A New Electric Turbine could Revolutionize the Future of Electric Cars


Conceptual futuristic sports car - design is generic and custom made.

        A Look Into the Future of Electric Turbine Cars

In the past two years, companies have promised electric motors producing far more torque density, measured in kilowatts per kilogram. Avid said its Evo Axial Flux motor makes “one of the highest usable power and torque densities of any electric vehicle motor available on the market today.” Equipmake says its motors develop “class leading power densities.” Yasa claims its “electric motors … provide the highest power/torque density available in their category.”

Enter Linear Labs, which says it has a motor to beat all. The company declares its Hunstable Electric Turbine (HET), perhaps with unintentional shades of Ayn Rand, “The Motor of the World.”

Watch The Video

 

The company told Autoblog, “The defining characteristic of this motor [is that] at very low RPMs … [for] the same size, same weight, same volume, and the same amount of input energy into the motor, we will always produce – at a minimum, sometimes more, but at a minimum – two to three times the torque output of any electric motor in the world, and it does this at high efficiency throughout the torque and speed range.”

“Hunstable” comes from the two principals: Fred Hunstable, an engineer who spent years designing the electrical infrastructure for nuclear power plants in the United States; and Brad Hunstable, Fred’s son and an ex-tech entrepreneur who helped found the streaming service Ustream, sold to IBM in 2016 for $150 million.

Linear Labs began as a father-son project to create a linear generator surrounding the shaft of an old-fashioned windmill that would provide reliable power (as well as clean water) to impoverished communities. The challenge was designing a generator able to produce sufficient power from the shaft’s low-speed, high-torque reciprocating movement. Brad said his father cracked the code about four years ago, resulting in “a linear generator that produced massive amounts of electricity from a slow-moving windmill.” What’s more, the breakthrough was modular, leading to a family of motors that has been issued 25 patents so far.

E Engine 7 download

What is the Hunstable Electric Turbine?

Electric motors are well into their second century, having barely changed since Nikola Tesla patented his innovations with the modern three-phase, four-pole induction motor between 1886 and 1889. While all motors consist of similar fundamental components – copper wire coils known as windings, and magnets – the way in which those components interact is slightly different. In a radial flux motor, one component spins within the other – imagine a small can spinning inside a larger stationary one. In an axial flux design, the components spin next to each other, like two flywheels sandwiching a central, stationary plate.

Typically, the way to create more torque is to send more current into a motor or build a larger motor. Linear Labs has found another way: by combining axial and radial flux designs in a single motor.

E Engine 2 download

Images: Stators and Rotors

E Engine 3 download

Copper Windings Inside the Huntstable Electric Turbine: Illustrations by Linear Labs

The HET is four rotors surrounding a stator. A central rotor spins inside a stator, creating one source of flux. A second rotor spins outside the stator, creating a second source of flux. Two additional rotors lie at the left and right ends of the stator, essentially forming an AF motor. That’s two more sources of flux, making four in total. It’s essentially two concentric radial motors bookended by two axial ones.

Linear Labs says all the HET generates all torque in the direction of rotor motion. In a promotional video, Fred Hunstable said, “We call it circumferential flux, sort of like a torque tunnel.”

Generating more torque in a given volume, and having all of that torque move in the direction of rotor motion, is how the Hunstables claim, “two to three times the torque for that size envelope compared to any other motor out there. It doesn’t matter what kind [of motor] it is, we will always out-produce it.”

Furthermore, by using discrete rectangular coils inset into the stator poles, the HET needs 30% less copper than a motor of similar size. The design also eliminates end windings – lengths of copper that lie outside the stator in a typical motor, generating wasted magnetic field and heat.

 

E Engine 4 download

Illustration by Linear Labs

What the HET could mean for future electric cars

So far, Linear Labs has inked deals with a scooter maker, with Swedish electric drive system firm Abtery, and with an unnamed firm designing a hypercar to be released within two years, utilizing four HETs. However, Brad Hunstable thinks the HET could have applications in the electric vehicle space, since the HET’s torque comes at RPMs that match the end use. Current EV motors spin much faster than the wheels, so most EVs use a reduction gear to connect a motor spinning at several thousand RPM with wheels spinning at anywhere from one to perhaps 1,800 RPM. If the HET generates the necessary torque at RPMs that match wheel speed, a carmaker could theoretically discard the reduction gear, reducing weight and improving powertrain efficiency.

Brad said testing has shown the HET in direct-drive configuration works in applications normally served by a 6:1 reduction gearbox, and it’s possible that the ratio is even higher. The downstream effects could be significant, according to Hunstable. That weight savings – the lower operating speed of the HET means fewer and lighter electronics, the company says – and efficiency gain could be used to reduce the size of the battery and thus the weight of the vehicle, saving cash and letting the manufacturer use lighter-duty components – perhaps enough to make a significant difference to the bottom line, Hunstable thinks.

The HET can also take over the role of a component known as a DC/DC boost converter, used in some EVs in situations in which the vehicle needs to trade torque for horsepower, such as during hard acceleration at highway speeds. By doing so, they use additional energy that can’t be put towards range. In general terms, EVs that emphasize performance use a boost converter, like the Tesla Model S, while ones that emphasize efficiency don’t, like the Hyundai Ioniq EV. (It should be noted that some hybrids, such as Toyota and Lexus hybrids, utilize boost converters to goose acceleration.)

Linear Labs says the HET does the job of the DC/DC boost converter on its own by changing the relative position of one or more of its four rotors, analogous to the variable cam system on an ICE, altering position depending on load needs. Combining the extra torque, reduced weight and complexity possible without a gearbox or boost converter, and lighter ancillaries, Linear Labs claims the HET could increase range by 10%.

EE Engine 5 f4ce5aa5ea15a6534bba0f190319a14d

A carmaker says …

No automaker will address claims by a company it has never heard of about a component it has never used. Still, we wanted to get OEM commentary to compare to Linear Labs’ statements. We contacted ChevroletTesla, and Hyundai. Only Hyundai agreed to a Q&A, connecting us with Jerome Gregeois, a senior manager at a Hyundai Group powertrain facility, and Ryan Miller, the manager for Hyundai’s electrified powertrain development team.

Gregeois said OEMs invest so much in batteries because they’re “so much more expensive than any of the [other] components,” and there’s so much more efficiency to be extracted from battery chemistry. Therefore, “The only way to reach competitive pricing compared to internal combustion engines or hybrids is really to get battery costs lower and lower.”

