The last year has given us plenty of headlines about aluminum manufacturing in cars — but cars powered by aluminum? That’s a new one. However, it’s not that far-fetched. You’re not going to win any races with Citroen’s cutting-edge car powered by Phinergy’s new aluminum-air batteries but you’ll get from Point A to Point B in relatively easy fashion with nothing more than water as fuel. From Clean Technica (appreciate the British spelling of aluminum):
The car has lithium-ion batteries that enable it to travel 100 miles per charge, and if the driver needs to make rare trips that are longer than 100 miles, she or he can use the aluminium-air batteries to travel an additional 1,000 miles or so.
The aluminium-air batteries (from Phinergy) are not rechargeable in the conventional sense, however. They have to be refilled with distilled water every 200 miles.
The aluminium-air batteries are strictly for backup. If you want to make long trips often, these batteries should not be used. They just prevent stranding, and facilitate occasional long trips. This is because these batteries’ aluminium electrodes are depleted with use. They have to be replaced more often than conventional EV batteries.
There’s no word if the manufacturing process uses recycled aluminum but considering the recyclable properties of our favorite metal, it would make sense that a clean-energy company would take that into consideration.