Before we get into competing battery chemistries, a quick refresher on how batteries work and what makes lithium-ion batteries so special. (If you don't want to read, you can listen!)
Do those green plots mark out champion cell performance relative to theoretical or production performance relative to theoretical?
In PV, the huge drop in price over the last 12 years came without a bunch of huge breakthroughs in the fundamental technology. Some of it was developing manufacturing that could adopt newer cell designs, a lot of it was better material supply and quality and then scale, scale, scale. It sounds like LIB isn't quite at that point yet, perhaps because the performance requirements are more diverse and present more directions and challenges for optimization. So I guess I'm wondering if it's people in the lab working on pushing out those green loops to the max or if the lab cells are great and it's a question of which will be more successful in manufacturing. Any insight?
Great post (as usual).
One thing I'd love Dave to tell us about is what over the horizon battery technologies may be out there that have at least the theoretical potential to blow away LIB, perhaps like some people think quantum computing will do. I don't care about feasibility, cost or manufacturability, but just whether there's any possibility of a breakthrough battery technology.
Maybe I'm denser than most people, but I never before understood why there was such a diversity of battery types, I.e. A, AA, AAA, C, D, etc. Now I do. Thanks.