San Diegans could get $20,000 off price of electric car

August 15, 2017 by  
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Elon Musk might have just ushered in the era of affordable electric vehicles with the first Tesla Model 3 cars rolling off the production line, but south of the Fremont factory in San Diego there is another great deal going on. Starting this month and running through the end of September, San Diego Gas & Electric customers can take advantage of a $10,000 discount off the purchase of a 2017 Nissan Leaf or a 2017 BMW i3. When the state of California’s $2,500 EV rebate and the $7,500 federal tax credit are added, SDG&E customers could potentially get $20,000 off the price of an electric car. The utility also offers an annual bill credit of up to $200 for driving an electric vehicle. Related: New lithium-ion battery from Japan could double electric vehicle range “All-electric cars have fewer parts which result in no oil changes and less maintenance costs,” the SDG&E website states. “Electric cars on freeways and neighborhood streets in the San Diego region reduces greenhouse gases and improves air quality. Moreover, when EVs plug into SDG&E’s grid they receive 43% renewable energy and no coal.” According to SDG&E, there are more than 1,100 public charging stations in the utility’s territory with plans to reach 3,500 charging stations. Charging infrastructure is increasing across the state — the California Energy Commission has awarded nearly $65 million to pay for more than 7,800 electric vehicle charging stations. + SDG&E Via The Verge Images via BMW and Nissan

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San Diegans could get $20,000 off price of electric car

‘Trump Forest’ plants trees to offset president’s climate ignorance

August 15, 2017 by  
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President Donald Trump is notorious for his ignorance on climate change . So instead of sitting by while his administration harms the planet, a British climate scientist, American PhD candidate, and French and Kiwi sustainable hat company founder decided to take action. They started Trump Forest to encourage people to plant trees , and have seen a huge response: so far hundreds of people around the world have pledged 130,999 trees . “Where ignorance grows trees” is the tagline of the Trump Forest project. Dan Price, Jeff Willis, and Adrien Taylor initiated the project in March of this year in New Zealand with a contribution of 1,000 native trees from Taylor’s company Offcut (which plants a tree for every cap sold). From there, hundreds of people in places as far-flung as Malawi, Japan, and the United States pledged to plant trees too. Related: Meet the teen planting 150 trees for every person on Earth Trump Forest isn’t after money, according to their website. Instead, they hope people will pay for and plant trees where they live in the name of America’s president, or donate to charity Eden Reforestation Projects . Taylor told the BBC of Trump, “Only a small percentage of the world voted him in, but we all have to deal with the consequences of his climate ignorance.” The organizers told the BBC they would need to plant a forest as big as Kentucky to offset Trump’s policies. They also estimated they’d need to offset 650 megatonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent by 2025 to make up for the actions of America’s commander-in-chief – that’s over 100 billion new trees. They think it’s feasible. Wouldn’t a forest named after Trump just bolster his already large ego? The organizers say people have complained about that, but they’d prefer if the president got on board. Taylor told the BBC, “We kind of want him to love the forest; this is his forest after all. We would love it if he tweeted about it.” Price said, “All we’re trying to do is pick up the slack he created and do the work for him.” If you want to get involved, you can check out the project here . + Trump Forest Via BBC Images via Pixabay and Ozark Drones on Unsplash

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‘Trump Forest’ plants trees to offset president’s climate ignorance

The UK will require electric car chargers at all major gas stations

August 10, 2017 by  
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Electric cars are expected to reach cost parity with gas-powered vehicles as soon as 2018 – and governments around the world are introducing new legislation and incentives to keep up with increasing demand. The UK just announced a new law that requires all major petrol (gas) stations and motorway services to install electric car chargers. The Automated and Electric Vehicles Bill, which was revealed during the Queen’s parliamentary speech, commits the government to improving the country’s electric charging infrastructure. It also requires that charging points be easy to access, work seamlessly across the UK and fall in line with the same set of technical and operational standards. As Auto Express reports, the UK’s public charging infrastructure is having a tough time keeping pace with EV uptake. In fact, a recent investigation reveals that electric and plug-in car ownership increased from 2,254 vehicles in 2012 to 85,983 at the end of 2016. At the same time, the number of charging points in the UK only grew to 11,736 in 4,243 locations (from 2,883 in 1,287 locations) during the same period. Previously, the European Parliament said there has to be at least one charger for every 10 electric cars on the road for EVs to become commercially viable. However, data obtained by charge point database Zap-Map shows that the ratio of EVs to chargers has grown from 0.78 to 7.32 in four years. Requiring all major petrol stations to install EV charging points is sure to further improve the car-per-charger-ratio. Related: GM is selling an electric car in China that costs just $5,300 Of course, it’s important to remember that it’s not just up to the government to install charging infrastructure. Says Steve Gooding, director of the RAC Foundation, “Ultimately, public investment in charging infrastructure will need to be matched by the private sector.” Via Auto Express Images via Pixabay

