Energy Department pushes for electric car battery research

A participant in a Toyota Motor Corp. press event puts a quick charger plug into the newly-developed compact electric vehicle "eQ" in this September 2012 file photo. A new center funded by the US Department of Energy aims to develop better electric car batteries and other energy storage systems. (Credit: Koji Sasahara/AP)

The Christian Science Monitor — If you want to know how advanced cars might be in the next hundred years, just take a look at how far the car has come along in the last hundred.

Unfortunately, electric cars missed out on decades of development over the last century. Battery technology in particular still suffers many of the issues it always has.

In an effort to speed up development, the U.S. Department of Energy has set a goal to improve battery and energy storage technologies by five times that of today–in the next five years. For technology which is often seemingly a decade away, that’s quite a goal.

That’s why DOE has created the Joint Center for Energy Storage Research, at a cost of $120 million over five years.

The idea is to replicate the kind of environment that spurred on other technical revolutions of the last century, such as the Manhattan Project in World War II. Read more.

Posted December 6, 2012