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  • Mathieu Malecot
    , contributor
    Comments (968) | Send Message
     
    hehehe
    17 Jul 2013, 06:57 PM Reply Like
  • pascquale
    , contributor
    Comments (96) | Send Message
     
    hahaha
    17 Jul 2013, 07:03 PM Reply Like
  • carlosgaviria
    , contributor
    Comments (783) | Send Message
     
    hihihi
    17 Jul 2013, 07:05 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    You know who. Hey, He's probably busy helping out cause!

     

    http://bit.ly/14frcPv
    17 Jul 2013, 07:07 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/15Ih5iW

     

    Thought this was a fairly decent (some math errors, typos though perhaps) look at copper supply issues. Seems to comport entirely with what John and Jack Lifton have been saying for years now. Interesting that it's starting to bubble up onto the popular radar screen though. (apart from all the copper thefts we hear about more and more lately..)

     

    What they didn't quite do is note the explicit point that:

     

    Glorious electric car future <=//=> copper supply wall.

     

    ...That might be too much for the audience to digest at one sitting.
    17 Jul 2013, 08:06 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2329) | Send Message
     
    Lithium an issue too? Cost prohibitive if Tesla and its ilk plan on displacing even 10% of the near Billion ICE engines on the road today with lithium based electric vehicles.
    >>
    http://bit.ly/18pgFUy
    18 Jul 2013, 03:37 AM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (734) | Send Message
     
    Electric Elevators
    What kind of batteries do they use? I know that there is a huge push in our office building to Go Green and to cut costs. Saving electric by regenerative charging should meet those goals. Especially by using a battery that won't catch fire at random.
    17 Jul 2013, 08:09 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Greentongue: "Especially by using a battery that won't catch fire at random".

     

    It's my understanding that in order to qualify for LEEDS certification the batteries must rigorously adhere to a strict schedule of catching fire. Failure to do so ...

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 06:11 AM Reply Like
  • Fred W
    , contributor
    Comments (481) | Send Message
     
    it is LEED not LEEDS. Get it right.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:34 AM Reply Like
  • PhishDBob
    , contributor
    Comments (20) | Send Message
     
    As a LEED AP BD&C, I can appreciate your need to correct people but in the future there are more appropriate ways to do so.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:41 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Missed congeniality ;-(
    17 Jul 2013, 08:21 PM Reply Like
  • pascquale
    , contributor
    Comments (96) | Send Message
     
    Indelco took care of you:) You're in his post.
    17 Jul 2013, 08:23 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Pascquale, I can't write a cognizant sentence but I tried to take care of the busy.
    17 Jul 2013, 11:28 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    JP
    I appreciated the pun. :)
    18 Jul 2013, 09:46 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    Plug In America’s
    Tesla Roadster Battery Study
    by Tom Saxton, Chief Science Officer
    Released :July 13, 2013
    http://bit.ly/15mxnOw

     

    "Summary of Results Of the factors considered –
    miles driven, vehicle age, and climate–
    only mileage showed a significant correlation with battery pack capacity.
    Data collected suggests that, on average, a Roadster battery pack will have between 80% and 85% of original capacity after 100,000 miles

     

    Unlike results from the Plug In America LEAF Battery Survey 5, no significant correlation was found between climate and battery longevity. There is significant variation in battery capacity reported;
    the difference in capacity be tween vehicles with similar mileage
    can be as large as the projected loss over 100,000 miles of use.
    Individual owners should therefore expect variation between their
    experience and the projected average performance. Because of the variation in battery pack longevity experienced by owners, especially
    where such variation may be due to factors beyond the owners’ control, it would seem desirable for the manufacturers of electric vehicles to guarantee not only the life of the battery pack, but also the capacity performance over time and miles. Nissan Motors
    responded to the climate issues reported by LEAF ow
    ners (and confirm ed by the Plug In America study)
    by amending their battery warranty to cover capacity. With the
    performance of the Roadster battery packs exceeding early expectations, it’s curious that Tesla Motors doesn’t offer any capacity warranty, even on the 85 kWh Model S, which
    has a warranty good for 8 years and unlimited miles."
    17 Jul 2013, 08:36 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    "Germany -- the world’s biggest distributed solar PV market -- may be primed for a wholesale shift to battery-backed solar on a large scale."

