|2018/7/21 11:36||Green Car Congress||
U of Western Ontario team proposes Se as promising candidate for all-solid-state Li batteries
Researchers at the University of Western Ontario are proposing selenium (Se) as a promising cathode material for all-solid-state Li batteries, paired with a lithium-tin (L-Sn) alloy as an anode and Li3PS4 as the electrolyte.
In a paper in the RSC journal Energy & Environmental Science, the team reports that in addition to the high electronic conductivity (1×10-3 S cm-1) of Se, a high Li+ conductivity of 1.4×10-5 S cm-1 across the Se-Li3PS4 interface can be achieved. The all-solid-state Li-Se cell shows a high reversible capacity of 652 mAh g-1 (96% of theoretical capacity) and exhibits favorable capacity retention upon cycling.
(a) Schematic diagram of an all-solid-state Li-Se battery. (b) Typical discharge/charge profiles of Se and S cathodes in all-solid-state batteries at 50 mA g-1 at room temperature. Li et al. Click to enlarge.
Since the 2000s, all-solid-state Li-S batteries have been studied as a promising alternative battery system due to the high theoretical energy densities (2567 Wh/kg compared to 387 Wh/kg for LIBs). However, these systems are still confronted with major challenges in terms of rechargeability, cycling stability, Coulombic efficiency and rate performance, which are far from commercialization. The fatal weaknesses of all-solid-state Li-S batteries are poor Li+ and electron transports between the electrode and the electrolyte.
Unlike batteries with liquid electrolytes that can easily wet the electrodes and ensure smooth Li+ transport, the Li+ transport in solid-state batteries is highly limited at the electrode-electrolyte interface. Although many of sulfide-based solid-state electrolytes exhibit high Li+ conductivities (10-4 to 10-2 S cm-1 at room temperature), the Li+ transport through the interface can be lagged by several orders of magnitude. … Meanwhile, the poor electronic conductivity of S cathodes is hindering the solid-state electrochemical reactions (lithiation/delithiation). In addition to engineering the S cathodes for all-solid-state batteries, developing new cathode materials with high ionic and electronic conductivities is another important approach to realize all-solid-state lithium batteries.
Compared to S, Se has much higher electronic conductivity (1×10-3 vs. 0.5×10-27 S m-1 at room temperature). Herein, an all-solid-state Li-Se battery is developed for the first time.
—Li et al.
The reversible charge capacity of the Li-Se cell (643 mAh g-1) was substantially higher than that of a Li-S cell (527 mAh g-1). Moreover, the team found, the Li-Se cell exhibited a significantly smaller polarization than the Li-S cell, indicating a higher energy efficiency and a more feasible electrochemical process of Se than S.
Based on their results, the team suggests that compositing Se and S for an advanced hybrid cathode could be a new strategy for enabling high-performance all-solid-state Li batteries. Fine tuning the balance between the ionic and electronic conductive Se and the high capacity S is currently under investigation.
The work was supported by Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC), Canada Research Chair Program (CRC), China Automotive Battery Research Institute, Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI), and University of Western Ontario.
Xiaona Li, Jianwen Liang, Xia Li, Changhong Wang, Jing Luo, Ruying Li and Xueliang Sun (2018) “High-performance All-Solid-State Li-Se Batteries Induced by Sulfide Electrolyte” Energy & Environmental Science doi: 10.1039/C8EE01621F
|2018/7/21 10:30||Green Car Congress||
UK government launches consultation on inclusion of E10 in market
The UK Department for Transport launched a consultation on whether and how it should introduce E10 fuel—which contains more bioethanol than traditional gasoline—to the UK market.
We have launched this consultation in order to understand the impact of E10 on the UK market better, and to ensure that drivers are protected if any changes come into effect.
—Transport Minister Jesse Norman
The changes to the Renewable Transport Fuels Obligation (RTFO) announced earlier this year require transport fuel suppliers to increase the amount of renewable fuel supplied across the UK up to 2032.
To meet these new targets, fuel suppliers could choose to increase the percentage of bioethanol in gasoline beyond the current 5% (E5) up to a limit of 10% (E10).
Filling up with E10 fuel reduces the greenhouse gas emissions of a gasoline vehicle by around 2%. However, according to industry figures, there could be around one million cars within the UK that are unsuitable for use with E10.
The consultation also includes proposals on introducing new fuel labels at filling stations and on new vehicles to help motorists select the right the fuel.
The government consultation will seek views on:
Whether and how to introduce E10 gasoline in the UK;
The reintroduction of an E5 protection grade to ensure standard gasoline remains available at an affordable price; and
The introduction of new fuel labeling at gasoline pumps and on new cars.
The 8-week consultation closes on 16 September 2018.
|2018/7/20 15:46||Green Car Congress||
Forsee Power to supply NMC Li-ion batteries for Alstom Aptis electric bus
Alstom has selected French battery manufacturer Forsee Power to provide Li-ion batteries for Alstom Aptis electric bus (earlier post), scheduled for series delivery from 2019 onwards. The vehicles will be equipped with NMC (Nickel Manganese Cobalt Oxide) Li-ion battery technology as a standard feature.