Concerning motors, Miller said, “Our focus and the industry’s focus on motors has been transitioning to silicon-carbide-based motor inverters.” The motor inverter converts the battery pack’s direct current (DC) into the alternating current (AC) used to power the electric motors that provide drive to the vehicle. Under regenerative braking, the motor inverter does the opposite – turning AC from the motors back into DC to recharge the battery. Silicon carbide technology, which the IEEE called “Smaller, faster, tougher,” is seen as enabling something like a 50% reduction in inverter volume.

E Engine 5

View photos Illustration courtesy Hyundai

Miller told us the permanent magnet motor in the Hyundai Ioniq is about 50 kilograms, or 110 pounds. The gearbox, which contains a final drive and a differential, is about 70 pounds. “It’s not light,” he said, “because gears are generally steel.” As for volume, the gearbox occupies about 70% of the volume of the motor.

We asked Gregeois and Miller if a direct-drive motor that allowed elimination of the gearbox would make an enormous difference in cost or complexity of the powertrain. Said Gregeois, “We think cost-wise that gearbox is going to be cheaper than two motors.” Miller added, “Steel and aluminum is very cheap.”

One automaker example doesn’t negate the benefits of the Hunstable Electric Turbine, and Brad Hunstable believes the savings are there. “Every drivetrain can be designed and engineered multiple ways,” he said. “But if you have two motors that produce twice the torque in half the size as one conventional motor that must utilize a gearbox, then there is no comparison. HET wins. Of course, for the short-term mass-market vehicle, one motor driving directly into the differential is the most likely scenario, still eliminating the standard … gearbox.”

And automakers are throwing money at improving their motors. Honda improved the electric motor in the Accord Hybrid by using square copper wires for the stator windings, and three magnets instead of two on the rotor. The changes are said to have added 6 pound-feet of torque and 14 horsepower.

E Engine 9A

View photos Illustration by Linear Labs

The First Inning

We asked Brad how long he thought it would be before we’d see an HET in a car like the Chevrolet Bolt. “Three or four, some say five years out … There are longer lead cycles to get into production for big companies, [but] we are in joint development agreements, we are testing with [automakers].”

There have been so many charlatans in the EV space that many of the stories we’ve read about the HET end in commenters attacking it like hyenas disemboweling a wildebeest.

“There’s a lot of smoke and mirrors in the motor space,” Brad acknowledged. “The difference in this one: We’ve built them. At the end of the day you can’t argue with something that’s built right in front of you.”

“We’re literally in the first inning of this technology,” he continued, “so there’s more things that we’ll continue to do that that’ll make this even better. But the first motors that we’re producing in the market are literally a quantum leap on everything that’s out there.”

The question, then, is whether that quantum leap makes sense from a cost and packaging perspective for the spectrum of EV manufacturers, or does it make sense primarily for luxury EV makers who can justify the HET’s cost. Can this one more efficient-yet-expensive component be countered and justified by removing a not-especially expensive thing (the gearbox) and removing some of these pretty expensive and heavy things (batteries)? Hyundai’s representatives weren’t so sure, but if this really is just the first inning for HET, perhaps more development and actual access by major manufacturers will provide the answer as the game goes on.

 

 

 

Will Tesla’s “Battery Day” mean “doomsday” for legacy carmakers playing catch-up?


A peek inside a segment of a Tesla Model 3 battery pack.

Tesla is expected to hold its Battery Day in April as Elon Musk announced during the company’s Q4 earnings call. The chief executive said the company has a “compelling story” to tell about things that can “blow people’s minds.”

These statements do not only pique the interest of the electric vehicle community; they also hint of updates that can spell disaster for legacy car manufacturers trying to catch up with Tesla in the electric vehicle market.

Batteries are key to staying on top of the electric vehicle segment and Tesla is the leader of the pack when it comes to batteries and energy efficiency. This has been validated by organizations such as Consumer Reports and even by competitors who go deep into their pockets and go as far as cutting their workforces to catch Tesla in terms of hardware, software, and battery technology.

Come Tesla Battery Day, the obvious would be made more obvious. Tesla could further widen the gap and set itself apart from the rest, not just as the maker of the Model 3, Model Y, Cybertruck or other vehicles in its lineup but as an energy company.

Mass Production Of Cheaper Batteries

Batteries are among the most expensive components of an electric vehicle. This is true for Tesla and other electric vehicle manufacturers. With pricey batteries, car manufacturers cannot lower prices of their vehicles and therefore cannot encourage the mass adoption of zero-emission cars.

Tesla has reportedly been running its “Roadrunner” secret project that can lead to mass production of battery cells at $100/kWh. According to rumors, Tesla already has a pilot manufacturing line in its Fremont facility that can produce higher-density batteries using technology advancements developed in-house and gained through the Maxwell acquisition.

With a $100/kWh battery, the prices of Tesla’s vehicles can be competitive even without government subsidies.”

Tesla Gigafactory 1, where Model 3 battery cells are produced. (Photo: Tesla)

Aside from the Roadrunner project, Tesla has also been setting itself up to succeed in the battery game and dominate the market with its partnerships. It has a long relationship with Panasonic that helped it manufacture batteries in Giga Nevada, but has also signed battery supply agreements with LG Chem and CATL in China.

Battery prices have been going down significantly in the last decade. According to BloombergNEF, the cost of batteries dropped by 13% last year. From $1,100/kWh in 2010, the price went down to around $156.kWh in 2019. This is predicted to come close to the target $100/kWh by 2023. If Tesla achieves the $100/kWH cost sooner than the rest, it will give the company a massive advantage over its competitors and that will eventually lead to better profit margins.

Aside from cheaper batteries, the increased battery production capacity is also key in bringing products such as the all-electric Cybertruck and Tesla Semi to life.

“The thing we’re going to be really focused on is increasing battery production capacity because that’s very fundamental because if you don’t improve battery production capacity, then you end up just shifting unit volume from one product to another and you haven’t actually produced more electric vehicles… make sure we get a very steep ramp in battery production and continue to improve the cost per kilowatt-hour of the batteries,” Musk said during the Q4 2019 earnings call.

Enhanced Tesla Batteries

Tesla already has good batteries through its years of research, experimentation, and partnerships with battery producers. It has invested a good amount of money and effort to make sure it’s leading the battery game.

This advantage is made very clear on how Tesla was able to produce the most efficient electric SUV today in the form of the soon-to-be-released Model Y crossover with an EPA rating of 315 miles per single charge versus the Porsche Taycan with a range of around 200 miles.

