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The Volkswagen Group is acquiring a 75.1% majority stake in the Swedish telematics specialist WirelessCar from Volvo with a view to making further advances in fleet connectivity. The sales price amounts to SEK 1.1 billion (US$122 million). Completion of the transaction is expected in the first half of 2019 and... Read more →

Artificial perception company AEye’s $40M Series B includes Subaru, Hella, LG, and SK

Robotic perception pioneer AEye, the developer of iDAR (Intelligent Detection and Ranging), announced the second close of its Series B financing, bringing the company’s total funding to more than $60 million. AEye Series B included global automotive OEM, Tier 1 and Tier 2 strategic investors Hella Ventures, SUBARU-SBI Innovation Fund,... Read more →

USDOT requesting public comment on Vehicle-to-Everything communications

The US Department of Transportation (USDOT) is seeking public comment on the use and integration of vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications technologies into the transportation environment, which have the potential to improve motor vehicle safety and efficiency as well as support cooperative vehicle automation concepts. The USDOT intends to maintain the priority... Read more →

The authorities of Frankfurt am Main have officially started the city’s first fully electric bus line, number 75, with the deployment of 5 Solaris electric buses. The vehicles carry passengers in the city center on a specially created zero-emission line connecting two university campuses. For the additional promotion of zero-emission... Read more →

Human Horizons, Wuxi Weifu e-Drive Technology and Protean Electric to deliver mass produced in-wheel motors for intelligent connected vehicles

Mobility technology innovator Human Horizons, Protean Electric Ltd and Wuxi Weifu e-Drive Technology Ltd. (WFDT) announced their memorandum of strategic co-operation to develop and to manufacture in-wheel motors for the next generation of intelligent connected vehicles. A dedicated team and production facility will be created in China to deliver in-wheel... Read more →

IAV GmbH reaches plea agreement with US DOJ over Volkswagen emissions issue; $35M fine

IAV GmbH has reached an agreement with the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) to resolve an investigation into the company’s role in Volkswagen AG’s use of defeat devices to evade US diesel emissions standards. Under the terms of the resolution, IAV has agreed to plead guilty to one felony... Read more →

Kidman Resources announces lithium offtake MOU with LG Chem for ~50% of annual production; 12kt/y for 10 years

Australia-based lithium developer Kidman Resources Limited has entered a non-binding Memorandum of Understanding with LG Chem for the supply of lithium hydroxide. The MOU contains commercial terms in relation to the supply of 12kt of lithium hydroxide per year to LG Chem over a term of 10 years. Pricing is... Read more →

A team of researchers in China has devised a simple and mass-produceable method to modify a Li metal anode to avoid the formation of an unstable solid electrolyte interphase (SEI) and the subsequent growth of Li dendrites in high-energy-density Li-S batteries. A paper on their work is published in the... Read more →

Sea Machines raises $10M in Series A; Toyota AI Ventures participating

Boston-based Sea Machines Robotics, a developer of autonomous control and advanced perception systems for the marine and maritime industries, closed a $10-million Series A investment led by Accomplice and Eniac Ventures, with participation from Toyota AI Ventures; Brunswick Corp., through investment partner TechNexus Venture Collaborative; NextGen VP, Geekdom Fund; LaunchCapital;... Read more →

Audi’s Autonomous Intelligent Driving teams up with Luminar for advanced LiDAR

Autonomous Intelligent Driving GmbH, a a wholly owned subsidiary of Audi AG and the center of excellence for urban autonomous driving in the Volkswagen Group—announced a partnership with Luminar Technologies Inc. to deploy its LiDAR technology. Since launching in March 2017, AID has been scouting the best complementary LiDAR solutions... Read more →

Rheinmetall Automotive expands further in China; aluminum cylinder heads and EV components

Rheinmetall Automotive has, together with its Chinese joint venture partner HUAYU Automotive Systems (HASCO), opened another production location. Around 16,000 square meters, the new plant of HASCO KSPG (Guangde) Nonferrous Components Co. Ltd. is situated in Guangde in the Chinese province of Anhui, northwest of Shanghai. This is the sixth... Read more →

