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The Yaris Hybrid-R features three 45 kW electric motors, one on each rear wheel and a third between the engine and transmission that operates as a generator. This third motor can act as an advanced traction control system. Click to enlarge. At the Frankfurt Motor Show, Toyota will showcase the... Read more →


IHI and Hyundai WIA form turbocharger JV in South Korea

IHI Corporation and Hyundai WIA Corporation, a major automobile parts manufacturer and a major subsidiary of Hyundai-Kia Motor Group, have entered a joint venture agreement for turbochargers. The Vehicular Turbocharger business unit of IHI Group has seven plants world-wide and is targeting 7 million units per year production in FY2015.... Read more →


Comparison between estimated EIBC and measured EIBC derived FOA3 (black open box), the FOA3 approach with the updated SN-CI correlation (blue triangle), and estimates obtained from the new FOX method (red circle) that are not dependent on SN. Credit: ACS, Stettler et al. Click to enlarge. Using an alternative approach... Read more →


Log−log relationship between NO2 mixing ratios and the total population of urban areas for the four regions. The approximate linear relationship for each region is notable, suggesting that the dependence of urban NO2 pollution upon population follows a power law scaling with population. Credit: ACS, Lamsal et al. Click to... Read more →


DOE and BSEE to collaborate on offshore oil and gas research and production

The Department of Energy’s (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy and The Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (BSEE) signed a Memorandum of Collaboration last week that will coordinate the ongoing efforts of the two agencies on offshore research and technological improvement projects to support the safe, sustainable offshore production of... Read more →


NSF to award up to $300K for manufacturing machines and equipment; focus on energy and additive manufacturing

The National Science Foundation’s (NSF’s) MME (Manufacturing Machines and Equipment) has issued a funding opportunity announcement (PD-13-1468) to award up to $300,000 for fundamental research leading to improved manufacturing machines and equipment, and their application in manufacturing processes. Key goals of the program are to advance the transition of manufacturing... Read more →


New 250,000 barrel per day distillation unit online at Whiting Refinery; expanding BP’s heavy crude capacity

BP recently commissioned a new 250,000 barrel-per-day crude distillation unit at its Whiting Refinery, marking a major milestone in the multi-billion dollar Whiting Refinery Modernization Project (WRMP). (Earlier post.) The unit will help the refinery significantly increase its heavy, sour crude processing capability to around 80% of its overall crude... Read more →


Dual-fuel company Clean Air Power raises £5 million; Abramovich with 1.5% stake

UK-based dual-fuel system company Clean Air Power (CAP) has raised £5 million (US$7.8 million), bringing in two new strategic investors: Ervington Investments Ltd, whose ultimate beneficial owner is Roman Abramovich, and Zara Shvidler. Together, these two investors committed to subscribe, if necessary, for the entire placement, which contributed significantly to... Read more →


California Energy Commission to award $4.7M for alternative fuels and advanced vehicle technology centers

The California Energy Commission (CEC) is seeking proposals (PON-13-605) to develop new centers or expand existing centers for alternative fuels and advanced vehicle technology. With a total $4.7 million available, the CEC expects to make at least three awards of up to $1,566,667 each to be distributed among Northern California,... Read more →


Optinol estimates its biobutanol process can achieve energy cost parity with ethanol

Based on preliminary engineering studies to estimate the capital and operating costs for commercial scale production, Optinol Inc. has concluded that it is feasible to produce bio-butanol using its process at energy-cost-parity with ethanol. Optinol has taken an alternative approach to producing butanol compared to companies like Gevo, Cobalt and... Read more →


Nissan demonstrating new safety technologies and scenarios on LEAFs

Nissan Motor Co. Ltd., is demonstrating two new safety technologies, and accompanying use case scenarios, on-board Nissan LEAF EVs at the Nissan 360 event. The innovations are also steps toward achieving autonomous driving. The first innovation is in the area of advanced sensors. Laser scanners and Around View Monitor cameras... Read more →


$12+M awarded to 4 projects seeking to design crops with ability to fix their own nitrogen; no artificial fertilizers

Four teams of researchers in the United States and the United Kingdom recently were awarded more than $12 million to begin a program of novel research to revolutionize current farming methods by giving crops the ability to thrive without using costly, polluting artificial fertilizers. The four highly innovative projects encompass:... Read more →


