Faurecia and Michelin to consolidate hydrogen fuel cell efforts in new joint venture Symbio

Michelin and Faurecia signed a Memorandum of Understanding to create a joint venture bringing together all of Michelin’s fuel-cell-related activities—including its subsidiary Symbio—with those of Faurecia. Symbio, a Faurecia Michelin Hydrogen Company will be owned equally by Faurecia and Michelin. This French joint venture will develop, produce and market hydrogen... Read more →


EPA proposes rule allowing sale of E15 year-round; improving RIN market transparency

The US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed regulatory changes to allow gasoline blended with up to 15% ethanol (E15) to be sold to 2001 and newer vehicles year-round across the country. The proposal takes advantage of the 1-psi Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) waiver for the summer months that has historically... Read more →


Volvo Group collaborates with California stakeholders to showcase potential of connected vehicle technologies with a Volvo VNL

In a coordinated effort to accommodate the ever-increasing demand for the transportation of goods while also reducing its impact on society, Volvo Group collaborated closely with several key California stakeholders to demonstrate Eco-Drive technology as part of its involvement in the Zero Emission Drayage Truck Demonstration Project. The project, led... Read more →


Volkswagen Group now planning 22M EVs in ten years; 70 new electric models by 2028

The Volkswagen Group is now planning to launch almost 70 new electric models in the next ten years instead of the 50 previously planned. As a result, the projected number of vehicles to be built on the Group’s electric platforms in the next decade will increase from 15 million to... Read more →


Rechargeable lithium metal batteries with increased energy density, performance, and safety may be possible with a newly-developed, solid-electrolyte interphase (SEI), according to Penn State researchers. The SEI is key to the stabilization of lithium metal anodes for rechargeable batteries; however, the SEI is constantly reforming and consuming electrolyte with cycling.... Read more →


New research led by a team from the Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) uncovers how a beneficial insect common to the Eastern US, the long-horned passalid beetle (Odontotaenius disjunctus), has a hardy digestive tract with microbes to thank for turning its woody diet into energy, food... Read more →


Air pollution could be causing double the number of excess deaths a year in Europe than has been estimated previously, according to a study published in the European Heart Journal. Using a new method of modeling the effects of various sources of outdoor air pollution on death rates, the researchers... Read more →


Nissan and NTT DOCOMO, INC. are putting Nissan’s Invisible-to-Visible technology through its field test in a moving vehicle, using DOCOMO’s fifth-generation mobile communications connectivity. The technology, first revealed at the CES trade show in Las Vegas in January, is being tested at Grandrive, Nissan’s proving ground in Yokosuka, Japan. Invisible-to-Visible,... Read more →


BASF Ultramid being used for fuel cell components for Mercedes GLC F-CELL

In close cooperation with Joma-Polytec and Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH, a subsidiary of Daimler AG, BASF’s engineering plastic Ultramid has successfully been used to manufacture a number of fuel cell system components. This solution is being used as standard in the new Mercedes GLC F-CELL, which combines a fuel cell... Read more →


Canada-based Lion Electric Co. (Lion) has unveiled its first all-electric Class 8 urban truck this morning. The Lion8 will be commercialized this Fall and the first vehicle will be delivered to Société des Alcools du Québec (SAQ). The Lion8 supports a battery capacity of up to 480 kWh (LG Chem... Read more →


Adamas Intelligence: China became a net-importer of several rare earth oxides (or oxide equivalents) in 2018

According to a new report from Adamas Intelligence, China became a net-importer of several rare earth oxides (or oxide equivalents) in 2018. The report, Rare Earth Recap 2018: Global Production, Trade and Prices, provides an overview of global primary and secondary production by country, oxide (or oxide equivalent) and value... Read more →


Munich Re insuring battery performance; stationary first, EVs in second phase

Munich Re is the world’s first insurer to offer a product that covers battery performance. The product allows manufacturers in the booming battery market to offer long-term performance guarantees—whose value is backed by the insurance coverage. The new coverage allows battery manufacturers to insure their customer warranties. For example, if... Read more →


