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Formula E race car unveiled

Fri, 09/13/2013 - 14:47 -- Anonymous
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The Spark-Renaul SRT_01E
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The car to be used in Formula-E, the race series that will promote zero-carbon electric driving, has been unveiled at the Frankfurt Motor Show. The Spark-Renault SRT_01E will be driven by the 20 competing teams in the inaugural series of the competition, beginning September 2014.

McLaren Electronics Systems is providing the electric motor, gearbox and electronics, while Williams Advanced Engineering is responsible for the design and supply of the 200kW batteries and BMS for the zero-carbon cars.

Sir Frank Williams, Founder and Team Principal of Williams, said: "Williams has a track record in developing hybrid technologies and the team at Williams Advanced Engineering is working hard to develop a battery system that is reliable and makes for excellent racing."

As with traditional Formula One, the promoters hope the e-motorsport will accelerate technological developments for electric cars. Each race will take place on a city circuit to best simulate driving conditions for passenger e-cars.

Alejandro Agag, CEO of Championship promoter Formula E Holdings, said: “With Formula E being an open championship, the series gives manufacturers the opportunity to showcase their electrical energy innovations.”

Following the first series teams are encouraged to design and build their own cars to promote electric drivetrain technology that will in turn benefit universal e-mobility. For this end, Formula E has dictated batteries cannot be swapped during the race to prevent companies designing evermore-efficient swapping systems that will have no value in passenger vehicles. 

Tesla gets Samsung onboard to ramp up production

Thu, 09/05/2013 - 12:05 -- Anonymous
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The Model S goes global
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Tesla Motors is ramping up production of the Model S with the anticipation of sales reaching 21,000 in 2014. The EV manufacturer has sought out a secondary supplier of lithium-ion batteries; Samsung SDI has been announced, alongside existing supplier Panasonic.

The diversification of battery supplier shows that Tesla is confident the Model S will continue to sell in high numbers, that it is strengthening its battery supply to meet the expected numbers. Tesla is testing Samsung SDI’s batteries before the deal is confirmed.

Concurrently, a European Tesla plant has opened in Tilburg, Netherlands, to assemble cars from US-made components for the European market.

US funds prototype of rechargeable 'nanoelectrofuel' flow battery for EVs

Wed, 09/04/2013 - 11:52 -- Anonymous
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EV battery
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Illinois Institute of Technology (IIT) has received a US$3.4M award from the US Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA-E) to develop flow battery technology aimed at doubling the current range of electric vehicles (EV).

IIT and Argonne National Laboratory will develop a prototype for a rechargeable "nanoelectrofuel" flow battery that may extend the range of EVs to at least 500 miles and provide a straightforward and rapid method of refuelling. Current EV ranges are 100-200 miles, with recharging taking up to eight hours.

Flow batteries, which store chemical energy in external tanks instead of within the battery container, are generally low in energy density and therefore not used for transportation applications.

The IIT-Argonne nanoelectrofuel flow battery concept will use a high-energy density "liquid" with battery-active nanoparticles to dramatically increase energy density while ensuring stability and low-resistance flow within the battery.

The IIT award is one of 22 projects across the country awarded a total of $36 million through the ARPA-E’s Robust Affordable Next Generation EV Storage (RANGE) programme, which seeks to develop innovative EV battery chemistries, architectures and designs.

Japan losing out in the supply chain game

Thu, 07/19/2012 - 18:02 -- Anonymous
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Japan is losing out to Chinese and South Korean competitors in supplying lithium-ion battery components around the world. In the 2011 financial year Japan supplied less than half of these key parts.

Global shipments of cathode and anode materials, separators and electrolytes are estimated to have grown 11.2% to US$70.2 million last fiscal year. Japanese firms' share fell 5.7% points to 46.6%, dipping below the 50% mark for the first time since 2008.

The Japanese Yano Research Institute believes Japan’s dominance was weakened following the 2011 earthquake and tsunami that halted the supply of some essential parts around the country. This, combined with the strong yen cutting into Japan’s competitiveness, meant a demand for cheaper materials grew.  Another factor is the shift in South Korean battery manufacturers to use domestically made parts over imports.


BASF entering electric vehicle market

Thu, 07/19/2012 - 18:02 -- Anonymous
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Europe’s lone wolf in cathode material provisions, Umicore, is to have competition in the form of German chemical maker BASF.  BASF will invest heavily to become a leading supplier in automotive battery materials based on market predictions for developments in the EV market to develop vehicles with a range of 250km in the next five years.


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