Developed and periodically updated by Michael Sivak, Sivak Applied Research. Last updated on September 23, 2020. The changes are in percent relative to the corresponding month in 2019. They are adjusted for both population and 2020 being a leap year (all but price of gasoline) and for inflation (price of... Read more →


The Buick Electra concept vehicle made its global premiere in Shanghai. The all-electric crossover offers a glimpse of Buick’s vision for a new intelligent electric future. Adopting the new “potential energy” design language, the Electra comes with a new-generation electric propulsion system and the advanced Ultium battery, along with a... Read more →


A current research project is working to establish the technical basis for standardization of methanol fuels in Europe. The project involves a consortium of universities, research institutes, industrial companies and small and medium-sized enterprises as partners. The partners in the “Methanol Standard” project aim to pave way for the certification... Read more →


Transform Materials has developed a novel and sustainable microwave plasma reactor process to convert natural gas into high-value hydrogen and acetylene, thereby opening up a new pathway for green chemical manufacturing. Transform Materials offers compact, modular and multiplexed plasma reactors producing high-purity hydrogen and acetylene that customers can integrate into... Read more →


Audi of America, American Tower Corporation, Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., and the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) are collaborating in an initial deployment of cellular vehicle-to-everything (C-V2X) communication technology in Virginia. The Virginia C-V2X deployment is a result of the combined efforts of Audi of America, VDOT and Qualcomm Technologies, which... Read more →


Location accuracy is a key requirement for the Connected Vehicle (CV) Pilots as vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) and vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) technologies are deployed in the field in larger quantities. The New York City Department of Transportation (NYCDOT) CV Pilot team is working hard to ensure that the in-vehicle devices can establish their... Read more →


Volkswagen announced that the Taos compact SUV, which slots into the lineup below the Tiguan, will feature a new version of the EA211 turbocharged four-cylinder engine that currently powers the Jetta sedan. Making 158 horsepower and 184 pound-feet of torque, the new engine increases in size from 1.4 to 1.5... Read more →


Jaguar Land Rover will use plastic waste in next-generation sustainable luxury interiors

Jaguar Land Rover is working with ECONYL nylon to develop high-quality interiors made from ocean and landfill waste. Next-generation Jaguar and Land Rover models will feature floor mats and trims made with ECONYL fiber from recycled industrial plastic, fabric offcuts from clothing manufacturers, fishing nets from the farming industry, and... Read more →


Hybrid systems of floating solar panels and hydropower plants may hold the technical potential to produce a significant portion of the electricity generated annually across the globe, according to an analysis by researchers at the US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). A paper on the work is... Read more →


thyssenkrupp System Engineering business unit to be split into two independent companies; powertrain and battery unit to be sold or find partners

At the start of the new fiscal year on 1 October 2020, thyssenkrupp will commence the operational realignment of its automotive system engineering activities. In the coming months the current System Engineering business unit will be split commercially, operationally and legally into two independent business units. The aim is to... Read more →


Hyundai Motor Group has formed New Horizons Studio, a new unit focused on the development of Ultimate Mobility Vehicles (UMVs), including the concept Hyundai Elevate walking car introduced at CES 2019 (earlier post). Hyundai Elevate does not rely solely on wheels and is expected to address challenging driving situations—for example,... Read more →


DHL to use biofuel to neutralize carbon emissions of all ‘less-than-container’ load shipments in ocean freight globally

DHL Global Forwarding, the air and ocean freight specialist of Deutsche Post DHL Group, says it will be neutralizing the carbon emissions of all less-than-container load (LCL) ocean freight shipments from 1 January 2021. As one of the leading ocean freight forwarders worldwide, and in line with Deutsche Post DHL... Read more →


The California state legislature passed and the Governor signed into law a bill (AB-2663) that lowers the Use Fuel Tax rate of dimethyl ether (DME) from $0.18 to $0.06 per gallon of DME used and $0.06 per gallon of DME-propane fuel blend used on or after 1 July 2021 (the... Read more →


PT Pertamina (Persero)—the national oil company of Indonesia—will use Honeywell UOP technologies to produce advanced biofuels at its Plaju and Cilacap refineries in Indonesia. The company will use UOP Renewable Jet Fuel Process technology at its Plaju refinery in Palembang, South Sumatra, and UOP Ecofining technology at its Cilacap refinery... Read more →


Democrats continue to drive less than Republicans in response to the pandemic

by Michael Sivak, Sivak Applied Research. In two recent analyses, I have shown that, during the pandemic, the decrease in vehicle miles traveled (VMT) in the states with preference for Democrats was greater than in the states with preference for Republicans. This was the case in both March 2020 (the... Read more →


Adamas: “Unfathomable” rare earth demand growth awaits post-2030

Demand growth of the 2020s will soon be dwarfed by the astronomical demand growth of the 2030s, according to a new forecast by Adamas Intelligence. Therein lies the real defining challenge and opportunity facing the global rare earth industry today, the company said. After growing at a CAGR of 6.4%... Read more →