The Tesla Model Y crossover. (Credit: Tesla)

With the acquired technologies from companies such as Maxwell and recently a possible purchase of a lithium-ion battery cell specialist startup in Colorado, Tesla demonstrates it’s not stopping its efforts to perfect its battery technology. Maxwell manufactures battery components and ultracapacitors and it’s just a matter of time before Tesla makes use of these technologies.

When asked about Maxwell’s ultracapacitor technology during the Q4 2019 earnings call, Musk said, “It’s an important piece of the puzzle.”

Musk also referenced the Maxwell acquisition during an extensive interview at the Third Row Podcast. “It’s kind of a big deal. Maxwell has a bunch of technologies that if they are applied in the right way I think can have a very big impact,” Musk said during a Third Row Podcast interview.

There are rumors out of China claimingthat Tesla may come up with a battery that combines the best traits of Maxwell’s supercapacitors and dry electrode technologies. This could mean batteries that could charge faster, pack more energy density, and last longer.

Controlling Battery Supply

Knowing what works and what doesn’t for electric car batteries puts Tesla on top of the game. Of course, add to that what could be the best battery management system that makes Tesla vehicles among the most efficient if not the best in utilizing their batteries. With the advantage on hardware and software fronts, the thought of Tesla becoming a battery supplier is far from being a crazy idea.

Its competitors such as Audi and Jaguar have recently expressed concerns about their battery supplies as they both depend on LG Chem. Tesla– aside from its partnerships with Panasonic, LG Chem, and CATL — pushes the limit to develop its new battery cells in-house and that opens up a lot of possibilities for Tesla as a business.

“It would be consistent with the mission of Tesla to help other car companies with electric vehicles on the battery and powertrain front, possibly on other fronts. So it’s something we’re open to. We’re definitely open to supplying batteries and powertrains and perhaps other things to other car companies,” Musk was quoted as saying.

Recent job postings for a cell development engineer and equipment development engineers suggest that Tesla might actually be considering the idea of introducing a battery line of its own. But of course, the next-generation batteries would be first used for its vehicle lineup. Once it meets that demand and hits economies of scale, one can only imagine how Tesla could play the important role of supplying batteries to other carmakers.

Whether Tesla would announce cheaper batteries, enhanced electric car batteries, or give updates about its efforts, Battery Day in April will most definitely be worth the wait. For other car manufacturers, time would pause during that day as they listen to what Elon Musk and his team will say. And most likely, after the company talk, other car manufacturers will have to go back to their drawing boards once more in an attempt to catch up.

10 Predictions for the Solar and Storage Market in the 2020s


Rooftop_Solar_Community_Austin_Texas_Shutterstock_XL_721_420_80_s_c1Branding and reputation will be increasingly important in the energy storage market.

All-in-one systems will be the new normal

1. Lots of storage

Batteries will be incentivized or mandated for practically every new solar PV system across the U.S. by 2025. As more homeowners and businesses deploy PV systems to reduce their electricity bills and ensure backup power, simple net metering will increasingly be replaced by time-of-use rates and other billing mechanisms that aim to align power prices with utility costs. We already see these trends in California and several states in the Northeast.

 

Solar systems with batteries are going to be about twice as expensive as traditional grid-direct installations, so in that sense, we will see actual costs increase as the mix shifts toward batteries. But while system costs will go up, we need to be careful to parse the actual equipment and soft costs from the consumer’s cost net of tax credits and incentives. Equipment costs for batteries and other hardware are generally flat to slightly down.

3. More battery and inverter packages from the same brand

Since the battery represents the dominant cost in an energy storage system (ESS), inverter companies will increasingly offer branded batteries. In turn, inverter companies packaging third-party batteries will eventually make way for savvy battery companies that can package the whole system.

4. Energy storage systems treated like heat pumps and air conditioners

California’s new Title 21 requirements make solar PV systems standard issue, and we can expect a future update to do the same for energy storage. By then, builders will be able to choose the ESS line they want to work with, and the whole process will look almost exactly like it does for home mechanical appliances like water heaters and HVAC systems. The only question will be whether the ESS is packaged with solar panels or kept separate.

Standards will evolve

5. Reputation will matter — a lot

The lack of meaningful industry metrics in energy storage creates an environment where branding and reputation become important, since users have little information beyond messaging and word of mouth. Long-term, this will create a barrier to entry for new battery startups, so expect fewer total players once a handful of brands emerge as high-confidence choices.

6. New safety standards and code requirements catch up to technology

Last October, the National Fire Protection Association published the first edition of the NFPA 855 code, which establishes an industrywide safety standard for energy storage systems. Test standards, including UL 9540, and UL 9540A, as well as building and electrical codes, such as the National Electrical Code (NEC/NFPA 70), International Residential Code and International Fire Code, are already being updated to harmonize with NFPA 855. The upshot is that kilowatt-hour capacity limits, siting and protective equipment requirements are becoming standardized and more accessible for both installers and inspectors to understand and apply.

All things will remain technical

7. Real automation and optimization software will outpace flashy interfaces

Third-party owners have specific PV fleet-management needs and often have proprietary software that their ESS needs to interface with daily. IEEE 2030.5 and related standards will help facilitate this need. Local installers have little in the way of hard requirements, but they and their customers will expect systems to be easy to install and operate.

In the long term, we’ll see real automation and optimization rather than the data-palooza common today. Many interfaces report too much data, and simplifying systems to hide irrelevant data will be necessary to avoid alienating the more mainstream consumers.

8. Still waiting for vehicle-to-grid

While V2G is not primarily a technical challenge, some manufacturers like Nissan and Honda have made significant headway. The challenge is more procedural than technical. V2G applications will take off when vehicle manufacturers and interface providers come to terms with how and when an electric vehicle’s battery is used for grid services or backup and how that impacts the EV’s warranty.

There’s also a consumer confidence problem to overcome, especially for those relying solely on their EV for transportation. We’re more likely to see “second-life” EV batteries repackaged for stationary storage — which is much easier to manage than trying to use the battery in the car.

9. AC and DC coupling will both be around for the foreseeable future

Given the latest National Electrical Code requirements for rapid shutdown, as well as the fact that module-level systems (e.g., Enphase and SolarEdge) represent the majority of installed systems, AC coupling is the clear choice for existing system owners to add batteries.

AC coupling will enjoy at least a temporary boom in popularity as people with existing PV systems seek to add storage. However, most advantages of AC coupling are for retrofits, and the majority of new systems will enjoy lower costs and better performance via DC coupling. DC coupling is arguably going to become more dominant once the PV-only retrofit market is saturated.

