NASA knows how to charge an electric car in 5 minutes


You may not know it, but many products we use every day are derived from aerospace technologies. And once again, it is thanks to this industry that we could soon be able to recharge our electric vehicles in 5 minutes, or even less.

In a recent blog post, NASA showcases a cooling system developed at Purdue University in Indiana for its equipment that could also accelerate the transition to electric vehicles.

The American agency explains that as part of its missions, certain equipment must operate at a specific temperature. This includes “nuclear fission energy systems for missions to the Moon, Mars and beyond.”

NASA’s new cooling system

NASA has therefore funded research to develop a new cooling system that is more efficient, but also more compact. The result of this research: a module called FBCE or Flow Boiling and Condensation Experiment that can transfer heat.

This has already been delivered to the International Space Station, but at the same time, researchers have also explored the use of this device to improve the charging of electric vehicles on Earth. And the results are more than encouraging: 100% in a few minutes!

By better dissipating heat, vehicles can be charged faster

According to NASA, to charge an electric car in five minutes, the chargers must provide 1,400 amps of current. However, currently, the most advanced systems provide only 520 amps. And on most home chargers, that’s 150 amps.

This limitation is due to the fact that the passage of current on the cable that is connected to the car generates heat. The charge cannot therefore be too fast, at the risk of causing overheating. To solve this problem, it is necessary to effectively remove the heat generated by the cable.

This is where the technology developed for NASA comes in. Indeed, thanks to its revolutionary cooling system, it is possible to multiply the electric current by 4.6 compared to the most efficient chargers on the market, without overheating.

The liquid used is dielectric, which means that it does not conduct current. And the system would be able to remove 24.22 kilowatts of heat.

NASA Purdue

“Purdue University’s Electric Vehicle Charging Facility can charge a car in five minutes,” NASA comments. This is possible thanks to the system (developed for its equipment) which cools the cable. © Purdue University/Jared Pike

You will have no more excuses

“Purdue’s charging cable can deliver 2,400 amps, which is well beyond the 1,400 amps needed to reduce the time it takes to charge an electric car to five minutes. The application of this new technology has resulted in an unprecedented reduction in the time required to charge a vehicle and could remove one of the main barriers to the global adoption of electric vehicles”. we read in the publication of the American agency.

However, the availability of charging stations and the slowness of this charging are obstacles to the mass adoption of electric vehicles.

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