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The UK will require electric car chargers at all major gas stations

100 percent clean energy is a team sport

August 8, 2017 by  
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Hawaii is leading the U.S. in becoming the first state to legally mandate using 100 percent renewable energy in the electric sector by 2045. Like any great goal, it will take team thinking and consideration of customer’s changing needs. 

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100 percent clean energy is a team sport

The world’s first all-electric sport utility truck is finally here – and it looks incredible

July 27, 2017 by  
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Electric vehicle buyers are spoiled for choice these days – there’s electric sports cars , sedans , SUVs , minivans , and motorcycles . So where’s the electric truck? New York-based Bollinger Motors just answered that question with the B1 – the world’s first all-electric, all-wheel drive sport utility truck. It’s remarkably refined with a strong, stealthy profile – and it’s rough and rugged enough to haul heavy loads and tackle challenging terrain. The B1 has better horsepower, torque, and ground clearance than any gas-powered truck in its class – plus a few features you simply won’t find in internal combustion engine vehicles. Read on for a first look – straight from Bollinger’s unveil tonight in New York City. Electric trucks make a lot of sense on paper, as EVs produce plenty of torque – which trucks need to cart heavy loads. However this power comes at a price – lithium ion cells are heavy, and automakers must carefully balance battery weight vs performance and cost when creating a new EV. Bollinger Motors found a winning formula by nesting the B1’s batteries in a remarkably strong aluminum chassis that weighs just 295 pounds. Two battery setups are available – a 60 kWh system with 120 miles of range, and a 100 kWh system with 200 miles of range. The longer range beats most electric cars on the road today – which is even more impressive given the B1’s powertrain specs. The Bollinger B1’s full-time, all-wheel drive powertrain features front and rear-mounted synchronous electric motors that produce 360 horsepower and 472 lb-ft of torque. That’s a lot of power – and it gives the B1 a 0-60 speed of 4.5 seconds and a top speed of 127 miles per hour. The vehicle’s curb weight is 3,900 pounds, which translates to a 10.8 power to weight ratio – and it has a payload capacity of 6,100 pounds. The sport utility truck measures 150 inches long, 76.5 inches wide, and 73.5 inches tall. It has a 105-inch wheelbase and 15.5 inches of ground clearance, which can be adjusted by the vehicle’s hydro-pneumatic suspension within 10 inches of wheel travel. Since the batteries are sunk into the chassis, the B1 has an exceptionally low center of gravity, and the engineering team dialed in a perfect 50/50 weight balance. This all adds up to an extremely capable off-road vehicle that gets an estimated 67.4 MPGe. The B1’s design is sleek and spartan inside and out. Aluminum interior panels help keep the truck’s weight down, and the dash features an old school mechanical speedometer and tachometer in addition to gauges for battery level, range updates, charging status, and FMVSS warning signals. The vehicle seats four within a steel passenger safety cage, and the interior can be fully hosed down thanks to polyurethane floor pans and rubber seals and gaskets that protect the instruments. The B1’s electric powertrain frees up cargo space for a “frunk” that is accessible through the center console. This is a clever design decision, as a stack of 12-foot boards will fit handily within the enclosed vehicle. It also has another trick up its sleeve: “Since the B1 is an all-electric truck, it’s really a portable energy source,” says Bollinger Motors’ founder and CEO, Robert Bollinger. “So we put 100 volt plugs throughout the truck so you can use it to power any equipment and tools you might need out in the field. USB and 12 volt plugs are also integrated into the dash to cover all power needs.” The inspiration for the B1 is easy to trace – it looks a bit like the iconic Land Rover Defender, stripped of its curves and fitted with a powerful all-electric powertrain. It’s not designed to be a mainstream truck, but as a boutique vehicle it’s stunning with performance to match. “We are so thrilled to be able to finally take the wraps off of our Bollinger B1 SUT,” said Robert Bollinger. “This is the culmination of what has been a 40-year-long boyhood dream of mine and I couldn’t be more pleased with the vehicle and the incredible team who worked so hard to create it.” The B1 prototype was designed, engineered and manufactured in Hobart, New York – and Bollinger is planning to keep all operations within the US as production begins. They’re currently talking to independent vehicle manufacturers with the goal of launching a production run of 10,000-15,000 vehicles later this year and delivering the first vehicles within 19 months. Bollinger has yet to announce pricing, however they’re targeting “ranchers, builders, do-it-yourselfers” with a direct to consumer model and a price point comparable to a “nicely equipped sport utility vehicle.” Interested buyers can reserve a spot on Bollinger Motors’ website, which will enable them to place an order in early 2018 with a $1000 down payment. + Bollinger Motors  