10. Battery pack voltage will increase dramatically

A century of lead-acid battery dominance has entrenched 48 volts (DC) as the standard battery system voltage. Systems with voltages up to 1,000 VDC are deployed using standard lead-acid cells, but it is only practical for engineered commercial and industrial or utility systems.

The Ohm’s law tradeoff between current and voltage pushed the EV industry, which needs to reduce weight and cost everywhere it can, to quickly migrate to high-voltage battery packs using 3- to 4-VDC lithium-ion cells. Similarly, the stationary energy storage industry is adopting higher-voltage battery packs to reduce the cost of battery inverters. Since conductor losses increase and decrease exponentially with current, higher battery voltages also enable better system efficiency.

The decade of the 2020s will ring in the age of mass solar-plus-storage solution deployment, allowing businesses and residents to tap into renewables more efficiently, protect against outages, save money and live more sustainably.

*** Re-Posted from Green-Tech Media

A Peek into the Future of … The Battery Technology ‘Pipeline’


Berkeley Lab battery researcher Gerbrand Ceder (Credit: Roy Kaltschmidt/Berkeley Lab)

Scientist Gerbrand Ceder evaluates some of the most promising battery technologies in development

Lithium ion is probably the most advanced technology available for the packs of rechargeable batteries you’ll buy this holiday season. The batteries also power the vast majority of consumer devices, electric vehicles, and grid storage systems.

Despite their ubiquity, lithium-ion batteries have disadvantages. Metals used in the batteries are becoming expensive and one crucial metal, cobalt, is relatively rare and has had recent media focus on questionable mining practices in some regions. Plus, the batteries can overheat and, when damaged, occasionally catch fire.

With its deep expertise in materials research, materials design, and energy storage technologies, Berkeley Lab is working on better battery alternatives. Gerbrand Ceder, a battery researcher in the Materials Science Division, details four battery technologies being studied by Berkeley Lab scientists that could make a big difference in the future.

Cobalt- and Nickel-Free Batteries

The reservoirs of a lithium-ion battery, the anode and the cathode, store lithium. When the battery is in use, lithium ions move to the cathode from the anode with the aid of a liquid electrolyte, typically an organic solvent, generating an electric current. When the battery charges, the reverse occurs.

Materials used to store lithium in lithium-ion batteries typically contain cobalt and nickel. Cobalt is scarce and expensive and has been linked with questionable practices in regions where it is mined.

The technology would solve these problems by eliminating cobalt and reducing or eliminating nickel. Iron or manganese, both of which are inexpensive, would ideally be used instead, Ceder said.

Possible uses: In consumer electronics and vehicles.

When available: Five to six years. 

Multi-Valent Batteries

Instead of using lithium ions, which are “single valent,” this technology would use materials with ions that carry more charge, like magnesium, calcium, or possibly aluminum. These so-called “multi-valent batteries” could therefore be much smaller and more powerful than lithium-ion batteries.

Possible uses: In portable electronics and electric vehicles “if we can make it work,” said Ceder, who is also a UC Berkeley professor in materials science and engineering.

When available: This technology is “the most ambitious but therefore probably also the most difficult,” Ceder said. It’s at least 10 years away.

Sodium-Ion Batteries

These batteries would replace the lithium in lithium-ion batteries with sodium. A sodium-ion battery would operate exactly the same as a lithium one, except instead of moving lithium ions, it would move sodium ions. Sodium is much cheaper than lithium, and the materials that would be used to store sodium could also be cheaper than those to store lithium, which are primarily cobalt and nickel-based oxides. Eventually, these batteries could cost less than half of lithium-ion batteries, Ceder said.

Possible uses: For electrical power grids to store excess power, often from solar and wind, for later use.

When available: The technology is “almost to the point where it can work,” Ceder said, “but the question is whether it will get market traction.” With market traction, the technology might be three to four years away, he said. 

Solid-State Batteries

This technology would replace the highly flammable liquid electrolytes of some lithium-ion batteries with an nonflammable solid material. The primary benefit would be improved safety, but it might be possible to use other storage materials and increase the energy content, Ceder said. In addition to being safer, such batteries could reduce costs and weight by eliminating the need for cooling and other safety devices.

Possible uses: In both electric vehicles to reduce costs and increase range and in consumer devices.

When available: At least four or five years away.

# # #

Founded in 1931 on the belief that the biggest scientific challenges are best addressed by teams, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratoryand its scientists have been recognized with 13 Nobel Prizes. Today, Berkeley Lab researchers develop sustainable energy and environmental solutions, create useful new materials, advance the frontiers of computing, and probe the mysteries of life, matter, and the universe.

Scientists from around the world rely on the Lab’s facilities for their own discovery science. Berkeley Lab is a multiprogram national laboratory, managed by the University of California for the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science.

DOE’s Office of Science is the single largest supporter of basic research in the physical sciences in the United States, and is working to address some of the most pressing challenges of our time. For more information, please visit energy.gov/science. 

Three Innovations To Upend The Energy Storage Market


The battery craze isn’t really about batteries at all. It’s about something far grander than a battery, which is simply a conduit to a much bigger story.

Batteries are like the internet without Wifi. 

The holy grail is energy storage.

And while perpetually bigger batteries themselves have emerged as the dominant solution to our energy storage needs, their reliance on rare earths elements and some metals that are controversially sourced, as well as the fact that their product life is quite limited, indicates they are simply a stop along the way to more creative innovations. 

Already, there are several challenger solutions that have the potential to rise above the battery as the answer to our energy storage needs.

Gravity 

One of these solutions is gravity. Several companies across the world are using gravity for energy storage or rather, moving objects up and down to store and, respectively, release stored electricity.

One of these, Swiss-based Energy Vault, uses a six headed crane to lift bricks when renewable installations are producing electricity than can be consumed and drop them back down when demand for electricity outweighs supply. The idea may sound eccentric but kinetic energy, according to a Wall Street Journal report on these companies, is getting increasingly popular.

The idea draws on hydropower storage: that involves pushing water uphill and storing it until it is needed to power the turbines, when it is released downhill. On instead of water, these companies use gravity, essentially lifting and dropping heavy objects. Energy Vault uses bricks and says 20 brick towers could power up to 40,000 households for a period of 24 hours. Related: Oil Suppliers Slash Prices To Save Asian Market Share

Another company, in the UK, lifts and drops weights in abandoned mine shafts. 

Gravitricity, which last year ran a crowdfunding campaign that raised $978,000 (750,000 pounds), is using abandoned shafts to raise and lower weights of between 500 and 5,000 tons with a system of winches. According to the company, the system could be configured for between 1 and 20 MW peak capacity. The duration of power supply, however, is even more limited than Energy Vault’s, at 15 minutes to 8 hours.

