Our Next Energy, also known as ONE, installed one of its battery packs in a Tesla Model S and managed to have it travel 752 miles on a single charge.

The Model S is Tesla’s longest-range vehicle with up to 405 miles of range on a single charge depending on the configuration.

CEO Elon Musk has often said that Tesla could make it have an even longer range by jamming a 120 kWh battery pack in it, but the automaker instead focuses on achieving a longer range through better efficiency.

In order to showcase its own battery technology, Our Next Energy (ONE) has now installed its own battery system in a Model S.

The company did a test drive with an average speed of 55 mph and achieved a range of 752 miles:

Our Next Energy, Inc. (ONE), a Michigan battery technology company, has demonstrated a proof-of-concept battery that powered an electric vehicle 752 miles without recharging. The vehicle completed a road test across Michigan in late December with an average speed of 55 mph. The results were validated by a third party using a vehicle dynamometer where the test vehicle, a Tesla Model S retrofitted with an experimental battery, achieved 882 miles at 55 mph.

They released a video of the range test:

In the original press release, the company didn’t explain anything about its battery technology.

After we asked, ONE sent Electrek more details confirming that they added about 99.8 kWh of energy capacity in the vehicle, which originally comes with a ~100 kWh pack, through a higher energy density design:

The battery system has an energy density of 416 Wh/L (compared to approximately 245 Wh/L of the original pack) and uses a Nickel-Cobalt-Manganese cathode and a graphite anode. The pack added an additional 331 kg in total to the original mass of the battery (and vehicle) while also adding 99.8 kWh of energy. The specific energy density of the pack we tested measured at 231 Wh/kg.

Aside from an impressive energy density, there’s not a lot of information in this statement since the chemistry of using a nickel-cobalt-manganese cathode and graphite anode is fairly common.

Though the company also added that it plans to change the chemistry of its Gemini battery:

Gemini will employ a new graphite free anode and a Nickel-Cobalt free cathode improving energy density to approximately 450 Wh/L and 290 Wh/kg in the long term. We have 10 Ah cells on test that support the system targets above and plan to scale up these test cells to produce 1000s by mid 2022. We will integrate a full pack using Gemini architecture for pairing a LFP traction battery with a manganese rich anode free range extender by the end of 2022.

The Michigan-based company plans to produce a production prototype of its cell by the end of next year.

Electrek’s Take

This is interesting, but as I stated, it lacks details. Also, the fact that it achieved an impressive range doesn’t mean that this solution is commercially viable. The longevity of the pack has not been addressed and a 200 kWh battery pack would greatly increase the price of the vehicle.

So it’s something to keep an eye on, but I’ll keep a healthy skepticism for now.

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Fred Lambert

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