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EVPlus - November 2014 News

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BMW reveal 'Tesla Killer' 500 kW eDrive plug-in hybrid system

Added by admin 30/11/14

Following the success of the BMW i3 electric car, and the i8 hybrid supercar, BMW has developed an even more powerful petrol-electric drivetrain that could underpin prestige and performance models in the future. This could be the most powerful BMW production powertrain ever.
The new system is part of an increasing investment into hybrid electric powertrains, starting with the upcoming 3-Series ActiveHybrid. This one in particular will sit at the top of the range. Expect it to appear in the firm's large saloons and M-powered SUVs in the next few years.
Dubbed Power eDrive, the new system forms part of a extended range of modular hybrid drivetrains being developed in a performance-based EfficientDynamics engineering program at BMW's research and development centre in Munich and envisaged for launch on a limited number of BMW Group production models in what it describes as "up-market segments" before the end of the decade.
The new hybrid system aims to provide the sort of smooth yet urgent step-off performance qualities delivered by a contemporary battery powered electric drive systems like that offered in the Tesla Model S, albeit with an overall range described as being over 600km thanks to a range extender function, including a 100km range on electric power alone.
Revealed in an otherwise innocuous-looking 5-series GT xDrive described by BMW as “the Tesla-killer”, the most powerful of BMW's new modular hybrid drivetrains uses the company's new 170 kW turbocharged 2.0-litre four-cylinder direct injection petrol engine in combination with two electric motors - a 150 kW version of the i3's synchronous uniit mounted up front in the space usually taken up by the torque converter in the car's eight-speed automatic gearbox and an even more powerful 200 kW unit set within the rear axle assembly.
All up, it is claimed to boast a combined system output of 500 kW along with a torque loading that, BMW engineers suggest, reaches beyond 1000 Nm - figures that easily top thhe 338 kW and 720 Nm of the existing 6.75-litre V12 petrol engine used by the 11-year-old Rolls-Royce Phantom.
The principle behind BMW's Power eDrive system is a maximization of electric motor performance.
                                                   Story and image courtesy: Electric Vehicle News



Next Generation GS Yuasa lithium-ion battery triples energy density

Added by admin 17/11/14

GS Yuasa Corp. said Monday it has developed a next-generation lithium-ion battery with three times the capacity of existing products.

The battery uses sulfur as a key material for the positive electrode. The Kyoto-based company now aims to improve the durability of the silicon-based negative electrode, so it can commercialize the next-generation lithium-ion battery by 2020.

Sulfur is harmless to humans, cheap and found in abundance in nature. But it does not conduct electricity, making it difficult to obtain strong electric output from batteries using sulfur-based electrodes.

GS Yuasa succeeded in discharging the high-capacity battery by filling sulfur into small holes on carbon rods in order to make the element conductive, the company said.

“This battery can be manufactured at a lower cost,” said Shuji Hitomi, group manager at GS Yuasa’s research and development center. “If it is used in a car, the range (without recharging) would be greatly increased.”
                                                   Story and image courtesy: Electric Vehicle News



Supercapacitor panel-powered EVs a ‘reality’ in 5 years say QUT researchers

Added by admin 07/11/14

A car partly powered by its own body panels could be on our roads within five years following the development of breakthrough nanotechnology by Queensland’s University of Technology (Australia).
Researchers at QUT have succeeded in developing lightweight ‘supercapacitors’ that they say can be combined with regular batteries to dramatically boost the power of an electric car.

The supercapacitors – described as a ‘sandwich’ of electrolyte between two all-carbon electrodes - were made by the research team into a thin and extremely strong film with a high power density.
The development means that the film could one day be embedded in a car’s body panels, roof, doors, bonnet and floor - storing enough energy to turbocharge an electric car’s battery in just a few minutes.
The findings, published in the Journal of Power Sources and the Nanotechnology journal, are the result of the work of the team comprising Postdoctoral Research Fellow Dr Jinzhang Liu, Professor Nunzio Motta and PhD researcher Marco Notarianni from QUT’s Science and Engineering faculty – Institute for Future Environments, and PhD researcher Francesca Mirri and Professor Matteo Pasquali, from Rice University in Houston in the United States.
According to Marco Notarianni, the car partly powered by its own body panels could be a reality in the next five years.
“Vehicles need an extra energy spurt for acceleration, and this is where supercapacitors come in. They hold a limited amount of charge, but they are able to deliver it very quickly, making them the perfect complement to mass-storage batteries.
“Supercapacitors offer a high power output in a short time, meaning a faster acceleration rate of the car and a charging time of just a few minutes, compared to several hours for a standard electric car battery.”
Dr Liu says one of these cars, after one full charge, should be able to run up to 500km – “similar to a petrol-powered car and more than double the current limit of an electric car."

According to Dr Liu, currently the ‘energy density’ of a supercapacitor is lower than a standard lithium ion (Li-Ion) battery, but its ‘high power density’, or ability to release power in a short time, is far beyond a conventional battery.

More ...
                                                   Story and image courtesy: Electric Vehicle News



Model S Achieves Euro NCAP 5-Star Safety Rating

Added by admin 05/11/14

The Tesla Model S has received a maximum-possible 5-star safety rating from the European New Car Assessment Programme (Euro NCAP).

Model S is one of just a few cars to have ever achieved a 5-star safety rating from both Euro NCAP and the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA). Additionally, Model S is the only car this year to have achieved both a 5-star Euro NCAP rating and 5 stars in every NHTSA subcategory, including frontal impact, side impact, and rollover. Only two other cars have earned the same recognition since 2011 (when NHTSA introduced its latest rating scheme).

The reason so few models achieve 5-star ratings in both Europe and the U.S. is that each program places emphasis on different safety aspects in the assessment process. NHTSA emphasizes structural and restraint safety, with a deep focus on how well the vehicle can withstand and absorb the energy of an impact while protecting its occupants. It is also primarily concerned with adult occupants. On the other hand, Euro NCAP assesses a wider range of scenarios, including tests for child and pedestrian safety. Unlike for NHTSA, active safety is also an important part of Euro NCAP’s 5-star requirement. Every year, the European organization raises the standard for a 5-star rating to account for technological advances in the industry.

The dual 5-star ratings for Model S validate our holistic approach to safety. We have been engineering passive and active safety systems in parallel, so the car is structurally sound and is also designed to intelligently anticipate and react to potentially dangerous situations.

More (+ video)...
                                                   Story and image courtesy: Electric Vehicle News 



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