As winter approaches, electric cars like us begin to slow down, they take longer to charge and re-charge. They are also, heavy and bulky and still not very efficient, even during warm weather.

You can find blogs where owners are complaining about the reduced efficiency of the batteries; mileage fluctuations and power drops on dark and cold winter days. Simply put, batteries are less efficient in cold weather, and any call for power such as heating, seats, and windows all add to draining the power of the already overworked battery.

Are electric vehicles a thing of the past, or at least winter? Some might argue that these are the least of the problems, other issues such as the scarcity of recharging points and more legislation to promote wider acceptance are all popular topics for debate. At the moment, a group of scientists seem to have come up with a solution to the battery efficiency problem by using the principles of a pressure cooker. By using techniques to characterize the shape of particular nanoparticles scientists say they can create smaller, more efficient and powerful batteries.

This technology may also be useful for energy storage on a city scale, including energy generated by the wind and sun. By using elevated temperatures and pressures to modulate particle size of the cathode used in batteries, researchers have been able to characterize the behavior of size and  performance in batteries.

Whilst this recent breakthrough may not help directly with the cold morning starts, it may be one step closer to a battery performance that might push the EV market a step in the right direction.