Toyota Motor Corporation (Toyota) is introducing “total-care service,” a pioneering set of mobility services specially designed for ride-hailing companies. Working with ride-hailing companies, Total-care Service will enable Toyota to leverage onboard telematics data through a shared information platform and provide services such as fleet management, automotive insurance, and vehicle maintenance... Read more →

DOE EERE expects to award ~$20M to more than 100 small business projects

As part of the US Department of Energy (DOE) funding opportunity (FOA) announcement from the Energy Department’s Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Office for approximately $37 million (DE-FOA-0001941), the DOE Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) expects to fund more than 100... Read more →

SEAT, a member of the Volkswagen Group, has joined Alastria, the first semi-public multi-sectorial consortium which aims to provide a venue for digital cooperation in an independent, neutral network in which blockchain technology-based products and services are developed. SEAT is the first car manufacturer to join this network of more... Read more →

The MINI John Cooper Works and the MINI John Cooper Works Convertible will be equipped as standard with gasoline engine particulate filter (GPF) to reduce particulate emissions from March 2019. MINI John Cooper Works The gasoline engine particulate filter is now an integral component of the exhaust emissions purification technology... Read more →

BMW i Ventures makes strategic investment in AI chip company Graphcore

BMW i Ventures has made a strategic investment in Graphcore, a company developing a new kind of computer processor and software specifically designed for machine intelligence. The investment is part of a new $200-million funding round for Graphcore, which values the company at $1.7 billion and brings the total capital... Read more →

UQM Technologies wins $1.8M contract from major fuel cell system supplier in China for fuel cell compressor systems

UQM Technologies, Inc. won an order from a major fuel cell system supplier in China for UQM’s Fuel Cell Compressor System (FCS). This combined electric motor, inverter and compressor module was selected as a high-performance, cost-effective solution by this new production customer after having purchased several FCS units earlier in... Read more →

Researchers at the US Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and Joint Center for Artificial Photosynthesis (JCAP) have shown that recycling carbon dioxide into valuable chemicals and fuels can be economical and efficient using a single copper catalyst. The work appears in the journal Nature Catalysis. …... Read more →

Kaspersky Lab: vulnerabilities in connected EV chargers could damage home networks

Kaspersky Lab experts report that electric vehicle chargers supplied by a major vendor carry vulnerabilities that can be exploited by cyber-attackers, and the consequences of a successful attack could include damage to the home electricity network. While modern electric vehicles are tested constantly for vulnerabilities, this research reveals that some... Read more →

Solaris delivering 3 electric buses to private bus company in Munich

Solaris will deliver three Urbino 12 electric buses to Josef Ettenhuber GmbH in Munich. After winning tenders for the delivery of electric buses to Berlin and Hamburg, Solaris signed a contract for the production of three Solaris Urbino 12 electric vehicles for Munich and the surrounding area. These are the... Read more →

Voltabox coming to CES 2019 with focus on e-mobility mass markets

Voltabox will come to the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) in Las Vegas for the first time in January with a focus on its e-mobility solutions. In addition to its lithium-ion battery technology, Voltabox will also present e-drives. Voltabox is active with its operating segment Voltaforce in select mass markets. For... Read more →

NIO Inc. officially launched the NIO ES6 on December 15, 2018 during the annual NIO Day celebration in Shanghai. The electric SUV starts at a pre-subsidy price of 358,000 RMB (US$52,000), and is available now for public pre-order via the NIO app, with delivery to start in June 2019. The... Read more →

Sumitomo Electric develops next-generation SiC transistors with world’s lowest on-state resistance

Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd. has developed V-groove superjunction transistors through a joint research project with the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST) using silicon carbide (SiC) semiconductors, and has achieved the world’s lowest on-state resistance of SiC transistors. Sumitomo Electric has already developed V-groove metal-oxide-semiconductor field-effect transistors... Read more →

Xtalic Corporation, a leader in providing nano-scale metal alloys and coatings, has entered the electric vehicle market with products that extend the life of connectors in electric battery chargers by up to 40 times. Founded by the head of the Department of Material Science and Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute... Read more →

