Report December 2008
On behalf of the Swiss Federal Office of Energy (SFOE )and of the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN)

The increasing scarceness of resources and pollution through emissions are obliging a new approach towards drive systems for vehicles. The use of electrical vehicles in light construction is a possible answer. This requires adequate and technically feasible and at the same time environmentally acceptable energy storage systems in form of an accumulator.

On the area of batteries for driving systems intensive research and development work has been done during past years. The scope of application of such batteries is for the most part for vehicles with:

–    hybrid drive(HEV), electrical drive in combination with a combustion engine;
–    plug-in hybrid drive (PHEV), by which electrical energy can be „refilled“;
–    pure electrical propulsion (BEV);

Available on the market are a number of vehicles with hybrid drive and also industrial vehicles which are driven by conventional batteries. The development of the fuel cell has not yet reached a practical stage. Which of the technical solutions will finally prevail, is determined by such factors as type of battery, vehicle design and infrastructure.

This paper gives an overview of the present state of development of the batteries for electric vehicles.

The batteries must comply with the relevant application or respectively should be adapted to the requirements. A comparison of the most promising battery types is given under chapter 4. The ideal battery should have a high energy and power density and at the same time have a reasonable price. (Chapt. 7 Requirements for batteries)

In order to come to a breakthrough in the application of batteries for individual mobility some more development steps will be necessary, e.g. lower production costs combined with higher energy density.

Read the whole study here (PDF, 2.8MB, german language only)