February 29, 2012
GM and PSA Peugeot Citroën enter long-term strategic alliance; considering new common platform for low-emission vehicles
General Motors and PSA Peugeot Citroën are forming a long-term and broad-scale global strategic alliance intended to leverage the combined strengths and capabilities of the two companies; contribute to the profitability of both partners; and strongly improve their competitiveness in Europe.
The alliance is structured around two main pillars: the sharing of vehicle platforms, components and modules; and the creation of a global purchasing joint venture for the sourcing of commodities, components and other goods and services from suppliers with combined annual purchasing volumes of approximately $125 billion. Initially, GM and PSA Peugeot Citroën intend to focus on small and midsize passenger cars, MPVs and crossovers. The companies will also consider developing a new common platform for low-emission vehicles. The first vehicle on a common platform is expected to launch by 2016.
Algae-based crude oil producer Sapphire Energy, Inc., has entered into a licensing agreement with Earthrise Nutritionals LLC, a producer of spirulina and spirulina-based products for more than 25 years. Sapphire Energy will integrate Earthrise Nutritionals’ spirulina strain into its growing inventory of cyanobacteria and algae strains for algae-to-energy production.
A University of Toronto research team has developed a process to analyze the behavior of bitumen in reservoirs using a microfluidic chip, a tool commonly associated with the field of medical diagnostics. The process may reduce the cost and time of analyzing bitumen-gas interaction in heavy oil and bitumen reservoirs.
Larry Burns: Holistic approach required to achieve transformational change of transportation and the automobile; the power of “And”
Larry Burns, former head of GM R&D and strategic planning and currently Professor of Engineering Practice at the University of Michigan and Director, Sustainable Mobility at the Earth Institute, Columbia University, used his presentation at the ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit (EIS) in Washington to call for a holistic approach to the transformational change required for the transportation sector in general and the automobile in particular.
He also called the propensity to “sit around debating” which drive technology or energy source is better than all the rest as “premature and presumptuous”. Stressing the power of “and” rather than “or”, he asserted that:
Shanghai Daily. The city of Shanghai, China will spend 10.3 billion yuan (US$1.63 billion) on 53 projects targeting air pollution, especially for PM2.5 control, over the next three years. The city will begin publicly reporting PM2.5 in June.
Hybrid-electric off-road car powered by EVO Axial Flux technology first electric-drive vehicle to complete Dakar Rally
A vehicle powered by EVO Electric Ltd.’s advanced Axial Flux motor and generator technology completed the Dakar Rally, held this year in South America. The EVO-powered OSCar eO, designed, built and operated by the Latvian company OSC, is the first electric-drive car to complete the rally. (Earlier post.)
New real-time measurements suggest that black carbon emissions from light-duty gasoline vehicles are significantly underestimated
A study by researchers from Environment Canada making real-time measurements of black carbon (BC) using two laser-induced incandescence techniques has found that BC emission factors from light-duty gasoline vehicles are at least a factor of 2 higher than previous North American measurements, and a factor of 9 higher than currently used emission inventories in Canada, which are derived with the MOBILE 6.2C model. Their study appears in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology.
Fleet-average, fuel-based emission factors measured with the incandescence techniques have not been previously reported, the authors said. These measurements have higher sensitivity and time resolution compared to traditional BC measurement techniques, resulting in improved BC concentration measurements on and near a typical North American highway.
Daimler Trucks North America’s complete MY 2013 medium- and heavy-duty vehicle lineup certified GHG14-compliant
Daimler subsidiary Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) has been certified by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as fully compliant with the new “Greenhouse Gas 2014” (GHG14) regulation (earlier post) for its complete product portfolio of model year 2013 long-distance haulage, medium-duty, construction and municipal vehicles.
Update on ALTe; EREV powertrain company tracking for production-caliber units by December, production ramp in 1Q 2013
Extended range electric vehicle powertrain company ALTe (earlier post) is tracking to produce a limited number of production-caliber vehicle powertrains by December, and plans to ramp up production in the first quarter of 2013, said CEO John Thomas in a recent interview with Green Car Congress. ALTe is targeting fleet vehicles such as delivery trucks, vans and shuttle buses and even potentially taxis and limos, in the light- to medium-duty vehicle classes—initially as conversions, but ultimately extending to an OEM basis.
The first wave of F-150 production-ready prototype extended range electric vehicles is soon due to be delivered to Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E) to kick-off a pilot study in the PG&E fleet. (Earlier post.) Specs for the powertrain in the F-150 include a 2.0L, 4-cylinder naturally aspirated gasoline engine powering an 82 kW (peak) Remy DC generator. Two 82 kW (peak) Remy DC drive motors running at 320V deliver 400 N·m (295 lb-ft) max torque, with a 21.6 kWh Li-ion pack from A123 Systems.
An updated roadmap for the Smart Grid is now available from the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), which recently finished reviewing and incorporating public comments into the NIST Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards, Release 2.0.