Researchers develop efficient route for production of BTX from biomass

A team at RWTH Aachen University has developed a novel route for the efficient production of BTX (aromatic hydrocarbons such as benzene, toluene, ethyl benzene and three xylene isomers)—which play an essential role in the petrochemical and fine chemical industries—from bio-derived isobutyraldehyde. In a paper in the RSC journal Green... Read more →


S. Korea launches new company to lead construction of hydrogen fueling infrastructure; 100 stations by 2022

South Korea’s Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy (MOTIE) announced that 13 hydrogen-related companies, including Hyundai Motor, are partnering to launch a special purpose corporation (SPC), named HyNet, to drive the construction of hydrogen refueling infrastructure in the country.. HyNet, with an investment of US$119 million (134 billion KRW) has... Read more →


SEAT, a member of the Volkswagen Group, presented two concept cars for the first time globally at the GenevaMotor show: the el-Born, its first 100% electric vehicle based on the Volkswagen Group’s MEB platform (earlier post), and the CUPRA Formentor, a high-performance plug-in hybrid CUV with CUPRA DNA which is... Read more →


2019 NTEA Fleet Purchasing Outlook reveals continued strong demand for biodiesel in diesel trucks

New research released by NTEA – The Association for the Work Truck Industry confirms that fleets across the country are increasingly relying on biodiesel for their existing and new diesel vehicles. For the third time in four years, surveyed fleets named biodiesel as their top alternative fuel choice both for... Read more →


The High Performance Computing for Manufacturing Program (HPC4Mfg) announced the recipients of $1.2 million in federal funding for four public/private projects aimed at solving key manufacturing challenges in steelmaking and aluminum production through supercomputing. Source: ArcelorMittal. The summer 2018 HPC4Mfg call for proposals, the sixth overall for the program, had... Read more →


At the 2019 Geneva Motor Show, BMW announced the market launch of a plug-in hybrid variant of the globally popular BMW X3. This makes it the first model of the brand to be offered with both a conventional combustion engine and a plug-in hybrid system—with the addition of a purely... Read more →


Caterpillar Inc. and the US Department of Energy’s (DOE) Argonne National Laboratory are teaming up to research heavy-duty diesel engines. This project is funded by the Department’s Advanced Manufacturing Office (AMO) and Vehicle Technologies Office (VTO) and is one of seven public-private partnerships recently selected under the DOE’s High Performance... Read more →


Williams Advanced Engineering has developed a pair of innovative technologies that promise a step-change in the affordability of composite materials. Known as 223 and Racetrak, these technologies offer comparable performance to existing composites solutions, but with a range of additional benefits, and at a cost that brings them within reach... Read more →


A team led by researchers from Kanazawa University in Japan, with colleagues from Guangzhou Institute of Energy Conversion in China, have used ozone from an atmospheric-pressure non-equilibrium plasma together with the desulfurization catalyst MnO2 to almost completely eliminate NO2 and SO2 from diesel exhaust gas at a low temperature of... Read more →


Mitsubishi Motors Corporation (MMC) unveiled a twin-motor, four-wheel-drive plug-in hybrid (PHEV) crossover concept—the Mitsubishi Engelberg Tourer—at the Geneva International Motor Show. The Engelberg Tourer takes MMC’s Twin Motor PHEV system fostered and developed in the Outlander PHEV and, using next-generation electrification and all-wheel control technologies, evolves it. The combination of... Read more →


ReactWell, LLC, has licensed a novel waste-to-fuel technology from the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory to improve energy conversion methods for cleaner, more efficient oil and gas, chemical and bioenergy production. ReactWell will bring ORNL’s electrochemical process, which converts carbon dioxide directly into ethanol (earlier post), into the... Read more →


Bioscience engineers at KU Leuven have created a solar panel that produces hydrogen gas from moisture in the air. After ten years of development, the panel can now produce 250 liters per day—a world record, according to the researchers. Twenty of these solar panels could provide electricity and heat for... Read more →


The Audi A3 Sportback g-tron is starting the new model year with a technology update. With an increased tank volume, the compact model can cover around 400 kilometers (248.5 miles) (WLTP cycle) in natural gas operation. Presales at dealerships in Germany have begun, with a base price of €30,600. Equipped... Read more →


