Purdue University announced that its engineers may have invented a solution to this particular problem with their new patent-pending charging station cable that could fully charge certain electric vehicles in less than five minutes. It should be noted, however, that the prototype has yet to be tested on an EV at the time of Purdue’s announcement.
In partnership with Ford Motor Co., Ford funded the research and development of the project.
Issam Mudawar, professor of mechanical engineering at Purdue University, and his students V.S. Devahdhanush and Seunghyun Lee were able to develop a prototype charging cable that could overcome one of the main hurdles in quickly charging electric vehicles overheating.
Essentially, overheating occurs when too much energy is delivered through a cable. The more power that is added, the hotter the cable will get, and if it gets too hot it can lead to dangerous effects.
Purdue professor Issam Mudawar and his students are working on a new charging cable design that could reduce charging times for electric vehicles to under five minutes.
Moreover, Overheating is not a new concept, EV charging stations and other types of electronics usually rely on liquid cooling systems to remove the heat from their cables. By removing the heat, the stations can increase the current through a charging cable, but this method can only do so much.
Mudawar and his students tried to address this problem with an alternative cooling method, liquid-vapor cooling. “Over the past 37 years, Mudawar has pioneered ways to cool electronics more efficiently by taking advantage of the way liquid traps heat when boiled into vapor. By absorbing heat in both liquid and vapor form, a liquid-to-vapor cooling system can dissipate at least ten times more heat than a pure liquid cooling system, ”says the press release.
Currently, the most advanced chargers in the industry can deliver currents up to 520 amps, which could charge an electric vehicle in 30 minutes, but most consumer chargers support currents less than 150 amps, which would take hours to charge an electric vehicle.
In a laboratory demonstration, the Mudawar prototype was able to draw over 2,400 amps of current, well above the 1,400 amps minimum required to cut charging times for large commercial electric vehicles to five minutes