Alternative Energy

Transportation News

The latest alternative transportation news from our hybrid, electric car and transportation news sources.

Jan 27, 2020

Alternative Transportation

Tencent gets proposal from MVRDV for green smart city

Jan 27, 2020: After two years of development, MVRDV has unveiled their competition entry for Chinese tech giant Tencent’s next campus—a green and futuristic smart city shaped like a continuous undulating mountain range. Located on a 133-hectare site in Shenzhen’s Qianhai Bay, the nature-inspired development combines references to the lush, mountainous surroundings with Tencent’s cutting-edge technology. The massive urban district is expected to include enough office space for 80,000 to 100,000 employees,...

Eco-friendly house uses only 19% of the energy it creates

Jan 27, 2020: Lexington, Massachusetts is known for its historical landmarks, but now the city is also home to a powerhouse of energy-efficient design. Designed by Stephanie Horowitz of Zero Energy Design, the Lexington Modern Residence is a contemporary 4,400 square-foot home that not only generates its energy through solar power, but is strategically built to significantly reduce its overall energy consumption.

Sherpa Light for indoor farming wins CES 2020 Innovation Award

Jan 27, 2020: Developed with the tagline “Grow whatever your heart desires, wherever you are”, Sherpa Light is a tunable artificial light source with the potential to replicate the exact sunlight conditions needed to grow any plant from around the world. Using tunable, full-spectrum LEDs, the device was created to emit different lighting intensities depending on the plant’s cellular structure in order to optimize growth.

Volkswagen reveals plans for mobile electric car charging robot

Jan 27, 2020: As the number of electric cars continues to increase, the need for charging stations comes along with it. Often finding a charging station not only involves planning to be at the location before the car runs out of battery power, but also being able to pull into one of the typically shared spots to complete the actual charge. Volkswagen is developing a mobile robot that eliminates the need to plug into a hard-wired charging port, bringing the charge directly to your vehicle regardless of which parking...

Zero-carbon home uses hemp fiber for innovative design

Jan 27, 2020: As designers and architects continue searching for innovative, sustainable building materials, hemp is becoming a front runner in the world of green design. In fact, London-based firm Practice Architecture collaborated with local hemp farmers in Cambridgeshire for the Flat House — a zero-carbon home built using hemp grown on-site.

GM to invest $2.2B at Detroit-Hamtramck to produce all-electric trucks and SUVs; GM’s first fully-dedicated EV plant

Jan 27, 2020: General Motors will invest $2.2 billion at its Detroit-Hamtramck assembly plant to produce a variety of all-electric trucks and SUVs. GM’s first all-electric truck will be a pickup with production scheduled to begin in late 2021. This will be followed soon after by the Cruise Origin, a shared, electric, self-driving...

Great Britain and the United States show the same pattern of recent changes in vehicle distance traveled

Jan 27, 2020: by Michael Sivak, Sivak Applied Research. Vehicle distance traveled per person in Great Britain is currently about one-half of the distance in the United States. The issue of interest in this study is whether, despite this difference, the two countries show similar patterns of recent changes on this measure. The...

Researchers devise photochemical process to convert bio-acetone to green jet fuel additive

Jan 27, 2020: Researchers at Los Alamos National Laboratory (LANL), with colleagues at Yale University, have developed a photochemical process to convert acetone derived from plants (bio-acetone) into a mixture of polycyclic alkanes, the high energy density of which is appropriate for high-perfomance aviation applications. A paper on the work appears in the...

LBNL, Nissan researchers explore ethanol internal reforming in SOFCs for vehicle applications

Jan 27, 2020: Researchers from Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (LBNL) and Nissan Research Center report on their investigation of the internal reforming of ethanol fuel on high-performance metal-supported solid-oxide fuel cells (MS-SOFCs) with infiltrated catalysts in a paper in the Journal of Power Sources. Dogdibegovic et al. Nissan’s public interest in ethanol-fueled solid-oxide...

Nissan and Uber partner in London: 2,000 LEAFs

Jan 27, 2020: Nissan and Uber have signed a deal to support the introduction of 2,000 all-electric Nissan LEAFs for drivers who use the Uber app. The fleet of 40kWh Nissan LEAFs, which can travel up to 168 miles on a single charge and are manufactured in Sunderland, will be offered to drivers...

Study suggests early childhood exposure to traffic air pollution associated with later structural changes in brain

Jan 27, 2020: A new study suggests that significant early childhood exposure to traffic-related air pollution (TRAP) is associated with structural changes in the brain at the age of 12. The Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center study found that children with higher levels of TRAP exposure at birth had reductions at age 12...

