Ford and Purdue University Created a Cable That Fully Charges an EV in 5 Minutes

The new cable would be able to output four times more current than today’s best option. 

By BRYAN HOOD

Ford may have just figured out a way to get rid of range anxiety once and for all.

The Detroit auto giant has teamed up with Purdue University to build a prototype of a cable that could fully charge an EV’s battery in just five minutes. There’s still a lot of work that needs to be done, but the cable could help overcome one of the last major obstacles standing in the way of battery-powered cars achieving mass acceptance.

EV driving ranges may finally be reaching acceptable levels, but slow charging times still make some drivers wary. The last couple years has seen charging times improve dramatically, but they’re still not great, especially when compared to the five minutes it takes to fill up a gas-powered car. Right now, the best you can hope for is around 20 minutes when connected to a DC fast charger. It’s even worse when you’re home. The Ford Mustang Mach-E is one of the more in-demand EVs on the market, but it takes 11 hours to charge to full capacity at home, even when connected to a Level 2 charging setup.

This is due in no small part to the fact that current charging cables just can’t handle the heat generated by the amount of power that would be needed to charge an EV as fast as gas can fill up a car. The cables connected to the Tesla Supercharger—currently the industry’s best charger—can handle a maximum of 520 amps of current. Ford and Purdue’s solution: Come up with a better method of cooling charging cables.

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Electric Geely Homtruck to take on Tesla Semi with autonomous driving and built-in apartment

Long-haul tractor has all the comforts of home

By Gary Gastelu

China’s Geely has unveiled an electric semi truck with all of the comforts of home for long-haul truckers.

The Geely Homtruck will be avaialble with an all-electric drivetrain.

The Homtruck, built by Geely’s Farizon Auto commercial truck unit, is equipped with a full mini-apartment that includes a bed, shower, toilet, electric kitchen and washing machine.

Geely said the Homtruck will be offered around the world with several powertrain options, including all-electric, range-extended electric and a hybrid with a methanol-burning internal combustion engine. A projected driving range between charges for the all-electric version was not announced.

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Segway introduces Apex H2 electric-hydrogen hybrid prototype

On track for a 2023 release date. 

 By: Dustin Wheelen Published by: Brian Potter 

When Segway unveiled its Apex H2 electric-hydrogen hybrid concept in April, 2021, it attracted many a naysayer—including us. While a hydrogen-powered motorcycle still seems out of the realm of feasibility in this day and age, that isn’t stopping Ninebot from pushing the Segway Apex H2 project forward.

Of course, most sceptics labelled the concept vaporware based not only on the fuel source but also due to the fact that the brand only offered rendered images. Now, Segway presents the Apex H2 in the flesh with a new prototype that remains surprisingly faithful to the original design.

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An e-Bus Starts Testing World’s First Wireless Electric Road, in Breakthrough Project

by Otilia Drăgan

After the 80-ton electric truck that was tested on 0.9 miles (1.4 km) of the ElectReon electrified roadway, a fully-electric bus was successfully launched as part of the groundbreaking SmartRoad Gotland Project. 8 photos

Several countries are promoting a carbon-neutral future by supporting electric vehicles, but Sweden, which is always one step ahead when it comes to innovations, is taking things even further, by introducing electric highways. It plans to have 1,240 miles (2,000 km) of electric highways by 2030, and become emissions-free by 2045.

To achieve these goals, the Swedish Transport Administration is funding four electric road demonstration projects implemented by several partners, in Italy, Germany, Sweden, and Israel. ElectrReon plays a leading part, as the provider of the in-road wireless EV charging technology. 

SmartRoad Gotland is the world’s first wireless electric inter-city road system, designed to be tested by an electric heavy-duty truck and an electric bus. The project’s electric road is 0,9-mile (1.4 km) long, located on the route between the airport and the center of Visby, on Gotland island, in Sweden.

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Michigan plans to build the country’s first wireless EV charging road

By Jena Brooker

Will it work?

To help Michigan reach its goal of carbon neutrality by 2050, Governor Gretchen Whitmer announced last month that the state will construct the nation’s first wireless electric vehicle charging road — a one-mile stretch in the Metro Detroit area. 

“Michigan was home to the first mile of paved road, and now we’re paving the way for the roads of tomorrow,” Whitmer said in a press release, “with innovative infrastructure that will support the economy and the environment.” 

A wireless EV road works like this: As a car drives over it, the vehicle’s battery is charged by pads or coils built under the surface of the street using magnetic induction. It doesn’t give the car a full charge, but it helps add some additional mileage to a vehicle before its next complete powering up.  

The project is still in the very early stages: The Michigan Department of Transportation began accepting proposals for the project on September 28. Until one is selected, it’s unknown exactly where the road will be, what it will look like, the precise cost, or how soon it could be operational. But some are questioning whether the project is worth it. Is it the best use of funds in a state with poor transit and crumbling infrastructure? And how will it even work, particularly in a place with harsh weather extremes like the Midwest? 

“It’s just not feasible or economically viable,” said Chris Mi, chair of the electrical and computer engineering department at San Diego State University who is an expert on electric vehicle charging. A one-mile demonstration is doable, he told Grist, but at the larger scale there are several practical and economic barriers. 

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The World’s First Battery-Electric Freight Train Has the Power of 100 Tesla Cars

And it’s powered by 18,000 lithium-ion battery cells.