The duration of power supply is an important issue. When the wind dies down and the sky is overcast, this could last more than a day as evidenced by the wind drought in the UK two years ago, when wind turbines were forced to idle for a week.

Heat

Gravity-base storage is one alternative to batteries, some of it cheaper than batteries, but for the time being, less reliable than batteries if we are thinking about a 100-percent renewable-powered grid. Another solution is thermal storage.

EnergyNest is one developer of thermal energy storage. It works by pumping a heated fluid along a system of pipes and storing it in a solid material. The heat flows into the material from top to bottom and is released into this material where it stays until it is needed again. Then, the flow gets reversed, with cold fluid (thermal oil or water) flowing from the bottom up, heating up in the process and exiting the storage system. Related: Restarted Saudi, Kuwaiti Oilfields To Pump 550,000 Bpd By End-2020

Then there is liquid air storage as an alternative to batteries. It works by separating the carbon dioxide and the oxygen from the nitrogen in the air and then storing this nitrogen in liquefied form. When needed to generate electricity, it is regasified. The process of liquefaction is powered by the excess electricity that needs to be stored and when a peak in demand requires more electricity generation, it is reheated and regasified, and used to power a turbine. According to experts, the process is not 100-percent efficient, with rates ranging from 25 percent to 70 percent.

Geothermal

Yet another potential alternative to batteries for energy storage is using geothermal energy to store heat and then releasing it to generate more electricity. The so-called sensitized thermal cells developed by researchers from the Tokyo Institute of Technology are technically batteries, as they use electrodes to move electrons. But on the flip side, it does not work with intermittent energy such as solar or wind. It taps the potential of geothermal energy, an underused renewable source.

Not all of these energy storage idea swill take off. Not all of them will prove viable enough to become widely adopted. Yet some alternatives to batteries will likely work well enough to provide an alternative to the dominant technology. Alternatives are important when you are aiming for 100-percent renewable electricity. 

EVs

Failing that, we could simply use our EV batteries as energy storage for excess power from solar and wind installations, as the International Renewable Energy Agency said earlier this month. While a strain on the grid when they charge, IRENA said, electric cars could juice up at the right time to take in surplus power and then release it back into the grid if that grid is a smart one. In 2050, around 14 terawatt-hours (TWh) of EV batteries would be available to provide grid services, compared to 9 TWh of stationary batteries, according to the agency. One way or another, slowly and with difficulty, we are heading into a much more renewable energy future.

Hydrogen Fuel Cell vs Electric Cars: What You Need to Know


Let’s get the main question out of the way first. What is a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle? And how is it different to the host of battery-powered electric vehicles making their way onto the market by manufacturers from Jaguar and Audi to Nissan and Renault? 

Hydrogen fuel cell cars have batteries onboard which store hydrogen and oxygen and power the vehicle with chemical reactions between the two elements to create water and energy.

Sometimes known as fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs), they have exhaust pipes but the only thing that escapes from them is water. The cars need refuelling, but with hydrogen rather than petrol or diesel fuel. For each fill of hydrogen, the car will gain 320-405km (200-250 miles) of range.

Meanwhile, conventional electric vehicles, often known as battery-operated electric vehicles (BEVs) are what we tend to think of as the most common fully electric cars. Like the Nissan Leaf, BMW i3, and Teslas.

These cars are powered by batteries which store charge in a similar way to phones, though many electric cars do manage to give themselves a slight recharge when braking, by converting the heat produced into electricity.

However, they’ll still need recharging at a mains electricity point after every 160-240km (100-150 miles). And that’s the main bugbear for many considering a BEV. With a standard EV and charging point, it could take up to 12 hours to fully charge a battery. Though rapid charge points exist, it will still take up to half an hour to add 160km of range.

You Also Might Want to Read …

Could This Scheme Encourage UK Drivers to Buy EV’s?

That compares with just a few seconds refuelling a petrol or diesel car on the forecourt. It’s here where fuel cell cars come into their own as a zero emissions alternative that’s also quick to refuel. Refuelling with hydrogen will take a couple of minutes, similar to the current practice.

With the basics out of the way, we asked two experts for their take on this new tech and when, if ever, we’ll see it taking the automotive industry by storm.

Why haven’t most people heard of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles?

“Hydrogen car development has taken a back seat due to the fact that electric vehicles are more popular among the public,” Mark Barclay, e-commerce manager at GSF Car Parts, tells Euronews Living.

“But there are benefits to hydrogen that outweigh electric — sometimes literally, as hydrogen fuel cells are much lighter than powerful batteries. As you can top up a hydrogen car much quicker than charging your electric model, they’re perfect for public transport and businesses that can’t afford vehicle downtime.”

So, what are the pros and cons of fuel cell vs electric, hybrid or standard cars?

The decision to buy an electric or non-combustion engine car comes down to four key criteria:

  • Range
  • Performance
  • Convenience of recharging/refuelling
  • Price

That’s according to Jeremy Parkes, global business lead for electric vehicles at Norwegian renewable energy tech consultancy and classification society DNV GL, who researches buying habits and what the future will hold for the roads.

“In terms of range, current hydrogen fuel cell electric vehicle models are slightly better than battery electric vehicles,” he says. “However, when looking at performance, the price point and the availability of recharging/refuelling, EVs are winning.”

What are the factors standing in the way of mass adoption of this tech?

“Although refuelling a FCEV is very similar in time to an internal combustion engine vehicle, the refuelling options are very limited and an expansion of the refuelling infrastructure is very expensive compared to the expansion of the EV charging infrastructure, mainly because there is already an electrical grid in place in most areas where cars typically need to be charged,” says Parkes.

“BEVs can already be conveniently charged at the passenger’s home, something that is not be possible for FCEVs. It should also be noted that the CO2 emissions from a BEV over its lifetime are not only significantly lower than an ICE vehicle but are also lower than FCEV, where the majority of hydrogen is generated using fossil fuels, through methane steam reforming.”

Honda planned to add hydrogen fuelling when it opened ‘Europe’s most advanced public electric vehicle charging station’ in 2017 Honda

The experts agree that a major factor preventing uptake at the moment is the prohibitive cost. Barclay adds: “Hydrogen fuel cells are very expensive, and there are very few places to refill in the UK, so the infrastructure just isn’t there to support the technology at the moment.

There are also safety concerns among the public around the production of hydrogen and storage facilities, as hydrogen gas is extremely flammable.”