Researchers calculate social cost of German nuclear phase-out at $12B/year; 70% from increased mortality risk

Jan 27, 2020: In a working paper for the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER), a team from UC Berkeley, UC Santa Barbara and Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) calculates that the social cost of the phase out of nuclear electricity production in Germany is approximately $12 billion per year. More than 70% of...

Rolls-Royce takes majority holding in power storage specialist Qinous; storage for microgrid activities

Jan 27, 2020: Rolls-Royce now holds a 73.1% majority stake in Berlin-based electricity storage specialist Qinous GmbH. The Group acquired the shareholdings of all other current financial investors, including that of investment holdings company IBB Beteiligungsgesellschaft mbH (Berlin). The founding shareholders will continue to hold shares in the company and will retain their...

Study links exposure to diesel exhaust particles to pneumococcal disease susceptibility

Jan 26, 2020: Researchers from the University of Liverpool, Queen Mary University, London and Trinity College Dublin have linked exposure to diesel exhaust particles (DEPs) to susceptibility to pneumococcal disease. An open-access paper on the work is published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that...

GTI launching a hydrogen technology center

Jan 26, 2020: GTI, a research, development and training organization focused on natural gas and energy markets, is launching a hydrogen technology center. GTI focuses its R&D efforts on the generation of clean hydrogen using hydrocarbon fuels that incorporate carbon capture and/or carbon sequestration in a cost-effective manner. These technology efforts are directed...

Amazon to deploy 10,000 electric delivery rickshaws in India by 2025

Jan 26, 2020: In an effort to reduce carbon emissions, Amazon will deploy 10,000 electric delivery rickshaws in India by 2025. This commitment comes after successful pilots across different cities in 2019; learnings from these pilots have helped the company create scalable and long term EV variants to build this large fleet. These...

UGA study finds black carbon aerosols from GDI engines will worsen public health, climate; need for GPFs

Jan 25, 2020: The gasoline direct injection (GDI) engine is one of the most prominent technologies car manufacturers adopted to achieve the fuel economy and carbon dioxide emission goals established in 2012 by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The market share of GDI-equipped vehicles increased from 2.3% in model year 2008 to 51%...

J.D. Power survey finds consumers continue to lack confidence in future mobility technologies

Jan 25, 2020: Consumers continue to lack confidence in the future mobility technologies that automakers are eager to bring to market, according to the J.D. Power 2019 Q4 Mobility Confidence Index Study fueled by SurveyMonkey Audience. The Mobility Confidence Index remains 36 (on a 100-point scale) for self-driving vehicles and 55 for battery-electric...

2020 Audi A8 TFSI e plug-in hybrid carries starting price of $94,000

Jan 25, 2020: Audi is pricing its 2020 A8 TFSI e plug-in hybrid with a MSRP of $94,000 in the US. Joining the flagship sedan model line, the Audi A8 TFSI e serves as the first plug-in hybrid variant of the A8. (Earlier post.) By comparison, the starting MSRP for a 2020 Audi...

Energy-efficient Indian home features beautiful greenery

Jan 24, 2020: Mumbai based architecture and design firm, unTAG has just unveiled a stunning home that was built for a retired school teacher looking to spend his retirement years in his home village of Dakivali, India. Working within the man's extremely limited budget, the architects employed several low-cost, passive strategies such as building the home in the middle of a lush bamboo field to use the vegetation as natural insulation.

EWG warns forever chemicals are contaminating US drinking water at levels far worse than expected

Jan 24, 2020: EWG has found that the amount of PFAS in drinking water is far higher than recent estimates.

Scientists announce the Doomsday Clock is within 100 seconds to midnight

Jan 24, 2020: The Doomsday Clock is closer to midnight than ever before.

This sustainable lodge is in the worlds oldest living desert

Jan 24, 2020: Related: +  andBeyond Sossuvlei Desert Lodge Via Wallpaper…

Award-winning Owl Woods Passive House playfully mimics birdhouses in Australia

Jan 24, 2020: Australian design studio Talina Edwards Architecture recently completed the Owl Woods Passive House — the first certified Passivhaus project designed by a woman architect in Australia.

Volvo Cars says early demand for fully electric Volvo XC40 Recharge P8 AWD is strong

Jan 24, 2020: Volvo Cars has opened order books for the XC40 Recharge P8 AWD (earlier post), the company’s first fully electric car which is based on the best-selling SUV, in selected markets. The company says it has already received “several thousands” of firm orders even before the formal start of sales. Production...

