Tuesday, June 20, 2017

New car battery promises instant recharging

New car battery promises instant recharging
Exciting news in an article from Mail & Guardian. The Ifbattery has been developed by a group of researchers at Purdue University in the United States.

Unlike conventional batteries which need to be recharged, and even the quickest car chargers take at least 20 minutes to get a meaningful charge, recharging of the Ifbattery is done by first emptying the batteries used fluid contents and then refilling via a pump with freshly charged fluid.

The Ifbattery uses a mixture of water, ethanol, aluminium and zinc to cause a chemical reaction. The article says that existing petrol pumps could be retrofitted to refill batteries instead of petrol and diesel tanks. The emptied contents of the flat battery could also be recharged to be used again.

If this technology comes to fruition it would mean that recharging an electric car would take no longer than filling up with petrol. Unlike fossil fuels though, the chemical mixture being used will be fully recyclable and will be recharged and used to fill another battery. It appears to have all the benefits of an electric vehicle with all the benefits of an ICE vehicle. It's also something that gives the oil companies an incentive to get behind electric vehicles. They will still be able to keep their chains of filling stations and instead of pumping gas they'll be pumping battery fluid. Everyone appears to be a winner.

This technology would really be a benefit to countries like South Africa where major cities are far apart and at the moment there are very few charging points and as far as I know there are no charging stations on the major intercity routes.

The group of researchers working on this revolutionary battery at the moment only amounts to three people. They are looking for funding to further their research. Hopefully this won't be the last we hear of the Ifbattery.

My favourite EV related YouTube channels

Some of the YouTube channels I have discovered about electric cars. Descriptions copied from the associated YouTube page.

James Cooke My daily VLOG about all things tech. Well mainly Tesla and Drones actually... for now!

Now You Know Now You Know is a educational technology YouTube channel creating unique videos on everything from Tesla and other electric cars, to vermicomposting and banana ice cream. We use everything from drones and GoPros to our Tesla Model X to show you the world from a different perspective Zac & Jesse, along with their trusty side-kicks Bobby & Brent, are trying to leave the planet just a wee bit better than how they found it by making videos packed full of information, motivation and mirth.

Transport Evolved Welcome to the official YouTube Channel for Transport Evolved, the daily multi-media news site for the latest news in the world of greener, cleaner, safer, smarter transport.

Fully Charged Fully Charged is a weekly + series produced and hosted by Robert Llewellyn (Red Dwarf, Scrapheap Challenge, Carpool). It's not only about electric cars, bikes, boats and planes but how we generate and even own the electricity to power these machines. From looking behind the myths of renewable energy, to seeking the truth about conventional generation Robert Llewellyn demonstrates what the future could have in store for us all.

Like Tesla How is it living with the Model X? Are those doors actually functional? Are the white seats really stain resistant? In our Like Tesla family videos you'll get to see how life really is owning the Tesla Model X and living with an EV. Enjoy!

Teslanomics Hola everyone! I'm Ben Sullins and here at Teslanomics we look at the economics behind everones' favorite EV, Solar, Battery and Tunneling? Company :) Every week I break down data about someting Tesla related to see what the data really shows. From time to time I'll do reviews of Tesla related products, apps, and even other EVs. So if you like looking at the charts and love Tessla, I'd love for you to join the community!

Monday, June 12, 2017

BMW SA seeks greater govt commitment for EV expansion in SA

BMW SA seeks greater govt commitment for EV expansion in SA
CEO for BMW in Sub-Saharan Africa, Tim Abbott has called on the government to give more commitment to electric vehicles to increase consumer confidence in them.

According to Creamer Media's Engineering News BMW would like to see legislation favouring electric vehicles as well as government investment in charging infrastructure.

At present BMW SA has 54 EV charging stations and are reviewing new sites for more chargers in Gautang and Kwazulu Natal.

Pros and cons of electric vehicles in SA - reader

Pros and cons of electric vehicles in SA - reader
Excellent article by Wheels24 reader Dewald Carsterns on the advantages and disadvantages of owning an electric vehicle. Quite rightly the advantages Dewald lists far outnumber the disadvantages. I won't spoil it by going into too much detail. You can read and enjoy the full list here.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Is BMW i8 & i3 Selling Like Hotcakes in South Africa?

Is BMW i8 & i3 Selling Like Hotcakes in South Africa?
Tech Financials look at the sales of the battery electric BMW i3 and the PHEV BMW i8 in South Africa.
Since market introduction in March 2015, a total of 419 BMW i models have been delivered to customers in South Africa, according to BMW South Africa. They said in a statement that the BMW i3 alone has sold 203 units, making it the most successful EV, while the BMW i8 ranks first among PHEVs with a total of 216 units delivered to customers.
Though not mind blowing figures, they are significant amounts. It equates to just under 10 of each model per month the past two and a bit years. Considering the i3 comes in around about R600,000, depending on the variant and the i8 is a wallet lightening R1,750,000, I'd say sales are pretty impressive.

Possibly aiding sales is the commitment BMW have put into charging infrastructure in the country. They have so far 54 charging stations and have signed a memorandum of understanding with Nissan, the only other local manufacturer offering a fully electric vehicle, to jointly expand the local charging network.

This shows that both companies are showing a long term commitment to plug-in electric vehicles in South Africa. There won't be, nor should there be, mass sales of electric vehicles until the charging infrastructure is in place first. When the consumer buys an electric vehicle, he or she needs to know there are ample places to charge their vehicle. Nobody is going to buy an electric car if they don't know where they're going to be able to charge it. The last thing the electric car cause needs is frustrated consumers not being able to locate chargers or having to queue to use a charger because there are insufficient numbers of chargers.

Friday, June 2, 2017

BMW vs Mercedes - Hybrid vs Hybrid - Electric Range Challenge

BMW vs Mercedes - Hybrid vs Hybrid - Electric Range Challenge
Cars.co.za compare two PHEV (plug-in hybrid vehicles, the BMW 330e and the Mercedes C350e. They attempt to drive both 20km through Cape Town traffic on battery electric power only without having to resort to using the petrol engine.

Thursday, June 1, 2017

May in rear-view

A selection of articles from the past month.