ABI Research forecasts 30% of V2X applications will be non-safety related by 2027

The share of non-safety V2X applications will grow from less than 10% in 2018 to 30% in 2027 as the V2X application ecosystem becomes more mature, according to a new forecast by ABI Research. Standardization, the adoption of open platforms, and the creation of a thriving third party developer environment... Read more →


BMW launching i Genius in UK; AI software to assist in promoting i3 and i8

BMW has launched “BMW i Genius”—a software system employing artificial intelligence technology to interact with potential customers of the BMW i3 EV or i8 PHEV in a live question and answer format that works on a mobile platform in the UK. Users simply text in a question relating to BMW... Read more →


DOE awards $1.3M to two projects testing fuel cell technology in refrigerated trucks

The US Department of Energy (DOE) will award a total of $1.3 million to fuel cell manufacturers Nuvera and Plug Power ($650,000 apiece) a project testing the use of hydrogen fuel cell refrigeration units (transport refrigeration units, TRUs) in delivery trucks. The companies will provide matching funds and labor of... Read more →


Technip to lay the world’s deepest gas pipeline, for Shell in the Gulf of Mexico

Shell Offshore Inc. has awarded Technip an engineering, procurement and installation contract for the development of subsea infrastructure for the Stones field. This field is located in the Walker Ridge area in the US Gulf of Mexico (GOM), at a water depth of approximately 2,900 meters (9,500 feet). This development... Read more →


Tesla Motors opens assembly plant in Tilburg, Netherlands

Having begun the first European deliveries of Model S, Tesla Motors opened its Tilburg Assembly Plant. The Tilburg facility will serve as the final assembly and distribution point for Model S vehicles sold in Europe as well as Tesla’s European service and parts headquarters. Some of the very first Dutch,... Read more →


Chevy small and compact sales up 229% from 2Q 2010; growing strength with younger buyers

Chevrolet’s small and compact car sales are up 229% from the second quarter of 2010 to the same quarter this year, GM announced. Chevrolet’s share of buyers under 35 continues to increase year over year, led by vehicles such as the Cruze, Sonic, and, most recently, the Spark mini car.... Read more →


Volvo Car Group receives approval for manufacturing in China

Chinese government authorities have approved Volvo Car Group’s (Volvo Cars) establishment of manufacturing plants in Daqing and Zhangjiakou. As a result, Volvo Cars’ full Chinese industrial footprint, including Chengdu, has been approved. The assembly plant in Daqing is under construction and the first pre-series cars will be built late 2013... Read more →


IMPCO CNG fuel system available for Chevy Cruze

IMPCO Automotive, a subsidiary of Fuel Systems Solutions, Inc. announced the development and availability of its bi-fuel CNG fuel system for the 2014 Chevrolet Cruze 1.4L sedan. The systems will be available throughout Fuel System’s IMPCO Automotive nationwide certified installation network beginning September 2013. The IMPCO Automotive powered Chevrolet Cruze... Read more →


Audi's Gen 2 3.0L TDI. Click to enlarge. Audi of America introduced four new TDI clean diesel models for the US market this year—the Audi A8, A7, A6, Q5—along with an updated Q7 TDI, all equipped with a second-generation 3.0L V6 TDI diesel engine. (Earlier post.) This week in Washington,... Read more →


Technip and Sasol form a front-end engineering alliance for GTL facilities

Technip and Sasol have established an alliance for front-end engineering services for future Sasol GTL projects. Furthermore, it also allows for Technip’s participation during the execution stage of future GTL projects. GTL technology is a process for converting natural gas into petroleum products such as naphtha and diesel fuel. These... Read more →


Celanese to cooperate with PetroChina to develop synthetic fuel ethanol opportunities in China with TCX process

Celanese Far East Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of global technology and specialty materials company Celanese Corporation, has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding to advance the development of synthetic fuel ethanol with PetroChina Company Limited, the largest oil and gas producer and distributor in China. Under this arrangement, the... Read more →


Smith Electric Vehicles signs LOI for Joint Venture in Taiwan; 5,000 vehicles in first 3 years