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The world’s first all-electric sport utility truck is finally here – and it looks incredible

Sono Motors unveils the $18,000 SION solar-powered car

July 27, 2017 by  
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The dream of being able to commute to work in a solar-powered car is finally becoming a reality. Sono Motors just unveiled the SION solar-powered electric car that can travel up to 18 miles using nothing but energy from the sun. The best part is that the SION isn’t just for the wealthy, since it only costs 16,000 Euros (around $18,600) plus the cost of the battery, and it is packed with incredible features like built-in moss filtration, bi-directional charging and integrated solar panels. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-sMMhO5kbVg Last year, Sono Motors, a German startup raised over $200,000 to bring the SION to life. Using 300 photovoltaic panels, the SION can store enough energy from the sun to travel up to 18 miles, but if you need to travel further, the SION can also be recharged using a standard outlet, like a conventional electric car. Depending on how much you want to spend, you can rent the car battery monthly, or purchase outright. Related: Lightyear unveils solar-powered car with a 500-mile driving range The Extender model starts at $16,000 Euros and has a driving range of 110 – 120 miles and can be quick-charged up to 80% in 40 minutes. Charging it up with the power of the sun will take half a day, but since Sono Motors says you can drive it to work for an 8-hour shift, the battery will be fully recharged thanks to the solar cells when you get off. With room for five passengers, you can bring the whole family along. A unique moss liner is integrated into the ventilation system that acts as a natural air filter to filter fine particles of dust from the air. There are also six airbags to keep everyone safe. Everything is controlled through the cockpit – a smart screen that shows your speed, battery level and everything else you need to run things smoothly. Repairs should be affordable, since Sono is releasing a repair manual and affordable parts along with the car. Sono Motors has also announced the addition of a new mobility system, called “goSono”. With the Sono App and the function of the bi-directional charging, you can use the vehicle as a mobile storage to power external devices, like generators while heading off the grid. Additionally the app makes it easy to offer make money with the SION by either renting it out through car sharing or by giving rides to other passengers, like Uber or Lyft . Sono Motors has already received interest from over 1,200 pre-orders for the SION, but the company is hoping to get that number to at least 5,000 before they can start production. The next step to get to the SION on the road is to get people behind the wheel, which will include unique test drive tours that will take place all over Europe. The first deliveries are expected to arrive in 2018. Images @Sono Motors + Sono Motors

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Sono Motors unveils the $18,000 SION solar-powered car