Researchers at Wuhan University in China have developed a new electrochemical cell, PANI/LixMn2O4, for selective recovery of Li+ ions from brine water with high impurity cations (K+, Na+, Mg2+, etc). The cell can simultaneously extract LiCl from a simulated brine with a high average current efficiency of 95%, energy consumption... Read more →


In 2018, 93% of all passenger BEVs, PHEVs and HEVs sold globally used permanent magnet (PM) traction motors, an increase of 1% over 2017 penetration rates, according to a model-by-model build-up using Adamas Intelligence’s “EV Motor Power and Motor Metals Tracker”. A PM traction motor has NdFeB permanent magnets mounted... Read more →


CARB fines major online automotive parts retailer $1M for selling illegal aftermarket parts in California; ~4,000 emissions violations

The California Air Resources Board (CARB) announced that AZAA Investments, Inc., formerly known as AutoAnything, Inc., paid $1 million to resolve violations of the California Health and Safety Code and Vehicle Code related to the sale of illegal aftermarket performance auto parts in California. Although the former AutoAnything, Inc. was... Read more →


Tesla introducing V3 Supercharging; up to 250 kW per car

Tesla announced that it is introducing V3 Supercharging, which will support peak rates of up to 250 kW per car. V3 represents a new architecture for Supercharging. A new 1MW power cabinet with a similar design to Tesla utility-scale products supports the peak rates of up to 250kW per car.... Read more →


UMD researchers develop highly reversible 5.3V Li-metal cell with 720 Wh/kg; 5.5V electrolyte

Over the last several years, increasing the energy density of batteries has been a top priority in battery technology development, congruent with increasing demands for faster mobile devices and longer-lasting electronic vehicles. The energy density of lithium-ion batteries can be enhanced by either increasing the capacity of electrodes, or by... Read more →


Audi is testing factory vehicles powered by used lithium-ion batteries at its main plant in Ingolstadt. Like all automobile manufacturers, Audi is obliged by law to take back energy carriers after they have been used in cars. Because they still have a large proportion of their original charging capacity, an... Read more →


Kia brings e-Soul to Europe, upgrades Niro hybrid and PHEV

Kia used the Geneva International Motor Show as the platform to introduce the battery-electric e-Soul to Europe, as well as to reveal new upgrades to the Niro Hybrid and Plug-in Hybrid. Every Kia vehicle on show in Geneva employs the brand’s mild-hybrid, hybrid, plug-in hybrid, or electric vehicle technology. Electrification... Read more →


Kia Motors revealed its new all-electric concept car, Imagine by Kia, at the 2019 Geneva International Motor Show. Imagine by Kia is the company’s first pure electric four-door passenger car. Unlike the award-winning e-Niro electric crossover, which is based on the existing architecture of the hybrid-powered Niro, Imagine by Kia... Read more →


NREL announces $18M investment in 9 new projects to advance medium- and heavy-duty natural gas vehicle technologies

The US Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) has selected nine projects as part of a multimillion-dollar effort funded jointly by the US Department of Energy (DOE), the California Energy Commission (CEC), and the Southcoast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) to advance the state of technology for natural... Read more →


The latest edition of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) annual Automotive Trends Report finds that Model Year (MY) 2017 vehicle fuel economy was 24.9 miles per gallon, slightly higher than MY 2016, and a record high overall. Since MY 2004, fuel economy and CO2 emissions have improved in eleven... Read more →


At the Geneva International Motor Show, Tom Gardner, Senior Vice President, Honda Motor Europe, said that the company intends to move 100% of its European sales to electrified powertrains by 2025. This new ambition builds on the brand’s 2017 aim of two-thirds of its sales to be electrified by 2025,... Read more →


XL unveiled its plug-in hybrid electric Ford Super Duty F-250 pickup truck (earlier post) at the NTEA Work Truck Show in Indianapolis. As the company first revealed in February, XL’s newest product expands its successful plug-in hybrid electric (PHEV) product family, which also includes the XLP Ford F-150 that the... Read more →


