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Lamborghini’s electrification process started in 2017 with the presentation of the Terzo Millennio and proceeded with the launch of the Sián at the 2019 Frankfurt Motor Show. As part of this process, Automobili Lamborghini and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have patented an innovative synthetic material that will act as the technological basis for a new generation of supercapacitors, an important initial result which will proceed with further optimization of the material’s properties and the creation of samples on increasingly larger scales.
The collaboration began three years ago when Automobili Lamborghini joined the MIT-Italy Program, and took a further step forward in 2017 with collaboration with Professor Mircea Dincă (MIT - Department of Chemistry), and Professor John Hart (MIT - Department of Mechanical Engineering).
Stefano Domenicali, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Automobili Lamborghini, commented: “Joint research with MIT fully embodies our values and our vocation for anticipating the future: a future in which hybridization is increasingly desirable and inevitably necessary.”
Supercapacitors of the future
The new patented material, synthesized in the laboratories of the Department of Chemistry at MIT by the team led by Professor Mircea Dincă with the support of the Department of Concept Development at Automobili Lamborghini, is based on the “Metal-Organic Frameworks” (MOF) concept. The molecular structure of this family of materials makes it the ideal candidate for producing electrodes for the high performance supercapacitors of the future as it maximizes the specific surface area, i.e. the amount of surface area exposed to electric charge in relation to the mass and volume of the sample. In particular, the stated goal of the research is to improve energy density. The patent filed today promises to increase this by up to 100% compared to the technology currently on the market.
Supercapacitors already represent a winning solution in high-performance motorsport applications by virtue of their exceptional power and durability specifications, and so promise to become an essential technology for years to come thanks to Automobili Lamborghini.
High-performance battery materials
Another three-year collaboration project with the team of Professor John Hart in the MIT Department of Mechanical Engineering aims to establish new design principles for high-performance battery materials that can be integrated into the vehicle structure. The project will result in battery prototypes that exhibit a combination of energy storage performance, geometric versatility, and structural integrity that is critical to the performance targets set by the Lamborghini Terzo Millennio.