Pensana plans $125M rare earth separation facility in England

UK-based Pensana plans to build, subject to funding, a US$125-million sustainable rare earth separation facility at the Saltend Chemicals Park (“SCP”) in Humber, UK. Targeted production is around 12,500 annualized tonnes of rare earth oxides, including 4,500 tonnes of magnet metal rare earth oxides (NdPr), which would represent approximately 5%... Read more →


The price of copper on the London Metal Exchange (LME) rose to $9,990/t on 29 April, marking a ten-year high and closing in on the record high LME price of $10,147.50/t on 14 February 2011. In its new Copper Monthly Insights, Roskill said that the ongoing surge in copper pricing... Read more →


The US Department of Energy (DOE) released a new report, Hybrid Energy Systems: Opportunities for Coordinated Research, highlighting innovative opportunities to spur joint research on hybrid energy systems (HES). These opportunities could drive the production of valuable fuels, chemicals, and products, provide greater cost savings, increase grid flexibility, and enhance... Read more →


In the period 2016-2020, the port of Rotterdam reduced its total carbon emissions by 27%. Nationwide, the volume of greenhouse gases released into the atmosphere fell by 14% in the same period. In 2020, Rotterdam achieved a 12% reduction in emissions, compared to 8% in the Netherlands as a whole.... Read more →


California HVIP opening to new voucher requests; $165M in funding

The California Hybrid and Zero-Emission Truck and Bus Voucher Incentive Project (HVIP) will open to new voucher requests at 10 a.m. Pacific on 8 June. When HVIP begins accepting new voucher requests, funds will be available in two waves. A total of approximately $165 million will be available, however, only... Read more →


Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) has licensed its award-winning artificial intelligence software system, the Multinode Evolutionary Neural Networks for Deep Learning (MENNDL), to General Motors for use in vehicle technology and design. MENNDL uses evolution to design optimal convolutional neural networks—algorithms used by computers to recognize patterns in datasets of... Read more →


ExxonMobil announced an oil discovery at the Uaru-2 well in the Stabroek Block offshore Guyana (earlier post). Uaru-2 will add to the previously announced gross discovered recoverable resource estimate for the block, which is currently estimated to be approximately 9 billion oil-equivalent barrels. Drilling at Uaru-2 encountered approximately 120 feet... Read more →


Fuel tankering in commercial aviation is the practice of overfueling with less expensive fuel purchased at one airport to avoid purchasing more expensive fuel at another—in other words, flying with extra fuel on board to save money. Calculating the benefit of tankering is highly flight-specific; extra fuel increases the takeoff... Read more →


Suzuki Motor Corporation, Subaru Corporation (Subaru), Daihatsu Motor Co. Ltd., Toyota Motor Corporation, and Mazda Motor Corporation reached an agreement to develop jointly technical specifications for next-generation vehicle communications devices. They also agreed to promote the common use of communications systems by using connected services to link automobiles and society... Read more →


Hino Motors Co., Ltd., a subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corporation, and REE Automotive Ltd. (REE), the developer of a next-generation EV platform, signed a strategic business alliance agreement to realize their shared vision of “providing new value to society through next-generation commercial mobility.” Hino and REE will combine Hino’s knowledge... Read more →


BMW i Ventures invests in Plus One Robotics to automate supply chain and logistics

BMW i Ventures has invested in Plus One Robotics, the leading provider of vision software for logistics robots. The Series B fundraise will help accelerate automation across the broader supply chain and logistics industry and deliver a transformative experience for warehouse operators. The company, co-founded by industry veterans including CEO... Read more →


For the past six years, Argonne researchers have collaborated with Cummins, an engine design and manufacturing company, and software developer Convergent Science, Inc., to create predictive engine simulations using the laboratory’s high-performance computing tools. Now, they’re extending their partnership for three more years, and adding new collaborators and capabilities to... Read more →


Toyota subsidiary Woven Planet acquires Lyft’s Level 5 Division to accelerate software innovation for automated driving; ~$550M deal

Woven Planet Holdings, Inc., a subsidiary of Toyota Motor Corporation, has agreed to acquire Level 5, the self-driving division of Lyft, Inc. one of the largest ride-hailing companies in the world. This marks the first major deal for the newly established Woven Planet. The deal will bring together world-class scientists... Read more →


