The US Department of Energy Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) has pledged $36 million to 22 projects to develop transformational electric vehicle energy storage systems using innovative chemistries, architectures and designs.
ARPA-E’s new program, Robust Affordable Next Generation Energy Storage Systems (RANGE), aims to accelerate widespread EV adoption by dramatically improving driving range and reliability, and by providing low-cost, low-carbon alternatives to today’s vehicles.
ARPA-E’s RANGE program seeks to improve EV driving range and reduce vehicle costs by re-envisioning the total EV battery system, rather than working to increase the energy density of individual battery cells.
Some of the projects selected will focus on developing robust battery chemistries and architectures that would improve vehicle driving range and overall battery robustness. For example, Solid Power located in Louisville, CO will receive approximately $3.5 million to develop a solid-state Lithium-ion battery that requires less protective packaging, which reduces cost and overall vehicle weight to improve driving range.
RANGE projects will also focus on multifunctional energy storage designs that use these robust storage systems to simultaneously serve other functions in a vehicle, further reducing an energy storage system’s effective and overall EV weight. For example, the University of California, San Diego will receive approximately $3.5 million to engineer a low-cost, low-weight battery and to redesign vehicle frames so the battery becomes an integral part of a vehicle’s support structure.
Information on all RANGE projects is available here [pdf].