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Technavio forecasts 45% CAGR in automotive fuel cell market through 2019

The global fuel cell market in the automotive industry is set to grow at a rapid CAGR of more than 45% (in terms of unit shipments) through 2019, according to a new report by global technology research and advisory company Technavio. Technavio calculated the market size for 2015-2019 based on... Read more →

A study of eco-driving behavior in hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) by a team from Technische Universität Chemnitz (Germany) and the University of Southampton (UK) has found that simply providing drivers with a technology that has the potential for high energy savings—i.e., a hybrid—is not sufficient to result in high energy... Read more →

DOE announces $1M H2 Refuel H-Prize Competition finalist: SimpleFuel

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced that SimpleFuel is the finalist for the $1-million H2 Refuel H-Prize Competition. (Earlier post.) SimpleFuel was selected by an independent judging panel and will have until July 2016 to deploy their small scale, on-site hydrogen generation and fueling system and prepare it for... Read more →

Shell Oil replacing Ryder diesel trucks with with Ryder LNG trucks for operations in Louisiana and Texas

Shell Oil Company has signed an agreement with Ryder System for 15 liquefied natural gas (LNG) heavy-duty vehicles supporting oil and gas logistics operations in Lafayette, La. and Houston, Texas. Shell has relied on Ryder for logistics solutions for more than 10 years. As Shell’s logistics provider, Ryder currently manages... Read more →

Sandia segmented morphing rotor blade design could enable 50MW offshore wind turbines with 200-meter blades

Sandia National Laboratories researchers are working on a new design for 200-meter blades that could enable offshore 50MW wind turbines. Sandia’s work on extreme-scale Segmented Ultralight Morphing Rotor (SUMR) is funded by the Department of Energy’s (DOE) Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy program. The team is led by the University of... Read more →

Nuclear plant designers, operators form consortium to advance small reactor technology

Leading developers and potential customers of small modular reactors (SMR) have formed a consortium to advance the commercialization of the innovative reactor designs. The memorandum of understanding establishes an organization called SMR Start. The organization is designed to help accelerate the commercialization of SMRs by creating an industry-driven entity whereby... Read more →

GM creates dedicated team to drive autonomous and advanced technology vehicle development

Effective 1 February, GM is creating a combined, dedicated Autonomous and Technology Vehicle Development Team. This team is tasked with accelerating the company’s technical capabilities and create the future direction of GM vehicle programs in the autonomous and “technologically advanced” vehicle space. Doug Parks, currently vice president, Global Product Programs,... Read more →

sonnen, the European market leader for smart energy storage systems, announced a partnership with SolarWorld, the largest crystalline-silicon solar manufacturer in the US and PetersenDean, the nation’s largest residential roofing company with more than a million roofs under its belt. The new solar-plus-storage package offers US homeowners a straightforward path... Read more →

Report: $12.1T must be invested in new renewable power generation over next 25 years to limit climate change

To reach the level of investment in new renewable power generation needed to avert dangerous climate change, $12.1 trillion of investment will be needed over the next 25 years—$5.2 trillion above business-as-usual projections—according to a new report by Ceres and Bloomberg New Energy Finance. The report, Mapping the Gap: Road... Read more →

Daihatsu to become wholly-owned subsidiary of Toyota Motor; strengthening small car operations

Toyota Motor Corporation and its subsidiary Daihatsu Motor Co., Ltd. (Daihatsu) have reached an agreement whereby Daihatsu will become a wholly-owned subsidiary of Toyota by way of a share exchange (expected to be completed in August 2016). Under the agreement, 0.26 shares of common stock of Toyota will be allotted... Read more →

Siemens sets new performance and efficiency world record at Düsseldorf power plant

On 22 January 2016, Siemens handed over the combined cycle power plant equipped with a Siemens H-class gas turbine at the Lausward location in the Düsseldorf (Germany) harbor area to the customer and operator, the utility company Stadtwerke Düsseldorf AG. The turnkey plant sets three new records in world-wide comparison.... Read more →

Almost two years after SDG&E proposed its Electric Vehicle Grid-Integration (VGI) pilot project (April 2014), the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) approved a modified version of the program, enabling the utility to own and to install 3,500 charging stations at 350 sites—businesses and multi-family communities, including in underserved neighborhoods, throughout... Read more →

