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Pike Research forecasts accelerating hybrid locomotive sales from 2015-2020

Hybrid electric locomotive sales will have an increasing presence in global rail markets between 2015 and 2020, according to a new report from Pike Research. During that period, hybrid locomotive sales will increase at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 19.4% under a baseline forecast scenario, with annual unit... Read more →

Estimated annual greenhouse gas emissions over the lifetime of the QCLNG project. More than half the emissions come from the LNG facility. Source: QCLNG EIS. Click to enlarge. BG Group has approved implementation of the first phase of a US$15-billion project to convert coal seam gas (CSG) to LNG—the first... Read more →

MES receives orders for 4 hybrid container cranes

Nikkei. Mitsui Engineering & Shipbuilding Co. (MES) has received an order for four of its new hybrid container cranes from two harbor-operation companies affiliated with Mitsui O.S.K. Lines Ltd. This marks MES’s first order for the systems. The cranes are for moving objects inside the container yard. They are designed... Read more →

Engine testing shows biofuel DMF produces competitive combustion and emissions qualities to gasoline

Testing in a single cylinder direct-injection spark-ignition (DISI) test engine comparing ethanol, gasoline and 2,5-dimethylfuran (DMF), using the optimized spark timings for each fuels, found that DMF produces competitive combustion and emissions qualities to gasoline, which, in some cases surpass ethanol. (Earlier post.) Recent work has improved the high yield... Read more →

A new paper in the ACS journal Chemical Reviews examines recent work exploring the use of ionic liquids (IL) in the formation of 5-Hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) from biomass. (Earlier post.) 5-HMF is a promising chemical intermediate for fuels and chemicals. (Earlier post.) Chemistry and applications of 5-HMF and its derivatives (solid... Read more →

Audi initiates electromobility partnership with Tongji University; “Audi Tongji Joint Lab”

Audi has launched a partnership with Tongji University in Shanghai (TUS) centered on research, instruction and services dealing with electromobility. Audi has been cooperating with Tongji University Shanghai since January. Students at TUS work together with the car manufacturer on various technical projects as part of their coursework for a... Read more →

Singapore’s A*STAR funding 8 new projects for advanced automotive technology; wireless charging for EVs

Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) announced the funding of eight new projects under its Capabilities for Automotive Research (A*CAR) consortium, bringing the total value to S$17.5 million (US$13.5 million) for the consortium’s 10 research projects jointly selected with industry partners to tackle current challenges in the automotive... Read more →

Toro partners with ATK to develop fuel cell powered utility vehicles

The Toro Company was selected by ATK, an aerospace and defense company, to help design and build two fuel cell powered utility vehicles with advanced hydrogen storage technology. The project is part of a contract awarded to ATK by the Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division, which is collaborating with... Read more →

Petroleum Marketers and Renewable Fuels trade groups join to warn retailers to hold off on E15 sales except to FFVs until regulations finalized

The Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) and the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) have issued a joint memorandum urging their members to limit E-15 sales to Flex Fuel Vehicles (FFVs) until regulations governing the fuel are finalized and implemented. Earlier in October, the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) granted a... Read more →

High-capacity vanadium oxide material for Li-ion cathodes with good cycling stability

Researchers from the Beijing University of Chemical Technology and Japan’s National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) have synthesized a high-capacity vanadium oxide cathode material for rechargeable Li-ion batteries via a combined freeze-drying method and appropriately post-treated in argon atmosphere. Electrochemical tests performed on this material demonstrated its... Read more →

Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers comments on proposed MY2017-2025 LDV CAFE/GHG regulations

The Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers has filed comments in response to the Notice of Intent (NOI) and Technical Assessment Report (TAR) for MY2017-2025 light-duty vehicle fuel economy/greenhouse gas regulations released last month by Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) (earlier post). In the comments,... Read more →

ARB releases proposed cap-and-trade regulation for comment; transportation fuels impacted in 2015

The California Air Resources Board released its proposed greenhouse gas cap-and-trade regulation. The release begins a public comment period culminating in a 16 December public hearing in Sacramento, California, at which the Board will consider adopting the proposed program. During the public comment period, ARB staff will continue to meet... Read more →

California gasoline consumption down 0.8% in July 2010

California gasoline demand fell by 0.8% in July compared to last year, according to figures released by the state’s Board of Equalization (BOE). In July 2010, Californians used 1.27 billion gallons of gasoline compared to 1.28 billion gallons the same month last year. The average California gasoline price at the... Read more →

