« May 2017 | Main | July 2017 »

GLBRC research review concludes cellulosic biofuels can benefit the environment if managed correctly

Cellulosic biofuels could provide an environmentally sustainable way of meeting energy needs—but with a few important caveats, according to a new review of research by a team from the US Department of Energy-funded Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center (GLBRC). Their paper is published in the journal Science. Although not yet... Read more →

Global Bioenergies completes private placement of approximately €10.25M

Global Bioenergies, the developer of a process to convert renewable resources into hydrocarbons through fermentation, has completed a private placement with qualified French and international investors. The Company has placed 640,00 new shares of a nominal unit value of €0.05, at a unit price of €16.00, inclusive of the share... Read more →

Daimler introducing first active emergency braking assistant for buses to feature pedestrian recognition

Daimler Buses and its product brands Mercedes-Benz and Setra are introducing Active Brake Assist 4 (ABA 4) with pedestrian recognition—the first emergency braking assistance system in a bus to automatically brake for pedestrians. Active Brake Assist 3 already carries out maximum full-stop braking for vehicles ahead and for stationary obstacles.... Read more →

15 GWh Li-ion battery plant investigated for Australia

A consortium led by Boston Energy and Innovation (BEI) has signed an exclusive memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the Townsville, Australia City Council to investigate the financial viability of building a 15GWh battery manufacturing plant in Townsville. Once in full production the 15GWh manufacturing facility can produce either 250,000 car... Read more →

Applanix and University of Waterloo collaborate on advanced guidance and control technologies for autonomous vehicles

Applanix, a Trimble Company, is collaborating on advanced research for autonomous vehicle guidance and control systems with the University of Waterloo Center for Automotive Research (WatCAR). Applanix will provide WatCAR with its Positioning and Orientation System (POS) for testing autonomous guidance and control systems in real-world conditions. Applanix will also... Read more →

Scientists at Rice University and their colleagues in China have fabricated a durable catalyst for high-performance fuel cells by attaching single ruthenium atoms to nitrogen-doped graphene. Catalysts that drive the oxygen reduction reaction in fuel cells are usually made of platinum. Platinum is expensive, however, and scientists have searched for... Read more →

Tenneco introduces DRiV electronic suspension technology; improved ride performance without suspension system redesign

Tenneco Inc. has introduced its digital suspension technology DRiV. DRiV automatically adapts to road surfaces using 16 discrete damping curves and mitigates packaging constraints by placing sensors, valves and intelligence inside the damper. With a wide range of vehicle applications globally, DRiV offers ride and handling benefits targeted for the... Read more →

China study finds associations between PM2.5 constituents and blood inflammation and coagulation

In a new study, a team from China has investigated the effects of various constituents of fine particulate matter (PM2.5) on blood inflammation and coagulation. The researchers found robust associations of the constituents—organic carbon (OC), elemental carbon (EC), nitrate (NO3–), and ammonium (NH4+)—with at least 1 of 8 inflammatory markers.... Read more →

Renault Trucks leading FALCON project to cut heavy-duty tractor-trailer fuel consumption 13%

Renault Trucks, part of the Volvo Group, is leading the FALCON (Flexible & Aerodynamic Truck for Low CONsumption) consortium project to develop a complete heavy-duty tractor-trailer combination to consume 13% less fuel than a standard coupling towed by a Renault Trucks T. The project team is focusing on optimized aerodynamics... Read more →

BASF & Nornickel to cooperate on raw materials for Li-ion batteries in Europe; BASF to invest €400M in cathode materials plants

BASF and Russia-based PJSC MMC Norilsk Nickel (Nornickel) signed a Memorandum of Understanding and entered exclusive negotiations to cooperate on the supply of raw materials for future battery materials production for lithium-ion batteries in Europe. The Nornickel Group is the world’s largest producer of nickel and palladium and one of... Read more →

Efficient Drivetrains expands PowerDrive portfolio with additional all-electric drivetrains

Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. has expanded its EDI PowerDrive solution portfolio to include additional models of all-electric drivetrains and full vehicle electrification kits for commercial vehicles spanning class 4 through 8. An extension of the company’s existing EDI PowerDrive plug-in hybrid (PHEV) portfolio, the new EDI PowerDrive EV vehicle product lines... Read more →

Cypress introduces new automotive microcontrollers for secure, high-speed networking in instrument clusters and body applications

