Sumitomo has shown a prototype of a car (a Toyota – shown in picture) that uses special type of engine, a liquid-nitrogen cooled one. The use of liquid nitrogen makes usual copper conductors have superconducting properties. Using superconductors in an engine greatly raises the engine’s efficiency, so it uses less energy and the battery lasts longer.
The liquid nitrogen decreases the temperature of the conductor to about -200 C, fact that decreases the resistance very close to 0 (zero). A conductor’s resistance cannot be absolutely zero, as some blogs sustain, because it would have an infinite conducting capacity: I=U/R. That also means, if the conductor has 0K, the electrons would not move anymore. They’d freeze. But that’s not the point. The idea is that if future electric motors would be made this way, a lot of energy otherwise dispersed by heat could be saved. Sumitomo are claiming that their prototype travels 10% further than conventional electric vehicles on the same battery.
Sumitomo’s plans for the future are to improve the efficiency of the power plant and then to produce a vehicle. If all goes according to plan they will also start producing motors for buses and trucks.