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UT Austin researchers successfully spoof yacht at sea with false GPS signals

A radio navigation research team from The University of Texas at Austin successfully coerced a 213-foot yacht off its course, using a GPS spoofing device. GPS spoofing creates false civil GPS signals to gain control of a vessel’s GPS receivers. The purpose of the experiment, led by assistant professor Todd... Read more →

Aviat Husky CNG. Click to enlarge. Airplane manufacturer Aviat Aircraft, Inc. and Minneapolis-based Aviation Foundation of America, Inc. unveiled the first dual-fuel, piston-powered aircraft to operate on both compressed natural gas (CNG) and aviation gasoline. The Aviat Husky CNG is on display outside the Innovations Pavilion throughout AirVenture 2013 in... Read more →

INEOS Bio begins producing cellulosic ethanol at commercial scale using gasification and fermentation

INEOS Bio started commercial-scale production at its first facility near Vero Beach, Florida, marking the first commercial-scale use of its gasification and fermentation technology for conversion of biomass waste into bioethanol and renewable power. (Earlier post.) The Indian River BioEnergy Center is producing commercial quantities of transportation fuel from vegetative... Read more →

The basic concept of GM’s variable swirl mechanism. Click to enlarge. The 2014 Chevrolet Cruze Clean Turbo Diesel’s (earlier post) 2.0L engine uses a variable-swirl intake mechanism to enhance performance while reducing emissions. The variable-swirl intake manifold design optimizes air charge mixture motion in the cylinders for a more efficient... Read more →

SAE and IEEE team up on CyberSecurity for the Transportation Industry Meeting

SAE international has paired with IEEE to develop the CyberSecurity for the Transportation Industry Meeting that will be held on 23 September at the Palais des congrés de Montréal in Montreal, Québec. This one-day technical symposium will address critical issues surrounding the security in the the networking of current and... Read more →

Keyera and Kinder Morgan to construct crude oil rail loading terminal in Edmonton

Keyera Corp., a Canadian mid-stream company, and Kinder Morgan Energy Partners formed a 50-50 joint venture to build a crude oil rail loading facility in Edmonton, Alberta, called the Alberta Crude Terminal. When complete, the Alberta Crude Terminal will be able to accept crude oil streams handled at Kinder Morgan’s... Read more →

California Air Resources Board signs MOU with Australian climate agency

California Air Resources Board Chairman Mary D. Nichols and Chair of the Australian Clean Energy Regulator, Chloe Munro, signed a Memorandum of Understanding to guide collaboration between the agencies in addressing the global issue of climate change. The agreement establishes a framework for a working relationship that will mutually benefit... Read more →

PowerGenix, the developer of high-performance, automotive Nickel-Zinc (NiZn) batteries, has entered into an innovation contract with PSA Peugeot Citroën Automobiles under which PSA will conduct a comprehensive evaluation of the use of PowerGenix’s NiZn batteries as a replacement for lead-acid in stop-start vehicles. Start-stop systems shut off engines while the... Read more →

Secretary Moniz dedicates new supercomputer at NETL to support fossil energy research

US Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz dedicated a new supercomputer at the National Energy Technology Laboratory (NETL). The high-performance computer is not only one of the top 100 supercomputers in the world, but it is also one of the most energy efficient for its size. The supercomputer is a 503 TFlops... Read more →

ITM Power to operate wind-to-hydrogen mini grid system in UK

ITM Power has been selected by the Homes and Communities Agency (HCA) as the preferred bidder in a recent competitive tender process to become the operator of a Hydrogen Mini Grid System (HMGS) in Rotherham, UK. The HMGS consisting of a 225 kW wind turbine coupled directly to an electrolyzer,... Read more →

Algae-to-crude company Sapphire Energy pays off government loan guarantee

Green crude company Sapphire Energy, Inc. has paid off the entire loan guarantee awarded to the company by the USDepartment of Agriculture. In Dec. 2009, the company was awarded a $54.5-million loan guarantee through the Biorefinery Assistance Program, administered by the USDA Rural Development-Cooperative Service, to build a fully integrated,... Read more →

New method for knock control could improve fuel efficiency, emissions and torque

Researchers at Villanova University are developing a new method for optimizing the knock control threshold that significantly improves the performance of a standard knock controller in a spark ignition gasoline engine. Using the method with no modifications other than optimizing the parameters of a standard controller, they have shown that... Read more →

