Jerry, I respect the work you do in EV conversions, but I respectfully disagree regarding the "wide conspiracy of corps." Going back to the late '90s, industry analysts (Pike, J.D. Power, etc), university professors at MIT, University Michigan, University of California, Cal Tech and the Department of Energy and Argonne Labs and the Center for Automotive Reserach have cited a need for greater energy density and lower cost in EV batteries. None have lamented over the Chevron/NiMH situation. All -- analysts, universities, national labs -- can't possibly be involved in the "wide conspiracy of corps."
The simple answer to "Why can't Detroit do it" is just that, simple: YOU don't have to comply with 20,000 pages or so of vehicle safety requirements, etc. including crashing many vehicles in the process. Will your 160 lb. body/chassis survive a wall collision @30MPH or so? Will YOU? Do your vehicles have airbags and all the other safety gear REQUIRED to legally sell vehicles to the public? Also, EVERYONE ELSE uses the SYSTEM cost for the battery SYSTEM, not just the cost of cells. I do agree that Tesla made a wise choice for their battery pack design. It also (depending on manufacturing details) may even lend itself to economic refurbishing of the packs (replace bad cells, etc.).
timjor19, I see no reason for Liion now since I can easily build a lead EV that gets 60 to 100 miles on $1000 and $1400 battery packs good for 4-7 yrs. Why would one spend $6-10k and all the hassle?
My way is use tried and true older tech that is mature and very cost effective. I can go 80-90 miles on the 3kwhr of electricity it takes to refine 1 gal of gas too which is also nice on the pocketbook.
By the time my lead packs die Li-ion will be cheap and reliable. I'll switch then. KIS and cheap! Big Auto is not going to like me in 2 yrs when my vehicles show them up for less money.
Laptop batteries is exactly what Tesla, Toyota are using!! Thousands of them.
Hi Charles, I don't expect you to buy it made a difference when you won't even admit Li-ion can be bought from many different companies retail in large amphr EV sizes for under $500/kwhr and small cells made by Panasonic used by Tesla only cost $250/kwhr.
The details is Chevron bought the NiMH patents from GM and Ovonics then would NOT let anyone make larger than 10amphr. So no EV's other than E bicycles could use them because they don't work in parallel packs.
At the time EV's with NiMH batteries were selling as fast as they were made and were getting 120-140 mile range and over 5 yrs actually cost less than an ICE. That terified Detroit and big oil. Detroit because they lose their real money maker, after sales ICE system parts with the modest markup of only 2000%!!! An E motor has one moving part plus 2 bearings and designed well lasts 100+ yrs with bearing changes every 1ook. So please tell me other than their fear, why they wouldn't fill the obvious market?
Battery energy only make a big difference if you don't change the vehicle design for lower drag. Don't forget the lead battery EV-1 got 80-100 mile range shows what a real EV can do.
EV's as businesses who use them for other reasons like forklifts who's EV drive tech I use, and golf carts, don't have any problems. I've used mostly 40 yr old motors/controllers for most of my EV's, just clean them up and good for another 40 yrs.
Whether Toyota likes EV's or not doesn't matter on whether EV's are viable, though makes my point well. Their excellent old RAV4EV, which isn't really a RAV4 chassis, proves my other point, EV's are viable.
Composites can drop weight, cost, parts numbers, labor and double EV's range. Why don't they use it? It's not like it's new. My tech used is 45+ yrs old.
So yes it's a wide conspiracy of corps doing what they do best, fight any new change out of fear.
My new composite chassis I did today for a 3wh car only weighs 90lbs and complete with body, about 160lbs BTW. If I can do it, why can't Detroit?
I've never checked out the details of the Chevron story personally, but my preliminary take on it is that the Chevron situation doesn't appear to have had much effect on the state of electric cars in the long run. Nickel-metal hydride was a good, but not earth-shattering battery chemistry. As you know, the EV1 used it and NiMH technology hasn't disappeared. It's still available but manufacturers don't choose it for today's pure electric cars because the energy density is still too low in their opinions. Their battery chemistry of choice is lithium-ion. Regarding Toyota RAV4 EV: Yes, they are still out there but Toyota is still not a big believer in pure electric cars. They've opted for the Prius family of hybrids for a reason: They believe that big lithium-ion batteries are still too expensive and don't offer enough to the consumer. Two weeks ago, one of our contacts at Toyota told us, "If you want longer range, it means more battery, which means more cost. A lot of folks are telling us that the cost is going down, but we are still estimating it at over $1,000/kWh." She said that Toyota is again dipping a toe in the water with the new RAV4 electric, but they are not big believers in pure electric technology. Bottom line is, I have no problem believing that the oil companies and car companies have conspired, but I don't believe it has made any difference. I've yet to hear any university-based materials science expert say that better technology is actually available, or that a big oil conspiracy has caused it to go away. You make a compelling case here, Jerry, but I'm still not buying in.
I am guessing the reason you dont go with LiON cells is cost? I know they have a lot of kick for the weight. A good source of Lion batteries would be to get laptop batteries but I suppose the complexity of the charger and the risks associated with LiOn's is probably not worth it.
Tim the lowest cost way is take a golfcart EV transaxle and a MC, attach the rear MC suspension to it and put real deep cycle lead batteries where the ICE/trans use to be. A good scrounger can build a 45-55mph one for under $1k. Others $2-3k.
Switch the rear tires to VW Rabbit ones, the 6vdc batteries for 12vdc Deka, Trojan, USBattery 60-72lb ones, modify the controller, charger for double the voltage/72vdc.
City range about 60 miles staying mostly under 45mph. Or higher speed range is better if an aero body is made.
2wh MC's are good too. VW Bug, Karman Ghia are excellent car choices. Google EV Racing or EV clubs and follow the websites links to many local EV clubs likely near you. They will be glad to help you. Tell them I sent you a many know me.
Secret to economical EV's is lightweight and good aero.
We looked at a number of sources to determine this year's greenest cars, from KBB to automotive trade magazines to environmental organizations. These 14 cars emerged as being great at either stretching fuel or reducing carbon footprint.
A quick look into the merger of two powerhouse 3D printing OEMs and the new leader in rapid prototyping solutions, Stratasys. The industrial revolution is now led by 3D printing and engineers are given the opportunity to fully maximize their design capabilities, reduce their time-to-market and functionally test prototypes cheaper, faster and easier. Bruce Bradshaw, Director of Marketing in North America, will explore the large product offering and variety of materials that will help CAD designers articulate their product design with actual, physical prototypes. This broadcast will dive deep into technical information including application specific stories from real world customers and their experiences with 3D printing. 3D Printing is