NASA can charge EVs in 5 minutes

Despite the recent innovation in space technology, and having actually sent humans in space before, the idea of humans living in space still feels like science fiction. Creating an environment that can sustain human life in absence of gravity, oxygen, and electrical outlets is no mean feat. Dedicated scientists from across the globe work day and night to facilitate some of the most unforgettable moments in space exploration. Advancements in space have left a lasting impression on humanity; with numerous day-to-day products being inspired by inventions originally intended to be used in space. I’ve covered some of them in my weekly video post. 

A team of researchers at NASA is developing a new technology that will achieve significant improvements in heat transfers to enable maintaining proper temperatures in space as well as reduce the size and weight of hardware required. The Flow Boiling and Condensation Experiment (FBCE) kicked off in 2021 on the International Space Station. A detailed explanation of the experiment concept (see image) and results can be found on the link below. This technology has the potential to make owning an EV on Earth easier and more feasible.

Long charging times are one of the key detractors of the global adoption of EVs. If implemented successfully, NASA’s tech can charge an EV in 5 minutes (industry goal). This is significantly smaller than the average charging times on the market today. Moreover, the overall size of charging stations and the cable weight will also reduce. The catch? Meeting this target will require charging stations to provide currents of 1400 amperes, much higher than the 520 amperes available right now. Charging systems that provide such currents will generate significantly more heat than current systems, and will require improved methods of controlling temperature. 

While some pieces of the puzzle remain before 5-min charging becomes a reality,  innovation and invention in space have once again laid the groundwork for future technology.

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