Nissan To Partner With NASA

Sun 17th Apr 2022

Japanese car manufacturer Nissan has announced that it will work with space agency NASA to develop their next generation of car batteries.

In a wide-reaching announcement which covered the company’s new facility for the research and development of EV batteries, it was revealed that the space-age partnership was working with NASA to build batteries with a 15-minute charge time.

The solid-state batteries are appealing to motor manufacturers as they are cheaper to build, are much lighter and have potentially shorter charging times. Nissan are not the only motor manufacturer to explore the possibilities of solid-state batteries, Volkswagen, Toyota and Ford have all invested millions of dollars into the alternative to lithium-ion. It is hoped that the development of cheaper solid-state batteries will eventually make EVs just as affordable as petrol and diesel engines.

The partnership between Nissan and NASA will take shape at the University of California San Diego, where it is hoped that they can half the size of the current battery by testing a variety of materials. In confirming the partnership, Nissan’s vice president Kazuhiro Doi said: “Both Nasa and Nissan need the same kind of battery.”

It won’t be the first time that NASA has collaborated with motor manufacturers, the space agency worked in partnership to produce their ‘Moon Buggy’ that was driven by Apollo astronauts on the moon. 

“Instead of taking a battery off the shelf, we determined we needed to develop a battery from scratch,” said Nasa researcher Rocco Viggiano.

“A solid-state sulphur-selenium battery is cool to the touch and doesn’t catch fire. It has a slimmer profile than lithium-ion batteries and has better energy storage. It can take a beating and still operate, often in less than ideal conditions.”