Tesla cars are known as Battery Electric Vehicles because they are powered solely by batteries. We know these cars use very high quality batteries. You may wonder how many batteries in a Tesla make the car so powerful. In this post we will try to understand Tesla’s powerful lithium ion batteries.
Batteries used in Tesla cars
In the early 1970s, a British chemist proposed the idea of using lithium ion battery cells. Now anybody can go online and learn how a lithium ion battery cell works. Experts have warned that using lithium ion battery cells is a great idea but at the same time these batteries are associated with dangers. Technically, these batteries are lightweight but illuminating.
The design of a battery cell is simple. In a cell, basically there are three components: two electrodes and a chemical material known as the electrolyte. When you charge a lithium ion battery, the negative electrode receives the lithium ions. And when discharge takes place, the opposite happens: lithium ions go to the cathode.
Since 2013 for models X and S cars, Tesla has been using lithium ion batteries manufactured in a special way. There are18650 cells in total. But that is not the case with all models. The model determines how many batteries in a Tesla car work together. These battery cells are small, not significantly larger than AA cells.
Tesla also has cylindrical cells that are 65 millimeters tall and 18 millimeters in diameter. The Panasonic design is known as a very robust formulation. They are famous for reliable performance and they are very long lived. They can withstand harsh environment.
Tesla has several battery packs and the most popular one has 7,104 18650 cells. In this pack there are 16 444 cell modules in total. 85kwh of energy can be stored in these cell modules.
The design was improved in 2015, and that change led to an increase in the power of the cell. Cell capacity rose by 6%. Then 90kwh of energy could be stored in the battery packs. Later, the internals of the packs were updated more and each of the modules could hold 516 cells.
As a result, the total number of cells became 8256, storing 100 KWh of energy. This energy is enough to enable a car to run 300 miles.
To lower costs and improve cell efficiency, Tesla has built its own battery factory, and released a new cell design known as 2170. Its diameter is 20 millimeters and height is 70 millimeters.
This cell is used in Powerpack storage products and Powerwall storage products. This cell is also used in the model 3 Sedan. This model is not as expensive as the Model S. 2170 design has more volume and is more energy efficient.
Batteries used in electric cars need to be recharged quickly. This is a key requirement. Home service is AC but batteries are DC devices. To charge batteries, a 240 volt circuit is used. The AC is rectified by the charging circuitry of the car, and then the current is converted to DC.
Tesla has installed charging stations worldwide and the charging stations can recharge Tesla cars very quickly. Typically, the process takes up to 40 minutes.
Battery packs with Panasonic 18650 can not necessarily charge faster. For a Panasonic cell, the highest charging voltage is 4.3 volts. Per cell, 2 amperes is the highest charging current. But, as we have already mentioned, this is not the same for all models. Multiple factors determine how many batteries in a Tesla car are attached together.
Reasons why Tesla is leading the technology
When it comes to the race of producing electric vehicles, Tesla is the leader. The reason is clear: Tesla cars come with the highest quality rechargeable batteries. Tesla has so far released many models of battery powered cars and these cars are very popular.
Tesla seems to put more emphasis on aerodynamics than luxury features. By making the batteries denser, Tesla has taken more risks than its competitors. Initially some experts questioned the car’s durability in the long run but Tesla has so far done very well. For example, Tesla Sedans have been around for close to a decade.
Tesla has been able to maintain its popularity largely because of its battery range. But battery range is not the only reason people like Tesla cars. Tesla has a few big competitors but most of them manufacture vehicles that are bigger and heavier and as a result consume more energy.
How long do they last?
The degradation of Tesla batteries does not happen overnight. The batteries in an electric car are not like the batteries in a gas-powered car because the former are designed for the purpose of running cars. In an electric car, if you leave the lights on, you will not have to worry about the batteries going dry.
Batteries occupy a lot of space in a Tesla vehicle, and they are an expensive component. The batteries are designed for enduring all types of conditions. A study has shown that Tesla batteries remain 98% effective even after being used for 6 years. Another study has shown that the batteries have no issue even after the car has run 500,000 miles.
There is no doubt that the number is staggering, but it is also true that the batteries wear down over time. However, the degradation of the batteries takes place over time, and not all at once. The process of degradation is very slow, and you will not be able to notice it on a daily basis.
According to some Tesla owners, the batteries are 95% efficient even after the car has run about 50,000 miles. And when the battery range decreases 5%, your car loses a very small fraction of its ability to cover long distances.
Older Teslas offer some more interesting statistics. According to the statistics, the batteries lose only 10% of their efficiency in the first 150,000 miles. That means, the batteries will remain 90% efficient even after the car has run 150,000 miles.
More on the batteries
Batteries are the main reason why Tesla has become so popular. Traditionally, batteries are a weak point of electric vehicles. Tesla offers so far the best cells, and they are energy dense. Tesla uses nickel, aluminum and Cobalt to make lithium ion batteries. The model of a particular Tesla car determines how many batteries in a Tesla car are attached together.
Over time, the company has developed the quality of the lithium batteries they produce. Users of the cars wonder what makes these batteries so powerful. Another great thing about the batteries of Tesla cars is that they are really cheap to fill up. The cars are popular also because they require little maintenance.
Now you know how many batteries in a Tesla make it so powerful, and it is clear that the batteries do not degrade drastically; they take a long time to degrade. And this degradation does not affect the functionality of the car. These amazing batteries are the main reason why Tesla cars have become so popular.