December, 2013

NASA Glenn develops automated flywheel pulse-and-glide system; improving fuel economy up to 40-100%

Green Car Congress

Innovators at NASA’s Glenn Research Center have developed an automated pulse-and-glide technique using a flywheel energy storage system for on-road vehicles; the technology, which NASA Glenn says can improve fuel economy over existing internal combustion or battery hybrid systems by 40-100%, is available for licensing.

2013 305

Thankful To Be Home — And ALIVE!

Creative Greenius

It all started with the video. It was sent to me last Thursday via email. A YouTube link from someone calling themself Primrose Evergreen. The email said “ We made this video. We want 2 talk 2 U. If U want 2 talk w/us B sitting on the 9/11 bench @ Pier & Valley/Ardmore @ 11:15 PM. Thanksgiving. No phones. No cameras. No recording devices. “ Debra didn’t want me to go and I will admit I was tired from too much food and too much drink.

2013 278
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Electric Cars So Disruptive, Gas Cars Will Be Obsolete In 2016, Says Futurist

Green Car Reports

Many people like to think they can predict the future, but only futurists (and psychics) get paid to do it. And futurist Lars Thomsen thinks that electric cars are such a disruptive technology that they will make gasoline cars obsolete--starting in 2016, or much earlier than most other analysts suggest. Thomsen delivered a speech this past

2013 127

BMW Uses Siri-like Tech to Promote Electric Car

DIY Electric Car

i Genius? service will be promoted across BMW?s s advertising for the BMW i3, which is due to go on sale in the UK in late 2013. I Genius uses software that is capable of interpreting words, their context and sentiment to instantly respond to questions. Consumers can text their questions for free and the system will instantly respond. If people ask a non-sensical or rude question, I Genius will answer with stock replies such as ?I I could talk about that, but I?d

2013 109

Renault, GM, Tesla all promising 200+ mile range electric cars in a few years

National Green Transportation

Renault is working on a plug-in hybrid for 2014, and is joining General Motors in predicting that by 2020 electric cars will commonly have an electric range over 200 miles. The statements were made late last week and

2013 82

MOT changes to clamp down on illegal removal of diesel car DPFs

Green Cars News

A loophole which allowed motorists to have their diesel particulate filters (DPFs) removed yet still pass their MOTs, is to be closed in response to concerns over the environmental impact of this practice. It was an issue raised by the campaign group, Clean Air in London (CAL) back in August, whic[.]. Green credentials

2013 60

Oak Ridge-GM prototype low-viscosity ionic liquid-additized engine oil delivers 2% fuel economy improvement over 5W-30

Green Car Congress

A team from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and General Motors, led by ORNL researcher Dr. Jun Qu, has developed a new group of ionic liquids as lubricant additives that could help improve the energy efficiency of cars and trucks. Prototype low-viscosity ionic liquid-additized engine oil demonstrated a 2% improved fuel economy compared to Mobil 1 5W-30 engine oil (3.93% over the 20W-30 baseline oil) in standard fuel efficiency engine dynamometer tests.

2013 296

More Trending

New Ford Mustang receives its own 2.3L EcoBoost variant

Green Car Congress

Mustang 2.3L EcoBoost. Click to enlarge. Ford revealed its new 2015 version of the Mustang (with great fanfare simultaneously in six cities on four continents and CEO Alan Mulally on ABC’s Good Morning America ) with a choice of three powertrains: a upgraded 5.0L V8, a 3.7-liter V6 and an all-new 2.3-liter EcoBoost engine developed specifically for Mustang.

2013 287

Study shows bamboo ethanol in China technically and economically feasible, cost-competitive with gasoline

Green Car Congress

Bamboo, the composition of which is highly similar to energy grasses used for biofuel production such as switchgrass, is an interesting potential feedstock for advanced bioethanol production in China due to its natural abundance, rapid growth, perennial nature and low management requirements. Now, researchers at Imperial College London have shown that bioethanol production from bamboo in China is both technically and economically feasible, as well as cost-competitive with gasoline.