Eviation Aircraft unveils all-electric aircraft with 600-mile range

June 23, 2017 by  
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Though flying via airplane is a fast and fun way to travel, it is one of the least environmentally-friendly methods to do so. That may soon change, however, as Eviation Aircraft (a member of NASA’s on-demand mobility program) recently unveiled the first prototype of an all-electric aircraft that has a range of up to 600 miles (965 km). Presented at the 52nd International Paris Air Show, the prototype could be ready to move into certification and commercialization as soon as next year. “At a time when we are more connected than ever, our mobility options must adapt to reflect this new, efficient future,” said Omer Bar-Yohay, CEO of Eviation Aircraft, in a statement. “Whether it is zero emissions , low-cost trip from Silicon Valley to San Diego, or Seoul to Beijing, our all-electric aircraft represents a chance for people to move with the speed and impact our global economy now demands.” The electric aircraft could potentially fly six to nine passengers, in addition to two crew members on long distances. With the intention to commercialize the plane by 2018, Eviation by far has the most aggressive timeline of any company intent on producing an electric plane. Due to the energy density of batteries, electric air transport has been limited. However, the company says it has developed a new aluminum-air battery that will make it possible for consumers to fly without harming the environment . Related: eGenius Plane Sets World Record for Electric Aircraft Speed “Based on an aerial application of  Phinergy Ltd’s Aluminum air battery, coupled with a high power rechargeable battery buffer, and managed by a clever mission specific power analytic algorithm, EViation’s energy system is unique. Providing a true solution to both energy density and utilization, at a cost that beats gas, and with zero emissions,” said Eviation Aircraft. Rather than compete with traditional aviation companies, Eviation will position itself as an Uber-like on-demand transport service. Mark Moore, Uber Engineering Director of Aviation, commented on the Eviation  technology : “We are witnessing a new age in aviation as advances in energy storage and aircraft design bring electric, on-demand air transit within reach. Our focus at Uber is in galvanizing the ecosystem necessary for urban VTOL electric vehicles to thrive for 20-60 mile trips that can provide massive time savings over ground transportation for long trips in cities. In parallel, we are encouraged to see bold new players like Eviation tackling challenges in different sectors using electric aviation; these players will help catalyze demand for new battery and rapid recharging technologies that are crucial to enable electric flight.” Via Elektrek Images via  Eviation Aircraft , Pixabay

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Eviation Aircraft unveils all-electric aircraft with 600-mile range

New research shows there may be 10 planets in our solar system

June 23, 2017 by  
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Don’t get your hopes up – scientists aren’t making Pluto a planet again just yet. But the number of possible planets that we haven’t discovered was recently bumped up to two. Last fall researchers published a study on the mysterious Planet Nine , which could explain the unusual tilt of the sun. Now University of Arizona (UA) scientists think they may have found evidence for yet another planetary mass object – and it could be closer than Planet Nine. Planet Nine – which scientists think might be 10 times Earth’s mass – could be lurking out past Pluto’s orbit. But Planet Nine might not be all we’ve missed in our solar system . Kat Volk and Renu Malhotra of the Lunar and Planetary Laboratory at UA think they’ve found an unknown planet that’s between the mass of Earth and Mars. What gave this potential planet away was the fact it could be controlling the orbital planes of Kuiper Belt objects (KBOs) – a group of space rocks. Related: New research suggests an unseen 9th planet may be tilting the solar system In the Kuiper Belt, the furthest away of the KBOs don’t orbit the sun with orbital tilts scientists would expect. Instead, they’re tilted away by around eight degrees, suggesting a mysterious something might be warping their orbital planes. Volk, lead author on a study slated for publication in the Astronomical Journal , said in a statement, “The most likely explanation for our results is that there is some unseen mass. According to our calculations, something as massive as Mars would be needed to cause the warp that we measured.” Why haven’t we yet stumbled across this potentially rather large planet? Volk and Malhotra say we haven’t searched the whole sky for distant objects in the solar system – Planet 10 may have been hiding among the densely packed galactic plane. We might catch a glimpse of Planet 10 when the construction of the Large Synoptic Survey Telescope – an instrument operated by a consortium including UA – is completed, possibly in 2020. Via Futurism and the University of Arizona Images via Heather Roper/LPL

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Hyundai’s new emissions-free bus travels 180 miles on just one hour of charging

