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Power system configuration diagram. Powell et al. Click to enlarge. Researchers at the Pacific Northwest National Laboratory report on a highly efficient, small-scale solid oxide fuel cell system featuring PNNL-developed microchannel technology in combination with adiabatic, external steam reforming and anode gas recirculation. The heat and water required for the... Read more →

Proton OnSite achieves hydrogen gas production at 5,000 psi without a compressor

Proton OnSite’s latest project with the US Department of Energy (DOE) has yielded a proton exchange membrane (PEM) electrolyzer stack that can produce hydrogen gas at the pressure required to fuel a vehicle, without the need for a compressor. A high-differential pressure PEM stack can now safely generate hydrogen gas... Read more →

Northrop Grumman Corporation and L-3 MAS will join forces on a variant of the Northrop Grumman-produced Global Hawk high-altitude, long-endurance (HALE) unmanned aircraft system (UAS) for Canada to maintain continuous surveillance of its Arctic territories. Rendering of Polar Hawk system. Click to enlarge. Dubbed “Polar Hawk,” the system will be... Read more →

Aqua America to transition portions of fleet to CNG

Aqua America, Inc., one of the largest US-based, publicly-traded water utilities, is going to transition portions of its larger vehicle fleet to compressed natural gas (CNG). Chairman and CEO Nicholas DeBenedict made the announcement before the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission’s Alternative Fuel Vehicles forum held at Drexel University in Philadelphia.... Read more →

Quantum and Dow Kokam deliver first Plug-In Hybrid Electric F-150

Quantum Fuel Systems Technologies Worldwide, Inc. has delivered the first pilot version of its plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) F-150 pickup truck to Florida Power & Light Company (FPL), in association with Dow Kokam, the lithium-ion battery system supplier for the PHEV F-150. (Earlier post.) FPL is an early adopter of... Read more →

Freescale introduces three reference designs for wireless charging for mobile devices

Freescale Semiconductor has introduced three reference designs for wireless charging for high-capacity, single- and multi-cell battery packs. Target applications include power tools, handheld radios and various industrial applications. Freescale has partnered with Fulton Innovation, a developer of wireless power and inductive charging technology. Fulton developed eCoupled technology to bring wireless... Read more →

The Alberta Energy Resources Conservation Board (ERCB) has given approval to Cenovus Energy Inc. to proceed with its Narrows Lake oil sands project, with an ultimate gross production capacity of 130,000 barrels per day. The company plans to demonstrate solvent aided process (SAP) on 25% of the wells there and... Read more →

A123 Systems 8K filing says substantial doubt about its ability to continue as a going concern; status of grants and incentives

In its most recent 8K filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Li-ion battery maker A123 Systems said a number of circumstances have raised “substantial doubt on [its] ability to continue as a going concern.” On 26 March, A123 launched a field campaign estimated to cost US$51.6 million to... Read more →

Details on Nissan’s I3 1.2L supercharged direct-injection gasoline engine

In 2011, Nissan launched a version of the Micra city car equipped with a new supercharged gasoline direct-injection engine (HR12DDR). The 1.2-liter, inline three-cylinder Direct Injection Gasoline-Supercharger (DIG-S) engine, assisted with a stop-start system, produces 72 kW (97 hp) and 142 N·m (105 lb-ft), while CO2 emissions are 95 g/km... Read more →

BASF grants license for manufacture of lithium-ion cathode precursor materials to OM Group

BASF Corporation, through its Ovonic battery materials affiliate, has granted OM Group, Inc. (OMG) a royalty-bearing license covering cathode precursor materials used in lithium-ion batteries. The license also covers the proprietary processes used to manufacture these materials. Ovonic, based in Rochester Hills, Michigan, is the global leader in nickel-metal hydride... Read more →

A computational analysis that screened hundreds of thousands of zeolite and zeolitic imidazolate framework structures has identified many different structures that have the potential to reduce the parasitic energy loss of carbon capture technologies for powerplant flue gas by as much as 30–40% compared with amine scrubbing. One of the... Read more →

Washington State opens 10 new public charging stations on West Coast Electric Highway; Seattle to Canadian border