Intelligent Energy signs LOI with drone manufacturer to develop fuel cell drones

Intelligent Energy has signed a Letter of Intent (LOI) with a major drone manufacturer to develop hydrogen fuel cell powered drones. The deal will see the two companies work together in the first quarter of 2016 to develop technological solutions to increase drone flight time. The goal is for the... Read more →

A team from Stanford University and the Department of Energy’s SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory has developed a new practical, high-energy-capacity lithium-ion battery anode out of silicon by encapsulating Si microparticles (∼1–3 µm) using conformally synthesized cages of multilayered graphene. The graphene cage acts as a mechanically strong and flexible buffer during... Read more →

DOE announces SBIR/STTR FY16 Phase 1 Release 1 awards; four for fuel cell membrane development

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced the 2016 Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR/STTR) Phase I Release 1 Awards, including four projects focused on durable and inexpensive polymer electrolyte membranes (PEM) for transportation and stationary fuel cell applications. (Earlier post.) These projects are awarded through... Read more →

Federal-Mogul Powertrain has developed a simplified transient dynamic simulation model of valve closing action in order to predict dynamic loading on engine valves. By improving the accuracy of calculated deformation and stress under load, the technique enables valve fatigue life to be estimated more reliably and helps to ensure optimum... Read more →

PSA Peugeot Citroën to create a joint venture in Iran with Iran Khodro

PSA Peugeot Citroën, which has operated in Iran for more than 30 years, and Iran Khodro signed a joint venture agreement to produce latest-generation vehicles in Iran. This 50/50 joint venture lays the foundations for a strategic partnership between the two companies. This joint venture is expected to invest up... Read more →

European ultracapacitor manufacturer Skeleton Technologies received a €4-million (US$4.4-million) investment from KIC InnoEnergy, an investment company dedicated to promoting sustainable innovation and entrepreneurship in Europe’s energy industry. The €4m investment from KIC InnoEnergy—the shareholders of which include ABB, EDF, Iberdrola and Total—will be used to further develop the competitive advantage... Read more →

SDCmaterials, a developer of advanced catalyst products based on a novel materials fabrication and integration platform, announced a partnership and formalized a supply agreement with Car Sound, a leading manufacturer of catalysts and catalytic converters for the automotive aftermarket. Investors in SDCmaterials include the venture capital arms of General Motors,... Read more →

Consortium to test Carnot isothermal compression technology for CNG refueling

Northwest Natural Gas Company of Portland, Oregon and Carnot Compression LLC based in Scotts Valley, California have formed a consortium to build and test an innovative CNG refueling unit. The planned 2-GGE/hour prototype compressor will use Carnot’s proprietary isothermal micro-bubble compression technology, which utilizes the weight of a working liquid... Read more →

European Commission proposing overhaul of type-approval framework to ensure strict compliance with EU requirements; centralized enforecement

The European Commission is proposing a major overhaul of the EU type-approval framework (Whole Vehicle Type-Approval System, WVTA). Under current rules, national authorities are solely responsible for certifying that a vehicle meets all requirements to be placed on the market and for policing manufacturers’ compliance with EU law. The new... Read more →

API: US petroleum demand rose 1.1%; highest December deliveries in 5 years

Total US petroleum deliveries, a measure of consumer demand, in December rose by 1.1% from December 2014 to average nearly 19.7 million barrels per day, according to API’s Monthly Statistical Report for December 2015. These were the highest December deliveries in five years. In December, total motor gasoline deliveries rose... Read more →

UCR team advances direct production of chemical and fuel precursors in yeast

A team led by a researcher at the University of California, Riverside has adapted the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing system for use in a yeast strain that can produce useful lipids and polymers. The development will lead to new precursors for biofuels, specialty polymers, adhesives and fragrances. Published recently in an... Read more →

The City of Los Angeles is introducing the Go LA app, powered by Xerox, a solution that integrates all the available methods of getting around the second largest metro area in the United States. Unlike other efforts to improve the daily commute, the Go LA app captures the full range... Read more →