Honda last week announced key targets for sales of electrified vehicles in North America, with a plan to make battery-electric and fuel cell electric vehicles (BEVs and FCEVs) to represent 100% of its vehicle sales by 2040, progressing from sales of 40% by 2030 and 80% by 2035. Honda and... Read more →


Electric truck company Tevva and Vattenfall signed a Memorandum of Understanding to explore the opportunity to provide a complete zero-emission transport solution for businesses looking to reduce the overall carbon impact of their operations Tevva is a pioneer in developing long-range zero emission truck capabilities Vattenfall Network Solutions’ Power-as-a-Service model... Read more →


LR has awarded Tsuneishi Shipbuilding Co., Ltd. with an Approval in Principle (AiP) for its Kamsarmax GF Bulk Carrier, which has been designed for dual-fuel operation, using both Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) and Fuel Oil. GF is an abbreviation for Gas Fuel. The Kamsarmax vessel is equipped with a fuel... Read more →


Wärtsilä joins €7.9M project to develop clean marine and off-road transport solutions; RCCI in medium-speed engine

The technology group Wärtsilä is participating in a consortium of Finnish research organisations and leading companies researching means for developing radical new solutions for clean and efficient marine and off-road transport. The project is expected to run until spring 2023, and has been granted funding of €7.9 million by Business... Read more →


In the first quarter of 2021, hybrid electric vehicles made up 18.4% of total passenger car sales in the EU, almost doubling their market share in a year, according to data from the European Association of Automobile Manufacturers (ACEA). Demand for electrically-chargeable cars also increased in Q1: battery-electric vehicles made... Read more →


Researchers from the University of Houston, with colleagues at the University of São Paolo in Brazil, have demonstrated how copper-resistant bacterium from a copper mine in Brazil convert CuSO4 (copper sulfate) ions into zero-valent Cu (metallic copper). An open-access paper on their research is published in Science Advances. Gracioso et... Read more →


California Governor Gavin Newsom has directed the Department of Conservation’s Geologic Energy Management (CalGEM) Division to initiate regulatory action to end the issuance of new permits for hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) by January 2024. Additionally, Governor Newsom requested that the California Air Resources Board (CARB) analyze pathways to phase out oil... Read more →


Orocobre Limited and Galaxy Resources have entered into a binding Merger Implementation Deed (MID) under which Orocobre will acquire 100% of the shares in Galaxy. The resulting company will have a A$4-billion (US$3.1-billion) market capitalization, making it the fifth-largest by capitalization. The merged entity will also be the fifth-largest lithium... Read more →


XCEED blockchain solution deployment to begin

Faurecia, Groupe Renault, Knauf Industries, Simoldes, and Coşkunöz, in association with IBM, have signed a partnership contract for the deployment of XCEED (eXtended Compliance End-to-End Distributed), a blockchain-based shared solution to trace the compliance of thousands of parts assembled in a vehicle in almost real time. (Earlier post.) This move follows... Read more →


New report finds California’s electric transportation workforce will nearly double by 2024

A new report commissioned by Advanced Energy Economy (AEE) projects that California’s electric transportation (ET)-related workforce will nearly double by 2024. With an estimated 3,900 ET-related businesses in 2019, California is already the leading state in electric transportation. The report, “Electrifying California: Economic Potential of Growing Electric Transportation,” was prepared... Read more →


UC report to CalEPA outlines policy options to decarbonize California transportation by 2045

A team of transportation and policy experts from the University of California released a report to the California Environmental Protection Agency (CalEPA) outlining policy options to significantly reduce transportation-related fossil fuel demand and emissions. Those policy options, when combined, could lead to a zero-carbon transportation system by 2045, while also... Read more →


Renesas and SiFive partner to develop next-generation high-end RISC-V solutions for automotive

Renesas Electronics Corporation and SiFive, Inc., the industry leader in RISC-V processors and silicon solutions, announced a strategic partnership to develop next-generation, high-end RISC-V solutions for automotive applications. The partnership will also include SiFive licensing the use of their RISC-V core IP portfolio to Renesas. RISC-V is an open standard... Read more →


