Along with the ever-present question of battery capacity, electric motorcycles also face the challenge of long recharge times. According to a study that has just come out, a breakthrough in battery design that uses an asphalt byproduct could be the solution to that problem.
The team behind the study (published in ACS Nano; we spotted the write-up in New Atlas) took lithium batteries and added asphalt by-product gilsonite. This achieved multiple goals: it stabilized the battery (making catastophic self-destruction less likely) and enabled the researchers to speed up recharge times considerably. Supposedly, the study saw batteries recharged in five minutes, instead of two hours for a similar battery with more conventional design.
Another benefit: the batteries are supposed to have energy density that exceeds anything on the market right now. Theoretically, that can mean smaller batteries, which would certainly be an asset to any electric motorcycle designer.
For a full write-up on the research, head over to New Atlas. And, pay attention to what you’re reading: this news could be the start of an electric motorcycle revolution, if the technology is able to be brought to electric motorcycles at reasonable cost. The big manufacturers are starting to show off interesting electric motorcycle projects, and once technology meets the needs of the OEMs, we can expect to see a big shake-up in the two-wheeled industry. We’ve already seen the Harley-Davidson bigwigs say the main factor holding back their Livewire project (pictured above) is battery tech. If this research solves those problems, then the future could indeed be electrifying, and not just for the MoCo.