, 2013
6,299
7,596
Canyon Lake,CA
Tesla batteries are ideal for battery swaps. Believe only 4 bolts hold them in and they just slot into connectors to marry the pack to the chassis. They had a station prototype in California for a while but nobody wanted to use it. Prefered to use the Superchargers at the same location. (Believe at Harris Ranch).

Problem with swaps is that everyone wants to drop off their old and degraded core, and pick up a much newer one with fewer charges. Nobody wanted to swap out a well performing pack and take the chance of getting an older one.

Also lots of different battery packs. 60 70, 75, 85, 90, 95, 100...series A-E
Gotta have batteries to fit the Model 3 and S/X.

Way too many issues to work out. Superchargers are fast and efficient.

Tesla spent that $ making Superchargers faster, increasing software to precondition batteries when selected and making the newer batteries faster charging.

Even most longer trips need only one or two stops per day. Start out morning with full charge. Drive 300 miles and grab some juice. Charge up again at your destination for the night. Charge while getting meals and restroom breaks and the charging becomes pretty efficient.
 

JohnSnowNW

Active Member
Feb 13, 2015
2,654
2,945
Minnesota
It's not the speed of a single car that's the problem, it's the accordion effect as result of charging speed that could become a big issue. One scenario came across my mind recently. Take LA to Vegas commute for example. For most Tesla's, an one way non-stop trip would get uncomfortably close to the full battery capacity given the average speed and the hilly conditions of the 15 FWY. This means most would want to charge at either Barstow, Primm, or Baker, similar to typical stops for gas cars. Let's say EV gets very popular and 30% of the cars on this route become EV, what would the necessary charging infrastructure needed at either of these 3 locations to make commute feasible for large volume of EV? I think there will need at least same number of charging stations as there are gas pumps at these places, or likely more since no EV can yet replenish range at speed of a gas car. I think this is the biggest challenge for EV and its charging speed.


Well that's why I discussed that charging speed is increasing considerably, and, then, Tesla is continually adding more SC stations.

With v3 Superchargers and the Model 3, Tesla has reduced charging time by 50% (at least in comparison to charging our MX)...and even faster if you only stop for a top-up. Both charging speed and the number of stations will only increase going forward. I think people need to remember that BEVs do not need to charge similarly to fueling an ICEV. Certainly, on the last leg of any journey I make I only charge to about 15-20% more than I need to get to my destination, since I have the ability to charge once there.

Lastly, range is continually increasing, which will limit the number of required charging stops.

To recap: Charging speed, the number of stations, and range are all continually increasing, while charging a BEV isn't exactly analogous to fueling an ICEV...and all these factors, together, mitigate the charging bottlenecks that today's BEVs face.
 
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