September 30, 2009
|The PX MiEV. Click to enlarge.|
Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) will be showing a total of 16 cars at the 41st Tokyo Motor Show later in October, including two concept cars: the Mitsubishi Concept PX-MiEV plug-in hybrid and the i-MiEV CARGO. MMC will also show 10 current production vehicles that qualify for eco-car tax incentives in Japan.
MMC Plug-in Hybrid. Powered by the new Mitsubishi Plug-in Hybrid System, the Mitsubishi Concept-PX (plug-in hybrid crossover) MiEV (Mitsubishi innovative Electric Vehicle) returns fuel economy in excess of 50 km/liter (118 mpg US, 2.0L/100km) on the Japanese 10-15 cycle.
New Biomass-to-Liquids Industry Association is Formed; Urges EPA to Promote the Cleanest Renewable Fuels Compatible with Existing Fuels Infrastructure
Advanced biofuel producers have formed the Low Carbon Synthetic Fuels Association (LCSFA). Specifically, the LCSFA represents the Biomass-to-Liquids (BtL) industry, with members including TRI, Rentech Inc., Velocys, CHOREN, Flambeau River Biofuels/Johnson Timber, AP Fuels and World GTL.
Gevo Biobutanol Retrofit Plant Starts Up; Gevo Launches Development Company to Retrofit Ethanol Plants
Gevo, Inc., a biobutanol and renewable hydrocarbons company, announced the start up of its first biobutanol demonstration plant designed from retrofitting an existing demonstration scale ethanol plant to produce biobutanol. (Earlier post.) In successfully producing biobutanol at the 1 million gallon per year pilot plant in St. Joseph, Missouri, Gevo is demonstrating the viability of its technology for retrofitting existing ethanol plants to make biobutanol.
Gevo’s biobutanol can be blended directly into gasoline. Gevo’s technology also enables using the biobutanol for the production of renewable hydrocarbons such as isooctene and isooctane for the gasoline market, renewable jet fuel and renewable diesel blendstocks. In addition, Gevo’s technology enables the production of a wide variety of chemicals such as isobutylene and paraxylene from renewable resources.
OriginOil, Inc., the developer of a new extraction process for algae oil (earlier post), has developed a new production system using a type of algae that attaches itself to growth surfaces. The new system helps pursue clean water goals while generating algae for fuel and other valuable products in wastewater treatment plants.
|The CR-Z Concept 2009. Click to enlarge.|
Honda will reveal the CR-Z Concept 2009, the most recent prototype of a compact sports car using Honda’s IMA technology, at October’s Tokyo Motor Show. Honda introduced the first version of the CR-Z concept at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2007. When the production version goes on sale in 2010, it will be the first series-production sports hybrid car from a major OEM, and the first gasoline-electric vehicle to employ a 6-speed manual transmission.
Honda will also reveal two more concepts at the show. The EV-N is a small, 4-seater battery electric vehicle, inspired by the N360, Honda’s 360cc micro car launched in the 1960s. It features solar panels in the roof, which could be used to help to charge the on-board battery. The EV-N is purely a design study and there are no plans for production.
BASF Future Business GmbH and PURAC, subsidiaries of BASF SE and CSM nv, respectively, are cooperating for the joint production development of bio-based succinic acid. Both partners have been working on the development of the industrial fermentation and down-stream processing of bio-based succinic acid and will start production of commercial quality and volumes in the second quarter of 2010.
A new report by the Geothermal Energy Association (GEA) shows strong growth in new geothermal power projects continuing through 2009. US Geothermal Power Production and Development Update, September 2009 identifies 144 new geothermal projects under development in fourteen states that could represent as much as 7,100 MW of new baseload power capacity. When added to the 3,100 MW of existing capacity, 10 gigawatts of geothermal power appears to be feasible.
|The 1.3-liter diesel CDTI for the Astra. Click to enlarge.|
Opel introduced the new Astra at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA) earlier this month. (Earlier post.) The new Astra is launching with a complete line-up of eight gasoline and diesel engines ranging from 70 kW/95 hp to 132 kW/180 hp. The new Astra has grown slightly to provide a roomier interior and, at the same time, it has benefited from engineering enhancements that allow it to improve fuel efficiency and performance.
The Astra’s line-up of powertrains with manual transmission cuts fuel consumption and CO2 emissions overall by more than 12% compared with the current generation. The average fuel consumption of the four diesel engines ranging from 70 kW/95 hp to 118 kW/160 hp, which are expected to represent almost half of the new Astra cars sold in Europe at launch, is 4.6 L/100 km (51 mpg US).
Univ. of Alberta and Helmholtz Association Partner to Develop Oil Sands Technologies to Address Environmental Issues
The University of Alberta and the Helmholtz Association of German Research Centres signed a memorandum of understanding that will create a five-year agreement, the Helmholtz Alberta Initiative (HAI). The goal of the initiative is to transform oil sands production processes by developing technologies that address sustainability challenges.
Xinhua. China will lower gasoline and diesel prices by 190 yuan (US$27.8) per tonne from Wednesday, the National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) announced Tuesday.