The production version of the i3. Click to enlarge. In a simultaneous—and video linked—unveil in New York, London and Beijing, BMW introduced the production version of its i3 battery-electric vehicle on Monday. (Earlier post.) The i3 is the first series-production vehicle out of BMW’s i brand, and is purpose-built around... Read more →

Ford aggregate driver data show its PHEV owners operate in electric mode nearly 60% of the time

Ford plug-in hybrid owners are operating in electric mode nearly 60% of the time, according to new aggregate data collected from Ford’s MyFord Mobile app. MyFord Mobile is available on Ford’s plug-in (PHEV) and battery-electric (BEV) vehicles, Fusion Energi, C-MAX Energi and Focus Electric, and is available for download both... Read more →

New eco-friendly catalysts for efficient hydrogenation of furfural and levulinic acid to biofuels

Researchers at Lakehead University in Canada have synthesized a series of chromium-free and noble-metal-free Cu–Fe catalysts utilizing inexpensive metal nitrates. The Cu–Fe catalysts exhibited highly efficient performance in the hydrogenation of biomass-derived furfural and levulinic acid, where biofuels—2-methylfuran and γ-valerolactone (GVL) were obtained at 51% and 90% yield under mild... Read more →

The EPoSil concept uses dielectric elastomer transducers to generate electrical energy from wave motion. Source: Bosch. Click to enlarge. A German consortium involving four companies and and two universities is developing dielectric elastomers (electroactive polymers) for the conversion of mechanical energy—in this case wave power—into electrical power. The German Federal... Read more →

Toyota: we sell 6 out of 10 hybrids in California

As Ford has rapidly gained hybrid marketshare in the US—and become even more aggressive about pointing that out especially vis-à-vis Toyota (earlier post)—Toyota has swung back with an analysis pointing to its sales strength in California—the leading hybrid market in the US—as well as its leading position with the technology.... Read more →

Evatran completes 1500+ hours of wireless charging trials with fleets

Evatran has logged more than 1,500 hours of charging time on its Plugless L2 wireless charging systems installed across the country through its Apollo Trial Program. More than 15 installations are now complete, with the final installations slated for mid-August. (Earlier post.) The program follows EV drivers as they use... Read more →

Studies indicate US population has fewer light duty vehicles and drives them less

The findings from two recent studies by Dr. Michael Sivak at the University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute together suggest that the US now has—per person, per driver, and per household—fewer light-duty vehicles and that they are driven less than a decade ago. In a study published in June (earlier... Read more →

Higher incidence of non-Hodgkin lymphoma found in regions near refineries and plants that release benzene

The incidence of non-Hodgkin lymphoma (NHL)—any of a large group of cancers of lymphocytes (white blood cells)—is significantly higher in regions near facilities that release the chemical benzene into the environment, according to a new study published in CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society. According to the... Read more →

Comparison of greenhouse gas emissions from new vehicles in 2020, EVs by state power mix. Percentages are relative to gasoline baseline. Click to enlarge. A report for policymakers issued by the Southwest Energy Efficiency Project (SWEEP) has found that in Arizona, Colorado and Nevada, electric vehicles offer the cleanest ride,... Read more →

Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Mitsubishi agree to joint development of charging infrastructure for plug-in vehicles in Japan

Toyota Motor Corporation, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd., Honda Motor Co., Ltd., and Mitsubishi Motors Corporation jointly announced their agreement to work together to promote the installation of chargers for plug-in electric vehicles (PEVs)—(plug-in hybrids (PHEVs) and battery-electric vehicles (EVs)—and to build a charging network service that offers more convenience to... Read more →

Stanford team advances with lithium sulfide batteries; high capacity and stable cycling with PVP binder

A team from Stanford University and Beihang University has demonstrated stable and high-performance Li2S (lithium sulfide) cathodes by using a poly(vinylpyrrolidone) (PVP) binder which exhibits strong affinity with both Li2S and lithium polysulfides. In an open-access paper published in the RSC journal Chemical Science, the researchers reported that a high... Read more →

Japanese carmakers partner to help double availability of public EV fast chargers

The Nikkei reports that Toyota, Nissan, Honda and Mitsubishi Motors will work together to promote the spread of rapid chargers for electric vehicles, covering a portion of the cost of installation at public facilities. The goal, according to the report, is to quickly bring the number of fast chargers in... Read more →