Medium-duty electric truck manufacturer Smith Electric Vehicles has signed a letter of intent to form a joint venture with Taikang Technology Corporation in Taiwan. Taikang Technology Corporation, a leading commercial vehicle manufacturer in Taiwan, has twenty-five years of automotive experience and has expertise in upfitting specialized municipal commercial vehicles. Smith... Read more →


Navigant forecasts global carsharing services to grow to $6.2B by 2020

In a new report, Navigant Research projects that global carsharing services revenue will approach $1 billion in 2013 and grow to $6.2 billion by 2020, representing a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 30.9%. North America and Europe will maintain their leading positions as the two largest carsharing markets, according... Read more →


PowerDriver simulations predict thermoelectric exhaust waste heat recovery output of 300W, -2.5% in fuel consumption; prototyping begins

The European Union-funded PowerDriver project—a two-year, €3-million (US$4-million) research project initiated in February 2012 to turn exhaust gas waste heat into electricity using thermoelectric generator (TGEN) technology—has completed simulation work on on a potential automotive application. Results suggest TGEN output of 300W and equivalent fuel saving over the NEDC drive... Read more →


ARPA-E awarding $36M to 22 projects in RANGE program for transformative EV storage

The US Department of Energy (DOE) Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) will award approximately $36 million to 22 projects to develop transformational electric vehicle (EV) energy storage systems using innovative chemistries, architectures and designs. ARPA-E’s new program, Robust Affordable Next Generation Energy Storage Systems (RANGE) (earlier post), aims... Read more →


DOE issues RFI on renewable carbon fibers; biomass-derived acrylonitrile

The US Department of Energy (DOE) has issued a Request for Information (RFI) (DE-FOA-0000975) regarding the state of technology development and commercial readiness of emerging renewable carbon fiber (RCF) technologies. Information is also sought in identifying what barriers to commercialization exist and the appropriate role for DOE with regard to... Read more →


Sendyne module precisely measures DC current from 3 mA to 500 A over the automotive temperature range

Sendyne has introduced the SFP100EVB, a turnkey module for precision measurement of current, voltage and temperature. The module was created for applications where accurate current measurements under conditions of widely-changing temperature are essential, such as battery monitoring for industrial, automotive, grid and off-grid storage, as well as photovoltaic arrays, drive... Read more →


BMW Concept X5 eDrive PHEV. Click to enlarge. BMW will present the Concept X5 eDrive all-wheel drive plug-in hybrid at the 2013 Frankfurt International Motor Show (IAA). The Concept X5 eDrive delivers the handling of a BMW, with an all-electric maximum speed of up to 120 km/h (75 mph), maximum... Read more →


Fiat picks AeroVironment as preferred provider of home charging for Fiat 500e

Fiat selected AeroVironment, Inc. as the preferred provider of home charging stations and installations for the battery-electric Fiat 500e. Fiat is the fifth plug-in electric vehicle (EV) auto manufacturer to choose AeroVironment as its full-service home charging partner. The 2013 Fiat 500e features a 24-kWh Lithium-ion battery that will allow... Read more →


Concept of the IntLiIon project. Click to enlarge. Bosch and partners Pro Design Electronic GmbH, University of Applied Sciences and Arts Hannover and Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) have launched a new €4.3-million (US$5.8-million) project to improve battery performance in hybrid and electric vehicles with smart battery management. The technical... Read more →


Hybrid Range Rover. Click to enlarge. Land Rover is launching its first hybrid models—Range Rover Hybrid and Range Rover Sport Hybrid. The two all-aluminum diesel-electric hybrids are based on Land Rover’s Premium Lightweight Architecture and share an identical powertrain. First deliveries will be in early 2014. The new Range Rover... Read more →


Images of Li-air cathode produced by neutron-computed tomography. Source: ORNL. Click to enlarge. This begins an occasional series on “big science” tools hosted at US national laboratories that are being applied to support the development of technology innovations for clean transportation. First up is a quick look at the two... Read more →


Nissan to offer new Cummins V8 turbo diesel in next-gen Titan pickup

Nissan will offer a newly-developed Cummins V8 turbo diesel in its next-generation full-size Titan pickup. The engine will have a torque rating in the mid-500s lb-ft and deliver more than 300 hp (224 kW). Now in the latter stages of development and testing, the available Cummins 5.0L V8 Turbo Diesel... Read more →