Dutch-Belgian truck company orders five Proton HyRange hydrogen fuel-cell systems for refuse trucks; EU project REVIVE

Jan 24, 2020: E-Trucks Europe, a manufacturer of electric-hydrogen hybrid commercial vehicles, has ordered five HyRange fuel cell systems from Proton Motor. The five hydrogen fuel cell systems will be used to outfit electric refuse trucks as part of the EU project REVIVE (Refuse Vehicle Innovation and Validation in Europe). The tender, which...

Equinor contracts for first green-ammonia-fueled supply vessel; 2MW SOFC

Jan 24, 2020: Norway-based energy company Equinor has contracted with Eidesvik Offshore for the Viking Energy supply vessel, which is being retrofitted to make it capable of covering long distances fueled by carbon-free ammonia. The vessel will transport supplies to installations on the Norwegian continental shelf (NCS). The Viking Energy. (Photo: Eidesvik Offshore)...

DOE announces up to $64M to advance H2@Scale in new markets

Jan 24, 2020: The US Department of Energy announced up to $64 million in funding (DE-FOA-0002229) to advance innovations that will build new markets for the H2@Scale initiative (earlier post). This investment will support transformational research and development (R&D), innovative hydrogen concepts that will encourage market expansion and increase the scale of hydrogen...

DOE to award up to $133M for advanced vehicle technologies research

Jan 24, 2020: The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to $133 million in funding to support new and innovative advanced vehicle technologies research. Funded through the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, this funding opportunity (DE-FOA-0002197) supports projects in advanced batteries and electrification in support of the recently announced DOE...

DOE to award ~$96M for bioenergy research and development

Jan 24, 2020: The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced up to more than $96 million in funding (DE-FOA-0002203) for bioenergy research and development. Topic areas within this FOA will advance DOE’s Bioenergy Technology Office’s objectives of reducing the price of drop-in biofuels; lowering the cost of biopower; and enabling high-value products from...

SAE International publishes updated standard for on-route mechanized conductive EV charging systems for buses: SAE J3105

Jan 24, 2020: SAE International published its latest standard, SAE J3105: Electric Vehicle Power Transfer System Using Conductive Automated Connection Devices, along with three new tributary documents. The standard covers the general physical, electrical, functional, testing, and performance requirements for a mechanized (hands-free) conductive power transfer system primarily for transit buses using an...

Volkswagen’s WeShare electric car-charing expands in Europe, fleet to increase to 8,400 EVs

Jan 24, 2020: WeShare, Volkswagen and ŠKODA’s free-floating electric car sharing service, is to expand into seven more cities in Germany and other European countries in 2020. Prague and Hamburg in the spring are to be followed by Paris, Madrid, Budapest, Munich and Milan in the course of the year. In all these...

Stunning House on the Rocks uses geothermal power

Jan 23, 2020: On Finland’s windswept Turku archipelago, Helsinki-based design practice and log house kit purveyor Pluspuu has completed yet another ecological wood house — fittingly named the House on the Rocks. Designed to embrace landscape views in multiple directions, the three-bedroom, two-bath residence is a custom design based on Pluspuu’s pre-designed house models Isokari and Kustavi.

Check out these amazing sustainable cabins by ZeroCabin

Jan 23, 2020: Armed only with experience in biology, chemistry and physics, a group of Chile-based scientists took concepts ranging from photosynthesis to thermodynamics to create Zerocabin, a collection of off-grid and self-sustaining cabins that use “free energy” to function.

Restored Georgian townhouse has rainwater-fed green roof

Jan 23, 2020: The Sun Rain Room is an extension and restoration of a two-story Grade-II Listed townhouse designed and constructed by Tonkin Liu. Partnering with local craftspeople to complete the project, the London-based architecture firm was able to create an extension of the existing structure through landscape that feeds off of the sun and rain.

Henning Larsen unveils plans for Copenhagens first all-timber community

Jan 23, 2020: A sustainable, nature-filled neighborhood unlike any other in Denmark could soon take root just beyond Copenhagen’s city center.

Charming hobbit home in Slovenian 'Shire' is built of local, natural materials

Jan 23, 2020: While it may not be located in the Shire, this hobbit home in Slovenia is just as magical as a Middle Earth abode.

