Follow the Battery Money

Dean Sigler Batteries, Diesel Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

With Tesla’s $5.5 billion “gigafactory” already producing cells for its line of cars and its “Powerwall” home energy storage systems, it now seems like a tenuous, toe-dipping approach with Volkswagen announcing its own battery plans.  VW may invest up to $15.5 billion according to Tech News, the outlet projecting the highest number.  Others with less money but promising technologies are also betting on better batteries. Tesla Gigafactory Grand Opening – More to Come With only 14 percent of its total area completed, the Tesla Gigafactory on Electric Avenue (what else?) near Sparks, Nevada, is already up and running, producing Tesla’s Powerwall and Powerpack battery systems.  According to Teslarati.com, “Elon Musk told investors at the 4th quarter earnings call earlier this …

First Seeo, Now Sakti3

Dean Sigler Electric Aircraft Components, Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Bosch’s acquisition of Seeo Inc. is followed within seven weeks by news that an innovator in another area has acquired a battery developer. Electric-vehiclenews.com announced that “Dyson, the U.K. company famous for its bagless vacuum cleaners, has acquired Michigan-based solid-state battery startup Sakti3 for $90 million and announced plans to build an important $1 billion battery factory to mass produce the next generation battery technology.” The report noted this was the second recent purchase of a promising start-up company by a larger, richer firm.  Bosch acquired Seeo Inc. to benefit from its solid-state technology, which like most solid-state batteries would, among other benefits, reduce or eliminate fire hazards – something brought to the fore by recent FAA rulings on shipping of lithium …

Bosch Doubles Down on Solid-State Batteries

Dean Sigler Electric Aircraft Components, Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Bosch, the German electronics giant, is making a strong showing at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA), and showing off its solid-state Li-ion battery technology.  It recently acquired Seeo, Inc., an American startup that has been developing such a battery for several years, and will add Seeo’s research to its own expertise and exclusive patents. Encouragingly, the company says it will be able to double the energy density of Li-ion batteries while cutting prices by half.  Perhaps discouragingly, Bosch says this will take until 2020 to bring to production. Green Car Congress quotes Dr. Volkmar Denner, chairman of the board of management for Robert Bosch GmbH, claiming a breakthrough.  “Bosch is using its knowledge and considerable financial resources to achieve a …

Lithium Sulfur Batteries – Energy Storage at New Heights

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 2 Comments

Last year, Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) announced that researchers had “successfully demonstrated that lithium-sulfur battery technology can indeed outdo lithium-ion on several fronts.”   Theoretically, lithium-sulfur batteries could be four times as energy dense as today’s lithium-ion batteries, but that promise had yet to be demonstrated.  ORNL took initial steps toward that goal, and within the last few months researchers at Vanderbilt University have shown a strong lead in forming lithium-sulfur batteries with commercial potential. Echoing work done at Sakti3, ORNL researchers demonstrated an all-solid-state lithium-sulfur cell, addressing flammability issues shared by batteries with solid electrolytes.  Using lithium polysulfidophosphates (LPSPs) in the cathode, and which have ionic conductivities eight times higher than that of lithium sulfide (Li2S) the team coupled …

Battery Prices and Lithium Futures

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

EV World has a weekly email update to which your editor subscribes.  Because they provide a collection of articles and opinions from different sources, one often comes away questioning trends and even facts – or sometimes the meaning of it all. This week, an article referenced from Green Car Reports says that EV batteries may already have fallen to $250 per kilowatt hour.  This would be a godsend for sales of battery-powered cars, because sticker prices would drop sharply.   The article quotes Wolfgang Bernhart, a partner at Rolan Berger Strategy Consultants, that battery prices are already much lower than previous predictions would have indicated, possibly as low as $250 per kilowatt hour.  His analysis credited economies of scale for this …