2013 284

Ford to make start-stop technology available on 70% of its N. America lineup by 2017

Green Car Congress

Auto Start-Stop technology will be available on 70% of Ford’s North American vehicle lineup by 2017, the company said. Ford Auto Start-Stop can increase fuel efficiency by up to 10% in city driving. A major part of the company’s Blueprint for Sustainability, the expansion of Auto Start-Stop comes as the 1.0-liter EcoBoost engine ( earlier post ) is set to go on sale in the 2014 Ford Fiesta. Rated at 45 mpg EPA highway (5.2

2013 284

BAL scientists engineer yeast to produce ethanol from brown seaweed; brown seaweed biorefinery

Green Car Congress

An international team of researchers from Bio Architecture Labs, a synthetic biology and enzyme design company focused on the production of biofuels and biochemicals from macroalgae (seaweed) ( earlier post ), reports the development of a synthetic yeast platform based on Saccharomyces cerevisiae that can efficiently produce ethanol from brown seaweed; the paper is published in the journal Nature.

2013 279

Nanoparticle-modified diesel reduces specific fuel consumption by 7%

Green Car Congress

In a study in the journal Fuel , researchers in India report that diesel modified with nanoparticles of aluminum (Al), iron (Fe) or boron (B) reduced specific fuel consumption by up to 7% compared with standard diesel. These “nano-fuels” showed reduced ignition delay, and longer flame sustenance. Emissions of CO and hydrocarbons were reduced, however NO x marginally increased.

2013 267

US Army flies Black Hawk with 50:50 isobutanol-derived alcohol-to-jet fuel blend

Green Car Congress

Bio-isobutanol company Gevo, Inc. announced that the US Army has successfully flown the Sikorsky UH-60 Black Hawk helicopter on a 50:50 blend of Gevo’s ATJ-8 (Alcohol-to-Jet)—a renewable, drop-in alternative fuel for JP8 derived from isobutanol. Earlier post.). This flight marks the first Army Aircraft to fly on the isobutanol ATJ blend. The US Air Force flew its first test flight using ATJ fuel in 2012. Earlier post.)

2013 263

California ISO publishes roadmap for integrating EVs into grid

Green Car Congress

Summary of the path to enable EVs to provide grid services. Source: CA ISO. Click to enlarge. The California Independent System Operator Corporation (ISO) has released a blueprint for integrating electric vehicles (EVs) into the grid: “ California Vehicle-Grid Integration Roadmap: Enabling Vehicle-based Grid Services ”.

2013 262

Mercedes-Benz announces strategic partnership with smart watch company Pebble Technology

Green Car Congress

Mercedes-Benz announced a strategic partnership with smart watch company Pebble Technology in the run-up to the 2014 International CES. The partnership gives Mercedes-Benz early access to some of the newest hardware and early releases of application programming interfaces (APIs) offered by the Silicon Valley-based company, allowing it to develop innovative integrated applications that pave the way for the future of in-vehicle use cases.

2013 262

ClipperCreek introduces 30 Amp 240V vehicle charge station starting at $590

Green Car Congress

ClipperCreek introduced its latest product, the HCS-40, a 30 Amp, 240 Volt Level 2 electric vehicle charging station, with prices starting at $590. The indoor/outdoor HCS features a fully sealed NEMA 4 enclosure and comes standard with 25 feet of charging cable and a 3-year warranty; an optional connector holster costs $19.

2013 261

Two case studies outline how Houston and Loveland are saving money with EVs in their fleets

Green Car Congress

The Electrification Coalition released two case studies outlining how two cities— Houston, Texas and Loveland, Colorado —are saving money by using electric vehicles (EVs) in their vehicle fleets. The Electrification Coalition, launched in November 2009, is committed to promoting policies and actions that facilitate the deployment of electric vehicles on a mass scale in order to combat the economic, environmental, and national security threats posed by US dependence on petroleum.

2013 258

Global geothermal industry passes 12,000 MW operational

Green Car Congress

The global geothermal industry surpassed 12,000 MW of geothermal power operational, with about 600 MW of new geothermal power coming online globally, according to a year-end update by the Geothermal Energy Association (GEA). New geothermal power came on line in Kenya, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Turkey, and Mexico, as well as Oregon, Nevada and Utah in the United States. New project announcements have increased the resource under development to about 30,000 MW.

2013 256

American Axle introduces EcoTrac disconnecting all wheel drive

Green Car Congress

American Axle & Manufacturing (AAM) announced the introduction of the automotive industry’s first disconnecting all-wheel-drive (AWD) system. EcoTrac is featured on the all-new 2014 Jeep Cherokee (rear-axle disconnect). The EcoTrac Disconnecting All Wheel Drive takes a new approach to minimizing the effect of inertia and drag on a vehicle’s driveline system by disconnecting many of the rotating components from the driveline when they are not needed.