The Washington State Department of Transportation (WSDOT), along with electric charging station partner AeroVironment opened 10 new public charging stations—seven along Interstate 5 and three along US Route 2 in northern Washington—that provide EV drivers the ability to travel from Seattle to the Canadian border. Eight of the 10 new... Read more →

Valence signs extended supply agreement for Li-ion batteries with PVI

Valence Technology has signed an extended supply agreement with France-based electric industrial vehicle maker PVI. Since launching the program four years ago, more than 120 electric commercial vehicles, including electric trucks and buses built by PVI and powered by Valence lithium phosphate battery systems, are in operation today in several... Read more →

Neste Oil sues Dynamic Fuels, LLC, Syntroleum Corporation, and Tyson Foods for infringement on NExBTL-related patent

Neste Oil Corporation has filed a patent infringement action against Dynamic Fuels, LLC, Syntroleum Corporation, and Tyson Foods, Inc in the US District Court for the District of Delaware. Neste Oil asserts that one of its patents is being infringed by Dynamic Fuels, Syntroleum and Tyson Foods in the production... Read more →

EEA: Higher EU greenhouse gas emissions in 2010 due to economic recovery and cold winter

Greenhouse gas emissions increased in the EU in 2010 as a result of both economic recovery in many countries after the 2009 recession and a colder winter, according to the latest greenhouse gas inventory published by the European Environment Agency (EEA). Nonetheless, emissions growth was somewhat contained by continued strong... Read more →

Nichicon Corporation has introduced what it believes is the smallest and lightest quick charger for Electric Vehicles (EVs). This 10-kW-capacity model is certified for the CHAdeMO system and expands the company’s lineup by adding an EV quick charger that simplifies installation and lowers the user’s total costs. Output voltage is... Read more →

Recycled and sustainable materials tally for the 2013 Ford Fusion

The new 2013 Ford Fusion continues use of recycled and sustainable materials including recycled cotton from jeans, recycled car battery casings, recycled clear plastic bottles and soybeans. Fusions can contain: Denim material equivalent to slightly more than two average-sized pairs of blue jeans. The Fusion uses post-industrial, recycled cotton used... Read more →

LEAF to Home with EV Power Station. Click to enlarge. Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. will launch the “LEAF to Home” V2H (vehicle-to-home) power supply system, which can supply electricity from the 24 kWh Li-ion battery pack in Nissan LEAF electric vehicles (EV) to residential homes when used with the “EV... Read more →

Seattle City Council passes resolution opposing transportation of coal through Seattle for export, measures for mitigating impact

The Seattle City Council unanimously passed Resolution 31379 stating Seattle’s opposition to the transportation of coal through Seattle. In addition to emphasizing the negative impacts on the climate, the resolution outlines measures the City will take to mitigate the regional impacts from the significant increase in coal trains that would... Read more →

Nissan testing peak-shaving services from Leaf EV to building

Nikkei. Nissan Motor introduced a trial setup in which a Leaf electric vehicle provides power for a limited time to a building during periods of its peak power demand (peak shaving). The test entails supplying 4%, or 6 kW, of the peak summer power consumption of a municipal administrative center... Read more →

Smart transport investment by sector, world markets: 2011-2017. Source: Pike Research. Click to enlarge. The widespread availability of high-speed networks, both fixed and wireless, along with the ability to embed intelligence in physical objects throughout the urban environment and the diffusion of mobile devices that can send and receive real-time... Read more →

Ford Focus 1.0L EcoBoost model accounts for 23.3% of Focus orders in April in Europe

Across Europe, more than 4,700 customers ordered a Focus 1.0-liter EcoBoost in April, accounting for 23.3% of the Ford Focus models in Europe’s major 19 markets. The Euro 19 markets are: Austria, Belgium, Britain, Czech Republic, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Spain, Sweden... Read more →

Infineon offers next-generation automotive high speed CAN TLE7250 transceiver family with improved robustness and increased energy efficiency

