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China Battery Giant CATL Launches Condensed Battery That May Power Electric Airplanes

Chinese battery giant Contemporary Amperex Technology Ltd (CATL), on 19 April unveiled a condensed matter battery that it said could supply enough energy to power electric passenger aircraft for civil aviation use.

The cutting-edge battery technology offers an energy density of up to 500 watt-hours per kilogram (Wh/kg), CATL's chief scientist Wu Kai said during a presentation at the Shanghai auto show.

Based in the Chinese coastal city of Ningde, the CATL thinks this is a significant achievement, which breaks the limits that have long restricted the development of the battery sector and will open up a new scenario of electrification centering on high level of safety and light weight.


Lithium-ion batteries (LIBs) have revolutionized the portable electronics industry and empowered the electric vehicle (EV) revolution.

Unfortunately, traditional LIBs are approaching its physico-chemical limit. The demand for higher density (longer range), high power (fast charging), and safer EVs has recently created a resurgence of interest in other cell chemistries.

The technology, which CATL calls a condensed state battery, uses a "highly conductive biomimetic condensed state electrolyte" which explains the battery name.

The condensed electrolyte creates a "micron-level self-adaptive net structure" that increases the efficiency of lithium ion transporting while boosting stability of the microstructure.

Furthermore, CATL’s condensed battery features ultra-high energy density cathode materials, innovative anode materials, separators, and manufacturing processes, to get it to the record energy density.


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