Toyota, Hybrid Boat, Voltabox, Ford.
AI for next-gen EVs: The Toyota Research Institute is to invest 35m dollars over the next four years to explore artificial intelligence and machine learning. It shall contribute to the development of advanced materials with a focus on next-gen EV batteries and fuel cell catalysts. Project partners are research entities, universities and companies.
electrek.co, greencarcongress.com, pressroom.toyota.com
Hybrid boat from Toyota: The hybrid pioneer is to transfer its technology to the sea. The prototype boat dubbed PONAM-28V sails with a parallel hybrid system. Toyota will supply a few of its hybrid vessels to Japan’s government for free for testing from mid-2018 for three yeras. Thus the boats will serve at Tokyo port facilities but also shuttle passengers during the Olympics in 2020. The PONAM comes with a 36 kW electric motor and an 11 kWh power pack.
autoblog.com, cnet.com, greencarcongress.com, newsroom.toyota.co.jp
Voltabox to produce 10 MWh: German Paragon subsidiary Voltabox managed to gain a new order for lithium-ion battery modules with NMC technology from an undisclosed client. The volume of the agreement totals 10 MWh and Voltabox plans to produce the battery modules on a new and highly automated assembly line at its headquarter in Delbrück. By the end of 2016, the battery specialist had provided more than 18 MWh of energy for trolleybuses and forklifts.
A strange take on park and charge comes from Ford. A patent outlines a plug-in hybrid whose engine charges the battery while the car is parked – given it is in an open space. How the car is to identify open air though, or how people would react to a parked car with running motor remains unclear.