Bosch boosts stake in SOFC expert Ceres Power to around 18%; possible expansion into SO electrolysis

Jan 23, 2020: Bosch has increased its stake in solid-oxide fuel-cell (SOFC) developer Ceres Power from 3.9% to around 18%. The stake increase is achieved through a subscription by Bosch for new Ceres Power shares, as well as the purchase of further shares from existing shareholders. Bosch’s total investment will be approximately €90...

Nouryon-led consortium wins €11M EU backing for green hydrogen project

Jan 23, 2020: A consortium comprising Nouryon (formerly AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals), Gasunie and four other partners will receive an €11-million European grant towards their proposed green hydrogen project in Delfzijl, the Netherlands. The project is a front-runner among several hydrogen initiatives aimed at cutting carbon emissions and will be a significant milestone in...

Audi of America, Virginia DOT and Qualcomm plan initial C-V2X deployment in Virginia

Jan 23, 2020: Audi of America, the Virginia Department of Transportation (VDOT) and Qualcomm Technologies, Inc., a subsidiary of Qualcomm Incorporated, announced plans for initial deployments of Cellular Vehicle-to-Everything (C-V2X) communication on northern Virginia roadways, employing advanced wireless communications to enhance vehicle safety by using the same portion of the 5.9 GHz band...

Volkswagen and Aeris form JV to focus on next-generation Car-Net in the US

Jan 23, 2020: Volkswagen Group of America and Aeris, a technology leader in the Internet of Things (IoT), have formed Ventic LLC, a joint venture that is the result of a long-term commitment between Volkswagen and Aeris in the development and operations of connected vehicle platform technologies. The Aeris mobility suite can be...

BMW i Ventures invests in Software Motor Company; high rotor pole switched reluctance motor system

Jan 23, 2020: BMW i Ventures has invested in Software Motor Company (SMC), a Silicon Valley-based company developing reliable, efficient and intelligent motor systems. SMC’s electric motor system is based on switched reluctance technology, managed by advanced cloud software. The Smart Motor system partners a patented high rotor pole switched reluctance motor (HRSRM)...

Consumer Reports calls on automakers to drop support for rollback of federal gas mileage standards

Jan 23, 2020: Consumer Reports sent letters and a consumer petition to the leaders of General Motors, Toyota, Fiat Chrysler, Nissan, Subaru, Mazda, Hyundai, Kia, and Mitsubishi, calling on the companies to drop their legal attack against America’s Clean Air Act, and instead support Clean Car standards that help drivers save money on...

Emissions of potent GHG HFC-23 have grown, contradicting reports of huge reductions

Jan 23, 2020: Despite reports that global emissions of the potent greenhouse gas, HFC-23, were almost eliminated in 2017, an international team of scientists, led by the University of Bristol, has found atmospheric levels growing at record values. Over the last two decades, scientists have been keeping a close eye on the atmospheric...

The Union Flats is a LEED Platinum-certified housing community

Jan 22, 2020: Prefab architecture and energy efficiency go hand-in-hand at The Union Flats, one of the largest completed modular housing developments in Northern California. Located in Union City directly across a new public plaza and the local BART station, the transit-oriented community celebrates walkability and the outdoors with its amenities and proximity to green space.

Hundreds of red plastic crates are repurposed into a public mosque in Indonesia

Jan 22, 2020: One green-thinking firm, Parisauli Arsitek Studio, has managed to find a way of giving new life to hundreds of discarded plastic crates.

Carbon-negative snack company AKUA offers kelp jerky and pasta

Jan 22, 2020: Seaweeds are becoming quite the catch for health- and eco-conscious brands and consumers.

Off-grid home is inspired by the iconic Australian Akubra hat

Jan 22, 2020: The Australian Akubra hat is one of the many symbols of the country, and one architectural team has used the hat's recognizable form as inspiration for a spectacular off-grid home in the small NSW town of Nundle.

Modular homes in Sweden are specially designed for solar panels

Jan 22, 2020: Swedish firm Street Monkey Architects has unveiled new solar-powered, prefabricated modular homes in Örebro, Sweden.

OXIS Energy Li-S cells close to achieving 500Wh/kg; targeting 600Wh/kg with solid-state Li-S technology

Jan 22, 2020: OXIS Energy has successfully tested its Lithium-sulfur (Li-S) battery cell prototypes at 471Wh/kg and is confident of achieving 500Wh/kg in the next 12 months. Consistently shipping cells at 400Wh/kg to its clients in Europe, the US and Japan, OXIS is collaborating with major European chemical partners to develop an advanced...