In August of 2018, the freight Transportation Services Index (TSI) grew to 135.3—105% higher than when the index began in January 1990. Source: DOT BTS. The TSI was created by the US Department of Transportation Bureau of Transportation Statistics to measure the movement of freight and passengers. The freight TSI... Read more →

Cyber hacks might cost the auto industry roughly $24 billion within five years, according to a new study by Upstream Security, which specializes in cloud-based security protection. Upstream studied the impact of more than 170 documented, Smart Mobility, cyber incidents reported between 2010-2018 and projected future trends based on that... Read more →

€7.9M Lithium Sulfur for Safe Road Electrification project launches in Europe in January

The €7.9-million (US$8.9-million), 43-month Lithium Sulfur for Safe Road Electrification (LISA) project will launch 1 January 2019 in Europe. The overall goal is to design and manufacture a lithium-sulfur technology that will enable safe electrification of EV applications. The partners involved in the LISA project are LEITAT (co-ordinators), OXIS Energy... Read more →

Vivarail and Hoppecke partner on batteries for Class 230 trains in UK

Vivarail and Hoppecke will work together to design and integrate batteries for Vivarail’s Class 230 trains. The deal cements the relationship between the two companies for a long-term future in developing battery trains for the UK rail industry. Vivarail launched the UK’s first passenger battery train in the last 50... Read more →

Lithium-chalcogen batteries—e.g., lithium-sulfur (Li-S) and lithium selenium (Li-Se) systems— are promising candidates for high energy electrical storage solution. Earlier this year, a team of researchers at the General Motors Research and Development Center in Warren, MI, with colleagues at Optimal CAE and Pacific Northwest National Laboratory (PNNL), reported demonstrating a... Read more →

Neste pilots filling station with automated shopping and a refueling robot in Finland

Neste has introduced automated shopping and robotized refueling at a filling station pilot in Finland. With the pilot filling station in Siltamäki, Vantaa, Finland, the company is testing a whole new kind of a customer experience. It is one vision of the future of the filling station, in which goods... Read more →

24M, part of a team that received $3.5 million in funding from ARPA-E in 2016 to further the development of the next generation of high-energy-density, low-cost batteries (earlier post), has raised a $21.8 million Series D to accelerate the deployment of its simple, capital-efficient, low-cost manufacturing process and the development... Read more →

Georgia kaolin mines are potential sources of rare-earth elements

The high-density minerals in the Georgia kaolin mines are potential sources of rare-earth elements, including the heavy rare-earth elements that are in high demand for many important uses and are mostly imported to the United States from China, according to a study led by Georgia State University and Thiele Kaolin... Read more →

Volkswagen bundling all intelligent driver assistance technologies under new umbrella brand IQ.DRIVE; heading to autonomy

Volkswagen is bundling its entire range of intelligent driver assistance technologies under the new umbrella brand IQ.DRIVE. Before Christmas, Volkswagen will be launching a 360° marketing campaign for the new brand in Germany, consisting of TV commercial and posters as well as printed and online advertisements. Other European markets are... Read more →

BMW Group launches ride-hailing business based in Chengdu

The BMW Group launched its ride-hailing service in Chengdu, the capital city of the Chinese province Sichuan, as part of its premium mobility brand ReachNow. The BMW Group is the first foreign company in China to obtain a license to operate a ride-hailing service. By adding an additional premium mobility... Read more →

Study finds megacity traffic soot can reach high altitudes and be transported over long distances, contributing to global warming

Soot from road traffic in emerging countries can reach high altitudes, where it can be transported over long distances and thus contributes to global warming, according to the findings of a study performed by an international team of researchers in the Bolivian cities of La Paz (the seat of government),... Read more →

According to United Nations forecasts, two-thirds of the world’s population will be living in cities by 2050. To offer personal mobility to people living in places where space is at a premium, Schaeffler is working on technology concepts such as the Schaeffler Mover for which the technology group has developed... Read more →

Municipal transport operator MPK in Poznań, Poland and Solaris Bus & Coach signed a contract for the delivery of 21 electric buses: 15 articulated and 6 standard length. Pursuant to the agreement the whole order is to be completed by the end of February 2020. The total contract value is... Read more →