2013 256

ExxonMobil Outlook: 35% growth in energy demand by 2040; hybrids to account for ~50% of new vehicle sales

Green Car Congress

By 2040, hybrids are expected to account for about 35% of the global light-duty vehicle fleet, up from less than 1% in 2010. Hybrids are expected to account for about half of global new-car sales by 2040. Source: ExxonMobil. Click to enlarge. Driven by increasing population, urbanization and rising living standards, the world will require some 35% more energy in 2040, according to ExxonMobil’s annual forecast report: Outlook for Energy: A View to 2040.

2013 256

US PIRG report finds reduced driving and rates of car commuting in most populous US urbanized areas

Green Car Congress

VMT per capita has declined across the US (2006 to 2011). States with shading are missing reliable data for all or part of an urbanized area, and ‘X’s denote the location of excluded urbanized areas. Source: US PIRG. Click to enlarge. A new report by the US PIRG Education Fund and the Frontier Group details reduced driving miles and rates of car commuting in the US’ most populous urbanized areas, as well as greater use of public transit and biking in most cities. The average American drives 7.6%

2013 256

Honda joins vehicle-to-grid technology demonstration project in partnership with University of Delaware and NRG Energy

Green Car Congress

Honda has joined a demonstration project for experimental vehicle-to-grid (V2G) technology aimed at providing a potentially valuable energy storage resource to the electrical grid while providing for more cost-effective ownership of plug-in electric vehicles. The Honda technology builds off of the research conducted by the University of Delaware and now supported by NRG Energy, Inc. through their eV2g joint venture ( earlier post ).

2013 253

Rotterdam using BYD e6 for electric taxi fleet

Green Car Congress

Rotterdam Taxi Centre (RTC), one of the biggest taxi operators in the Netherlands, is switching to electric taxis and has put into service two BYD e6 models, following successful extensive operation with an e6 model. RTC plans to extend its fleet of emissions free pure electric taxis to 25 within the next 18 months, according to CEO Sjaak de Winter. The City will install the 500 th charging point next week, supplied with ‘green’ electricity from renewable sources.

E6 252

Siemens and Cummins partner to provide diesel-electric EPA Tier 4 passenger rail locomotives in US

Green Car Congress

Siemens Rail Systems and Cummins are partnering to bring EPA Tier 4 compliant locomotives to market. Under the agreement, Cummins QSK95 diesel engines will be used in Siemens’ diesel electric locomotives in the US. Leveraging Siemens proven rail technology, these locomotives will be designed and built specifically to deliver a smoother, more reliable and more energy-efficient riding experience for passengers. The QSK95 engine for rail. Click to enlarge.

2013 250

Venter: algae biofuels require “real scientific breakthroughs”; biofuels need a carbon tax to be viable

Green Car Congress

During his keynote and subsequent question-and-answer session at the BIO Pacific Rim Summit on Industrial Biotechnology and Bioenergy in San Diego this week, Dr. Craig Venter, Founder, Chairman, and CEO, J. Craig Venter Institute and Founder and CEO, Synthetic Genomics, Inc. SGI) tangentially provided a brief update on the status of SGI’s research work with ExxonMobil into algae biofuels, as well as some general observations on the prospects for algae biofuels. “

2013 248

Honda begins sales of new VEZEL and VEZEL hybrid in Japan

Green Car Congress

VEZEL HYBRID. Click to enlarge. Honda Motor Co., began sales of the VEZEL in Japan today. Honda says that the VEZEL fuses the dynamic qualities of an SUV, the elegance of a coupe, the functionality of a minivan and excellent fuel economy. The conventional VEZEL is equipped with a 1.5L direct-injection DOHC i-VTEC engine coupled to a CVT, as is available in front-wheel and four-wheel drive versions.

2013 247

CRC ACES Phase 2 report finds emissions from modern heavy-duty diesels well below required levels

Green Car Congress

2010 engines emissions reduction relative to 2010, 2007, and 2004 US emission standards. Source: CRC. Click to enlarge.

2013 247

Study explores impact of changing gasoline and diesel taxes in Europe

Green Car Congress

Diesel is currently taxed at a lower level than gasoline in Europe; however, since 2011 the EC has been considering reversing that situation by making energy taxes systematically reflect the CO 2 performance of the energy product. As on a volumetric basis, diesel contains more carbon than gasoline, the tax on diesel fuel would increase.

