Quantum will help us recharge electric cars faster

Quantum will help us recharge electric cars faster

Quantum charging will reduce the charging time of electric vehicles from ten hours to three minutes. Whether it is photovoltaics or fusion, sooner or later human civilization must turn to renewable energy. This is considered inevitable considering the growing energy demands of humanity and the limited nature of fossil fuels. As such, much research has been conducted in order to develop alternative sources of energy, most of which use electricity as the main energy carrier.

Extensive research and development in renewable energy has been accompanied by gradual social changes as the world adopted new products and devices running on renewable sources. The most surprising recent change is the rapid adoption of electric vehicles. Currently millions of electric cars are sold every year. The electric car market is one of the fastest growing sectors and has helped propel Elon Musk to become the richest man in the world.

Unlike traditional cars that derive energy from burning hydrocarbons, the Electric vehicles rely on batteries as a storage medium for their energy. For a long time, batteries had a much lower energy density than hydrocarbons offered, which resulted in very low ranges of the first electric vehicles.

However, the gradual improvement in battery technologies has allowed electric cars to fall within acceptable levels compared to gasoline cars. It is no euphemism that improving battery storage technology was one of the major technical bottlenecks that needed to be solved to kick off the current electric vehicle revolution.

Recently, scientists from the Center for Theoretical Physics of Complex Systems at the Institute for Basic Science (IBS) have further explored these questions. The article, which was chosen as "Editor's Suggestion" in Physical Review Letters, showed that all-to-all coupling is irrelevant in quantum batteries and that the presence of global operations is the only ingredient of quantum advantage. . The group went further to pinpoint the exact source of this advantage by ruling out any other possibility and even provided an explicit way of designing such batteries.

Additionally, the group was able to accurately quantify how much speed charging can be achieved in this diagram. While the maximum charge rate increases linearly with the number of cells in classic batteries, the study showed that quantum batteries employing global operation can achieve quadratic scaling in charging rate. To illustrate this, we will consider a typical electric vehicle with a battery that contains around 200 cells. The use of this quantum charging would lead to a speed of 200 times compared to classic batteries, which means that the charging time at home would be reduced from 10 hours to about 3 minutes. At high-speed charging stations, the charging time would be reduced from 30 minutes to seconds.

Researchers say the consequences can be far-reaching and that the implications of quantum charging can go far beyond electric cars and consumer electronics. For example, it could find key uses in future fusion power plants, which require large amounts of energy to be charged and discharged in an instant. Of course, quantum technologies are still in their infancy and there is still a long way to go before these methods can be implemented in practice. Research findings such as these, however, create promising direction and can incentivize funding agencies and businesses to further invest in these technologies. If used, it is believed that quantum batteries would completely revolutionize the way we use energy and bring us one step closer to our sustainable future.

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