ZeroAvia recently completed the first hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered flight of a commercial-grade aircraft. The flight took place at the company’s R&D facility in Cranfield, England, with the Piper M-class six-seat plane completing taxi, takeoff, a full pattern circuit, and landing. This milestone on the road to commercial zero-emission flight is part of... Read more →


Ballard expanding MEA production capacity 6x by early 2021 to meet expected growth in fuel cell vehicle demand

Ballard Power Systems is expanding manufacturing capacity for production of its proprietary membrane electrode assemblies (MEAs)—a critical component of every fuel cell—6x by early 2021 at its headquarter facility in Vancouver. The upgraded capacity for production of 6 million MEAs annually, equivalent to approximately 1.66 Gigawatts of product, will make... Read more →


Ballard Power Systems and MAHLE have agreed to collaborate on the development and commercialization of zero-emission fuel cell systems to provide primary propulsion power in various classes of commercial trucks. MAHLE’s commercial vehicle division supplies a broad range of products to truck and other OEMs, including power cells, valves and... Read more →


In August 2020, cumulative US plug-in vehicle sales reached 1.6 million units, according to data gathered by Argonne National Laboratory. Plug-in vehicles consist of both battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). Source: Argonne National Laboratory, Light Duty Electric Drive Vehicles Monthly Sales Updates, August 2020. A... Read more →


Stanford University scientists have identified a new solid-state Li-ion electrolyte predicted to exhibit simultaneously fast ionic conductivity, wide electrochemical stability, low cost, and low mass density. The low-cost materials—made of lithium, boron and sulfur—could improve the safety and performance of electric cars, laptops and other battery-powered devices, according to the... Read more →


Solaris Bus & Coach has signed a contract with public transport operator Freiburger Verkehrs AG for the supply of 15 electric buses: five 12-meter Solaris Urbino 12 electric and ten 18-meter articulated Urbino 18 electric. The commissioned Urbino will be equipped with Solaris High Power batteries. Batteries with a total... Read more →


XPeng enters into cooperation agreement for new smart EV manufacturing base in Guangzhou; $586M in financing

Chinese EV contender XPeng announced that its wholly owned subsidiary in China, Guangdong Xiaopeng Motors Technology Co., Ltd. entered into a cooperation agreement with Guangzhou GET Investment Holdings Co., Ltd., a wholly owned investment company of Guangzhou Economic and Technological Development Zone. According to the terms of the Cooperation Agreement,... Read more →


A recent report from CE Delft, an independent research and consultancy organization, regarding the climate impact of Exhaust Gas Cleaning (EGC) systems for the marine industry. The study compares the results to the use of low-sulfur marine fuels and is made from a well-to-wake perspective in order to achieve an... Read more →


Fraunhofer ISI/ICCT analysis of PHEV data finds real-world CO2 emissions 2-4x higher than official values

A new analysis of the real-world usage of more than 100,000 plug-in hybrid electric vehicles shows a large deviation between on-road CO2 emissions and fuel efficiency and the official vehicle type-approval values. The results of the joint study, released by German Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research ISI and... Read more →


Researchers from Tohoku University’s Graduate School of Engineering have discovered a novel iron-based superelastic alloy (SEA) capable of withstanding extreme temperatures—both high and low. A paper on the work is published in Science. SEAs are found in a wide variety of commercial applications because of their superelasticity, allowing them to... Read more →


Particle accelerators generate high-energy beams of electrons, protons and ions for a wide range of applications, including particle colliders that shed light on nature’s subatomic components, X-ray lasers that film atoms and molecules during chemical reactions and medical devices for treating cancer. As a rule of thumb, the longer the... Read more →


Scientists at Oak Ridge National Laboratory have created a composite that increases the electrical current capacity of copper wires, providing a new material that can be scaled for use in ultra-efficient, power-dense electric vehicle traction motors. ORNL scientists used new techniques to create long lengths of a composite copper-carbon nanotube... Read more →


The Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST) announced that Dr. Kyung-Joong Yoon and Researcher Ji-Su Shin from the Center for Energy Materials Research, together with Professor Yun -Jung Lee from Hanyang University (Hanyang University, President Woo-Seung Kim), have developed a single-atom Pt catalyst that can be used for SOFCs.... Read more →


Evonik and Siemens Energy commissioned a pilot plant—sponsored by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF)—that uses carbon dioxide and water to produce chemicals. The necessary energy is supplied by electricity from renewable sources. The pilot plant is located in Marl, in the northern Ruhr area. It is... Read more →


US Xpress releases trucking industry forecast; driver turnover, truckload capacity and load volumes significantly impact market

US Xpress, Inc., one of the US’ largest asset-based truckload carriers by revenue, released its September industry forecast spotlighting key economic trends and updates specific to the trucking industry. Three key insights include: Rising Driver Turnover. As the economy slowly recovers, freight volumes will rise and drivers will become an... Read more →