Infineon Technologies AG introduced the latest generation of its High Speed CAN transceivers designed for automotive network applications: the TLE7250 family comprising the TLE7250G and the TLE7250GVIO. Compared to the previous generation, the new transceivers offer improved immunity against Electromagnetic Interference (EMI) for the 1MHz to 1GHz frequency range and... Read more →

The International Energy Agency (IEA) has released a special World Energy Outlook report on the production of unconventional gas—“Golden Rules for a Golden Age of Gas”—intended to help stakeholders to work together to address public concerns about the associated environmental and social impacts. Among the findings of the report is... Read more →

Berkeley Lab and CalCEF form new CalCharge partnership to boost battery technologies

CalCEF, a non-profit umbrella organization that creates institutions and investment vehicles for the clean energy economy, and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) have formed a partnership to launch CalCharge, a consortium uniting California’s emerging and established battery technology companies with academic and government resources. By bringing together the dozens... Read more →

Researchers at Wuhan University (China) have synthesized a Sb/C (antimony/carbon) nanocomposite for use as an anode material in a room-temperature sodium-ion (Na-ion) battery. A comparison of the cycling capacities of the metallic Sb and the Sb/C nanocomposite electrode at a current rate of 100 mA/g. Source: Yang et al. Click... Read more →

The EVer (Electric Vehicle extended range) powertrain of the Fisker Karma. Click to enlarge. Fisker Automotive published its first business update, announcing that revenues had exceeded $100 million in the first four months of 2012. The company, which began deliveries of the Fisker Karma luxury four-door extended range electric sedan... Read more →

MIT report finds China’s actions on climate change crucial; argues for global economy-wide greenhouse gas tax

A new report from the MIT Joint Program on the Science and Policy of Global Change shows the importance of all major nations taking part in global efforts to reduce emissions—and in particular, finds China’s role to be crucial. The report—titled “The Role of China in Mitigating Climate Change” and... Read more →

Tanaka Precious Metals records highest shipment volume of fuel cell catalysts in FY2011; led by home use applications

Tanaka Kikinzoku Kogyo K.K., which holds the global leading share in fuel cell catalysts, posted record shipment volume of fuel cell catalysts in FY2011 (April 2011 - March 2012). Using the shipment volume in FY2004 as an index of 100, shipment volume reached its highest level on record at 244... Read more →

VTT researcher proposes theory for sliding friction

Dr. Lasse Makkonen, Principal Scientist at VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland, has presented a first principles thermodynamic model of sliding friction between solid objects. According to his theory, the amount of friction depends on the thermodynamic surface energy per unit area of the materials in question. This concept, outlined... Read more →

Infiniti models to be manufactured in Xiangyang, China beginning 2014

Dongfeng Motor Co., Ltd. (DFL) and the City of Xiangyang today announced that the Xiangyang plant in Hubei Province, China, has been selected as the local production site for Infiniti. The plant, operated by Dongfeng Motor Co., Ltd., Nissan’s joint venture company in China, will manufacture two Infiniti models starting... Read more →

This drawing shows the damaged outer wall of a carbon nanotube with nanosized graphene pieces (white patches), which facilitate the formation of catalytic sites made of iron (yellow) and nitrogen (red) atoms. The catalyst reduces oxygen to water. Click to enlarge. A team of researchers has demonstrated the ability of... Read more →

SARTRE public road test. Click to enlarge. Vehicle platoon tests in the SARTRE (Safe Road Trains for the Environment) project—a joint venture between Ricardo UK Ltd, Applus+ Idiada, Tecnalia Research & Innovation, Institut für Kraftfahrzeuge Aachen (IKA), SP Technical Research Institute, Volvo Technology and Volvo Car Corporation—are making progress. (Earlier... Read more →

Nikkei: Japan carmakers now rely on emerging markets for 62% of profit

An analysis by the Nikkei finds that emerging markets are rapidly rising as a percentage of Japanese automakers’ earnings, at the expense of Japan, Europe and the US. Six major domestic carmakers earned a combined 62%, or ¥788.4 billion (US$9.9 billion), of their operating profits from emerging markets in fiscal... Read more →

