Pipistrel developing emissions-free regional aircraft
Slovenian aircraft manufacturer Pipistrel is working on a zero-emission regional aircraft with 20 seats, which should be available between 2028 and 2030. The Miniliner concept now unveiled could fly on hydrogen, although Pipistrel says it is still evaluating various propulsion solutions.
Hydrogen fuel cell aircraft takes off in Stuttgart
The latest generation of the world’s first four-seater hydrogen fuel cell aircraft, the Hy4, has now been unveiled at Stuttgart Airport. The latest generation of the Hy4’s propulsion system recently received test flight permission, which means that the model can now take off at Stuttgart Airport.
FutPrInt50 research project to look into hybrid aircraft
Within the framework of the FutPrInt50 research project coordinated by the University of Stuttgart, an international consortium aims to identify and drive forward technologies that will enable the commercial use of a hybrid-electric aircraft with up to 50 seats by 2035/40.
TU Delft & Gazelle developing crash-proof e-bike (video)
TU Delft, together with the bicycle manufacturer Gazelle, has developed the prototype of a crash-proof e-bike. The intelligent control assistant intervenes as soon as the electric bike threatens to tip over and keeps the bike stable and upright at speeds of over 4 km/h.
TU Delft, Umicore, Furion, PC-Aeros.
Self-healing and charging roads: A team at the Technical University of Delft has come up with asphalt able to charge electric cars and to repair itself and is ready to put it on trial. The road material is pervaded with conductive steel fibres and bacteria capable to fill small cracks in its surface when warmed. EV charging shall work whenever cars come to a halt. The scientists estimate, the useful asphalt would cost just 25 percent more than a conventional road.
Umicore is to scale up production to tend to the increasing demand for Li-ion batteries. The Brussels-based company intends to raise 300m euros until 2019 to extend its production of NMC cathode materials. Some of the money will be invested in Cheonan, South Korea and Jiangmen, China, where the first production lines are to start moving at the end of 2018.
Hybrid bike with Wankel engine: French Furion created a hybrid motorcycle concept equipped with a 654cc Wankel rotary engine and a 40 kW electric motor. Thanks to this pairing, the Furion M1 shall lasts for up to 400km with low fuel consumption. If the board will consider mass production, is unclear.
newatlas.com, motorcyclenews.com, paultan.org, youtube.com
Solar maiden flight: PC-Aeros introduced its solar aircraft last year along with the plan to take it on a stratospheric flight by 2018. The first test has been done now albeit with lower aspirations. The solar plane was airborne for seven minutes at a modest height of 300 metres. Further trials are to follow.
Lucid Motors, BMW, Efficient Drivetrains, TU Delft.
LG Chem to supply Lucid Motors: The EV start-up forged yet another battery coalition, this time with LG Chem, after closing a deal with Samsung only recently. The strategic supply agreement with LG will deliver cells with a proprietary chemistry that has been developed together. Lucid said, it deems it best to retain as much flexibility as possible, esp. as it looks at possible other applications for its batteries that may differ in performance requirements.
BMW project i 2.0: A new campus is to combine all R&D activities for autonomous, connected and electric drives from the German carmaker in a centre close to Munich from mid-2017. Project i 2.0 that will bundle all competencies at one location comes prior to the iNext, due to debut in 2021.
bmwgroup.com (in German)
5,000 hybrid and electric drive trains shall soon roll off the lines of Efficient Drivetrains after it relocates to a bigger site. The drive train maker will be moving its current Dixon operations in California into a new 10,000 square foot space in February of 2017.
Integrated battery electrolysis: Researchers at the TU Delft developed the ‘battolyser’ – a battery system that can store or supply electricity but can also split water into hydrogen and oxygen using electrolysis. They claim 90% efficiency for their nickel-iron based battery. The next step is to scale up.
BASF, Nissan, TU Delft, Uni Michigan.
Closer connections: BASF and Toda Kogyo are to collaborate in cathode active materials (CAM) and its respective precursors in the USA. The deal would entail a broad range of CAM for Li-ion batteries for use in the automotive and other markets. The two firms already entertain a similar partnership in Japan.
Nissan fuel cell research: Vanderbilt University and the Georgia Institute of Technology are working with Nissan North America on low-platinum-metal-group electrocatalysts with a proton-conducting binder. The project is funded by the Doe with 4.5m dollars and aims for improved FCV.
