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Thread: Another vote for removable battery packs...this time on Steroids!!

  1. Super Moderator
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    #1

    Another vote for removable battery packs...this time on Steroids!!

    If you think you have an issue with batteries that are not removable...well, imagine your phone being 3,000 pounds, having 4 wheels, 4 seats and being your major source of transportation!

    Yeah, I'm talking cars here. But not just ANY car, how about the Tesla...a fully electric car that will travel 200 miles on one charge? It's really a feat for the ages to have created a car and company that was against all odds and was "destined to fail", yet it's not only still viable...it's still innovating.

    In case you don't know it, if you own one of these electric cars (which by the way use Lithium Ion batteries - very similar to the ones in your phone), the company has installed FREE - that's right, totally FREE charging stations all across the country, where you can pull in, plug in, sit and enjoy a book or a half-hour radio show or movie on your tablet, and then disconnect and drive another 200 miles, all at no cost! The company's founder Elon Musk has vowed that their charging stations will remain free for ever. But he's apparently not stopped there. Allow me to digress for a moment...

    Recently one of our Moderators, MandyMakesApps posted a way to turn your Samsung Galaxy S4 into a wireless chargeable phone, and how to do it in 20 seconds. That's about the time it takes to power the phone off, remove the depleted battery, replace the depleted battery with a fully charged one, replace the cover and power the phone back on. In her post, instead it's done by inserting a thin card into the back of the phone over the battery, which provides the necessary wireless "antenna" (coil) and connects with contacts already there, to allow the phone to use the magnetic field created by standard wireless charging pads to charge the battery. See Wireless Charging on your SGS4 in 20 minutes...

    OK, so FoxKat, what does that have to do with the Tesla? Are we talking about wireless charging of the car's battery? Well, no - although that concept is already a reality too (see immediately below).

    Inductive charging is also used for CARS and the technology is moving along fast!!



    No, what we're talking about here (as you might have gathered from the title of the post), is instead of charging the battery, why not exchange the depleted cells like we do with our empty Propane Grill canisters at the local Home Depot or Lowes, for one that's full and ready to power our Grill (or Grille if I may)?

    Today, Musk and Tesla announced an incredible new way to charge your electric car, one that is not only highly innovative, but cuts the charge time from over 30 minutes, to under 2 minutes. How, you ask? Well, it's a $500,000 cost per charging station (that Tesla will be paying), to convert it into a fully automated battery swapping station. You then simply drive the car in, press a button and sit back, and while you wait your car "powers off", then a robotic apparatus comes out of the ground below your car, removes the fasteners and gently detaches the huge battery pack from under your car. Then it proceeds to swap it underground with another that it has previously charged (also fully automatically), and stores the depleted battery in a holding cell below the asphalt where it begins charging it for the next car. In fact, it has several charged cells waiting so it's ready to do multiple swaps one right after the other. Once completed, the car "reboots" and you're on your way in under 2 minutes...less than half the time it takes to fill a typical car's gasoline tank! The cost...about $80 per "fill-up"

    So could you imagine being able to go to any retail store, purchase a charged battery for your phone and swap it as a deposit with the old battery and be on your way in seconds? Well, the idea isn't really all that new...remember AA and AAA batteries?

    See the video and story below.

    Musk Demos Tesla Beating Audi in Refueling Contest - Businessweek
    Last edited by FoxKat; 06-21-2013 at 05:01 PM.
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    #2
    Quote Originally Posted by FoxKat View Post
    So could you imagine being able to go to any retail store, purchase a charged battery for your phone and swap it as a deposit with the old battery and be on your way in seconds? Well, the idea isn't really all that new...remember AA and AAA batteries?
    The idea is definitely not new! But maybe it doesn't need to be. This old idea could, IMO, will put the breaks on gasoline power much faster than feared (by the oil majors) up until now. The innovation here is taking out management our of and putting convenience into the process. I don't even need my hands to refill! Push a button, robot does the job, zip away!

    I don't think it can happen for phones though, there's too much fragmentation. We're fighting over a standard for wireless charging, imagine if there were to be a standard for 'a' particular type of back cover with 'a' particular type of battery for all phones! Plus smartphone evolution is probably 100 fold faster than automotive.
    Waiting for the supercharger day to arrive!

    On a side note, I don't think there has ever a man as influential as Elon Musk who has also been so humble while shooting up in fame and riches. What a guy!
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    Excellent evaluation and points. Fragmentation is THE NUMBER ONE issue with Android phones, since all manufacturers are working feverishly to differentiate themselves from the other, whereas Apple with their "one size fits all" mentality has allowed it to dominate the smartphone market and the accessories market for well over half a decade. Only due to the wide dispersion of Android, has Apple fallen to the lower tier. Imagine if Android were a proprietary OS, just like OS6, and imagine if the patent on it and the designs rested with only one manufacturer - let's say Samsung. We wouldn't be having this discussion. There would be all but 2 "one size fits all" smartphones and instead of an entire wall or aisle of phone covers and accessories at Walmart, there would be an endcap.

    The company who finds the way to bridge this fragmentation gap and make accessories that are "one size fits all Android" will surely be the new mega-successful corporation. Now, MicroUSB was SUPPOSED to reign in the fragmentation, but where the connection is placed, coupled with the varied phone shapes and sizes essentially reduces that to a dongle or tether cord with a plug on the end...not very sexy. Same holds true for Bluetooth. It was supposed to make the 30 pin connector on the Apple iPhone moot...but reality has proven that wireless control hasn't gotten nearly as reliable as gold contacts, and so the accessories that are supposed to give full control, for instance of the radio app...instead are working poorly on some, OK on others and well on a few.

    Let's keep the dialogue going regarding wireless charging and other forms of rapid replenishment - does anyone want to see a Fuel-Cell option...I know I do! The standard is already there. The simple rechargeable lighter has a universal valve on the bottom...and any Butane dispenser you pick up at the department store will charge any rechargeable Butane lighter out there. That should be an easy port over to Fuel-Cell technology.
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    "Professor FoxKat"
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    #4
    Great post! Thanks for sharing this FoxKat!
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    #5
    Thanks, Storm. It's exciting to see the advancements in chemistry of batteries and how nanotechnology may change the battery forever...but it's still pretty neat to see innovation in an "old-school" manner solve a problem so quickly and efficiently. The main benefit here is that since these stations will sit un-attended and unused for hours at a time, they can accomplish a longer, slower charge on the stored bank of battery packs without inconveniencing the drivers, and thereby extending the lifespan of these batteries significantly. Since they are expensive, any additional lifespan is well worth the investment in these stations.
    Last edited by FoxKat; 06-24-2013 at 03:16 PM.

    "Professor FoxKat"
    "Saving DROID Razr's, one battery at a time. :-)" - (credit SallyC)
    Avatar is Maxwell Smart, AKA Agent 86, from "Get Smart" (with his signature "Shoe Phone"), a SitCom TV series by Mel Brooks & Buck Henry, based on the spy thriller series, "The Man From U.N.C.L.E.".
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