Chevron, Toyota to explore strategic alliance on hydrogen

Chevron USA, through its Chevron Products Company division (Chevron), and Toyota Motor North America, Inc. signed a memorandum of understanding to explore a strategic alliance to catalyze and lead the development of commercially viable, large-scale businesses in hydrogen, with the goal to advance a functional, thriving global hydrogen economy. Chevron... Read more →


A new $2-million project at the University of Michigan aims to develop easier and more cost-effective ways to make recyclable lightweight automotive sheet metals. “The Clean Sheet Project” seeks to develop new design tools and establish best practices for material producers and carmakers with a focus on recycling from start... Read more →


ELYSIS has selected the Alma smelter, operated by Rio Tinto in Saguenay-Lac-Saint-Jean, Québec, for the first installation and demonstration of its inert anode technology at a commercial size of 450 kiloamperes (kA)—a common capacity for modern, full-scale smelters. ELYSIS is a joint venture company, led by Rio Tinto and Alcoa,... Read more →


SEMI and Center for Automotive Research collaborate to harmonize semiconductor and automotive supply chains

A global shortage of semiconductors—caused by manufacturing delays that some semiconductor makers blame on a faster-than expected recovery from the coronavirus pandemic—has forced automakers to adjust or cancel production over the past months. Now SEMI, the largest global trade association for the design and manufacture of semiconductors, and the Center... Read more →


Volvo Cars and DiDi Autonomous Driving, the self-driving technology arm of Didi Chuxing, the world’s leading mobility technology platform, have signed a strategic collaboration agreement on autonomous vehicles for DiDi’s self-driving test fleet. Volvo Cars will provide DiDi with XC90 cars equipped with necessary backup systems for functions such as... Read more →


RWE and H2U partner to develop global hydrogen trading between Australia and Germany

RWE Supply & Trading and Australian hydrogen project developer The Hydrogen Utility Pty Ltd (H2U) have joined forces to develop hydrogen trading between Australia and Germany. Together, they aim to bring green hydrogen produced in Australia to Europe. This is in line with the objective of HySupply, a 24-month German-Australian... Read more →


Origin Energy signs MOU with Port of Townsville on hydrogen export project with Kawasaki

Origin Energy’s export-scale liquid hydrogen project has reached an important milestone, with the signing a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Port of Townsville to collaborate on the potential expansion of the port, as well as the development of a liquefaction facility, new berth and associated infrastructure. Origin is collaborating... Read more →


The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released its 28th annual Inventory of US Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks (GHG Inventory), which presents a national-level overview of annual greenhouse gas emissions from 1990 to 2019. Key findings from the 1990-2019 US Inventory include: In 2019, US greenhouse gas emissions totaled 6,558... Read more →


Sinopec Capital to invest in and partner with LanzaTech; direct production of chemicals from wastes and residues

Sinopec Capital, as the industrial investment arm of Sinopec Group—one of the world’s largest integrated energy and chemicals companies—announced an investment in LanzaTech with a focus on promoting direct production of chemicals from waste carbon. Petrochemicals account for around 12% of global oil demand—a share that is expected to increase.... Read more →


Uniper to make Wilhelmshaven German hub for green hydrogen; green ammonia import terminal

Under the name “Green Wilhelmshaven,” Germany-based international energy company Uniper plans to establish a German national hub for hydrogen in Wilhelmshaven and is working on a corresponding feasibility study. Plans include an import terminal for green ammonia. The terminal will be equipped with an ammonia cracker for producing green hydrogen... Read more →


NIO and Sinopec unveiled the NIO Power Swap Station 2.0 at Sinopec’s Chaoying Station in Beijing. This is NIO’s inaugural second-generation battery swap station and also the first under the NIO-Sinopec partnership, representing the rollout of NIO Power Swap Station 2.0. (Earlier post.) As a smart battery swap system enabled... Read more →


Continental and Amazon Web Services create platform for automotive software

Continental and Amazon Web Services (AWS) will work together going forward within the scope of a new development cooperation. The goal of their long-term collaboration, with AWS serving as the preferred cloud provider, is to develop Continental Automotive Edge (CAEdge): a modular hardware and software platform that connects the vehicle... Read more →