June 2, 2017 by  
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It isn’t just passenger vehicles  going green  these days – mass transit is jumping on the zero-emissions bandwagon. Hyundai just unveiled its first mass-produced electric bus called the Elec City . After one hour of charging, the bus can travel 180 miles thanks to a 256kWh battery pack. Best of all, the company’s first emissions-free vehicle will be available for order in 2018. According to a report from Yonhap news agency , the company has embraced green innovation “to diversify its lineup with environmentally friendly vehicles and enhance its brand image in global markets where clean modes of transportation have emerged a key point in auto manufacturing.” Hyundai launched the bus at the Truck & Bus Mega Fair, a local commercial vehicle exhibition. Tak Yeong-duck, senior vice president of Hyundai’s Commercial Vehicle R&D Division, admits that the Elec Bus has its flaws, but says it will undoubtedly become more efficient as  electric vehicle technology is improved upon. He said, “There still remain things to be improved in terms of the charging infrastructure for pure electric vehicles. But we have decided to launch the Elec City next year as the government plans to increase the number of charging stations in the coming years.” Related: The world’s fastest charging electric bus powers up in 10 seconds flat The sleek electric bus is estimated to cost more than 200 million won ($179,000 USD), and that price does not factor in the central government’s subsidy worth 100 million won. It has not been confirmed, either, if the company will sell the Elec City (which took eight years to develop) in the United States. If Hyundai does make the emission-free bus available in the U.S., it will face some fierce competition. Chinese manufacturer BYD has sold electric buses in California , as has the Canadian company GreenPower . Tesla CEO Elon Musk has also considered developing an electric bus and knowing his ambition, it might just happen. Now that Hyundai has unveiled its first emissions-free vehicle, it has a new goal of improving the fuel efficiency of its commercial vehicles up to 30 percent by 2020. Additionally, the company aims to sell 105,000 commercial vehicles in global markets, up from 102,000 units sold in 2016. According to recent reports, Hyundai may even release a long-range electric vehicle in 2018 – keep an eye out for that. + Elec City Via Yonhap News Agency Images via Elec City

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Hyundai’s new emissions-free bus travels 180 miles on just one hour of charging

Teslas highly-anticipated solar roofs go up for pre-order today

May 10, 2017 by  
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Good news! Tesla’s solar roof tiles will finally be open for pre-orders today. Earlier this morning, CEO of the company Elon Musk tweeted that orders for the highly anticipated tiles will begin this afternoon. He wrote, “Tesla solar glass roof orders open this afternoon. I think it will be great. More in about 10 hours …” Only two of the four possible tile styles are being made publicly available. According to a response Musk made to a question on Twitter, the tiles that can be pre-ordered are the black glass smooth and textured versions. The Tuscan and French slate versions will be available to order “in about six months,” he added. Tesla solar glass roof orders open this afternoon. I think it will be great. More in about 10 hours … — Elon Musk (@elonmusk) May 10, 2017 Tesla enthusiasts around the world can get excited, for the product can be ordered “for almost any country,” according to the company’s CEO. Deployment (i.e. delivery and installation) has also been confirmed for this year in the U.S. and in 2018 for overseas orders. No official price has yet been confirmed for the sought-after Tesla tiles. According to previous hints from the American automaker, however, the cost of its solar tiles is likely to be the same as the cost of an ordinary roof, in addition to the cost of electricity . Undoubtedly, this will be the biggest hurdle for many who seek to invest in the eco-friendly technology. More will be known in a few hours. Why all the excitement? The solar roof tiles are capable of generating enough energy to fully power a household. Any excess power generated could be stored in Tesla’s Powerwall 2.0 battery units , ensuring a household has a backup energy source in case of demand spikes. Related: Tesla just chopped $5000 off the cheapest Model S One of the tiles consumers are looking forward to is the quartz solar roof tile, which was announced by Musk last fall. According to a series of tweets he made, the tiles are transparent to allow sunlight to penetrate the cells from above but appear opaque when viewed from a certain angle. Additionally, they have roughly equivalent efficiency of traditional solar power gathering cells. They are likely to become most popular because of their more traditional roofing aesthetic. Musk has said of the tiles, “The solar roof consists of uniquely designed glass tiles that complement the aesthetics of any home, embedded with the highest efficiency photovoltaic cells. It is infinitely customizable for a variety of different home styles, each uniquely engineered so that the photovoltaic cells are invisible. He added, “We expect this to have two or three times the longevity of asphalt. It’s really never going to wear out. It’s got a quasi-infinite lifetime. It’s made of quartz ”. + Tesla Via  Electrek

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Teslas highly-anticipated solar roofs go up for pre-order today

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