Teams at Helmholtz Zentrum Berlin (HZB) and TU Darmstadt have produced a cost-effective fuel-cell catalyst material consisting of iron-nitrogen complexes embedded in tiny islands of graphene only a few nanometers in diameter. The FeN4 centers provide excellent catalytic efficiency, approaching that of platinum. For their synthesis process, they devised a... Read more →

ExxonMobil, Renewable Energy Group partner to research production of biodiesel from cellulosic sugars

ExxonMobil and Renewable Energy Group (REG) are partnering to study the production of biodiesel by fermenting renewable cellulosic sugars from sources such as agricultural waste. The agreement is between ExxonMobil Research and Engineering Company and REG’s Life Sciences subsidiary. Terms were not disclosed. REG has developed a patented technology that... Read more →

Valence and EaglePicher enter into Li-ion strategic alliance

Valence Technology and EaglePicher Technologies have entered into a strategic alliance including a technology license agreement for certain Valence Lithium-Ion technology and future supply considerations. The agreement accelerates EaglePicher’s expanding Lithium-Ion based portfolio of products and applications that will be developed at its Lithium-Ion Center of Excellence in Joplin, Missouri.... Read more →

ALABC: 48V mild hybrids can meet emission targets with CO2 reductions of 15-20%

Current mild-hybrid vehicle projects, in partnership with Ford and Hyundai/Kia, that utilize advanced 48V lead-carbon batteries, can reduce CO2 emissions by 15-20%, according to the latest data from the Advanced Lead Acid Battery Consortium (ALABC), presented at the Advanced Automotive Battery Conference (25-28 January, Mainz). The T-Hybrid (based on a... Read more →

Sprig Electric pairs Tesla Powerpack with rooftop PV system

Silicon Valley-based Sprig Electric is among the first electrical contractors in the nation to pair Tesla’s Powerpack stationary battery system (earlier post) with a 350 kW commercial rooftop photovoltaic (PV) system to optimize energy savings. The pairing, installed by Sprig Electric at their corporate headquarters in San Jose, will cut... Read more →

Duryea Technologies (founded in 1996 under the name “eCycle” with the objective of commercializing hybrid and electric motorcycles) has developed an electric supercharger for use in the consumer and commercial vehicle markets. Superchargers compress the intake charge to increase the amount of air delivered to an engine, which results in... Read more →

Porsche has restructured its Boxster mid-engine roadster lineup, introducing the new 718 Boxster and 718 Boxster S. The launch of the new 718 Boxster generation represents the first time since the late 1960s that Porsche is implementing sports cars with four-cylinder flat (i.e., horizontally opposed, or “boxer”) engines. The outgoing... Read more →

Hyundai’s all-new 2017 Hyundai Elantra arrives in dealerships this month, featuring two new, more efficient powertrains; lower weight; improved stiffness, and a number of safety and connectivity technologies. Elantra is one of Hyundai’s all-time best-selling models; the 2017 version starts at $17,150—$100 less than the award-winning model it replaces. The... Read more →

DeltaWing Technology Group—creators of the DeltaWing vehicle design (earlier post)—and DHX Electric Machines—a Georgia Tech spinout and developer and manufacturer of ultra-high torque density electric machines using proprietary and patented direct cooling technology—announced an agreement granting DeltaWing worldwide rights to make, use and sell DHX electric motors and components specifically... Read more →

Tamoil begins sales of 20% Neste NEXBTL renewable diesel blend in Italian Alps

Oil and energy company Tamoil has begun selling a cold-weather diesel blend containing a minimum 20% Neste NEXBTL renewable diesel to its corporate customers in the northern Italian Alps region. “Gasolio Artico Tamoil - New Generation Diesel” fuel reduces emissions and provides excellent performance in cold conditions. We are happy... Read more →

UQM Technologies to supply PowerPhase HD220 motor/controller to Kalmar for electric airplane tugs

UQM Technologies announced today that Kalmar Motor AB in Sweden has successfully passed vehicle trials with major airlines and plans on beginning production orders by mid-2016 using the PowerPhase HD220, UQM’s heavy-duty commercial traction electric motor/controller system, for their TBL50 airplane tugs. The PowerPhase HD220 delivers 700 N·m peak torque... Read more →

Report: Musk trims Telsa’s China EV expectations to 5,000 units this year

The Nikkei Asian Review reported that Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk said that the company has trimmed its China EV sales target for this year to 5,000 units, down from last year’s target of 10,000. Tesla has reported that it had sold 3,025 cars in China through the first nine... Read more →

