Hyundai reportedly working on next-gen solid-state batteries for electric vehicles

April 6, 2017 by  
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Major car companies like Hyundai have toyed with both hydrogen and electricity for clean fuel sources, but now it seems the Seoul, South Korea -based manufacturer may be taking a major step towards improving technology for their electric cars with solid-state batteries . An April 5 report from The Korea Herald says the car company has pilot-scale battery production facilities in which they’re developing the battery technology that could store more energy  and be a game changer for the industry. Hyundai may be working on solid-state batteries in their facilities they own, according to information obtained by The Korea Herald from who they described as sources close to the matter. They quoted this source as saying, “Hyundai is developing solid-state batteries through its Namyang R&D Center’s battery precedence development team and it has secured a certain level of technology.” Related: 2017 Hyundai IONIQ will be offered in EV, plug-in hybrid and hybrid versions Hyundai is apparently developing the technology without help from Korean battery manufacturers like LG Chem or Samsung SDI . The source compared Hyundai’s approach to Toyota’s – they also own production facilities according to the source. Industry sources told The Korea Herald Hyundai might be able to mass produce solid-state batteries around 2025. LG Economic Research Institute analyst Choi Jung-deok told The Korea Herald “…if automakers are able to succeed the mass production of next-generation batteries, the paradigm of batteries in the future may be shifted.” As solid-state batteries carry less risk of explosion they are considered safer than conventional batteries. According to Electrek, no company has yet been able to produce solid-state batteries at a large scale and at a price competitive with lithium-ion batteries. Along with Toyota, Ford has dabbled in the technology as well. Companies like Bosch and Dyson have also invested in the technology; the latter acquired a solid-state battery startup in 2015 for $90 million with plans to construct a $1 billion factory. Via The Korea Herald and Electrek Images via Jakob Härter on Flickr and Wikimedia Commons

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Hyundai reportedly working on next-gen solid-state batteries for electric vehicles

Stanford researchers pioneer world’s first affordable urea battery

February 13, 2017 by  
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Stanford University researchers have designed a new battery that could revolutionize renewable energy storage . Using urea , an affordable, natural and readily available material found in mammal urine and fertilizers, their battery is notably more efficient than past iterations. The battery, developed by Stanford chemistry professor Honjie Dai and doctoral candidate Michael Angell, uses an electrolyte made from urea – a material already produced in mass industrial quantities for use in plant fertilizers. Non-flammable and made with electrodes from abundant materials like aluminum and graphite, the battery presents a low-cost way for storing energy from many sources – including renewables . “So essentially, what you have is a battery made with some of the cheapest and most abundant materials you can find on Earth. And it actually has good performance,” says Dai in a press release. “Who would have thought you could take graphite, aluminum, urea, and actually make a battery that can cycle for a pretty long time?” Dai and his team were the first to make a rechargeable aluminum battery in 2015, which charged in less than a minute, while lasting for thousands of charge-discharge cycles. And they’ve improved on both the performance and cost of their latest model, which is about 100 times cheaper than the 2015 battery, with a higher efficiency of 1,500 charge-discharge cycles and a charging time of 45 minutes. This is also the first time that urea has been used to make a battery. Related: MIT researchers invent ingestible battery powered by stomach acid Energy storage is a huge challenge for solar power and other renewables, as users need a reliable way to store power for when their systems aren’t producing energy. The batteries currently on the market, including lithium ion and lead-acid batteries tend to be quite costly and don’t last that long. But Dai and Angell believe their battery might be the solution to the conundrum of renewable energy storage. “It’s cheap. It’s efficient. Grid storage is the main goal,” says Angell. “I would feel safe if my backup battery in my house is made of urea with little chance of causing fire,” added Dai. The researchers have licensed their battery patents to AB Systems, a company founded by Dai, and a commercial version of the battery is on the way. They’re planning to work on increasing its life span down the road by further investigating its internal chemical processes. Via Stanford Images via Pexels , US Navy and Tea Horse Trade Guest House , Wikimedia Commons

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Stanford researchers pioneer world’s first affordable urea battery

Playful KATRIS scratching post blocks fit together like Tetris for cats

February 13, 2017 by  
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Cat owners who find themselves hiding grubby scratching posts out of sight will love this awesome KATRIS set that combines feline fun with playful design. The modular system consists of scratchable blocks that double as flexible furnishings . All of the pieces are non-toxic, and they can be assembled in a variety of ways so that cats can enjoy an ever-changing feline playground. Featured on an episode of Animal Planet’s “My Cat From Hell”, KATRIS is the result of extensive research into the best materials for feline furniture according to cat behavioral science. Each shred-resistant block is made with 200 sheets of FSC-certified heavy-duty paper , and they can support up to 300 pounds of weight. The blocks can be connected in a variety of ways using built-in straps. https://youtu.be/dHhO_CnZBjU Related: Architects turn a cramped apartment into a gorgeous loft where the owner’s cats can roam freely The blocks are manufactured using non-toxic ingredients, such as SGS-certified, non-toxic glue and eco-friendly branding ink made with non-toxic soybean inks. Not only is the whole system completely recyclable, but the blocks are designed to have an extremely long life cycle, further minimizing waste. + KATRIS Cat Via Curbed Images via KATRIS