Toyota and CATARC to Start Plug-in Hybrid Tests in China

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC) and the Chinese government-affiliated China Automotive Technology and Research Center (CATARC) have agreed agreement to conduct joint verification tests of the Prius Plug-in Hybrid"in Tianjin. The goal of the verification tests, which are to start within this year, is to determine the adaptability and usefulness of... Read more →

The flywheel-hybrid system bolts directly onto the automatic transmission. Click to enlarge. Construction has begun on the first “Flybus” prototype vehicle, designed to demonstrate the viability of a cost-effective alternative to battery-hybrid buses by using flywheel energy storage. (Earlier post.) The Flybus system could deliver up to 20% savings in... Read more →

12th Five-Year Plan for China’s auto industry to make new-energy vehicles priority

People’s Daily. The 12th Five-year Plan for China’s auto industry reportedly will make developing new-energy vehicles the top priority. China is targeting annual new-energy automobile sales of 1 million units by 2015, according to the China Association for Automobile Manufacturers. Under the plan, China will update the new-energy vehicle sector... Read more →

US Fuel Cell Council, National Hydrogen Association merge

The US Fuel Cell Council (USFCC) and the National Hydrogen Association (NHA) are merging to form the Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy Association (FCHEA) to accelerate the commercialization of fuel cell and hydrogen energy technologies. An intended goal of the merger of two of the hydrogen and fuel cell industry’s... Read more →

TransGas and SK E&C team on West Virginia coal-to-gasoline project

TransGas Development Systems, LLC announced an agreement with SK Engineering & Construction Co., Ltd (SKE&C) leading to engineering, procurement and construction of its first US coal-to-gasoline plant—Adams Fork Energy—to be located in Mingo County, West Virginia. (Earlier post.) SKE&C is the Engineering & Construction arm of South Korea-based SK Group.... Read more →

GM investing $190M at Lansing Grand River for new small Cadillac model

General Motors will invest $190 million in its Lansing Grand River assembly plant for the production of a new Cadillac model. The announcement brings the total of new US investment to more than $3.1 billion and more than 7,900 jobs that GM has created or retained in 21 US plants... Read more →

Energy diagram for the combination of nitrogen dioxide and the hydroxyl radical. The two combine in the atmosphere to make either nitric acid or peroxynitrous acid; the so-called branching ratio of these two chemicals is important in models of ozone production. Credit: Caltech/Mitchio Okumura. Click to enlarge. A research team... Read more →

First cargo ship in Pacific Northwest plugs into shore power at Port of Tacoma

Supported by an EPA grant worth nearly $1.5 million, two Totem Ocean Trailer Express, Inc. (TOTE) cargo ships will now plug into electrical power and shut down diesel engines while docked during weekly calls at their Tacoma terminal. The $2.7 million shore power project will reduce diesel and greenhouse gas... Read more →

Robert Transport orders 180 Peterbilt LNG trucks powered by Westport HD

Robert Transport of Boucherville, Quebec has issued a purchase order for 180 Peterbilt liquefied natural gas (LNG) trucks featuring Westport HD Systems. This represents the largest single order yet for LNG trucks powered by Westport HD, said David Demers, CEO of Westport Innovations. The Westport HD System consists of the... Read more →

A team from Japan’s AIST and Ishihara Sangyo Kaisha, Ltd. has developed a new titanium oxide material—H2Ti12O25—that exhibits 28.5% higher energy capacity than lithium titanate (Li4Ti5O12, LTO). Additionally, the team developed a synthesis method that can be used at a relatively low temperature of 200-300 °C. Charge-discharge curve of the... Read more →

Normalized fuel consumption reduction from TSCi over the mini-map operating points compared to production PFI SI engine. Click to enlarge. Engine testing of the Transonic Combustion injection-ignition system (TSCi, earlier post) applied to a gasoline-fueled production passenger car engine (with a diesel engine architecture) has shown fuel consumption reduction in... Read more →

Cellulosic ethanol blend available at filling stations in Denmark

An E5 blend of 95% gasoline and 5% cellulosic ethanol is premiering at 100 filling stations across Denmark. Made available by Statoil, the Bio95 2G mixture uses ethanol derived from wheat straw collected on Danish fields after harvest and produced by DONG Inbicon, using enzyme technology from Novozymes. Long a... Read more →