Cypress Semiconductor Corp. is sampling new devices in its Traveo automotive microcontroller (MCU) family that provides secure, high-speed networking for classic instrument cluster applications. The new MCUs support the Controller Area Network Flexible Data-rate (CAN FD) standard for high-speed, in-vehicle networking, allowing large amounts of data to be exchanged between... Read more →

Continental will exhibit hoses and lines that increase the efficiency—and thus the range delivered and durability—of the batteries in electric vehicles at the IAA 2107 show in Frankfurt am Main in September. Continental already supplies solutions for cooling systems; the lines for the battery cooling system in hybrid and electric... Read more →

Ricardo to help FMC engineer a new family of electric vehicles for global markets

Ricardo has signed a strategic cooperation agreement with China-based startup Future Mobility Corporation (FMC) to provide engineering support in the development of a family of state-of-the-art electric vehicles, aimed at offering affordable quality and performance to customers in Asia, North America and Europe. Formed in 2016, Future Mobility Corporation (FMC)... Read more →

Germany launches €60M, 3-year consortium project on high-volume production of automotive fuel cells; BMW, Daimler, Ford, VW

Germany has launched a ~€60-million, three-year consortium of leading industrial companies to investigate high-volume production of automotive fuel cell stacks. The “AutoStack-Industrie” project is funded by the Federal Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI), with €21.3 million in the first year. The “AutoStack Industry” project is a joint initiative... Read more →

Siemens invests more in ChargePoint, helps bring Series G round to $125M; bolstering Euro expansion

ChargePoint has secured an additional $43 million in funding. With participation from technology leader Siemens, this new funding will help to further accelerate the company’s commitment to e-mobility across Europe. The latest funding follows an initial $82 million investment and closes the total Series G round at $125 million, led... Read more →

MacGregor, part of Cargotec, and ESL Shipping Oy, part of Aspo Plc, have agreed to develop and test jointly an autonomous discharging feature on MacGregor bulk handling cranes. The cranes will be fitted on board ESL Shipping’s two new liquefied natural gas-powered handysize bulk carriers. Autonomous crane operation improves efficiency... Read more →

London launches $111M program to upgrade around 5000 older buses to Euro VI emissions standard

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, launched a £86.1-million (US$111 million) program to retrofit around 5,000 older buses with a new exhaust system that will upgrade the vehicles to Euro VI emissions standards. By September 2020 the entire bus fleet will be at least Euro VI standard, with the emissions... Read more →

Study of 60M US seniors strengthens link between air pollution and premature death

A new study of 60 million Americans—about 97% of people age 65 and older in the United States—finds that long-term exposure to airborne fine particulate matter (PM2.5) and ozone increases the risk of premature death, even when that exposure is at levels below the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS)... Read more →

Fuel ethanol production capacity in the United States reached 15.5 billion gallons per year, or 1.01 million barrels per day (b/d), at the beginning of 2017, according to the US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) most recent US Fuel Ethanol Plant Production Capacity report. Total capacity of operable ethanol plants increased... Read more →

A study led by researchers at Tampere University of Technology in Finland found that the use of neat Neste MY Renewable Diesel in working machines—a Wille 355B compact utility machine and Wille 855C multi-purpose wheel-loader—efficiently reduces particulate matter emissions compared to EN590 diesel with 7% biodiesel. With renewable diesel, both... Read more →

Volkswagen to start fitting vehicles with pWLAN technology as standard from 2019 on for V2X communication

From 2019, Volkswagen will start fitting its first models with pWLAN as standard in order to serve as an additional communication technology for the exchange of selected information relevant to traffic between cars made by different manufacturers. This will involve information being exchanged both between vehicles (car-to-car), as well as... Read more →

PG&E launches $4M rebate program for customers using compressed natural gas as transportation fuel

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) launched the new Clean Fuel Rebate program for customers driving vehicles using compressed natural gas as a clean transportation fuel. Eligible customers already have a compressed natural gas account and fill up at PG&E stations across Northern and Central California. The first rebate will... Read more →

Xylogenics releases new strain design for patented GX-1 yeast technology

Xylogenics released a new strain design for its patented GX-1 yeast production and fermentation process. The efficiencies created by the newest strain design will have an immediate impact on industries that rely on micro-organism technologies—most notably the ethanol industry wherein individual production plants are planning to invest upwards of $350... Read more →

Daimler and LBBW successfully utilize blockchain technology for launch of corporate Schuldschein

