July EV Report
EV REPORT #9 – JULY 2022
DRIV EV- A MONTHLY REVIEW OF WHAT’S HAPPENING WITH & ABOUT EVs
This month meet Ziggy, the wireless battery charging robot, sand batteries and all you need to know about Regenerative Braking.
- BMW has just announced its investment of $1.05B to make more electric cars at its Stryr, Austria plant. (Car Buzz 6/25/22).
- VW announced its plans to open 6 battery cell production plants it plans to build in Europe and North America by 2030. The plants have a planned capacity of 40 GWH which is enough to supply 500,000 EVs. (Car & Driver 7/8/22)
- Lexus, Toyota’s luxury division has committed to building a $2.25B development centre in Shimoyama, Japan. The centre will be as big as 140 baseball stadiums and is expected to be ready in March 2024. ( Car Buzz 7/11/22).
- Tesla will soon open up a full supercharger network across North America allowing both Tesla and non Tesla EVs to refuel. Construction of the network is currently underway and is expected to run at capacity by the end of this year.
- Shell is expanding its Canadian EV charging network by adding 70 fast charging ports to its existing 37 refueling stations along major routes from BC to Ontario by the end of this year. Shell’s long range plans call for 500 chargers in Canada by 2025 with one million worldwide by 2030. Currently there are about 16,000 charging ports in 6800 locations in Canada with 90% of them in BC, Ontario and Quebec. (Driving 7/14/22).
- The Governor of NY just announced a new program to accelerate development of 50,000 public and commercial charging ports by 2025. In addition, EV drivers in the state will receive a discounted electric bill for charging their vehicles in off-peak hours. (Rochester News 7/15/22).
- Last week the European Commission approved a joint venture between Volvo, Daimler and Trata to invest $500m euros to set up 1700 truck charging ports by 2027. Big rigs account for 19% of all road emissions in Europe so electrifying this market is critical to meet global climate change goals.(BLoomberg Hyperdrive 6/22/22).
BATTERY PRIMER Part 3: Regenerative Braking
Regenerative braking is part of almost every hybrid and Ev on the market today. The basic purpose of Regenerative Braking (RB) is to save energy by braking which in turn helps to recharge the vehicle’s battery. RB does not replace a vehicle’s conventional braking system. How it works is like this, when braking a braking control unit (BCU) decides if either the conventional system or the RB is to be used. In a hybrid or EV the electric motor can turn in two directions. In one direction it turns the wheels and drives the car and in the other direction it recharges the car’s battery. So when you stop pressing the accelerator and are in coast mode or when you press the brake pedal, the engine starts turning in the opposite direction and recovers the energy created by braking or coasting. RB can save up to 75% of the energy normally wasted through conventional braking and of course this results in far less wear and tear on brake rotors and pads.
For example, in a sudden or emergency situation when the driver hits the brake pedal hard the conventional braking system is triggered but when a driver eases up on the accdlerator when approaching a stop signal the unit will most likely utilize the RB function and gradually slow the vehicle down without actually using the brake pedal. Additionally the BCU decides if the RB is to be used immediately or stored to add to the battery’s range. Many EV;s on the market today have a switch or control know that allows the driver to set how much RB is desired. Usually the range is from very little to what is called “one pedal driving” wherein the brake pedal is used significantly less than one in an ICE vehicle. Having driven 3 EVs with this function I can say it does take getting used to but usually within 30 minutes of driving one adapts and finds the RB very useful.
MORE BATTERY NEWS
- Pictured above is Ziggy, a robotic EV charging station designed to operate in parking garages. It can be summoned with an app on a smart phone and come to where the vehicle is located in the garage. Production is tentatively scheduled for late 2023 or early 2024 according to California start up, EV Safe Charge. The big advantage of Ziggy is that it eliminates congestion at a charging station. (Car & Driver 7/5/22).
- Cambridge< UK based startup “Nyobolt” is using niobium and tungsten in their new battery technology which they say will allow batteries to be charged from empty to 90% in less than 5 minutes while improving power and durability tenfold. Nyobolt’s current focus is on developing batteries for high performance racing EVs but believes its batteries could be ready for the mass market later this decade. (Electrek 7/18/22).
- Sila Technologies is replacing the graphite anode in its lithium ion batteries with a form of silicon they claim will charge faster and increase density by 40%. Mercedes is their first customer and will use the technology in their 2025 EQG model. (Car Tech 7/17/22).
- Swedish EV battery maker, Northvolt has received a $1.1B investment, primarily from VW and Goldman Sachs. Northvolt says its first gigafactory, Northvolt Ett has orders totaling $55B from customers such as Volvo, BMW and VW. (Bloomberg 7/8/22).
- Finnish engineers have installed the world’s first “sand” battery that they say can hold renewable energy for up to months at a time. The battery built by Polar Night Energy (pictured below) is comprised of a tall silo that holds 100 tons of sand. Energy from solar panels and wind turbines warms the sand to 500C and generates hot air that is circulated within the silo. This “green energy” can then be discharged when needed. Researchers claim this would solve the problem of supplying energy for heated buildings. ( Daily Mail 7/5/22).
- The Swedes are doing it again, this time with the world’s first electric passenger ferry (pictured below). Trials are still underway in Stockholm, Sweden where 900,000 passengers travel by ferry daily. The ferry has a maximum speed of 30 kph, it can go 50 miles on a single charge and can fully recharge an empty battery in 1 hour. ( Bloomberg 6/24/22).
- Turkey recently announced the discovery of the world’s 2nd largest rare element reserve. The reserve is said to have sufficient reserves that can sustain the EV industry for decades to come with a projected annual output of 600 tons of lithium. .Global automakers are naturally overjoyed with this news as such a find as it would ease the supply chain issues that have disrupted industry for the last two years as well as reduce the industry’s reliance on China as Turkey is viewed as a more amicable partner. Car Buzz 7/9/22).
- Amazon is to use electric cargo bikes to replace thousands of its ICE vans. London, England will be the first city to see the switch. These bikes are limited to 25 kph which is usually sufficient for delivery purposes in crowded urban centres. And an Oregon firm, Arcimoto Inc has built the “Deliverator” (pictured below). This is an electric 3 wheeler capable of 75 mph and a range of 100 miles. The Deliverator is designed for fleet customers looking to lower operating costs and maximize deliveries/hour. Cost for the Deliverator is around $25,000. ( Bloomberg 7/4/22).
Global automakers have so far committed to investing over $526B in EVs through 2026 and that is double the amount they projected just a couple of years ago. Since the industry is spending this much on EVs I can only guess that the automakers will be spending less on development for new or redesigned ICE vehicles. While consumers may be able to pay an ICE vehicle for the next 10 or 15 years the rate of improvements and upgrades for these vehicles is sure to slow significantly.
Thanks for reading! Until next month,
The July EV Report was written and contributed by SGIN Member: Andrew McPherson (firstname.lastname@example.org)
If you would like to share any informative articles or reports, please submit to Jenn Bowes (email@example.com)