Exxon Mobil predicts that by 2040, half of all new cars that will come off the assembly line will be hybrid. However, hybrid cars have one problem: batteries, the energy of which is used to operate an electric motor, are very bulky and heavy, even taking into account the current development of lithium-ion batteries. Volvo has become the manufacturer of the newest body panels that manage to save and store energy, like the classic batteries, but with the least weight and space expenditure.
About the Volvo Company and its idea
Volvo Company appeared in 1915 in Sweden. The name of the company in Latin means, “I twist.” Despite its age, Volvo is an extraordinarily innovative organization. Currently, the company is going to make a real revolution in modern engineering. The fact is that Volvo intends to abandon the familiar batteries and enclose a material that accumulates energy between the special polymer plates. This is what the body panels of the future will be made of, as well as doors, trunk lids and, possibly, wheel housings.
Three years Volvo and nine other companies conducted tests in laboratories. Finally, Volvo experts began running trials. The project to develop the idea of body panels that can accumulate energy, received funding from the European Union. According to experts, this invention will significantly help to save space due to the lack of current bulky batteries. In addition, a car, equipped with such body panels, will be much lighter than the electric cars that we know today. Such a battery is charged in the same way as the usual lithium-ion battery. If the batteries at the electric car will be used at a hood, door panel and roof at the same time, then the energy should be enough for more than 100 km. Thanks to this development, the weight of cars could be reduced by 15%. In future, this innovation will be used even at the rent cars. This way, the cars of Orlando airport Enterprise will be even more comfortable and modern.
About the project
This innovative battery development project is called ‘Tomorrow’s Volvo Car’. It began operating in 2010 and was run by the English Institute, since precisely this institute was working on the material that was used in large quantities in the base for the production of batteries for energy storage panels. Funds for the realization of this project were appropriated by the European Union in the amount of 3.5 million euros, most of which will go to the London Institute. At first, the project was organized in order to find a decent and more profitable replacement for an old massive battery, free up a significant amount of space, replacing them with cars, having an electronic engine and with the hybrid cars.
How will the substitution happen?
The main substances that are part of the body are polymer carbon fiber and synthetic resin. The material is completely new and has a number of necessary and effective properties: its physical and electronic characteristics will make it possible to store significantly more energy per unit of volume than the ordinary lithium-ion batteries can store.
The material is very strong, not looking at the fact that during the process, its form is simply changeable. In fact, the substitution will look like this: innovative batteries will be built into the body of the car, providing it with energy that a standard battery was previously producing. You can replenish the energy supply of the device using an ordinary method – by plugging it into the socket or using the brakes energy recovery system.
It must be emphasized that in order to charge this battery you will need even less time than it takes to charge a standard battery. You can put the battery in virtually any place of the car.
In other words, we can say that manufacturers do not just make a new battery, but try to provide the car body with an electronic charge of energy. Developers report on the benefits of their own invention. On the basis of all this information you can make a prediction that the idea is very productive and will have a great success with fans of economical and environmentally friendly transport. At first, the idea will appeal to those people who already have solar panels installed on their roofs.