Image: Goggo Network

Welcome to the first instalment of our mini-series exploring the future of energy. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be releasing a number of videos, delving into various aspects of this vital topic.

In the not-so-distant future, the current frustrations about the size, range, weight and cost of batteries have all been resolved. In this video, Graeme discusses a very clever solution for fast recharging that already exists.

The future is electric. And it is very smart.


Come with me to the future as we have a look at the batteries in EVs, electric vehicles, whether those be cars, buses, trains, planes, scooters, whatever the case may be, batteries in the future are going to look very different than they do now.

My name is Graeme Codrington, and this is a Throw Forward Thursday. And in the very near future, we are going to see remarkable advances in battery technology, including using new materials that allow us to have batteries with a much longer battery life, with much more powerful batteries that are also lighter and easy to use.

These are some of the complaints about existing batteries, and therefore complaints about existing EVs, that they don’t have enough range, that it takes too long to recharge them, and that the batteries are too heavy and expensive.  All of those could be solved, will be solved, and I don’t know how far we have to go into the future, but there are remarkable stories every week coming out of science labs all around the world about everything from getting rid of rare-earth minerals and replacing them with things like graphene on the one side, or even sand, although that probably doesn’t make it way into a car.

There are other innovations about to take place. In fact, some of them we don’t have to go into the future to see, but it gets us to change our way of thinking. I love this idea in parts of Asia, where instead of actually recharging the battery in the vehicle, you simply take a new battery and replace it. The old battery or the used-up battery gets recharged while you are out and about, and when you get back, you swap it back again. And as you can see in the picture, it’s even done on a public basis where you basically don’t own the battery, you just swap it out whenever you need it.

Very smart thinking in terms of solving a problem not by fixing the battery, but by fixing the infrastructure and system around it. I love smart people with smart solutions. Of course, that’s not really possible with bigger vehicles, heavier vehicles that need bigger batteries. But if scooters can show us, it can be done, then we just have to rework the infrastructure on other vehicles to make that a reality as well.

I think we’re also going to see a combination of technologies in the future, maybe including solar panels and solar type technologies embedded in the vehicles themselves providing an additional layer of power. We might see things like wind power coming into it as the vehicles move, their little turbines that create power that at least create a hybrid option with the battery. And it might also be contactless power in the roads that those vehicles actually drive on. All sorts of possibilities are available.

So, if you don’t mind me being just a little bit grumpy, if you know me, you’ll know I’m an upbeat, optimistic, maybe even idealistic, futurist, always trying to see the positive and the bright side of any dark futures that might exist. But on this one, my grumpiness is not with the future, it’s with the present. You see, energy is something I follow quite closely, and I get a lot of news articles in my news feed just moaning about batteries. But moaning in a way, where the journalists who write the stories sound as if they don’t think any solutions are ever possible. “Oh, batteries don’t give us enough of a charge, so we can’t go far enough with our electric vehicles. Woe is us our electric vehicles are doomed. Let’s just stick with our gas, Gasless”.

And maybe there’s part of the solution. I wonder how many of those stories are actually in some way, planted by the existing car manufacturers and the petrol, diesel, gas companies as a bit of propaganda against what the EV future might hold. Any article which doesn’t indicate that current technologies are not the limit of our ability to develop technologies.

We are not at the end of the development cycle, we’re actually only near the beginning. And there are no problems that exist now that have come up against a natural physical limit. Technology advancement will solve every single problem we can currently imagine, including some of the disposal and recycle issues that I haven’t even touched on.

So, welcome to the future where we have solved our battery problem, creating remarkable batteries that are long-lasting, quick-charge dodging, easy to use, light and cheap and we live in a world that has moved beyond some of our current reliance on fossil fuel-driven vehicles. That’s the future I’m hoping for that’s the future I know will come probably sooner rather than later.

As always, thank you for joining me in the Throw Forward Thursday Studio. I’ll see you next week where we’re going to keep on a little mini-series for the next few weeks looking at the future of energy.

I’ll see you next week.



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Graeme Codrington, is an internationally recognized futurist, specializing in the future of work. He helps organizations understand the forces that will shape our lives in the next ten years, and how we can respond in order to confidently stay ahead of change. Chat to us about booking Graeme to help you Re-Imagine and upgrade your thinking to identify the emerging opportunities in your industry.

For the past two decades, Graeme has worked with some of the world’s most recognized brands, travelling to over 80 countries in total, and speaking to around 100,000 people every year. He is the author of 5 best-selling books, and on faculty at 5 top global business schools.



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