Looking to gather momentum in the electric vehicle field, Toyota’s focus is also on batteries. The Japanese giant has recently unveiled a solid-state LiCoO2 (lithium cobalt oxide) battery that features higher energy density and bears temperatures of up to 100 degrees Celsius. The new cell is made from 4 x 3.6V units, totaling a 14.4 V.
Solid state batteries have the advantage of being able to be used far above the temperatures an organic electrolyte battery would be. When an all-solid-state battery is in an ideal state, the lithium spreads faster than electrolyte, and thus obtains higher power output.
All-solid-state batteries have a problem that a material is produced in a chemical reaction between the boundary surfaces of positive electrodes and solid electrolyte, increasing resistance. To solve this issue, Toyota reduced the resistance of the boundary surfaces by 99% by coating the surfaces of positive electrode materials with ceramics with help from the National Institute of Materials Science (NIMS).
Toyota announced lithium ion batteries for their future hybrid and electric vehicles. This battery will probably get included in the next generation Prius or in the newly-unveiled RAV4 electric, made in collaboration with Tesla Motors.