     

    http://bit.ly/1aRBid4
    17 Jul 2013, 08:42 PM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (734) | Send Message
     
    I heard rumor that our favorite company has had a working demo in their parking lot for years. Pity it is "parked" there and not being sold in Germany.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:11 AM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    AeroVironment Overestimated Electric Vehicle Adoption Rates; Reports Reduced Annual Revenue as a Result
    http://bit.ly/17mkl4V

     

    OTOH
    Best buy has moved out of the EV charging business. (I assume for the same reason and Aero has picked up the Ford contract.)
    http://bit.ly/17mkl51
    As Best Buy Exits The EVSE Game, Ford Goes With AeroVironment to Provide Home Charging
    17 Jul 2013, 08:47 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    TESLIVE: CEO Musk Says Tesla’s Biggest Challenges Are “Avoiding Big-Company-Itis” and Getting Panasonic to Up Cell Production

     

    <So, the bigger current challenge is this cell ramp up, to which Musk says this:

     

    “We’re working with Panasonic to ramp up production. We need a lot of battery. The sheer number of battery plants that needs to get built is quite staggering.”

     

    This could be a “real” problem. If Musk is being serious here, then this could play out to be quite an issue as Tesla looks to increase production and eventually add the Model X and that third-generation cheaper Tesla into the mix. Then there’s that electric truck, too.>

     

    This could have an interesting story. I wonder how locked into the contract Panasonic is?

     

    Navigant Research Ranks LG Chem, JCI and AESC as Leading Lithium-Ion Battery Manufacturers in the World
    http://bit.ly/1aRDxgu

     

    (Nice graphic)
    17 Jul 2013, 08:57 PM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    Maybe Musk should have taken a hint from BMW to have two sources for batteries before he started promising the world.
    17 Jul 2013, 09:02 PM Reply Like
  • froggey77
    , contributor
    Comments (2768) | Send Message
     
    The price of electric vehicles is falling is it time to buy?
    http://onforb.es/16KmJjG

     

    “Manufacturers are realizing that selling an electric car at a loss is better than not selling one at all,” said Karl Brauer, senior analyst at Kelley Blue Book. “And because these vehicles still make up a tiny percentage of total sales these automakers can absorb the financial loss with minimal pain,” he said. “But at some point electric cars will have to stand on their own in terms of generating a profit. In the meantime, if you’re a buyer looking to try out an electric car there are some excellent deals to be had.”

     

    $7,500 in govt incentives, the companies are taking a loss on each one, and still too expensive for most to buy.
    17 Jul 2013, 09:31 PM Reply Like
  • tripleblack
    , contributor
    Comments (13444) | Send Message
     
    Froggey, the $7500 fed incentives are just the tip of the iceberg, depending on where you live...

     

    Oklahoma, for instance will pony up 50% of the cost of the car in tax credits... Add in the $7500 from the Feds, and Oklahomans are able to buy a $40,000 car for about $12,500 net, thanks to OPM (other people's money). Lovely.

     

    California once had a $5000 incentive, but had to cut it back to only $2500 after they, er, basically went bankrupt (funny how such things tend to link together). Then of course there's the infamous free pass perpetual for the HOV...