GE Hitachi Nuclear Energy (GEH) and Savannah River Nuclear Solutions, LLC, (SRNS) signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to explore the potential of deploying a prototype of GEH’s Generation IV PRISM reactor as part of a proposed demonstration of small modular reactor (SMR) technologies at the US Department of Energy’s... Read more →

J.D. Power forecast of hybrid-, plug-in hybrid- and battery-electric vehicle global sales through 2020. Click to enlarge. A new report from J.D. Power and Associates estimates combined global sales of hybrid-electric vehicles (HEVs), plug-in hybrid-electric vehicles (PHEVs) and battery-electric vehicles (BEVs) will total 5.2 million units in 2020, or some... Read more →

Porsche delivering double-digit improvements in fuel economy across entire current model series

Porsche is consistently targeting improving fuel economy with each model change. Depending on the model, the savings achieved by all currently available model series in comparison with the corresponding predecessors lie in the double-digit percentage range while simultaneously offering significantly increased performance. With consumption reductions of 20 to 23% in... Read more →

Better Place bringing switchable battery electric taxi program to the San Francisco Bay Area

Better Place, with support from the US Department of Transportation via the Metropolitan Transportation Commission, has committed to bring a switchable battery, electric taxi program to the Bay Area in partnership with the cities of San Francisco and San Jose. Over the next three years, the program will deploy and... Read more →

Mack Trucks, Inc. introduced a natural gas-powered version of its TerraPro Cabover model for the refuse and construction applications. Mack officials made the announcement and displayed the truck at the company’s World Sales Conference, being held at the new Mack Customer Center in Allentown, PA. Natural gas-powered Mack TerraPro certified... Read more →

Computer-generated image of the Turbulent Jet Igniter, designed to replace the spark plug in a modern spark ignition combustion system. Click to enlarge. MAHLE Powertrain is developing an advanced spark-initiated pre-chamber combustion system—Turbulent Jet Ignition (TJI)—for otherwise standard spark-ignition (SI) engines found in current on-road vehicles. The TJI system, which... Read more →

BASF breaks ground on North American Li-ion cathode plant

BASF broke ground on a $50+ million facility in Elyria, Ohio to produce advanced cathode materials for automotive lithium-ion batteries. (Earlier post.) The new production facility in Elyria is being built with the help of a $24.6-million grant from the DOE under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. BASF is... Read more →

Toyota Motor Corporation (TMC), Toyota Chemical Engineering Co., Ltd. (Toyota Chemical Engineering), Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., Ltd. (Sumitomo Metal Mining) and Primearth EV Energy Co., Ltd. (PEVE, formerly Panasonic EV Energy) have launched what they say is the first business to recycle nickel in used hybrid-vehicle nickel-metal-hydride batteries for use... Read more →

Honda to debut EV concept, plug-in hybrid platform at LA Auto Show

Honda will unveil a new electric vehicle concept on 17 November at the 2010 Los Angeles Auto Show. Additionally, Honda will reveal a plug-in hybrid platform showcasing the next-generation of Honda hybrid technology. Honda Motor Co., Ltd. President and CEO Takanobu Ito will attend the press conference, marking the first... Read more →

Forecast: Algae-Based Biofuels Production to Reach 61M Gallons per Year by 2020

According to a new report from Pike Research, algae biofuels production will grow rapidly over the next decade, reaching 61 million gallons per year and a market value of $1.3 billion by 2020. While barely a drop in the bucket for biofuels, Pike says, this represents a compound annual growth... Read more →

DOE to award remaining $19.7M to Rentech and ClearFuels integrated bio-refinery project

Rentech, Inc. and ClearFuels Technology Inc. have signed a cooperative agreement has been signed with the US Department of Energy (DOE) to receive the remaining $19.7 million of a $23-million grant to complete construction of a demonstration scale biomass gasifier at Rentech’s Energy Technology Center (RETC) in Colorado, and to... Read more →

Canada Post Buying 10 Ford Transit Connect Electric Vans

Azure Dynamics Corporation and Ford Motor Company of Canada, Limited, will deliver one of the first Transit Connect Electric commercial vans to Canada Post under the LEAD customer program. Canada Post will receive one of the Ford Transit Connect Electric delivery vehicles by the end of this year and has... Read more →