Top row: Effects of the DOC on mutagenicity of the condensates in the strain TA98 with and without metabolic activation (+/−S9); n.s.: not significant. Bottom row: Mutagenicity of the particle extracts with and without DOC. Credit: ACS, Westphal et al.Click to enlarge. A team of researchers in Germany has found... Read more →

Nikkei: Japan gov’t to ease rules for building hydrogen stations in June, offer subsidies

The Nikkei reports that the Japan government will ease regulations on the construction of hydrogen stations for fuel cell cars in June, in addition to offering subsidies to companies involved in a plan to set up 100 such sites throughout the country by 2015. The government will revise a ministerial... Read more →

EU awards €4M for project on doped carbon nanostructures as metal-free catalysts

The EU has awarded €4 million (US$5 million) to a new research project that will develop doped carbon nanostructures to replace precious metals needed in catalysis: FREECATS - Doped carbon nanostructures as metal-free catalysts. FREECATS has chosen to focus on three applications where metal-free catalysts can replace metal-based catalysts: fuel... Read more →

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines vessel demonstrates ocean-going diesel particulate filter

Mitsui O.S.K. Lines has started a demonstration test of the Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) system installed on the diesel engine used for power generation on an MOL Group-operated ocean-going vessel. This is the first application of the self-cleaning DPF on an ocean-going ship. The test is scheduled for about one... Read more →

OptaSense signs global agreement with Shell to deploy fiber monitoring for hydraulic fracturing operations

OptaSense, a QinetiQ company, has signed a Global Commercialization and Framework Agreement with Shell that sets out the basis on which Shell businesses can contract with OptaSense directly to use its unique Distributed Acoustic Sensing (DAS) system. The initial service to be provided under the agreement is a commercial hydraulic... Read more →

EcoCAR 2 Year One Winner: Mississippi State University

EcoCAR 2: Plugging In to the Future named Mississippi State University, with its series-parallel plug-in hybrid electric vehicle design, the Year One winner at the EcoCAR 2012 Competition in Los Angeles. The 15 universities competing in EcoCAR 2 gathered for six days of judged competition for $100,000 in prize money.... Read more →

DOE to fund up to $12M in FY 2012 for work on innovative biosynthetic pathways for transformational improvements in biofuels production

The US Department of Energy (DOE) is soliciting (DE-FOA-0000719) research projects for up approximately $12 million in awards in FY 2012 for work on biosynthetic pathways for advanced biofuels to demonstrate transformational, not incremental, improvements in yield and productivity. Synthetic biology technologies hold promise for addressing critical barriers in the... Read more →

Univ of Delhi team uses Ru/C catalyst for one-pot conversion of biomass to DMF; EMF as another promising biofuel

Researchers at the University of Delhi (India) report the one-pot conversion of lignocellulosic and algal biomass into 2,5-dimethylfuran (DMF) using a multicomponent catalytic system comprising [DMA]+[CH3SO3]− (DMA=N,N-dimethylacetamide), Ru/C, and formic acid. A paper on their work is published in the journal ChemSusChem. The synthesis of DMF from all substrates was... Read more →

Petrobras: drilling in new deepwater pre-salt block indicates 700M barrels oil, 3T cubic meters gas

Petrobras announced the development of the exploration of block BM-C-33, south of the Campos basin. The drilling of the well 1-REPF-12D-RJS, where the discovery of a new hydrocarbon reservoir in the pre-salt layer was recently announced, indicated estimated recoverable volumes of more than 700 million barrels of oil and 3... Read more →

NOAA predicts a near-normal 2012 Atlantic and Eastern Pacific hurricane season, below-normal in Central Pacific

Conditions in the atmosphere and the ocean favor a near-normal hurricane season in the Atlantic Basin this season, NOAA forecasts. NOAA’s outlook for the Eastern Pacific basin is for a near-normal hurricane season and the Central Pacific basin is expected to have a below-normal season. For the entire six-month season,... Read more →

NEMA creates new EVSE working groups to address key gaps in EV standards

The National Electrical Manufacturers Association’s (NEMA) Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment/Systems Section created two new working groups to develop standards that focus on network roaming for a public charging station and communication of electric vehicle (EV) metering data. The Section created the working groups to address several gaps in EV charging... Read more →