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JRP3
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Forward thinker, tirelessly fighting against misinformation.
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  • Enough resources for One Billion EV's 2 comments
    Jun 19, 2011 9:50 AM
    One of the arguments that the anti-EV crowd tries to use against EV's is that there simply is not enough material to build all the batteries needed for a significant number of EV's.  I've never seen any credible numbers to back up that assertion, all estimates show plenty of lithium in the world, and I've never seen any projected restrictions on the various other materials used in battery construction.  A new study has come out that shows we have enough raw material to build one billion 40kWh EV packs.  That means we could replace every car on the road in the world today with an EV, almost twice over.

    On the order of 1 billion 40 kWh Li-based EV batteries could be built with the currently estimated reserve base of lithium, according to a recent study by researchers from Lawrence Berkeley National laboratory and the University of California, Berkeley. Lifetime system cost, and other factors, will likely limit scale up more than resource constraints, they found.
    http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/06/albertus-20110617.html
    Worth noting that the LEAF pack is 24kWh so you could actually produce even more EV's like the LEAF, but I think one billion EV's should carry us for a while.
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  • fxfx
    , contributor
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    Ok, so a research shows that Li is not a constraint (at least you could dig up this much Li (though it may cost a bit more money than people realize). But what about the rest? What about the real (opposed to hyped/claimed/promised) life cycle of a battery? Remember, the TSLA S comes with 85 kwh, double those 40kwh. And as it seems you need to replace that battery at least 2 times over a span of 10 years! All of a sudden, that 1 bn cars comes down to 250 million. still impressive - but what about the other raw materials that are needed to built all those batteries? I can't say whether we will have enough or too little of those available but one could safely assume that you will need a lot of them more than you need today. That will drive up their prices and would require huge investments in new mining capacity allover the world. Can it be done? probably, but it will take a lot of time and a lot of $$ to go there. And all of a sudden, EVs may not look so environmentally-friendly anymore...
    9 Sep 2013, 06:41 AM Reply Like
  • JRP3
    , contributor
    Comments (7607) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » First, there is no suggestion that Tesla will need a replacement pack in 10 years at all. The 85kWh pack is rated at 265 miles of range, which means for your average yearly driving of 12K miles it would be recharged 45 times, which is 450 times in 10 years. The chemistry used in the Model S is rated for over 2000 charge cycles.
    Second, since I wrote this article a huge deposit of lithium has been found in Wyoming.
    Third, the batteries are fully recyclable.
    Fourth, the other major materials in the batteries are carbon, aluminum, copper, and plastic, we have plenty of all of those.
    Fifth, and final, battery research is ongoing and progressing using even cheaper and more common S and Si, among other materials.
    10 Sep 2013, 09:27 PM Reply Like
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