How will prices compare in the long run?

“BEVs are already much cheaper, both the upfront and running costs for FCEVs are higher than for BEVs,” Parkes tells Euronews Living.

“Many new technologies struggle getting to scale which is crucial for the reduction of costs, since every time the production levels of a new technology increase the costs will decrease. For battery technology, we see a cost reduction of 19% for every doubling of the production levels.

Already we see the total number of BEVs being manufactured and sold globally in the millions, compared to hydrogen, which amount to just a few tens of thousands being sold to date.”

Who’s working on the tech and when will we see it?

“Toyota, Honda, and Hyundai already have hydrogen cars on the market and Europe is catching up,” says Barclay. But he still thinks hydrogen cars “clearly have some way to go before they take over the roads” to the extent electric and hybrid cars have.

“The industry still needs to adapt to these new technologies as investments continue to be made to improve the concept of hydrogen powered vehicles, mostly to reduce cost,” he says. “So, hydrogen cars should begin to threaten electric vehicles or even overtake them within the decade, and businesses should be prepared for that.”

A fleet of fuel cell Toyota Mirai cars have racked up more than a million miles on the streets of London.Toyota

Parkes disagrees. “Ultimately it comes down to two factors. The proven scalability, and hence the cost reductions of battery technology, and the poor charging infrastructure for fuel cell cars mean that BEVs are expected to dominate the passenger vehicle market in the coming decades.”

He adds: “There are still some expectations in the market that fuel cell technology might scale-up.

For instance, by the rise of producing hydrogen though electrolysis, driven by very low electricity prices due to excess renewable energy, which could form a business case for hydrogen production.

However, it should be highlighted that with current technology this is very inefficient, approximately three times as much energy needs to be put into the process compared to the energy available in the hydrogen produced.”

There have been allegations of unethical and unsustainable sourcing of raw materials for EV batteries. Are they true and should people be worried?

Critics have slammed reports of unsustainable sourcing for the lithium ion batteries that go into conventional electric vehicles. However, “they ignore the innovation push in the industry that will lead to major cost reductions, as well as alternative ecological battery solutions”, Parkes says.

“Not only are BEVs more ecological in the short term, but also more sustainable and responsible in the long term.

The industry is making rapid advances as we scale-up, developing new battery types for EVs such as the use of solid-state batteries, which can charge and discharge faster and have a higher energy density than li-ion batteries, as well as using less rare metals in its production process.”

So, that’s it. A beginners’ guide to the world of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and how they compare to the mainstream electrical vehicle. If you’ve got any more questions you’d like answered, let us know in the comments section below.

 

Outlook to 2030: the electric vehicle revolution


Times change. While the twentieth century saw the rise of the conventional, combustion engine vehicle, recent years of the opening decades of the twenty-first century have witnessed the emergence of a new breed of vehicle – the electric vehicle.

A symbol for much larger changes taking place in global energy, the electric vehicle is a true disruptive technology. And its future through the coming decade is going to a remarkable industrial journey – one in which batteries have a critical role to play.

Equal parts challenge and opportunity

The shift towards electric transportation is happening. It’s being driven largely by public opinion and policy geared towards reducing climate damaging emissions and pollution. Many stakeholder groups speculate over how fast the shift will unfold – forecasts for lesser and greater roll-out of EVs being a reflection of uncertainty over how the many determining factors will play out.

For instance, the IEA’s New Policies Scenario – based around the impact of already announced policy ambitions – predicts global EV sales would reach 23 million per year and the global fleet exceed 130 million by 2030.

More optimistically, under the EV30@30 Scenario, global sales reach 44 million vehicles per year by 2030 and the number on the road exceeds 250 million. In this future, EVs account for 30% of all vehicle sales in 2030 and almost half of all vehicles sold in 2030 in Europe. Of critical consequence, associated with this scenario is a reduction in oil demand estimated at 4.3 million barrels per day.

Of course, the reality is that we will see varying rates of EV adoption in different markets. Already in Norway, for instance, over 40% of new cars are electric – a figure well ahead of any other nation. Looking at the success in Norway reveals that it’s been had through a combination of many factors which impact adoption.

It’s clear, for example, that increasing adoption requires build-up in charging infrastructure to support EVs. This is no small matter, requiring proactive urban planning and considerable investment. Adding complexity, a wide mix of stakeholders will be required to collaborate and play their part in securing this future, including private industry, public bodies, and new actors in emerging transport supply chains.

The role of favorable national policy to encourage EV adoption is also significant. Customer acceptance is key too, and although helped by policy-based incentives and subsidies for EVs, this requires high-performance vehicles at competitive costs compared with combustion vehicles.

Altogether there’s a whole landscape of variables in play which will influence the growth of EVs. That said, three things are clear:

One: the shift has already begun and it’s only going to gain momentum

Two: the shift is in every way a revolutionary one

Three: batteries are front and center in this story as a key enabling technology

 

Gaining momentum

There can no longer be any question over if the shift to electric transportation is happening. In 2018, the global electric car fleet passed 5 million – up 2 million or 68% in just one year. Around one quarter of the world’s electric fleet is in Europe, where sales of electric cars rose 81% in the final quarter of 2019 and accounted for 4.4% of total new car sales in the period according to the automotive industry federation, ACEA.

Looking forward, the trend strengthens – upheld by stricter EU policy measures and plans of major automotive manufacturers who have outlined clear intentions to electrify the car and bus markets, beginning with no less than 92 fully EV models brought to market in 2021.

The question of what technology will enable the transition to cleaner transportation appears largely to have been answered: production plans for alternative drivetrains other than electric are “almost non-existent” according to European clean transport campaign group

Transport & Environment. The group report only 9,000 fuel cell cars in total are forecast to be produced by 2025 compared to 4 million electric cars, and production of compressed natural gas cars is set to decrease, accounting for less than 1% of vehicles produced in Europe by the mid-2020s.

To be sure, the forthcoming decade will be one in which electric goes mainstream in the automotive industry.

A revolution in every way

The electrification of transportation is in every way a revolutionary shift. While the twentieth century saw refinement of the internal combustion engine, that technology is now to be entirely replaced. Combustion engines and gearboxes are out, battery packs and electric powertrains are in. The EV revolution requires nothing short of retooling massive portions of vehicle manufacturing lines. It means going back to the drawing board on vehicle design.

In parallel, the rise of EVs carries indirect consequences for broader society and industry. It means adjusting habits, changing how we plan urban areas, it means building new infrastructure, and securing compensatory measures in electricity grids to handle the new requirements of EVs.

