Toshiba Corp. said it will develop an electric-powered bus with a charge time of just five minutes.
In cooperation with Tokyo’s Minato Ward, the electronics giant will retrofit small buses owned by the ward with its new lithium-ion cells and motors.
The five-minute recharge when the battery level is at 50 percent is less than a quarter of the time it takes with a conventional lithium-ion battery.
Toshiba said the retrofitting will be done at a relatively low cost because it will use small cells comparable to those for passenger cars.
The cells do not deteriorate as much as conventional products even after they are recharged again and again.
To keep the battery level above 50 percent, the buses will return to a garage for a recharge after traveling roughly a modest 12 kilometers. For this reason, the ward plans to use the vehicles over a short route to make rounds of residential areas.
The ward plans to start test runs by the end of this fiscal year and begin full-fledged operations from next fiscal year.
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