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Playful KATRIS scratching post blocks fit together like Tetris for cats

New man-made diamonds turn nuclear waste into long-lasting batteries

November 29, 2016 by  
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Researchers have found a way to use diamonds to convert nuclear waste into long-lasting batteries . A team of physicists and chemists at the University of Bristol discovered the new technology, which transforms thousands of tons of troublesome nuclear waste into lab-grown diamond batteries capable of generating a small amount of electricity. The diamond batteries, like the precious gems they are based on, could last essentially forever. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6ME88nMnYE Ushering in what researchers are calling the “Diamond Age” of battery power, the technology developed by the University of Bristol team uses man-made diamonds formed from nuclear waste, plus a small amount of radioactive energy, to create a low-current battery durable enough to outlast human civilization. The team unveiled their discovery on Friday at a sold-out lecture at the Cabot Institute. While traditional batteries require wires and coils to operate, the diamond-based battery needs only to be placed near a radioactive source in order to begin generating small electrical currents. The lack of moving parts makes the battery far more durable than its conventional counterparts. Related: Recycled diamonds provide an ethical choice for glittering milestone gifts Additionally, the diamond batteries could help dispose of nuclear waste in a safe, permanent way, while resulting in usable energy that does not produce greenhouse gas emissions or require supplemental fuel. “There are no moving parts involved, no emissions generated and no maintenance required, just direct electricity generation,” said Tom Scott, Professor in Materials in the University of Bristol’s Interface Analysis Center. “By encapsulating radioactive material inside diamonds, we turn a long-term problem of nuclear waste into a nuclear-powered battery and a long-term supply of clean energy .” Early prototypes of the battery rely on nickel-63 as the radiation source, which is encased within the man-made diamond, but the team is testing other options to boost efficiency and output. Next on the list is the addition of carbon-14, a radioactive version of carbon which can be easily harvested from graphite blocks. The United Kingdom currently stores around 95,000 metric tons of graphite blocks, so the utilization of carbon-14 in diamond batteries would greatly reduce the cost and risk of storing that particular form of nuclear waste . Via New Atlas Images via Michelle Tribe/Flickr and University of Bristol

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New man-made diamonds turn nuclear waste into long-lasting batteries

Why Tesla’s SolarCity bid is more than a family affair

June 22, 2016 by  
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The combined clean energy giant could result in a “one-stop shop” for solar homes with an electric car in the garage. But that’s not all.

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Why Tesla’s SolarCity bid is more than a family affair

The nuts and bolts of aggregated energy storage

October 16, 2015 by  
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Are customer-sited batteries right for you? Here’s a detailed cost-benefit analysis.

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The nuts and bolts of aggregated energy storage

3 new ways batteries can keep you going and going and going

September 21, 2015 by  
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Get ready for energy storage capabilities to disrupt the electricity grid.

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3 new ways batteries can keep you going and going and going

Researchers develop printable, flexible lithium-ion batteries shaped like hearts

August 17, 2015 by  
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As design objects, batteries couldn’t be more boring. They are wholly functional, featuring unimaginative square edges and wrapped completely in monotones. Batteries are designed to end up hiding inside something far better-looking, like an iPhone or a Tesla. But, thanks to 3D printing , batteries might soon get their moment in the spotlight. Researchers in South Korea have been experimenting with a new technology that lends itself to a variety of battery shapes, including paper-thin versions that bend, as well as whimsical heart-shaped ones. Read the rest of Researchers develop printable, flexible lithium-ion batteries shaped like hearts

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Researchers develop printable, flexible lithium-ion batteries shaped like hearts

#SmallSteps: Recycling and Rechargeable Batteries

July 2, 2015 by  
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You may recycle cardboard and plastic, but what else is in your trash that you can recycle? Ever thought about those batteries you toss out? Turns out, it’s more dangerous than most of us knew to just throw out our batteries! There are about 3…

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#SmallSteps: Recycling and Rechargeable Batteries

Tesla’s Powerwall home battery is already sold out through 2016

May 9, 2015 by  
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Only a week has gone by since Elon Musk announced Tesla’s new, much-hyped Powerwall home battery on April 30, and the company is reporting that they’ve already sold out of their batteries through mid-2016, booking 800 million in revenue, according to Bloomberg . On an investor earnings call on May 6th, Musk reported that the demand is so high for their batteries that in the past 7 days alone they’ve taken already reservations for 38,000 home batteries and 2500 of the larger commercial scale batteries intended for industry. Musk says that this means that Tesla will have to expand the current Gigafactory that is under construction or build another one, as the originally-planned 5-million-square-foot battery factory they’re working on will not be big enough. According to Musk, the production of batteries alone will easily consume the entire capacity of the $5 billion, 50 GWh Gigafactory in Nevada, which is slated to open next year. Read the rest of Tesla’s Powerwall home battery is already sold out through 2016 Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: elon musk , Gigafactory , power wall , powerwall , reserving the Powerwall , solar city , tesla , tesla battery , tesla factory , Tesla Gigafactory , tesla home battery , Tesla nevada factory , tesla powerwall , tesla powerwall home battery

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Tesla’s Powerwall home battery is already sold out through 2016

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