EV-makers seek to extinguish battery fire problem before it explodes

The news: EV companies are working on battery modifications to make them less prone to overheating and catching fire.

  • Following multiple incidents of electric scooters catching fire in India, leading to casualties, companies like Battrixx, Sun Mobility, and Bounce are seeking preventive solutions, per The Economic Times.
  • Gogoro, which makes swappable batteries for light EVs, just released a swappable solid-state battery prototype it says is virtually fireproof, per Electrek.

Why it’s worth watching: Although EVs are less likely to catch fire than their gas-powered counterparts, when they do ignite, the conflagrations can be more intense and harder to put out, justifying steps to reduce batteries’ flammability, such as by adding coolant.

The opportunity: Proactively dealing with EV battery safety issues, rather than waiting until EVs are packed like sardines in hot parking garages, will prevent any retroactive backlash from loss of life and property.

  • Substituting unstable cobalt for other materials could help avoid the costly metal that’s linked to labor rights abuses in Africa as well as reduce flammability.
  • In addition to minimizing fire risk by letting batteries cool as they charge, battery swapping can also reduce the cost of EVs and the wait-time for charging.