Going into the new decade, it is policy which is acting as a major driver for this change. While national policy is in play too, a central piece of EU policy is new regulation setting CO2 emission performance standards for new passenger cars and for new light commercial vehicles.

The new regulation, being phased in from 2020, means that from 2021 the EU fleet-wide average emission target for new cars is 95g CO2/km. To meet this, manufacturers will have to increase the share of alternative fuel vehicles they produce and put to market. If successful, the policy is expected to result in a 23% reduction of greenhouse gas emissions from road transport in 2030 compared to 2005.

“This is a pivotal moment for Europe’s automotive industry,” commented Lucien Mathieu, analyst at Transport & Environment last year. “Carmakers are investing €145 billion in electrification, and battery making is finally coming to Europe. Success in this area is a top EU industrial priority. We need to send a clear signal to industry that there is no way back, and agree a phase-out of petrol and diesel car sales in cities, at national and EU level. The age of the combustion engine is coming to an end.”

A leading role for batteries

In the shift towards carbon-neutral transport, batteries are key. More specifically – battery chemistry, reduced cost and expanded production capacity.

Where gearbox and engine design determined vehicle performance, with EVs it is batteries that determine performance. This situation puts the battery industry in the dead center of the EV revolution and has prompted a dramatic escalation in planning new battery production for Europe, much of which will come online through the decade ahead.

For Europe’s automotive sector, this domestic battery production capacity brings not only security of supply but also the means to ensure they remain at the forefront of vehicle ingenuity. It is in Europe’s new battery R&D labs that EV driving range, performance and lifetimes will be determined – all of which is key to delivering compelling, desirable vehicles to market. Success in the European EV revolution in every way depends on success of Europe’s up and coming battery industry.

Going forward into this new decade we’re at the beginning of a great journey. Integrating batteries into desirable, high-performance EVs is no simple task. Success in the wider picture of electrification of transportation is harder and more complex still. But it’s all far from impossible. And with transport representing almost a quarter of Europe’s GHG emissions and the main source of urban air pollution, it’s absolutely necessary.

Article provided by NorthVolt

The Key To The Electric Car Revolution? It’s The Batteries … It’s Always been about the Batteries


Toy Pan 1 download

It is hard to overstate the almost supernatural ability of Elon Musk to see the future and act on his instincts. Nearly a decade ago when electric cars first became a thing, Elon was already gearing up to make the batteries and install the charging network that would power the electric car revolution. Only now are others coming to the same realization Musk had a decade ago.

Panasonic & Toyota Form New Battery Partnership

Toy pan 2 https___s3-ap-northeast-1.amazonaws.com_psh-ex-ftnikkei-3937bb4_images_3_5_8_9_11259853-4-eng-GB_1214N_Toyota-Panasonic

So far as anyone can tell, Toyota has zero interest in manufacturing battery electric cars. It is all in on hybrids and plug-in hybrids and still dazzled by the promise of hydrogen fuel cells. In essence, it has chosen to sit on the sidelines because of a corporate-wide belief that current lithium-ion battery technology will soon be outmoded as new solid state technologies come along. Why hitch your wagon to a falling star?

Toyota and Panasonic announced this week they have formed a new partnership known as Planet Energy and Solutions. According to Forbes, it will work on prismatic batteries they intend to sell to other automakers. Prismatic batteries are square rather than cylindrical. The new business will initially employ more than 5,000 people and Toyota will own 51% of it while Panasonic will own the remaining 49%.

“Batteries — as solutions for providing energy for automobiles and other forms of mobility, and as solutions for various kinds of environmental issues — are expected to fulfill a central role in society going forward,” the companies said in a press release. The two companies have been cooperating on battery research since 1996.

The EU Is Ready To Take Battery Manufacturing Seriously

At the beginning of the modern electric car age, it was assumed auto manufacturers would make their own batteries. Then the thinking changed as the car companies realized what a massive and expensive challenge it was to make batteries, and then ceded the playing field to battery companies. But that led political leaders in Europe to worry that foreign companies would soon control the battery supply. They had good reason to be concerned, as CATL, LG Chem, BYD and others all announced plans to build European battery factories.

In response, the French and German governments announced last week a major new initiative to build European-owned battery factories in both countries, according to the Los Angeles Times. Germany and France “want to build the best and most sustainable batteries” in Europe, said Peter Altmaier, Germany’s Economy and Energy Minister, in a statement from Berlin on Friday. “I’m convinced that battery cells made in Kaiserslautern will set new standards in their CO2 footprint.”

Toy Pan 3 images

Kaiserslautern is where Groupe PSA-Opel and Total’s Saft Groupe will build a new battery factory at a cost of about €2 billion. To be known as the Automotive Cell Company, that factory is expected to begin production in 2024 and employ 2,000 workers.

Another factory will be constructed in the Hauts de France region in the northeast corner of the country near the border with Belgium. That facility will be known as the Automotive Cell Company and will cost about 2 billion euros. In an announcement about the new factory, French president Emmanuel Macron said, “We need to be able to produce our batteries; this is a matter of industrial sovereignty and the reduction of CO2 emissions,” according to Electrive.

The Europeans are getting a late start in the competition to build battery cells for electric cars, an industry that is expected to be worth as much as €25 billion a year by the middle of this decade. That means there will be a lot of money to be made for somebody and the Europeans want to make certain a significant portion of the profits remain in Europe.

This is all good news for the EV revolution, which will rely on a steady supply of reasonable priced batteries as the transition to electric transportation moves forward.

Economical Water-Based Batteries to Store Solar and Wind Energy – Are They the Answer to Our Renewable Energy Future?


Introduction

In this age endless scientific advancements and technological developments, the two rapidly growing forms of energy generation in the world are wind and solar, and both have the same fundamental constraint.

These forms of energy generation are subject to weather conditions, and there are times when they don’t generate any electricity at all. Energy companies who are dependent these generation methods require some type of backup while their solar farms and wind turbines are logged off.

Since there are not many options for these energy companies, most of them turn to fossil fuels like coal or natural gas which notably undermines the advantages of green energy to a great extent.

Nonetheless, an alternate solution which is being trialled in some parts of the world is battery storage so that surplus power produced from renewable energy can be saved for the future. But batteries have their own set of intricacies and problems. Majority of the utility-scale battery systems are costly to build, and they can only last for a specified period of time.

Commonly, the lifespan of rechargeable batteries is around a decade before they can no longer hold a charge and need replacement.

Nevertheless, a group of researchers at Stanford University have come up with a new type of water-based battery. Composed of water and salt, they hope that the battery could be utilised to store energy produced from wind and solar farms, boosting the effectiveness of renewable energy sources.