Each contig (overlapping segment of DNA derived from shotgun sequencing) was plotted against its average read coverage per base (X axis), and its GC% (guanine-cytosine) content (Y axis). The surface area of each circle is proportional to the length of the contigs in bp, giving an intuitive visualization of how... Read more →

Alabama and Mississippi are forming a partnership to further study the oil sands resources in the two states, Alabama Governor Robert Bentley and Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant announced on Saturday while speaking to the Southern States Energy Board. The State of Alabama has the third largest oil sands resource in... Read more →

Ford recalling some MY 2013 C-MAX Hybrids due to structural safety issue

Ford Motor Company is recalling model year 2013 C-Max hybrid vehicles, without panoramic roofs, that were manufactured 19 January 2012 through 25 June 2013. The affected vehicles were built with insufficient interior head impact protection at the roof/B-Pillar area; during vehicle testing, the vehicle exceeded a head injury criteria requirement... Read more →

UPS sets 2017 goal of 1 billion alternative fuel miles

UPS released its annual Sustainability Report announcing that while the total number of packages shipped in 2012 increased, the company reduced its total Greenhouse Gas (GHG) emissions. Environmental achievements included ground and air fuel savings, increased investments in alternative fuel vehicles, and retooled routes that shaved 12.1 million miles from... Read more →

Maryland governor releases final Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act Plan

Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley released the state’s Greenhouse Gas Reduction Act Plan with the goal of reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions 25% by 2020 from a 2006 baseline. The plan is a comprehensive, long-term framework. The majority of its programs are already in place and will be strengthened with new... Read more →

Study investigates impact of operating conditions and load on soot particle number distribution for diesel and biodiesel

A team led by researchers from Brunel University (UK) has investigated the exhaust soot particle number size distributions obtained from the combustion of diesel and biodiesel (rapeseed methyl ester, RME) in a high speed direct injection (HSDI) diesel engine under different engine operating conditions: fuel injection pressure, injection timing, exhaust... Read more →

Manufacturing 8-speed automatics at Gray Court. Click to enlarge. ZF Friedrichshafen AG has officially opened its new plant for automatic passenger car transmissions in the US. Located in South Carolina, ZF Transmissions Gray Court, LLC will produce about 1.2 million transmissions at this plant annually; this includes 400,000 8-speed and... Read more →

Royal Academy of Engineering study examines future lower-carbon ship powering options

International shipping contributes an estimated 3% of global emissions of CO2. Although the industry has reduced its consumption of fossil fuels by a number of measures such as using increasingly thermally efficient diesel engines in recent decades, the current total fuel oil consumption is in excess of 350 million tonnes... Read more →

Saft begins volume production of Li-Ion batteries for Bosch residential energy management and storage system

Saft has entered high volume series production of lithium-ion batteries for Bosch’s BPT-S 5 hybrid intelligent energy management and storage solution. The Bosch BPT-S 5 Hybrid integrates a solar inverter, an energy management system and Li-ion batteries in a single unit certified and safety tested for domestic installations in Germany.... Read more →

Nissan introduces new CNG-powered Navara in Thailand

Nissan introduced the new Nissan Navara CNG, a pick-up truck powered by Nissan’s first bi-fuel compressed natural gas (CNG) engine. Locally installed under Nissan manufacturing standard, the new Navara CNG offers high performance and improved fuel efficiency while being fully supported by Nissan’s standard warranty. The new Navara CNG is... Read more →

Lux Research projects methanol-to-gasoline most competitive route for liquid fuels from natural gas or waste

The price disparity between crude oil and other resources, coupled with the emergence of cheap and abundant shale gas, especially in the United States, is opening up opportunities to produce cheaper gasoline, according to a new report from Lux Research. With crude oil price projected to top $140 per barrel... Read more →

Univ. of Nottingham technology enables crops to take nitrogen from the air rather than from fertilizers

Researchers at the University of Nottingham (UK) say they have developed a new technology—which entails putting nitrogen-fixing bacteria into the cells of plant roots— that would enable crops to take nitrogen from the air rather than from expensive and environmentally damaging fertilizers. Nitrogen fixation, the process by which nitrogen is... Read more →

Mercedes-AMG and Aston Martin Lagonda to enter technical partnership; Daimler to receive up to 5% stake in Aston Martin