Daimler AG and Landesbank Baden-Württemberg (LBBW) for the first time have jointly used blockchain technology to execute a financial transaction. Daimler and LBBW successfully tested this innovative technology for capital markets in parallel with the process that is required by regulatory authorities. Through LBBW, Daimler launched a €100-million, 1-year corporate... Read more →

BASF to sell electrolytes manufacturing site in Suzhou to Shenzhen Capchem

BASF recently signed an agreement to sell its electrolytes manufacturing site in Suzhou, China, to Shenzhen Capchem Technology Co., Ltd. (Capchem), one of the leading suppliers in the global electronic-chemicals and functional materials industry. Financial details of the transaction will not be disclosed. The transaction is expected to close in... Read more →

BMW i Ventures makes strategic investment in Xometry; manufacturing on demand

BMW i Ventures has made a strategic investment in Xometry, an on-demand manufacturing platform that provides product designers and engineers access to a nationwide network of manufacturing facilities. Since launching in 2014, Xometry has continued a rapid market expansion, recently eclipsing 5,000 customers spanning multiple verticals, including aerospace, automotive, consumer,... Read more →

LiquidPiston, Inc. (LPI), a developer of advanced multi-fuel-capable rotary combustion engine technology, has been awarded a $3-million Rapid Innovation Fund (RIF) award from the US Army to develop an innovative ultra-portable 2kW diesel Compact Artillery Power System (CAPS). The RIF process is extremely selective, with only five percent of whitepapers... Read more →

In the ongoing quest to develop high-capacity cathode materials for high-energy batteries, the conventional approach has been to rely on lithium-excess materials to operate the cathode at high voltage. This approach, however, has been dogged by numerous unresolved issues, such as voltage fading and structural failure. Now, an international team... Read more →

Volkswagen IT expands deep learning competence via partnership with NVIDIA

Volkswagen IT is cooperating with US technology company NVIDIA with a view to expanding its competence in the field of deep learning. At the Volkswagen Data Lab—named the Group’s center of excellence for AI and data analysis—IT experts are developing advanced AI systems with deep learning. The Volkswagen Group is... Read more →

Royal Dutch Shell plc, through its subsidiary Shell International Exploration and Production B.V, and SBI Bioenergy Inc. have reached an agreement granting Shell exclusive development and licensing rights for SBI’s biofuel technology. Canada-based SBI has a patented process that can convert a wide range of waste oils, greases and sustainable... Read more →

UPS commits to aggressive goals for more alternative vehicles, fuel and renewable power by 2025

UPS announced new sustainability goals to add more alternative fuel and advanced technology vehicles to its fleet while increasing its reliance on renewable energy sources. The goals, available in the company’s 2016 Corporate Sustainability Report, support UPS’ commitment to reduce its absolute greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from global ground operations... Read more →

Volkswagen of America is in the process of rolling out its all-new long wheelbase 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan (earlier post). As with the all-new 2018 Volkswagen Atlas full-size SUV (earlier post), the new Tiguan is based on Volkswagen’s Modular Transverse Matrix (MQB) architecture. The all-new 2018 Volkswagen Tiguan—the second-generation of the... Read more →

Every tenth kilometer driven in a car2go is electric

Daimler’s carsharing company car2go now has 300,000 customers at three purely electric locations who regularly drive 1,400 electric vehicles. Around 10,000 journeys are made per day. car2go customers have already driven a total of 57.3 million purely electric kilometers. That is equivalent to 1,429 trips around the earth or as... Read more →

German government setting up National Forum on measures to reduce diesel car #NOx emissions

German Transport Minister Alexander Dobrindt and Federal Environment Minister Barbara Hendricks have agreed to establish a National Forum on measures to reduceNOx emissions from diesel passenger cars while at the same time ensuring mobility. In addition to the two Federal ministries, more subject-related ministries and representatives of the automotive industry... Read more →

ChargePoint takes over GE’s EV charging network; nearly 10,000 new residential and commercial charging spots

ChargePoint, Inc. has acquired assets and customer contracts related to GE’s charging network business, adding more than 1,800 commercial and about 8,000 residential charging spots to the ChargePoint network. The specifics of the agreement remain confidential. ChargePoint will maintain GE’s existing software and commercial charging spots, helping to make the... Read more →

Mexico CRE approves 10% ethanol blend in country except for three metropolitan zones