To put it simply, the battery could diminish the need to burn carbon-emitting fossil fuels and provide a cost-effective measure to store wind or solar energy. Last but not least, this new type of battery developed by researchers at Stanford has the potential to solve global problems with an inexpensive, durable battery perfect for utility-scale energy storage.

All You Need To Know About The Research Project 

Yi Cui, the senior author of the research project, and a professor of materials science at the Stanford elaborated upon their project. He explained that they had dissolved a special salt in the water, and put an electrode.

Dr. Yi Cui

They developed a changeable chemical reaction that could store electrons in the form of hydrogen gas. Cui also stated that they-they had recognised catalysts that could bring them below the $100 per kilowatt-hour, which was the target of the Department of Energy (DOE).

In the meantime, Steven Chu, erstwhile DOE secretary and Nobel laureate and a professor at Stanford who was not a part of the research team recapitulated that the prototype demonstrated that science and engineering could attain newer ways of inexpensive, highly durable, and utility-scale batteries.

The prototype of the device developed connected a power source to the battery to mimic power that could be fed by energies, namely solar or wind.

The electricity was pumped through the solution, and it triggered a chemical reaction resulting in the formation of manganese dioxide and pure hydrogen gas. In simple words, the Electrons and the manganese sulphate dissolved underwent reaction and the particles of manganese dioxide that were left clinging to the electrodes.

The overabundant electrons commenced bubbling. The hydrogen gas could then be stored and later burned as fuel whenever there was a requirement for excess electricity. Therefore, the battery is highly efficient and durable. Once it is drained, it can be easily recharged with more electricity and the process continues. 

At present, the prototype is around three inches tall, and it has the potential to generate 20 milliwatt-hours of electricity. Moreover, it is reported that this could be scaled to an industrial-grade system that had the capacity to charge and recharge up to 10,000 times and develop a grid-scale battery which had a remarkable lifespan.

In addition to that, the device is also being viewed as a form of backup to deal with demand escalations.Despite all these endeavours, there is still a long way to go before the availability, and global utilisation of this type of battery becomes widespread.

The researchers have only examined a small prototype in the lab, and there is no assurance that the design will perform excellently in the field. But if the battery is as inexpensive and long-lasting as it seems to be, this type of storage will become prevalent in all parts of the world within a very short span of time. 

Final Words 

The demand for economical water-based batteries to store solar and wind energy is quickly increasing. It is so because energy generation has become necessary and it is the need of the hour.

Furthermore, inexpensive and durable batteries could increase the number of utilities building solar and wind plants. Besides that, a cost-effective battery would get rid of the biggest downside of renewable energy. On this account, water-based batteries will be nothing less than a miraculous boon to the entire world. 

Nikola Corporation to Unveil Game-Changing Battery Cell Technology at Nikola World 2020


Nikola 1A download

Technology encompasses world’s first free-standing / self-supported electrode with a cathode that has 4x the energy density of lithium-ion

Nikola Corporation is excited to announce details of its new battery that has a record energy density of 1,100 watt-hours per kg on the material level and 500 watt-hours per kg on the production cell level. The Nikola prototype cell is the first battery that removes binder material and current collectors, enabling more energy storage within the cell. It is also expected to pass nail penetration standards, thus reducing potential vehicle fires.

  • Technology encompasses world’s first free-standing / self-supported electrode with a cathode that has 4x the energy density of lithium-ion
  • Achieves 2,000 cycles
  • Cell technology expected to cost 50% less to produce than lithium-ion
  • Could drive down the cost of hydrogen and double the range of battery-electric vehicles worldwide
  • Nikola will share IP with all other OEM’s around the world that contribute.

This battery technology could increase the range of current EV passenger cars from 300 miles up to 600 miles with little or no increase to battery size and weight. The technology is also designed to operate in existing vehicle conditions. Moreover, cycling the cells over 2,000 times has shown acceptable end-of-life performance.

Nikola’s new cell technology is environmentally friendly and easy to recycle. While conventional lithium-ion cells contain elements that are toxic and expensive, the new technology will have a positive impact on the earth’s resources, landfills and recycling plants.

This month, Nikola entered into a letter of intent to acquire a world-class battery engineering team to help bring the new battery to pre-production. Through this acquisition, Nikola will add 15 PhDs and five master’s degree team members. Due to confidentiality and security reasons, additional details of the acquisition will not be disclosed until Nikola World 2020.

“This is the biggest advancement we have seen in the battery world,” said Trevor Milton, CEO, Nikola Motor Company. “We are not talking about small improvements; we are talking about doubling your cell phone battery capacity. We are talking about doubling the range of BEVs and hydrogen-electric vehicles around the world.”

“Nikola is in discussions with customers for truck orders that could fill production slots for more than ten years and propel Nikola to become the top truck manufacturer in the world in terms of revenue. Now the question is why not share it with the world?” said Milton.

Nikola 1A download

 

Nikola Reveals Range of Hydrogen Fuel Cell and Battery-Electric Vehicles

Nikola will show the batteries charging and discharging in front of the crowd at Nikola World. The date of Nikola World will be announced soon but is expected to be fall of 2020.

Points include:

  • Nikola’s battery electric trucks could now drive 800 miles fully loaded between charges
  • Nikola trucks could weigh 5,000 lbs. less than the competition if same battery size was kept
  • Nikola’s hydrogen-electric fuel cell trucks could surpass 1,000 miles between stops and top off in 15 minutes
  • World’s first free-standing electrode automotive battery
  • Energy density up to 1,100 watt-hours per kg on a material level and 500 watt-hours per kg on a production cell level including; casing, terminals and separator — more than double current lithium-ion battery cells
  • Cycled over 2,000 times with acceptable end-of-life performance
  • 40% reduction in weight compared to lithium-ion cells
  • 50% material cost reduction per kWh compared to lithium-ion batteries

Due to the impact this technology will have on society and emissions, Nikola has taken an unprecedented position to share the IP with all other OEM’s, even competitors, that contribute to the Nikola IP license and new consortium.

OEMs or other partners can email batteries@nikolamotor.com for more information.

ABOUT NIKOLA CORPORATION
Nikola Corporation designs and manufactures hydrogen-electric vehicles, electric vehicle drivetrains, vehicle components, energy storage systems, and hydrogen stations. Nikola is led by its visionary CEO Trevor Milton. The company is privately held and headquartered in Arizona. For more information, visit www.nikolamotor.com.

%d bloggers like this: