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  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    iindy> Let me play devil's advocate on the 4 points.

    Expensive, yes, but it's still practically a prototype. Cost must come down in time as manufacturing the electrode is refined and streamlined. The "it's too expensive" argument has applied to most human innovations in the earliest stages going back forever. For years it was believed that only the rich would be able to afford automobiles (which was true until the Model T). Why is the answer to "too expensive" to start over and create something else that is also probably too expensive?

    PbC does not have energy density going for it, so yes it's heavy and large. But the starter battery in your car is no less heavy and large (in fact it is a lot heavier with twice the lead). All my life I've never heard the objection before that car batteries are too heavy and large, so why is this an issue now?

    As for lead, it's bad wherever it can be ingested. That's paint chips/dust, solder in plumbing, and as a gasoline additive that ends up in the air. When sealed in a battery lead poses no problem, especially since favorable economics leads to 99% recycling of lead batteries. Not an issue. Heck, the government is fine with putting mercury right in my teeth; the supposed federal movement to get lead out of car batteries is but a fiction.

    I think when the stock is way down there is a psychological reaction to see all the real and imagined negatives pressuring it. Sort of mentally justifies the stock price.
    Nov 20 03:09 PM | 9 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    Perhaps comparing the PbC to other batteries was a mistake all along. What the GM/Chrsyler/Ford JV with Maxwell tells us is that Maxwell's supercaps are probably our direct competition, not batteries, for auto. After all, the big 3 are pooling money to develop something new with Maxwell. Striking to me. With all the lithium battery solutions on the market plus the PbC and lead paste models, apparently nothing works for them so they want Maxwell to develop something new. I sure as heck never saw that coming.

    I guess the cynical view could be that the JV is just a ploy to pretend nothing on the market works for s/s to keep regulators' heels cooled for a few years.

    I'm highly skeptical that Maxwell will develop something that clearly, unequivocally beats PbC, but what do I know. If I remember they get to use significant DOE play money for the JV so the cynical view may have merit.

    I would like to see Axion go to DOE and explain they are spending money to reinvent what already exists. As far as I can tell, correct me if I'm wrong. But as soon as you get into capacitance combined with faradaic energy it seems that when it comes to an auto sized battery Axion has refined one heck of a negative electrode already. Why duplicate the effort at the cost of time and money? Axion should ask BMW and other OEMs to share their PbC data with DOE for the good of everybody.
    Nov 20 02:22 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    Yes, nice to get positive coverage, with a pile of analysts in attendance. “We are thrilled to feature presenters who are not typically covered and are ‘off the radar,’ but who also show great performance potential for investors. They truly are the best of the uncovered and positioned for explosive growth.”

    Perhaps DDG 'gets it' that selling the Axion story is perhaps more important than selling batteries in this period before the cash runs out in a year.

    I think Axionistas should spread the word as much as we can too. The stakes are too great if PIPEr selling etc continues to pressure the stock.
    Nov 20 08:58 AM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    geo> I have no idea whether BMW has considered or will consider a takeover of Axion but what I am sure of is that it would be a very smart move for them. Especially given what the company is now selling for.

    I do believe that BMW understands that with its clout as a big customer it could get the PbC manufacturered one way or another. So I don't believe it "worries" or should worry about there being enough PbCs should that be its choice, except for the near term while electrode production is ramping up.

    BTW "Berkshire Hathaway" was not an "investment firm". It was a textile mill that after years of Buffett doing bolt on acquistions you might now call an investment firm on a de facto basis only. Certainly was never organized as pooled capital seeking out investments. Buffett's partnership was, but he disbanded that and gave investors their money when the market got frothy around '66 I think it was.
    Nov 19 03:34 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power's IPO Crash: An Opportunity To Buy? [View article]
    Maybe you are not familiar with coconuts. They are a crop and their waste is husks.
    Nov 19 03:28 PM | 3 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power's IPO Crash: An Opportunity To Buy? [View article]
    ggrogers> The raw material of the carbon is indeed an agricultural waste product which is very, very cheap. The high expense comes in processing it to the nanoporous carbon form. Yes it is expensive, NOW, in the infancy of nanocarbon commercialization.

    Like any technology, personal computers for example, cost starts out very high but comes down in a hyperbolic fashion with a theoretical limit that approaches raw material and energy cost. In this case it is coconut waste.

    If your position is (seriously!) that nanoporous carbon suitable for supercapacitor electrodes won't come down dramatically in price in the future, I will bet against you all day.

    As always you've found a way to nitpick and distort the facts in order to spread fear. Your starting point is the given that whatever the aspect being discussed you must cast a negative light on it. From that automatic conclusion you then work backwards to find an argument and some distorted 'facts' to lead you there. That's why every word you've ever written on Axion or PbC has been negative. In your vast commentary, can you show me even one positive thing? Even one neutral? Please, I challenge you.

    Your 100% negative bias which means that you have skin in this dispersions game is so obvious that I'm going to ask you to forever stop posting on any of my articles. If you continue, you risk me involving Seeking Alpha to delete them and possibly ban you from the site.

    When others on the Axion blog called you a paid troll who had a long history of polluting the yahoo AXPW board I gave you benefit of the doubt. No more. Keep your junk off of my writings.
    Nov 19 02:14 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power's IPO Crash: An Opportunity To Buy? [View article]
    JRP> Sorry but cells are not batteries. A Tesla battery pack "string of cells" is not comparable to 1000 full auto-size batteries wired together filling a whole rail car. In your loose usage of 'string of cells', to compare apples to apples, then at about 10-12 cells per PbC times 1700 PbCs per OTR locomotive, the figure for a fair comparison is as much 20,000 cells in a string. But in rail they are also spread out connected by perhaps a thousand feet of conductor and tricky terminal connections. Not comparable to the cells factory made within one box that fits under the trunk or whatever.

    That PbC is superior to lithium in cell self equalization requiring far simpler BMS is not something I made up, but a point made in the reports of engineers working with PbC that has not been contended, except by you. The concave down PbC charge profile is reported as unique to PbC. You also refuse to acknowledge the fundamental difference between battery and capacitor. If lithium gives PbC competition in its sweet spot in the future, it will be lithium supercaps IMO not lithium batteries. However since Axion has a patent wall around nanoporous carbon negative electrodes, ANY other solution competitve with PbC in its sweet spot is very likely to infringe.

    PbC is not competitive in auto electric drive or auto hybrid electric drive. It is in stop/start & accessory load management. Autos and Tesla have come a long way with lithium but I think there's a limit -- when the power demands become too great and space and weight are not issues the economics shift toward PbC. I doubt that lithium is competitive in the really heavy usage apps such as locomotive and heavy truck motive. If it were why would Norfolk Southern mess around with a tiny company like Axion to the exclusion of every lithium manufacturer?

    I don't believe satellite power is a valid comparison; yes the cold is extreme but the power demands would seem extremely light to me compared to locomotives in extreme cold, etc. Mostly satellites are just running electronics, no? Orbiting needs very little power so the biggest power demands may be small electric motors for adjusting dishes etc. Nobody said lithium doesn't work at all in extreme cold, but it does suffer a lot of performance loss compared to mild temperatures as any battery does. Ultracaps no. If all you have to do is power transmitter/receiver and some small motors, power loss from cold is not a problem. The other thing is that in satellites reliability is everything so money is no object in terms of using the absolute best battery construction. Not at all comparable to the economics a railroad is looking at.
    Nov 19 01:44 PM | 5 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    Rick and ngs> Fair enough. We've had some soft numbers thrown our way, mpg "claims" if you will and suggestions regarding longevity, but for skeptics yes there is no robust and unassailable data yet.

    I believe in ePower's mpg claims because I understand where the increased efficiency is coming from in the theoretical model (from storing excess ICE horsepower, moment to moment, that normally cannot be stored anywhere near as efficiently if at all in existing models).
    Nov 18 04:19 PM | 7 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    "They do have a supply chain to keep happy"

    Wouldn't their battery supplier be happy if BMW fed them carbon electrodes and they then built the battery to sell to BMW? Profits/volumes could be as good as ever.

    "apparently Axion balked at or rejected the arrangement presented to it."

    Doesn't matter what Axion wants. As I pointed out BMW can easily take over Axion for a pittance and then do whatever it wants with the PbC. They could even kill the Axion name and the PbC brand. Change it to a much more marketable name emphasizing nanocarbon, not lead.
    Nov 18 02:57 PM | 4 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    greent> ePower has published data "hard facts" that are impressive indeed. It only remains to prove or disprove their claims by independent testers. That ePower is engaging independents (multiple FedEx contract truckers of the Lexington, KY hub) as I type speaks to their honesty.

    If you wanted to just bilk investors on something that can't work as advertised you keep asking for more money and saying new technical hurdles and problems have come up ad nauseum. IOW, you put off independent testing forever.

    Epower isn't doing that. Data will start coming in soon and in a few months it will be available from many independent trucker sources.

    Environmental groups would probably be low on a publicity priority list. First you need to convince technology experts who have the understanding to assess your tech. John is doing just that. In addition to giving investor presentations, I got an email from John that he will be in my area to present at a clean energy conference. If you click over to the home page you'll see logos of sponsors of this consortium. An impressive list of regional powerhouses. I think a very wise place to start the simultaneous publicity/investment theme awareness. Environmental lobby organizations can wait.
    Nov 18 02:38 PM | 8 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    Kenneth> Totally unrelated bolt on acquisitions has worked fabulously for Berkshire Hathaway, the most profitable and successful conglomerate in history. Buy Dairy Queen one day and an Israeli steel tool producer the next, zero synergy.

    The synergy between BMW and making batteries for its cars is tremendous. Business textbook vertical integration. It's worked out tremendously well for McDonald's to own its own beef production, etc, etc.
    Nov 18 01:25 PM | 6 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    ngs> 100,000 mile life is not completely impossible but ePower has seen no evidence of degradation to suspect such a short life. On the contrary Axion's teardowns of ePower's used batteries have been highly encouraging, allowing Axion to keep increasing the warranty period.

    100,000 miles can easily represent less than a truck year of fleet use. It's a round figure you just made up. Better to focus on reported facts like the battery teardowns than making stuff up.
    Nov 18 01:03 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    DRich> The thing is though that BMW would know that they hold the power to make Axion far stronger with the stroke of a pen, if they realize it's in their interest to do so. They should as it makes tremendous sense for them to buy Axion for peanuts now.

    Suppose that PbC is actually the best battery for s/s but BMW doesn't want to deal with weak little Axion as you say. Suppose that the second best battery is JCI's or EP's. Then they should,

    -buy a controlling interest in Axion equity, immediately boosting Axion's prospects and sales by simply attaching the BMW name and by implication their war chest (no more financing worries ever)
    -arrange for immediate production ramping of electrodes for their own needs
    -get their PbC's effectively at cost since they own the company
    -have a cost advantage over every other automaker while profiting from sales to them under exclusive patent protection
    -in scaling up electrode production, begin the process and learning curve leading to substantial PbC cost reductions over time, reducing or eventually eliminating the reason to go with 2nd best (Ultrabattery or whatever)
    -are never at JCI's mercy for anything nor have to pay for JCI's markup
    -own a large, perhaps controlling, interest in the PbC's future across all applications from trucks to locomotives to grid and renewable storage to anything new that has not been dreamed up yet. A share of multi billion dollar markets in the future basically for free.

    Just attaching the BMW name to the PbC battery would give it prominence and virtually ensure its success. Does anybody think island nations or utilities or solar projects etc would not give much more serious consideration to the "PbC by BMW" battery?

    If they're smart BMW will see this opportunity and pick Axion up for peanuts. Given Axion's desperate straits financially they could have ~75% of the company for maybe $10-15 million whether Axion wanted the takeover or not. Assuming the PbC performs as I believe it does (BMW will surely know), the opportunity for them is huge and everything lines up in the Pros column, nothing significant in the Cons column. A no brainer acquisition.
    Nov 18 12:39 PM | 10 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    I keep thinking about the BMW edrive drawings. A BMW win I think is by far the biggest potential positive for the stock. Instant game changer. So it's worth examining.

    I also don't believe the notions that supply chain shakiness would keep BMW away from PbC. First, then why didn't they stop testing PbC a long time ago? Second, as soon as they say they want it the only issue to be worked out is how to ramp up electrode production. Every other component of the battery is standard and could be manufactured by any current manufacturer.

    One battery per car; one electrode per car, maybe 100,000 electrodes in the first years which would be a mere 300 per day. I don't see where BMW would find this unworkable. In a pinch if there were a shortage they could substitute Ultrabattery or something else for a period.

    So how do people feel about the BMW eDrive opportunity right now? I think chances are quite good that the drawing reflects a second SLI battery larger than the 12V LAB and I think the most likely possibility is that that battery is in fact PbC. After all, when I asked here if BMW is known to have tested any other batteries for stop/start nobody knew of any.

    Anybody care to put a probability on PbC in BMW? I think chances are excellent but maybe I'm missing something.
    Nov 18 11:11 AM | 15 Likes Like |Link to Comment
  • Axion Power Concentrator 381: Nov. 16, 2014 [View instapost]
    ngs> Disagree, what is needed is optimism that any reliability wrinkles can be ironed out. The most important part, that huge gains in MPGs can be had for heavy trucks, is proven.

    Industry and Washington have been foot dragging badly on national energy policy for a long time. The last thing needed is making excuses for more foot dragging. I'm not saying mandate or apply pressure to use hybrid trucks. I'm just saying that big names like the Sierra Club could do some due diligence on a little outfit like ePower if they feel it is promising enough. Maybe visit Florence with a good engineer in tow, and if they find the tech to be an unsung winner to then get up on a stump and sing its praises. I cannot imagine a better use of a few thousand dollars of Sierra Club monies.
    Nov 18 09:57 AM | 11 Likes Like |Link to Comment