     

    AZ - lower licensing fees, plus HOV sugar

     

    CO - $6000 and they toss in another 20% rebate for buying an EV charger

     

    DC - Excise tax exemption and lower registration fees

     

    FL - $5000 and you are exempt from annoying insurance surchages which plague mere mortal citizens who cannot venture into the HOV lanes solo

     

    GA $5000

     

    HI $5000

     

    IL $4000

     

    LA $3000

     

    MD HOV access

     

    MT $500

     

    NJ $4000 plus HOV goodies

     

    OR $5000

     

    PA $3000

     

    SC $1500

     

    TN $2500

     

    UT $2500 for conversions, $500 otherwise, plus HOV

     

    WA 6.5% sales tax exemption (nice chunk on an expensive car) plus Charge Station and Parts

     

    WV $7500 plus HOV

     

    So, $7500 from the federales is just the beginning. Easy to pile on State tax incentives and make the haul much larger. Of course for all the morons, er, loyal taxpayers who are NOT out picking their neighbors' pockets with both paws, this just means they are getting poorer while the rich get richer.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:35 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    I watched a 1 1/2 hr PBS Frontline episode last night entitled "Silicon Valley". I thought it illustrated quite well why many here continue to believe in and stay invested in Axion. In short, it’s fun [and potentially highly rewarding] to be involved with a cutting edge product that has the potential to transform industries. Here’s a blurb on this episode:

     

    Program: American Experience
    Episode: Silicon Valley
    Led by physicist Robert Noyce, Fairchild Semiconductor began as a start-up company whose radical innovations would help make the United States a leader in both space exploration and the personal computer revolution, changing the way the world works, plays, and communicates. Noyce's invention of the microchip ultimately re-shaped the future, launching the world into the Information Age.

     

    http://bit.ly/18p4AyK

     

    This episode describes how at a time when the transistor was hardly more than a curiosity, as soon as Noyce saw the first technical reports, he knew he was looking at the future. From the 3-minute trailer... [ http://bit.ly/18p4AyL ], Noyce recalls, “The concept hit me like an atom bomb... It was one of those ideas that jolts you out of the rut, and gets you thinking in a different way.” — Noyce later went on to invent the integrated circuit and founded Intel Corp.

     

    As I watched this, I was often struck by similarities between the story of the evolution of the transistor, and the story of Axion's PbC battery. From the painstakingly laborious early manufacturing processes to fully automated processes. How along the way at various junctures, he encountered skeptics and critics, most of whom could not stretch their imagination to envision numerous possibilities for its usage in many different applications. He encountered various difficult financing situations along the way, and at one point only one of about 50-60 potential financiers stepped up to the plate and invested in his ideas.

     

    This episode also reminded me of the story I heard once about the evolution of the quartz watch. Most people think it was invented by the Japanese, but it was actually invented by the R&D department in one of the old Swiss clock and watch companies, an industry and world market the Swiss once dominated. When management first saw the watch, they considered it hardly more than a novelty, and as far as I recall, didn’t even patent it. They even openly displayed it at a trade show. A Japanese company representative saw it, and immediately saw the enormous potential, and the rest is history. It was shortly after that the mighty Swiss clock and watch industry withered, and gave way to the new upstart Japanese manufacturers.

     

    Which brings me back to Axion and ePower. Two tiny little companies that I think are standing at the verge of creating somewhat of a mini-revolution in the trucking industry. I love the possibilities of what may happen with BMW and NS, but the whole idea of increasing mileage on OTR trucks as much as 50% or more is pretty inspiring to me. As hard as it is for people to grasp a disruptive concept such as this [as in too good to be true], I have to believe the amount of time it takes for trucking companies and individual truckers to realize how effectively the PbC technology [in conjunction with ePower’s] can affect their bottom line will be less than it will be with other industries. The immediate economic benefits are just so compelling, and could perhaps make it necessary for competitors to quickly follow suit if they are to stay competitive.

     

    In the above story about the transistor, industry giants at the time [Texas Instruments, Philco, IBM, and others] were caught flat-footed by the arrival of Robert Noyce and his new ideas and inventions. But they quickly caught on, and signed license agreements with his new upstart company. — To borrow another expression from the old Cool Hand Luke movie, I believe what we’ve had at Axion is “a failure to communicate”, with potential customers, with shareholders, and with potential strategic investors. Hopefully, with new blood coming into the Sales Dept. and top management, new and creative ways can be found [AND SOON] to successfully market this amazing disruptive product and technology. And IF.... they can all begin to execute as a team, we should all end up sitting pretty, despite some of the setbacks we’ve experienced along the way.
    18 Jul 2013, 01:09 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    OT: For those of you that have had comments deleted by Seeking Alpha's moderation facility and believe that that you may have been unfairly censored or that the criteria are way too tight (or, loose, viewed another way), I've been working with David Jackson and Eli (top of the SA editor food chain) on this issue.

     

    Eli is handling the ball ATM and has permitted me to post his email for others who would like to give him additional input.

     

    I suggest a copy of the deleted comments, the full e-mail, if available, I guess is best.

     

    eli@seekingalpha.com

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 06:25 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    07/17/2013: EOD stuff partially copied from instablog (up in ~1 hr.).
    # Trds: 137, MinTrSz: 500, MaxTrSz: 54000, Vol 793295, AvTrSz: 5790
    Min. Pr: 0.1500, Max Pr: 0.1650, VW Avg. Tr. Pr: 0.1552
    # Buys, Shares: 67 426075, VW Avg Buy Pr: 0.1559
    # Sells, Shares: 68 347220, VW Avg Sell Pr: 0.1542
    # Unkn, Shares: 2 20000, VW Avg Unk. Pr: 0.1585
    Buy:Sell 1.23:1 (53.7% “buys”), DlyShts 334605 (42.18%), Dly Sht % of 'sells' 96.37%

     

    Week end & this week's daily estimated values (older dailys in prior EOD posts) for next share issue:
    06/14: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.2315, in 40 days: $0.1968 Wk cls VWAP $0.2122
    06/21: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.2176, in 40 days: $0.1850 Wk cls VWAP $0.1751
    06/28: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1956, in 40 days: $0.1663 Wk cls VWAP $0.1474
    07/05: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1805, in 40 days: $0.1534 Wk cls VWAP $0.1518
    07/12: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1657, in 40 days: $0.1408 Wk cls VWAP $0.1403
    07/15: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1625, in 40 days: $0.1381
    07/16: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1599, in 40 days: $0.1359
    07/17: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1579, in 40 days: $0.1343

     

    Vol, in K (for above wks/days): 4,356, 1,934, 3910, 1,217, 2902, 1532, 982, 793.

     

    On my original inflection point calculations, readings for 5, 10, 25, 50, 100 and 200 day periods:
    1-day change: 20.7%, 14.2%, 8.1%, 2.0%, 1.3%, 0.7%
    5-day change: 44.8%, -32.6%, 931.3%, -59.2%, 18.4%, -41.0%
    5-day rate of change change: 43.7%, -43.1%, 16.7%, -896.5%, -12.2%, -23.8%

     

    On my newer inflection point calculations, for those same periods:
    1-day change: 58.8%, 48.8%, 34.4%, 46.5%, 31.9%, 67.2%
    5-day change: 139.2%, 8921.5%, 20676.4%, 311.0%, 386.0%, 605.3%
    5-day rate of change change: 109.0%, 67.5%, 288.5%, 692.7%, 444.8%, 780.3%

     

    ARCA was again on the ask from the get-go again, and hung around all day. A little more patient until late in the day. Spent a bit less time at the front of the line than I had noticed before, but based on the short percentage (relatively large) they and some of their cohorts must have been jumping down to hit the bids, suggested by the “Dly Sht % of 'sells'” as well (347K “sells” vs. 334.6K short). This is like the old days!

     

    Again, our price spread, 10% following yesterday's 25.9%, suggests that a change in behavior may be on the way, especially since we've had three days of good volume, albeit reducing. The price spread narrowing a bit, with reducing volume suggests consolidating though, not surprising coming off the low VWAP of $0.1318 on 7/15 when we had 1.532MM+ volume. Everybody needs a little breather. So I'm not looking for a near-term big move unless some news appears.