Delphi Automotive joins US EPA SmartWay Transport Partnership

Delphi Automotive has joined the SmartWay Transport Partnership, a collaboration between the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and transport industry designed to reduce greenhouse gases and air pollution. Launched in February 2004, the SmartWay Transport Partnership brings together major freight shippers, trucking companies, railroads, logistics companies and trade/professional associations to... Read more →

Kia introduces new Flex-Fuel Soul Flex at Brazilian Motor Show; boosts output and lowers fuel consumption

Kia Motors has introduced its new fuel-efficient, ethanol-gasoline powered Soul Flex at the 26th Salao Internacional do Automovel, in São Paulo, Brazil. Kia’s Soul Flex is the first Korean FFV (Flexible Fuel Vehicle) which can run on an ethanol-gasoline mixture, 100% ethanol or 100% gasoline. It is especially designed for... Read more →

DOI approves 1GW solar power project; largest yet on US public lands

The US Department of the Interior has approved the 1,000 MW Blythe Solar Power Project, the largest solar energy project yet to be built on US public lands. The project, proposed by Palo Verde Solar I, a subsidiary of Solar Millennium, LLC, will cover 7,025 acres of public lands eight... Read more →

Volvo C30 DRIVe Electric. Click to enlarge. Backed by research support from the Swedish Energy Agency, Volvo Cars is initiating development of a fuel cell system that can extend an electric car’s operating range . The aim is to have two prototype chassis based on the Volvo C30 DRIVe Electric... Read more →

DOE, BOEMRE and NOAA awarding nearly $5M for projects to advance ocean renewable energy

The Department of Energy (DOE), Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, Regulation and Enforcement (BOEMRE), and the Department of Commerce’s National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced eight joint research awards totaling nearly $5 million to support the responsible siting and permitting of offshore wind energy facilities and ocean energy generated... Read more →

Sandia study finds the alcohol isopentanol appears to have a good potential as a HCCI fuel, either neat or in a blend with gasoline

A study of isopentanol—a five-carbon, long-chain alcohol (C5H12O)—by researchers at Sandia National Laboratories as a fuel for homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI) engines found that isopentanol has superior physiochemical properties compared to ethanol and very similar HCCI combustion properties to gasoline. Results from the study suggest that isopentanol has a... Read more →

iDiverse develops stress-resistant yeast for producing fuel ethanol

Biotechnology company iDiverse has modified yeast to be highly resistant to a number of lethal stresses normally encountered in the bioproduction of fuel ethanol. In doing so, iDiverse has enabled the yeast to generate more ethanol. We are very pleased with our first generation, proof-of-concept technology and are rapidly developing... Read more →

Volvo posts first order for methane/diesel buses

Volvo has received its first order for buses that operate on both biogas (biomethane) and diesel, for 11 buses from Vårgårdabuss in Sweden, for putting in service in July 2011. It involves the Volvo 8500 intercity bus model. Using diesel technology increases environmental efficiency compared with current gas-operated buses, Volvo... Read more →

Nissan releasing new Fuga Hybrid in Japan

Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. is launching the new Nissan Fuga Hybrid luxury sedan in Japan; the vehicle goes on sale 2 November at Nissan dealers nationwide in Japan. The new Fuga Hybrid adopts Nissan’s original Intelligent Dual Clutch Control one-motor two-clutch parallel hybrid system (earlier post). The new Nissan Fuga... Read more →

Hybrid electric Cascadia. Click to enlarge. Daimler Trucks North America LLC (DTNA) and Walmart have collaborated to build the first hybrid electric Freightliner Cascadia. This truck also marks the beginning of a long-term strategic partnership between DTNA and Walmart to develop innovative, green technologies. Developed based on a Walmart spec’d... Read more →

Ford planning incremental $850M in Michigan between 2011 and 2013

Ford Motor Company plans to invest an additional $850 million in Michigan between 2011 and 2013 as part of the company’s commitment to competitively grow its engineering and manufacturing employee base, upgrade its facilities in the state and further improve its vehicle fuel economy. Ford’s investment will generate up to... Read more →

Clean Diesel Technologies awarded $1.3M for ferry emission reduction program

Clean Diesel Technologies, Inc. has been awarded $1.3 million in funding by the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority (NYSERDA) to supply diesel emission control technology as part of a New York City ferry emission reduction program. The agreement follows a successful demonstration phase in which test vessels... Read more →