Formulation of the overall vehicle rating according to US-NCAP based on weighted Relative Risk Scores (RRS). Source: NHTSA. Click to enlarge. Tesla Motors announced that in recent US-NCAP (New Car Assessment Program) testing, the Model S earned an overall 5-star safety rating from NHTSA as well as 5 stars in... Read more →


Israeli PM Office co-hosting Fuel Choices Summit; $1M annual prize

Israel has set a goal of reducing its use of oil for transportation by 60% in less than 20 years. The Israeli Prime Minister’s Office, in partnership with Bloomberg, is hosting a Fuel Choices Summit, 12-13 November in Tel Aviv, to explore the challenges, opportunities, and implications of this effort.... Read more →


Ford is introducing a Ford Police Interceptor utility vehicle with the 365-horsepower (272 kW) 3.5-liter EcoBoost V6 engine. The engine, which delivers 350 lb-ft (475 N·m) of torque, has been available in a variety of Ford vehicles, including the Police Interceptor sedan, and is the choice for more than 40%... Read more →


Schematic diagram of the successful “shoebox” reformer design and a picture of the core, after insertion of the catalyst. Credit: ACS, Sall et al. Click to enlarge. A team at Monsanto and colleagues at AVL Powertrain have successfully designed and demonstrated an onboard low-temperature ethanol reformer that can be driven... Read more →


UK’s Network Rail developing a prototype battery-powered train; trying Li-ion and sodium-nickel batteries

The UK’s Network Rail, the company that runs, maintains and develops Britain’s rail tracks, signaling, bridges, tunnels, level crossings, viaducts and 17 key stations, is part of an industry study into the feasibility of using battery electric trains on parts of the railway which have not been electrified. Other partners... Read more →


New synthetic fungal-bacterial consortia for direct production of isobutanol from biomass

A team from the University of Michigan, Michigan State, and UCLA has designed synthetic fungal-bacterial consortia for the direct production of isobutanol from biomass. The required biological functions are divided between two specialists: the fungus Trichoderma reesei, which secretes cellulase enzymes to hydrolyze lignocellulosic biomass into soluble saccharides, and the... Read more →


44 mpg highway Mitsubishi 2014 Mirage starting at $12,995

Mitsubishi Motors North America’s (MMNA’s) 2014 Mitsubishi Mirage 5-door sub-compact—which offers highway fuel economy of up to 44 mpgUS (5.3 l/100 km) on CVT-equipped models—will have a starting MSRP of $12,995. The CVT-equipped models also carry an EPA rating of 37 mpg city, 40 mpg combined (6.4 and 5.9 l/100... Read more →


Autonomous Vehicle Sales by Region, World Markets: 2015-2035. Source: Navigant Research. Click to enlarge. In a new report, Navigant Research forecasts that vehicles with autonomous driving modes will gradually gain traction in the market over the coming two decades, from about 4% of the global light-duty vehicle market in 2025,... Read more →


Report: Mitsubishi Motors resuming production of Outlander PHEV after battery problems; 18,000 vehicle backlog

The Nikkei reported that Mitsubishi Motors Corp. (MMC) is restarting production of the Outlander plug-in hybrid after about a five-month suspension due to battery problems. (Earlier post.) In separate incidents earlier this year, MMC reported a fire in a i-MiEV battery pack at the Mizushima battery pack assembly plant; and... Read more →


The study found that the highest-emitting 10% of gasoline vehicles are now responsible for the overwhelming majority of running CO, NMHC, and NOx. Credit: ACS, McDonald et al. Click to enlarge. A study of motor vehicle emissions by researchers at UC Berkeley found that running CO and evaporative and tailpipe... Read more →


Researchers discover that adding arsenic to magnesium imparts corrosion resistance; “stainless magnesium”

Researchers in Australia and Wales have discovered that alloying additions of arsenic to magnesium can impart significant corrosion resistance. Their discovery, reported in the journal Electrochemistry Communications, could have implications for light-weighting in the aerospace, automotive and electronics industries. Weighing in at two thirds less than aluminium, magnesium is the... Read more →