Lithium-ion batteries have come a long way, but in many ways they haven’t come far enough. The quest for better battery tech has been ongoing, and now, with Lamborghini licensing MIT’s new high-capacity, fast-charging organic battery tech, a significant leap is on the horizon.

Unlike nearly every other lithium-ion battery chemistry, TAQ is an organic compound — not the free-range hippie type, but the kind made primarily of carbon. Researchers have been investigating organic materials as cathodes, the negatively charged part of the cell, because they could store more energy at lower cost. But so far, candidate materials haven’t been very durable because they tend to dissolve in the liquid electrolytes commonly used in the industry today.

The new material doesn’t dissolve in two widely used electrolytes, and it sports an energy density that’s 50% better than one of the most common lithium-ion battery chemistries in use today, nickel-manganese-cobalt (NMC).

TAQ, short for bis-tetraaminobenzoquinone, is composed of carbon, nitrogen, oxygen, and hydrogen arranged in a row of three neighboring hexagons. The structure is similar to that of graphite, which is almost universally used today as an anode material (the positive terminal). Each TAQ molecule is attracted to up to six others through hydrogen bonds, which aren’t as strong as other bonds but are sufficient to create a nearly flat sheet of the stuff that can be layered atop each other with the holes storing lithium ions.

The material was discovered by Tianyang Chen and Harish Banda while they were working in the lab of Mircea Dincă, a professor at MIT who has a partnership with Lamborghini to help the hypercar manufacturer electrify its lineup. Lamborghini, which previously used a supercapacitor developed in Dincă’s lab in its Sian model, has licensed the patent on the material.

This groundbreaking shift in battery tech marks a significant advancement in energy storage technology, promising to revolutionize the automotive industry and beyond. Stay tuned for the exciting developments to come as Lamborghini leads the charge towards a sustainable and electrifying future.

Source: TechCrunch