2013 246

Ford researchers report detailed study of the effect of different ethanol blend levels on emissions from FFVs

Green Car Congress

FTP cycle-weighted tailpipe emissions of N 2 O, NO x , and the sum of NMOG and NO x. The minimum in NO x and NMOG emissions for midlevel ethanol blends points to future opportunities for emission reductions from FFVs. Credit: ACS, Hubbard et al. Click to enlarge.

2013 246

Univ. of Waterloo and GM team develop simple flash heat treatment to boost performance of Si-based anodes for Li-ion batteries

Green Car Congress

Flash heat treatment significantly boosted the performance of silicon-based electrode materials. Credit: ACS, Hassan et al. Click to enlarge. Researchers at the University of Waterloo (Canada) and the General Motors Global Research and Development Center have developed a novel, economical flash heat treatment (FHT) for fabricated silicon-based Li-ion electrodes to boost the performance and cycle capability of Li-ion batteries.

2013 246

Converting glycerol from biodiesel production into bio-gasoline

Green Car Congress

A team at the University of Idaho has demonstrated that glycerol, a byproduct from biodiesel production, could be used as a substrate for producing drop-in gasoline-range biofuel. In a paper published in the ACS journal Energy & Fuels , Guanqun Luo and Armando G. McDonald describe their study of converting methanol (MTG) and a mixture of methanol and glycerol (MGTG) into gasoline-range hydrocarbons using a bench-top, fixed-bed microreactor.

2013 246

EIA: light duty vehicle energy consumption to drop 25% by 2040; increased oil production, vehicle efficiency reduce US oil and liquid imports

Green Car Congress

Energy consumption by light-duty vehicles in the United States, AEO2013 and AEO2014, 1995-2040 (quadrillion Btu). LDV energy consumption declines in AEO2014 Reference case from 16.0 quadrillion Btu in 2012 to 12.1 quadrillion Btu in 2040, compared with 13.0 quadrillion Btu in 2040 in the AEO2013 Reference case. Source: EIA. Click to enlarge.

2013 243

DSM and DONG Inbicon show cellulosic bio-ethanol fermentation on industrial scale with 40% higher yield

Green Car Congress

Royal DSM, together with DONG Energy (Denmark), has demonstrated the combined fermentation of C 6 and C 5 sugars from wheat straw on an industrial scale. The combined fermentation results in a 40% increase in ethanol yield per ton of straw, which can result in significant cost cuts in the production of bio-ethanol from cellulosic feedstock.

2013 241

New Berkeley Lab spectroscopy technique for in situ measurement of charge dynamics in an operating battery electrode

Green Car Congress

This schematic depicts the new soft X-ray spectroscopy technique. Windows etched into a foil covering allow soft X-rays to measure charge dynamics in an operating electrode. Click to enlarge. Researchers at Berkeley Lab and its Advanced Light Source have developed a new soft X-ray spectroscopy technique that can measure the migration of ions and electrons in an integrated, operating battery electrode.

2013 240

DOE releases three reports showing strong growth in US fuel cell and hydrogen market

Green Car Congress

The US Department of Energy (DOE) released three new reports showcasing strong growth across the US fuel cell and hydrogen technologies market. According to these reports, the US continues to be one of the world’s largest and fastest growing markets for fuel cell and hydrogen technologies. In 2012, nearly 80% of total investment in the global fuel cell industry was made in US companies.

2013 239

Sen. Baucus draft for energy tax reform focuses on clean production of electricity and fuels; repeals plug-in vehicle credits

Green Car Congress

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) introduced the latest in a series of discussion drafts to overhaul the US tax code. This new staff discussion draft focuses energy tax policy on stimulating domestic, clean production of electricity and transportation fuels, which account for 68% of energy consumed in the US. It also would repeal a number of current tax incentives, including those for plug-in electric vehicles and fuel cell vehicles.

2013 237

New Mercedes-Benz C-Class drops weight, adds new engines, diesel hybrid, w/ plug-in to come; up to 20% cut in fuel consumption

Green Car Congress

The new C-Class. Click to enlarge. Mercedes-Benz has launched its new C-Class, featuring a lightweight design concept with weight savings of up to 100 kg (220 lbs); excellent aerodynamics and new, economical engines along with a hybrid model. The C-Class is the top-selling model series from Mercedes-Benz; sales of the preceding model, which was launched in 2007, total more than 2.4 million.

2013 237