The Forze VII has become what its design specc promised as students of the TU Delft presented the hydrogen-powered racer to the public. Two electric motors give the car a peak power of 320 kW, accelerating it from 0 -100 kph in less than 4 seconds. A 100 kW fuel cell stack provides the energy.
Solar car wins for 6th time: The Uni Michigan team has won the American Solar Challenge for the sixth consecutive time. It led the field of 23 college competitors with its solar-powered car that carried the team for 1,975 miles over eight days. Sponsors include Siemens and GM.
Fraunhofer ISC, China, TU Delft, Max Plank Institute.
Why do batteries age? Three years ago, researchers at the Fraunhofer ISC set out to answer that question, looking in detail at Li-ion batteries in electric cars. They found that mainly rapid charging and cell design are to blame. Detailed results ABattReLife EU project were now published.
Battery research centre: The Chinese government will invest 500 million yuan (76.6m dollars) in a R&D centre, as it strives to push local production of batteries for electric vehicles. Companies, universities and institutions are encouraged to cooperate.
Stationery storage study: A three-stage research project by TU Delft will look at powering houses with stationery batteries. The projects will be set up together with Eneco, who wants to become the Tesla Powerwall distributor in the Netherlands. Fields of study include power management and EV charging.
Long life: The Max Planck Institute and the University of Science and Technology of China have developed a long-life sodium battery that still has 96 percent capacity after 2,000 charging cycles. Scientists used a mixture of graphene oxide and nanotubes made of carbon to improve the sodium compound’s conductivity.
TU Delft, Palm Beach, Pepco.
EV study: E-Mobility NSR partner TU Delft produced the report “Analysis of consumers’ EV potential,” asking if people can keep their driving behaviour, while replacing one or all cars with EVs. They found that while people living outside of cities drive longer distances, they also own more cars on average and have a higher potential to replace at least one fuel-based car for an EV.
e-mobility-nsr.eu, e-mobility-nsr.eu (report as PDF)
Free EV ride in Florida: Shoppers and visitors can again hop on (and off) the Palm Beach Free Ride electric cars, as they go into service for a second season. New this year is a Holiday Haute Ride that takes customers from one popular shopping area to the next.
Pepco deploys smart charging solution: The electric service provider will install ClipperCreek’s smart charging stations equipped with Itron Embedded Sensing technology. Pepco´s voluntary Demand Management Pilot Program encourages customers in Maryland to conveniently take advantage of off-peak charging.
Battery train, Formula E, Solar Forest, TU Delft.
Britain’s 1st battery-electric train: Network Rail is currently testing an battery-powered Abellio Greater Anglia Class 379, which is usually fed via overhead lines. Bombardier has now retrofitted the train with battery packs to see if these could enable it to run on routes without overhead power lines.
Formula E charges wireless: At least the safety cars do as Qualcomm delivers its inductive charging technology for two BMW i3 and two i8. So far, only one i3 is ready to charge without a wire but the other three will be made fit to charge inductively soon.
Recharge under a tree: Designer Neville Mars has come up with the idea of a ‘Solar Forest,’ where every “tree” charges an EV and provides shade at the same time. The charging stations are powered by leaf-like solar canopies that follow the path of the sun.
Fuel cell racer: Student’s at the TU Delft are testing the sixth iteration of the Forze, a hydrogen powered lightweight race car that can go from 0 to 100 kph in less than four seconds and onwards to a top speed of 210 kph. The 100-kW fuel cell is supported by a supercapacitor that adds another 90 kW of power.
autoevolution.com (with video)
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Most clicked link on Wednesday was the new anti-Tesla conspiracy featuring the “toxic tesla crime-mobile” in our Short Circuit section.
Fleet manager adoption of EVs, Low-speed EVs in China.
Research tip: William Sierzchula’s study ‘Factors influencing fleet manager adoption of electric vehicles’ at the TU Delft, Netherlands, found that most fleet managers based their EV buying decision on their own testing experience. “Greening” the company’s image or incentives were less important.
greencarcongress.com, sciencedirect.com (purchase study)
Reading tip: EVs are just slowly catching up speed in China? AutoblogGreen took a closer look at low-speed vehicles and found out that half a million electric were sold so far. A low-speed electric vehicle revolution!