By  Chris Young

Freight train manufacturer Wabtec, in collaboration with Carnegie Mellon University, unveiled the world’s first battery-electric locomotive, a report in Digital Journal reveals.

The Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based firm claimed its new machine is “dramatically more powerful” than a Tesla electric car and that it can help to significantly reduce carbon emissions for the already relatively green freight train transportation sector.

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China wind turbine maker to launch EV-charging robots

Envision Group eyes potential in mobility, hydrogen and weather forecasting

Envision Group’s Mochi robot charges electric vehicles while drivers are away. 

TOKYO — One of China’s biggest wind turbine makers plans to tackle the country’s chronic shortage of electric vehicle charging points: mobile robots that bring the juice to the car.

Envision Group plans to start testing its Mochi robot — so named because it provides mobile charging services — in Shanghai this year. The robot is also being shipped to Singapore.

The company aims to make the robot available through a smartphone app-based membership service that will allow drivers to leave their cars for Mochi to find and charge automatically.

“Your parking will totally change … you don’t spend time looking for charging stations. You don’t need to wait in your charging station,” Envision’s Chief Executive Lei Zhang told Nikkei Asia in an interview. “We can put the robot in all car parks for big buildings,” he said.

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All New Audis Will Be Electric Starting in 2026

2026 will see a radical change to Audi’s lineup of cars and SUVs, while 2033 will be the last year it produces combustion engines.

BY HAZEL SOUTHWELL 

Audi confirmed in March of this year that it was stopping all development of combustion engines to focus completely on electric vehicles. Then, a few months later, its board chairman Markus Duesmann told German news that all new Audis would be electric from 2026. And, today, it’s confirmed that timeline for phasing out internal combustion engines, by saying that “new Audi models from 2026 will be all-electric, and combustion engine production to end in 2033.”

Audi announced the plan as part of its new Vorsprung 2030 manifesto, which highlights how Audi is planning to become more sustainable in the ways it develops vehicles. The detail goes from the combustion phase-out to looking for that unbelievably sexy automotive buzzword currently—”synergies”—that will help the brand transfer its main area of profits from combustion vehicle sales to electric. 

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This Startup Produces EVs in a Different Way: Minifactories

Instead of investing billions of dollars, these $50 million plants could save companies.

By  Loukia Papadopoulos

Electric car and van startups are looking for new ways to manufacture their products. They all learned from Tesla which experienced a manufacturing hell when first producing its vehicles.

“The thing that’s remarkable is that Tesla didn’t go bankrupt in reaching volume production,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk said in a July 26 earnings call, according to Reuters.

Now British-American startup called Arrival, which builds electric vans and buses, has become the poster boy for using “microfactories” to build its products. These small plants cost a mere $50 million and do not feature expensive equipment. Arrival’s vans are made of lightweight colored plastic composite foregoing the need for pricey paint shops.

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This Solar-Powered Electric Ferry Is the First Maritime Robotaxi in Europe

By Otilia Drăgan

Robotaxis are not news anymore, with several self-driving car services all over the world. But transferring this concept to water-based transportation is something to talk about. This pioneering ferry isn’t just an autonomous vessel for transportation, but it’s also solar-powered and available for ridesharing.

Startups are really taking a leading role in this new automotive wave based on electrically-powered, autonomous vehicles. Buffalo Automation might not sound familiar, but this American company has already achieved a lot since 2015, when it was founded. Specializing in AI solution for autonomous transport and navigation, it has developed a predictive marine navigation system, AutoMate, which is adapted for large commercial ships.

In 2020, Buffalo Automation launched a new product line based on the Greycraft autonomous navigation technology. Greycraft made its debut in Knoxville, Tennessee, and it’s the concept behind this first European commercial robotaxi service.

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BMW reveals E-scooter and electrified cargo bicycle concepts

By Shane McGlaun 

BMW reveals E-scooter and electrified cargo bicycle concepts

Companies around the world are conducting lots of research into the future of mobility in cities. Research is being conducted by traditional automakers and by new startups looking at alternate methods of transportation. BMW Group Research has revealed two mobility concepts for the city with an e-scooter concept called Clever Commute and an electrified bicycle called Dynamic Cargo.

The electrified bicycle is a three-wheel design and has a compartment between the two small rear wheels for storing cargo. Dynamic Cargo is a compact cargo bike concept promising high agility, flexible usage options, and increased year-round suitability. It has a loading platform with attachments for transporting loads and/or children for leisure activities.

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Indiana To Build Wireless In-Motion Charging For Electric Vehicles On Highway

BY TYLER DURDEN

The Indiana Department of Transportation (INDOT) has begun the first phase of a project to transform a segment of the state’s highway into wireless charging pavement for electric vehicles, according to local news WRTV. 

INDOT partnered with Advancing Sustainability through Power Infrastructure for Road Electrification (ASPIRE) Initiative, in a three-phase project that will use magnetizable concrete, developed by a German startup Magment GmbH, to allow seamless wireless charging of electric vehicles while in motion. 

“We’re quite eager to see this first of its kind project unfold in Indiana,” David Christensen, the ASPIRE Innovation Director, said. “This partnership that includes Magment, INDOT, Purdue University, and the larger ASPIRE consortium has great promise to really move the needle on technology development, which will, in turn, enable more positive impacts from deeper electric vehicle adoption.”

The project will be conducted in three phases. The first and second will be pavement testing at Purdue University’s West Lafayette campus. The third phase will be INDOT installing a quarter-mile-long wireless charging pavement on a stretch of highway in the state. 

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