Porsche has commissioned a fully electric MAN eTGM (earlier post) for logistics operations at its Stuttgart-Zuffenhausen site. The truck is the first vehicle of this kind that has gone into series production in Germany. Both Porsche and MAN are members of the Volkswagen Group. The electric 32-tonne truck will soon... Read more →

The California Air Resources Board on Friday approved the Innovative Clean Transit regulation (ICT) (earlier post)—a first-of-its-kind regulation in the US that sets a statewide goal for public transit agencies to gradually transition to 100% zero-emission bus (ZEB) fleets by 2040. The ICT is part of a statewide effort to... Read more →

Hyundai announced that the starting price for the 2019 Kona Electric electric crossover is $36,450, for an effective net price of $28,950 ($29,995 including delivery), with the electric vehicle tax credit of $7,500 factored in. Customers may receive the available federal tax credit of up to $7,500, dependent on individual... Read more →

HYON receives PILOT-E funding for two zero-emissions maritime projects using fuel cells and green H2

HYON AS has, together with partners, been awarded grants under Norway’s PILOT-E scheme for the development and realization of two maritime projects; a high-speed ferry and a short-sea freighter. The ambitions of both projects are to realize zero-emission propulsion via fuel cells using cost-efficient hydrogen produced from electrolysis based on... Read more →

Continental announced the completion of a joint Cellular V2X trial in Japan together with Ericsson, Nissan, NTT DOCOMO, OKI and Qualcomm Technologies. The companies have successfully conducted Japan’s first C-V2X testing in the country using 5.8 GHz as the experimental radio frequency for direct communication. The use cases were designed... Read more →

Argonne chemists have identified a new catalyst that maximizes the effectiveness of platinum. Platinum—which offers unrivaled activity and stability for electrochemical reactions, such as the conversion of hydrogen and oxygen into water and electricity in fuel cells—is both scarce and expensive. Scientists are searching for alternative practical fuel cell catalysts... Read more →

Ballard Power Systems has received a purchase order from Porterbrook Leasing Company Limited, a leading participant in the rail leasing market, for an FCveloCity-HD fuel cell module and related support to power a HydroFLEX train in the UK. Earlier this year, UK Rail Minister Jo Johnson MP challenged the rail... Read more →

DOE announces $100M energy-water desalination hub to provide secure and affordable water

The US Department of Energy (DOE) will award $100 million to establish an Energy-Water Desalination Hub (Hub) to address water security issues in the United States. (DE-FOA-0001905) The Hub will focus on early-stage research and development (R&D) for energy-efficient and cost-competitive desalination technologies including manufacturing challenges, and for treating non-traditional... Read more →

Hyundai has taken two out of the ten spots in the 2019 WardsAuto 10 Best Engine competition with the all-new 2019 NEXO FCEV fuel cell vehicle and 2019 Kona Electric CUV. (Earlier post.) This marks the tenth time Hyundai has earned a WardsAuto 10 Best Engine recognition since the awards’... Read more →

Nissan ‘No Charge to Charge’ expands to Hawaii

Nissan North America, Greenlots, Inc., and EVgo are bringing the “No Charge to Charge” (NCTC) promotion to the Hawaiian Electric Companies’ service territory. It provides up to two years of free fast-charging for those who purchase or lease a new Nissan LEAF from certified dealers in Hawaii after 1 November... Read more →

In 2016, ZF and Venturi formed a technology partnership for the FIA Formula E. For the fifth season of the championship, ZF has developed an electric driveline for Venturi that includes an electric motor as well as newly developed transmission and power electronics. New Formula E rules this year will... Read more →

International study finds organic food has larger climate impact than conventional, due to greater land use

Organically farmed food has a larger climate impact than conventionally farmed food, due to the greater areas of land required. This is the finding of a new international study published in the journal Nature. The researchers developed a new method for assessing the climate impact from land-use, and used this,... Read more →

Fulcrum BioEnergy has selected Gary, Indiana as the location of its Centerpoint BioFuels Plant, which will convert municipal solid waste (MSW) into low-carbon, renewable transportation fuel. Fulcrum has developed and demonstrated a proprietary thermochemical process that converts MSW feedstock into low-carbon renewable transportation fuels including jet fuel and diesel. The... Read more →