At the moment electric cars store their energy in their batteries. The problem with these batteries is that they need to be big enough to sustain the car traveling for hundreds of miles, and in turn they also pose some potential risks such as exploding. They can also be very expensive to replace.

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However it seems that some researchers at the Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, have been working on a technology that could turn carbon fiber into battery electrodes, meaning that in the future it is possible that electric cars could store their energy within their carbon fiber bodies (assuming that carbon fiber is used). In turn this could make cars lighter due to no longer needing a huge and heavy traditional battery, which could also help extend how far the car can drive as a lighter body means less energy is needed to propel it forwards.

According to Leif Asp, Professor of Material and Computational Mechanics and one of the researchers of the technology, “A car body would then be not simply a load-bearing element, but also act as a battery. It will also be possible to use the carbon fibre for other purposes such as harvesting kinetic energy, for sensors or for conductors of both energy and data. If all these functions were part of a car or aircraft body, this could reduce the weight by up to 50 percent.”

However there is a downside to this technology, and that is cost. There is a reason why you typically find carbon fiber being used by higher-end sports cars as the material is expensive, so you can imagine that building a car completely out of the material will be rather costly.

Filed in Green >Transportation. Read more about and .

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