There has been growing interest in the potential for converting glycerol—a relatively large (about 10 wt %) byproduct of the conventional production of biodiesel (fatty acid methyl esters)—into solketal (2,2-dimethyl 1,3-dioxalane-4-methanol) for use as an oxygenated fuel additive or diesel combustion promoter. A number of approaches to solketal production have... Read more →

Researchers at Northwestern University’s McCormick School of Engineering have found that crumpled graphene balls are an extremely promising lubricant additive. In a series of tests, a polyalphaolefin base oil with only 0.01–0.1 wt % of crumpled graphene balls outperformed a fully formulated commercial lubricant in terms of friction and wear... Read more →

Volkswagen Group confirms 20 more EV or PHEV models by 2020; Müller says Europe needs to lead with electric mobility

At the Volkswagen Group’s New Year reception in Brussels, Group CEO Matthias Müller said that the Group would concentrate on sustainability more than ever before—encompassing products, strategy and management. Müller will present the new Strategy 2025 for the Group this summer. Among other things, the company’s brands will introduce about... Read more →

Siemens to acquire simulation software supplier CD-adapco for $970M

Siemens and CD-adapco have entered into a stock purchase agreement for the acquisition of CD-adapco by Siemens. The purchase price is $970 million. CD-adapco is a global engineering simulation company with software solutions covering a wide range of engineering disciplines including Fluid Dynamics (CFD), Solid Mechanics (CSM), heat transfer, particle... Read more →

Global energy demand will increase 25% between 2014 and 2040, driven by population growth and economic expansion, ExxonMobil forecasts in the 2016 edition of its annual The Outlook for Energy. At the same time, energy efficiency gains and increased use of renewable energy sources and lower carbon fuels, such as... Read more →

A thin coating of graphene nanoribbons in epoxy developed by the Rice University lab of chemist James Tour has proven effective at melting ice on a helicopter blade. The coating may be an effective real-time de-icer for aircraft, wind turbines, transmission lines and other surfaces exposed to winter weather, according... Read more →

Juniper: Apple Carplay and Android Auto to drive connected car market to $600M by 2020

A new study from Juniper Research estimated that the adoption of connected in-vehicle infotainment systems will produce revenues exceeding $600 million in 2020, representing a 10-fold increase on this year. The new research, Consumer Connected Cars: Telematics, Insurance & In-Vehicle Applications 2015-2020, forecasts that consumer adoption of connected car entertainment... Read more →

The automotive industry has been exploring the use of haptic gas pedal technologies as a way to reduce fuel consumption and increase safety by signaling the driver using a mechanism such as a vibration or a counterforce in the accelerator pedal. Continental announced its Accelerator Force Feedback Pedal in 2010,... Read more →

Tottori Prefecture, Tottori Gas Co., Ltd, Sekisui House Ltd. and Honda Motor Co., Ltd. signed an agreement to pursue jointly Tottori Prefecture’s project to establish a base for a hydrogen energy demonstration (and environmental education). This will be Japan’s first case where hydrogen energy will be utilized through the integration... Read more →

Researchers find some solid-state hydrogen storage materials could serve as less toxic solid propellants for rockets

Researchers in China have found that amine metal borohydride—a novel hydrogen-enriched boron–nitrogen–hydrogen (BNH) hydrogen storage system—has potential as a solid propellant or additive for solid and hybrid rockets. In a paper in the ACS journal Energy & Fuels, they investigated the combustion properties of two newly developed ethylene diamine aluminum... Read more →

QNX Software Systems Limited, a subsidiary of BlackBerry Limited, earlier this month introduced the QNX Platform for ADAS (advanced driver assistance systems), expanding its portfolio of automotive software products. The QNX Platform for ADAS is scheduled for general release in Q2 2016. Designed for scalability, the platform will enable automotive... Read more →

In a first for commercial aviation, Air BP, together with Norwegian airport operator Avinor, and sustainable biofuel specialist SkyNRG, announced that all airlines landing at Oslo Airport can have jet biofuel delivered from the airport’s main fuel farm, via the existing hydrant mechanism. Lufthansa Group was the first airline to... Read more →