Alstom said it chose Forsee Power for its advanced technology in terms of yield and density, its competitiveness and its ability to provide a recyclable product, from collection to the re-use of cells.
Alstom and Forsee Power have worked together to define the most suitable product for Aptis, while retaining the vehicle’s openness to different battery technologies and charging speeds.
The vehicle’s design, with most of its equipment on the roof, coupled with the modularity of the ZEN35 battery packs, give Aptis the greatest range flexibility when compared to other vehicles in its category.
Alstom has developed precise simulation tools to establish the onboard energy required by operators and thus design the vehicle most suited to the requirements of each line (with range per charge from 150km to over 250km).
Alstom and Forsee Power are also collaborating on the best way to monitor battery use in real time, thereby optimizing usage cycles and thus battery life expectancy.
Alstom has also developed long-term battery leasing solutions that allow municipalities to reduce the financial impact of purchasing electric buses by spreading the cost of the batteries over the lifespan of the vehicle—20-year lifespan, longer than the lifespan of other electric buses, due to the structure of the vehicle and its electrical components derived from trams.
Aptis is a new electric mobility solution that offers the advantages of a tram in a bus. Designed to ensure a clean and efficient transport system for cities, Aptis offers a new passenger experience with its low floor and 20% more glass surfaces.
Seven of Alstom’s sites in France are involved in the design and manufacture of Aptis: Duppigheim for the overall engineering, bodywork, testing and certification; Saint-Ouen for the system integration; Tarbes for the traction; Ornans for the engines; Villeurbanne for the electronic components of the traction chain; and Reichshoffen for the manufacture of the central passenger module, final assembly and in-series tests. Finally, the Alstom site of Vitrolles is responsible for developing one of the charging solutions (SRS).
|2018/7/20 11:41||Green Car Congress||
Study provides insight into mechanism of atmospheric new particle formation in polluted cities
The formation of new atmospheric particulates—i.e., de novo rather than as direct emissions—via nucleation and growth is a major source of aerosol pollution in terms of number concentration. In spite of a great deal of research, it is still a puzzle why and how such new particule formation (NPF) occurs in a highly polluted urban atmosphere.
Previous research has suggested that NPF is extremely sensitive, occurring only under specific atmospheric conditions and requiring clean air, free from large numbers of pre-existing aerosols, which tend to suppress the new particle formation process.
However, recent observations reveal substantial rates of NPF occurring in some heavily-polluted megacities, despite the heavy loads of ambient particles there, contradicting these understandings.
Now, a team of researches has investigated new particle formation in Shanghai and, in a paper published in Science, describes the conditions that make this process possible.
Using a variety of instruments which measured atmospheric chemistry and the molecular priorities of newly formed aerosols, NPF events were recorded in two surveys between March 2014 and February 2016.
The two datasets revealed the chemical and physical mechanisms behind the observed events and suggest that the formation of secondary aerosols likely occurs through sulfuric acid-dimethtlamine-water nucleation—a conclusion largely supported by experimental laboratory studies.
According to both observation and theoretical arguments, NPF usually requires a relatively high sulfuric acid (H2SO4) concentration to promote the formation of new particles and a low preexisting aerosol loading to minimize the sink of new particles. We investigated NPF in Shanghai and were able to observe both precursor vapors (H2SO4) and initial clusters at a molecular level in a megacity.
High NPF rates were observed to coincide with several familiar markers suggestive of H2SO4–dimethylamine (DMA)–water (H2O) nucleation, including sulfuric acid dimers and H2SO4-DMA clusters. In a cluster kinetics simulation, the observed concentration of sulfuric acid was high enough to explain the particle growth to ~3 nanometers under the very high condensation sink, whereas the subsequent higher growth rate beyond this size is believed to result from the added contribution of condensing organic species.
—Yao et al.
The authors suggest that the large atmospheric NPF events observed in China are the result of the large emissions of precursor gases, like sulfur dioxide, ammonia, and other volatile organic compounds, and that reductions in the emission of these compounds are crucial to reducing the formation of secondary aerosols.
Lei Yao, Olga Garmash, Federico Bianchi, Jun Zheng, Chao Yan, Jenni Kontkanen, Heikki Junninen, Stephany Buenrostro Mazon, Mikael Ehn, Pauli Paasonen, Mikko Sipilä, Mingyi Wang, Xinke Wang, Shan Xiao, Hangfei Chen, Yiqun Lu, Bowen Zhang, Dongfang Wang, Qingyan Fu, Fuhai Geng, Li Li, Hongli Wang, Liping Qiao, Xin Yang, Jianmin Chen, Veli-Matti Kerminen, Tuukka Petäjä, Douglas R. Worsnop, Markku Kulmala, Lin Wang (2018) “Atmospheric new particle formation from sulfuric acid and amines in a Chinese megacity” Science Vol. 361, Issue 6399, pp. 278-281 doi: 10.1126/science.aao4839
|2018/7/20 11:00||Green Car Congress||
How Self-Driving Cars Will Accelerate Electric Vehicle Adoption
By Haden Kirkpatrick.