Strategy Analytics’ Automotive Connected Mobility service released its H1 2021 Global Ride-Hailing Market Update and its associated Global Ride-Hailing Forecast, tracking more than 140 unique operators across 119 different countries. Although 2020 was tough for ride-hailing operators everywhere, with a decline of 18% in worldwide total revenue (gross bookings) across... Read more →


Washington state legislature passes law establishing setting MY2030 target for 100% electric new LDV sales

The Washington State legislature has passed legislation that sets a target for all MY2030 or later passenger and light-duty vehicles sold in Washington State to be electric vehicles. The new law establishes the most aggressive such state goal in the US—five years ahead of California’s 2035 target. Clean Cars 2030... Read more →


Via over-the-air (OTA) software updates, Ford will offer its BlueCruise hands-free highway driving technology later this year on 2021 F-150 and 2021 Mustang Mach-E models equipped with the available Ford Co-Pilot360 Active 2.0 Prep Package. Over-the-air software updates allow owners of select Ford vehicles to update software from the convenience... Read more →


Strategy Analytics: Overall UX of BEVs does not match price point

A new report from the Strategy Analytics In-Vehicle UX (IVX) service, “Consumer Interest in EVs: Lingering Concerns Meet a COVID Bump,” surveyed car owners across the US, UK, and China regarding their interest in and concerns with BEV ownership. While interest in BEV and hybrid ownership is relatively strong in... Read more →


The Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) has published findings and data from its inaugural study counting the number of people biking and walking on Los Angeles streets. The count, which took place at 63 intersections over several weekends in 2019, reveals trends in active transportation while observing the demographics... Read more →


When winter storms threaten to make travel dangerous, people often turn to salt, spreading it liberally over highways, streets and sidewalks to melt snow and ice. But a new study led by Sujay Kaushal of the University of Maryland warns that introducing salt into the environment—whether it's for de-icing roads,... Read more →


Volvo Cars, Zoox and SAIC are among the growing number of leading transportation companies using the newest NVIDIA DRIVE solutions to power their next-generation AI-based autonomous vehicles. NVIDIA’s design-win pipeline for NVIDIA DRIVE now totals more than $8 billion over the next six years, reflecting a growing range of next-generation... Read more →


REE Automotive Ltd (REE) announced a strategic collaboration agreement with Magna International to bring to market Modular Electric Vehicles (MEVs) for tech companies and new electric mobility players under the “Powered by REE” brand. The strategic collaboration will explore the combination of REE’s REEcorner technology (earlier post) with Magna’s vehicle... Read more →


Baker Institute: China positioning itself to dominate world’s copper supply

China is positioning itself to dominate the global supply of copper, a material in high demand as the world transitions to alternative energy systems, according to experts from Rice University’s Baker Institute for Public Policy. “If China’s dominance of rare earth element supplies is the global energy transition’s ‘elephant in... Read more →


Plug Power Inc. has been invited to submit a Part II Application for a loan guarantee under the US Department of Energy (DOE) Title XVII Loan Guarantee Program. The invitation for the Part II application is for a proposed $520-million loan guarantee from the DOE to support the use of... Read more →


LG Energy Solution and SK Innovation to end all legal disputes over EV batteries in US and Korea

LG Energy Solution and SK Innovation have agreed to settle all legal disputes relating to EV batteries in the United States and Korea. As a result, all litigation between the companies, which began in April 2019, is resolved. In this agreement, the two companies agreed to the following terms. SK... Read more →


Researchers find abundance of oil-eating bacteria in northeast Atlantic

A team of scientists from Heriot-Watt University has found the waters in the Faroe-Shetland Channel (FSC) are teeming with oil-eating bacteria. The FSC is a deepwater sub-Arctic region where the oil and gas industry has been active for the last 40 years. An open-access paper on the research was published in... Read more →


Toyota moves mobility services in Europe under Cologne-based KINTO Europe

Toyota Motor Europe (TME) has started KINTO Europe GmbH, a limited liability company with headquarters in Cologne, Germany. Toyota Financial Services Corporation (TFSC), Japan, holds 51% of the company’s shares, with the remaining 49% owned by TME. Both TME and TFSC are wholly owned by Toyota Motor Corporation, based in... Read more →