The Governing Body of Mexico’s Energy Regulatory Commission (CRE) recently approved improvements to the Official Mexican Standard NOM-016-CRE-2016 Oil quality specifications, with the intention of introducing more options in products to the Mexican market, while simplifying regulation. Among the changes, the standard now allows the increase of the percentage of... Read more →

Aston Martin confirms limited production run of all-electric RapidE for 2019

Aston Martin confirmed that the all-electric RapidE (earlier post) will enter production in 2019 in a limited run of 155 units. In 2016, Aston Martin and China-based technology company LeEco had signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) towards the creation of a partnership to develop a production version of the... Read more →

According to a new study led by a team at Duke University, airborne particulate matter and dust are cutting solar photovoltaic energy output by more than 25% in certain parts of the world, with roughly equal contributions from ambient PM and PM deposited on photovoltaic surfaces. The regions hardest hit... Read more →

Volvo Cars and Autoliv team up with NVIDIA to develop advanced systems for self-driving cars

Volvo Cars, automotive safety systems provider Autoliv, and NVIDIA are teaming up to develop advanced systems and software for self-driving cars. The three companies will work together with Zenuity, a newly-formed automotive software development joint venture equally owned by Volvo Cars and Autoliv (earlier post), to develop next generation self-driving... Read more →

Leclanché signs preferred partnership agreement with Škoda Electric to supply battery packs for electric buses

Energy storage company Leclanché SA and Škoda Electric, a manufacturer of electric drives and traction motors for trolley and electric buses, have signed a Joint Development Agreement and Framework Purchase Contract through which Leclanché will provide Škoda Electric with battery solutions for its electric bus expansion strategy. The agreement is... Read more →

BMW Spartanburg plant now largest manufacturing facility in the BMW Group production network

On 23 June 1992, the BMW Group announced its decision to build its US plant in Spartanburg, South Carolina. Continuous expansion of the plant with extensive additions and the decision to build the successful BMW X models in Spartanburg have made the plant the largest manufacturing facility in the BMW... Read more →

Faurecia to equip 20,000 Seoul buses and trucks with Amminex NOx reduction technology

Faurecia has won a contract to retrofit 20,000 Seoul buses and commercial vehicles using its Amminex technology. Amminex has developed an Ammonia Storage and Delivery System (ASDS) which has demonstrated its efficiency to almost completely eliminate NOx from diesel engines. (Earlier post.) As part of the Seoul Metropolitan Air Pollution... Read more →

Toyota invests in V2X chipset company Autotalks

Israel-based Autotalks, a developer in V2X (Vehicle to Everything) communication chipsets (earlier post), has completed its Series D round with about $40 million in investments, an oversubscription of $10 million. The increased investment amount is a result of new investments from investors such as Mirai Creation Investment Fund, of which... Read more →

ECS and Toyota announce three 2017-2018 Fellowship winners for projects in green energy technology

The ECS Toyota Young Investigator Fellowship Selection Committee has selected three winners who will receive $50,000 fellowship awards each for projects in green energy technology. The awardees are Dr. Ahmet Kusoglu, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory; Professor Julie Renner, Case Western Reserve University; and Professor Shuhui Sun, Institut National de la... Read more →

Schaeffler and Audi to cooperate to develop next 3 generations of Formula E powertrain

Schaeffler and Audi have agreed on an extensive cooperation in the development of the powertrain for the next three generations of the Formula E race car. Schaeffler Chief Technology Officer Prof. Peter Gutzmer and Peter Mertens, Member of the Board of Management, Technical Development AUDI AG, signed a three-year agreement—up... Read more →

Small-scale GTL company Velocys targeting biomass to diesel and jet for US market

Velocys plc, a provider of technology for smaller scale gas-to-liquids (GTL), is planning a new strategy under which it will focus on building plants that convert woody biomass to high-specification renewable diesel and jet fuel for the US market. Currently, Velocys technology is producing Fischer-Tropsch (FT) product at ENVIA. The... Read more →

Using a stock-flow model based on data from Norway, a researcher at the country’s Institute of Transport Economics (TØI) has calculated the energy transition time lag for motor vehicles under a number of scenarios. In his paper in the journal Energy Policy, Lasse Fridstrøm finds that in the most optimistic... Read more →

Long term exposure to aircraft noise linked to high blood pressure

A study by researchers in Greece, the UK and The Netherlands links long term exposure to aircraft noise, particularly during the night, to an increased risk of developing high blood pressure and possibly heart flutter and stroke as well. The paper is published in Occupational & Environmental Medicine. The research... Read more →