Over the last two decades, fully electric cars have had, let’s say, a slow start. In 1997, the Toyota Prius was released as the world’s first mass-produced hybrid. And while hybrid technology has taken off, drivers have been hesitant to accept fully battery-powered tech for a variety of reasons, including a lack of charging stations. But things are looking up for electric. Today you can get a full charge at one of the 16,000 stations across the US.
Plus, battery costs are rapidly decreasing and the public is warming up to the idea of electric cars. In fact, some experts predict electric vehicles (EVs) to account for 65 percent to 75 percent of sales in 2050—which is also good news for the environment.
Another hot topic in the auto world is autonomous rides. Though we’re still several years away (at least) from robots taking the wheel, some cities in America—Las Vegas, Phoenix and Pittsburgh, to name a few—have already seen self-driving vehicles in action. In the future, autonomous vehicles and battery-powered technology could work together to create cleaner, more efficient roads.
Electric Vehicles: Right Now. Maybe you’ve ridden in an EV. Maybe you own a Tesla Model X or Audi e-tron. For the most part, they look, sound and act like a traditional car, but there’s one major difference: their engines run on batteries and not on internal combustion powered by fossil fuels. The pros of going gasless include reduced maintenance costs, lower fuel expense and—most importantly—less pollution. However, electric vehicles are currently more expensive than traditional vehicles. Some experts believe battery costs will continue to decline over the next 10 years, which will further entice shoppers. In fact, from 2014 to 2016, battery prices fell by 50 percent, allowing EVs to gain some traction.
Driverless Vehicles: Right Now. No, they’re not straight out of a sci-fi movie. The term autonomous vehicle (AV) can refer to a car, a truck or even a drone. These vehicles operate on computer intelligence with varying levels of human assistance. Self-driving cars come decked out with intelligence you might not see: sensors, radars and cameras to virtually scan the road, with a ton of processing power under the hood to handle the data streams from all those input sensors. Currently, several laws and regulations stand in the way of a driverless reality, but automakers and tech giants continue to refine their robot rides because they know they’re the next big thing.
Should All AVs Be Battery-Powered? Consider this: At the root of driverless technology is convenience. Humans will no longer have to stress about driving. But the consequences could be harmful. For example, you arrive home from the grocery store and realize you forgot the milk. No problem — just send the car back to fetch it. That’s now two trips back and forth to the grocery store where there might have only been one. Can’t find a parking spot at a baseball game? Your self-driving vehicle can just drive around in circles for three hours. While it’s a much more convenient option, the environmental toll could be severe. Some experts predict that gas-powered, self-driving vehicles could wreak havoc on the environment, causing a 200 percent increase in emissions.
The solution? Make all AVs electric. A marriage of these two powerhouse technologies would completely change the auto industry, the environment and our lives. As Esurance found in a recent report, AVs could also be a cheaper option for consumers—potentially made cheaper still if those AVs are electric. There are still a few variables on the table, but it’s safe to say a clean, green electric AV would significantly reduce air pollution.
Fewer Traffic Jams, Less Pollution. Being gridlocked on the highway doesn’t just make you late for dinner, it also damages the environment. In 2012, a study by the Texas A&M Transportation Institute found that traffic congestion was responsible for 56 billion pounds of carbon dioxide pollution. But in the future, AVs will be able to talk to each other (vehicle-to-vehicle communication) or infrastructure (vehicle-to-infrastructure communication). This will lead to perfectly synchronized driving patterns. Just think—no braking for red lights, stop signs or traffic. And with orchestrated driving on battery power, emissions could be reduced drastically.
Ownership Could Look Different. Here’s a fact: The average car spends 95 percent of its life in park. In the future, sharing an electric vehicle might be standard. Imagine this – you hail a nearby ride to pick you up and take you to work. Rather than sitting (or driving) idle, the vehicle calls on its next passenger and continues to do so until it needs a full charge. This scenario could drive down transportation prices considerably while also reducing the need for consumers to own cars, eliminating environmental waste.
What’s Next for Electric Self-Driving Cars? For self-driving cars to accelerate EV adoption, it will be a collective effort. Policymakers need to establish regulation and demand cleaner vehicles. Automakers and tech giants must continue to raise the bar and push for battery power. And of course, it’ll take the confidence of consumers to trust the clean, self-driving machines and put them to use.
Haden Kirkpatrick is the head of marketing strategy and innovation at Esurance. Haden is an innovator and futurist who is constantly thinking about how IoT, self-driving cars and machine learning will impact the auto insurance industry. Learn more about Esurance by visiting Esurance.com.
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