Mercedes-AMG GmbH, a 100% subsidiary and the high performance brand of Daimler AG, and Aston Martin Lagonda Ltd. intend to enter a technical partnership. Essential elements of the planned partnership are supply agreements between Mercedes-AMG, Mercedes-Benz Cars and Aston Martin. Mercedes-AMG will supply Aston Martin with engines, while Mercedes-Benz Cars... Read more →

Fraunhofer establishes Center for Energy Innovation (CEI) at UConn; energy storage and fuel cells among targeted technologies

Fraunhofer and the University of Connecticut (UConn) have established the Fraunhofer Center for Energy Innovation (CEI), the mission of which is to develop advanced technologies related to energy storage, fuel cells, in-stream hydro, power management and distribution through contract research. Fraunhofer and UConn will cooperate in several areas. In order... Read more →

JBEI researchers engineer bacterium to produce diesel-range biofuel using CO2 as sole carbon source

A team of researchers with the US Department of Energy (DOE)’s Joint BioEnergy Institute (JBEI) has engineered the bacterium Ralstonia eutropha—a microbe now used to produce biodegradable plastic—for the production of fatty acid-derived, diesel-range methyl ketones. A paper on their work is published in the journal Applied and Environmental Microbiology.... Read more →

Enbridge to build $1.3B Woodland Pipeline Extension to support Kearl oil sands project; 400kbpd initially

Enbridge Inc. is proceeding with the construction of the Woodland Pipeline Extension Project. The project will extend the Woodland Pipeline south from Enbridge’s Cheecham Terminal to its Edmonton Terminal to connect up with refineries and export pipelines in the Edmonton area. The project has an estimated cost of $1.3 billion,... Read more →

MIT team testing new SiC nuclear fuel-rod cladding that could lead to safer power plants

A team of researchers at MIT is developing and testing a new silicon carbide (SiC) cladding material for nuclear fuel rods that could reduce the risk of hydrogen production by roughly a thousandfold compared to the common zircaloy cladding. Tests of the new cladding material are described in a series... Read more →

World energy consumption by fuel type, 2010-2040. Source: IEO2013. Click to enlarge. The US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA’s) International Energy Outlook 2013 (IEO2013) projects that world energy consumption will grow by 56% between 2010 and 2040, from 524 quadrillion British thermal units (Btu) to 820 quadrillion Btu. Most of this... Read more →

SAE International CRP1234-4 publishes final report on R-1234yf

SAE International’s Cooperative Research Project (CRP1234-4) has published a final report on R-1234yf, confirming that the low global warming potential (GWP) R-1234yf is safe to use in automotive direct expansion air conditioning systems. As previously reported the estimated overall risk of vehicle fire exposure attributed to use of R-1234yf is... Read more →

DSM Stanyl ForTii used in exhaust gas recirculation temperature sensors

Royal DSM says a new generation of automotive exhaust gas recirculation temperature (EGRT) sensors is now being made in its Stanyl ForTii high-temperature performance polyamide 4T. With its very high temperature stability, Stanyl ForTii enables cost reduction in the production of the sensors without compromising on quality. EGRT sensors are... Read more →

BMW i Ventures invests in UK's leading provider of EV charging infrastructure

BMW i Ventures has made a strategic investment into Chargemaster Plc, the UK’s leading provider of electric vehicle charging infrastructure. In addition to this investment, Chargemaster and BMW i have entered into a wide ranging cooperation agreement whereby Chargemaster will provide a range of E-mobility services. Both parties will carry... Read more →

Oerlikon Graziano launches 4-speed electric drive; up to 15% efficiency increase

Transmission specialist Oerlikon Graziano, part of Oerlikon’s Drive Systems Segment, is presenting its 4SED (4 Speed Electric Drive) (earlier post) to customers around Europe. This new compact, lightweight transmission offers increased efficiency, smooth shifting and a scalable design making it suitable for a wide range of vehicle types. The 4SED,... Read more →

California Energy Commission holding two hydrogen workshops on infrastructure and fueling

In August, the California Energy Commission (CEC) will hold two public workshops related to the use of hydrogen as a transportation fuel: one on infrastructure, the other on measurement and dispensing. On 12 August, CEC staff will host a public workshop on California’s hydrogen fuel infrastructure. This workshop has two... Read more →