ARPA-E awards $2M to Achates Power for opposed-piston engine for hybrids; U Mich, Nissan partners

Achates Power was awarded $2 million in funding from the US Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy (ARPA-E) for the development of a Highly-efficient Opposed-Piston Engine (HOPE) for Hybrid Vehicles. (Earlier post.) Achates Power has partnered with the University of Michigan and Nissan Motor Company., Ltd. for the project.... Read more →


Nissan unveiled the all-new IMQ concept vehicle at the Geneva International Motor Show. At the heart of the IMQ is the next generation of e-POWER, a 100% electric motor drive system that delivers instant, linear acceleration. e-POWER, introduced in 2016 in the Note, is a non-plug-in series-hybrid drive system. e-POWER... Read more →


The Nissan LEAF is the first electric car to surpass 400,000 sales. Introduced in 2010 as the world’s first mass-market electric vehicle, the Nissan LEAF has led the way in making the excitement and convenience of electric driving accessible to non-luxury buyers. In launching the first-generation LEAF, Nissan pledged to... Read more →


Mercedes-Benz unveiled the first purely battery-electric people mover in the premium segment at the Geneva Motor Show. Mercedes-Benz Vans plans to release a series-production vehicle on the basis of the Concept EQV, to be presented to the public at this year’s Frankfurt Autoshow. Technical highlights of the vehicle include a... Read more →


Mazda Motor Corporation staged the world premiere of the second model in its new-generation lineup, the Mazda CX-30 compact crossover SUV, at the Geneva International Motor Show. As a new core model, the CX-30 will be rolled out to global markets, with sales starting from Europe this summer. The powertrain... Read more →


Volvo Buses and Nanyang Technological University (NTU) in Singapore have demonstrated the world’s first 12-meter autonomous electric bus. The Volvo bus will soon begin trials on the NTU campus. The bus is equipped with four lidar sensors which enables it to detect and stop for objects coming in its way.... Read more →


Federal agencies release framework for advancing the bioeconomy

The federal Biomass Research and Development (BR&D) Board unveiled a multi-agency strategy to accelerate innovative technologies that harness the nation’s biomass resources for affordable biofuels, bioproducts, and biopower. The Bioeconomy Initiative: Implementation Framework was developed by the B&RD Board—an interagency collaborative which is co-chaired by the US Department of Agriculture... Read more →


At the Geneva International Motor Show, Jeep presented its new plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) models: the Jeep Renegade and Jeep Compass. The new PHEVs have a pure electric range of approximately 50 kilometers (31 miles) and a top electric speed of about 130 km/h (81 mph). CO2 emissions are... Read more →


Teijin Limited’s automotive composites specialty groups have developed a multi-material composite automotive door concept that maintains required crash specifications while reducing overall weight by 35% when compared to a conventional steel door. A prototype of this unique approach, developed jointly by Teijin Composites Innovation Center (TCIC) and Continental Structural Plastics... Read more →


Although Germany, the UK, US, Canada and Ukraine are phasing out domestic coal production capacity, expansion of production capacity in countries such as India and Indonesia is predicted to generate modest annual growth of 1.3% in coal production over the next four years, with output reaching 7.6 billion tonnes in... Read more →


Audi unveiled the Q4 e-tron concept compact electric SUV at the Geneva Motor Show. The Audi Q4 e-tron concept gives an advance look at what will be the fifth series production electric vehicle that the manufacturer will introduce by the end of 2020. The Q4 e-tron concept is based on... Read more →


An analysis by JATO Dynamics has found that average new vehicle CO2 emissions in European increased in 2018, with the total average increasing by 2.4 g/km to 120.5 g/km in 2018—the highest average of the last four years. The analysis covered 23 markets in Europe and found a direct correlation... Read more →


Volvo Cars to limit all its cars to 180 km/h (112 mph); geo-fenced limits possible in future; proposals coming on intoxication and distraction

Volvo Cars, as a worldwide leader in safety, will limit the top speed on all its cars to 180 km/h (112 mph) from 2020. The company’s Vision 2020, which aims for no one to be killed or seriously injured in a new Volvo by 2020, is one of the most... Read more →