     

    Here's some price context for the day's action:
    $0.1500-$0.1521: 111600 shares, 14.07% of vol, VWAP $0.1511, b:s 1:3.29, 23.3% buys
    $0.1525-$0.1549: 283020 shares, 35.68% of vol, VWAP $0.1536, b:s 1.02:1, 50.5% buys
    $0.1550-$0.1570: 215600 shares, 27.18% of vol, VWAP $0.1557, b:s 1.22:1, 52.5% buys
    $0.1583-$0.1599: 085000 shares, 10.71% of vol, VWAP $0.1589, b:s 24.00:1, 84.7% buys
    $0.1600-$0.1650: 098075 shares, 12.36% of vol, VWAP $0.1604, b:s 2.77:1, 73.5% buys

     

    Some context in time frames:
    09:30-09:57: 103575 shares, 13.06% of vol, VWAP $0.1552, 41.1% buys
    10:02-10:27: 073520 shares, 09.27% of vol, VWAP $0.1522, 87.1% buys
    10:37-10:57: 133600 shares, 16.84% of vol, VWAP $0.1548, 48.3% buys
    11:08-11:29: 126500 shares, 15.95% of vol, VWAP $0.1576, 68.8% buys
    11:31-11:54: 040000 shares, 05.04% of vol, VWAP $0.1564, 12.5% buys
    12:08-12:50: 044500 shares, 05.61% of vol, VWAP $0.1526, 0.0% buys
    13:02-13:28: 120000 shares, 15.13% of vol, VWAP $0.1573, 70.0% buys
    13:54-14:25: 020000 shares, 02.52% of vol, VWAP $0.1534, 39.5% buys
    14:44-14:59: 051500 shares, 06.49% of vol, VWAP $0.1525, 21.4% buys
    15:00-15:29: 067000 shares, 08.45% of vol, VWAP $0.1553, 76.1% buys
    15:32-15:58: 013100 shares, 01.65% of vol, VWAP $0.1554, 69.5% buys

     

    In spite of the above, keep an eye on the inflection point calculations and the improving buy:sell. The inflection point calculations are definitely showing reducing weakness and the newer one is nearing showing rise. It's not there yet, but it's working on it.

     

    Also, keep in mind that Drich mentioned, IIRC, that the MACD made a move to almost above zero – first time since 5/2/13. http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    Details of “Dly Sht % of 'sells'” and inflection points omitted here.

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 06:31 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Thanks HTL. I'll add that a big change in the action has been NITE's big buying. Time and time again they have had big and often the biggest blocks on or near the best bid. Usually takes them a while to get warmed up each day. They're back again today.

     

    Someth'ns going on there. Wish I knew what. One of my fondest dreams (note: pure spec on my part) is that it's Blackrock, now that a BMW deal may be close at hand. They were, surprisingly to me, on a recent CC after all, so at least up til then, they were still hanging around.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:51 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    MrI: Well, @ 10:48 ARCA showed up - on the ask of course, at the lowest price natch, and BTIG and NITE joined them at $0.1529 ask. Of course, the bids started getting hit immediately, moving to $0.1511, near the low seen so far, $0.1510. There were only a few shares traded at the bid prior to that.

     

    HardToLove
    EDIT: BTW, the bid dropped immediately to $0.1511 from $0.1529 when ARCA hit us.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:59 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    NITE, ARCA, and BTIG have been the biggest sellers on Level II since the PIPE deal started, so that's not a recent change. NITE being the biggest buyer, on Level II anyway, is. I don't recall anyone mentioning it yet, so that's why I did.

     

    Happened again today. NITE had 40k bid at 15.11 or so, which was the biggest block this morning. Took them awhile to get it there, as usual.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:12 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    MrI: The deal with ARCA is they always (amost) seem to get the ball rolling downhill on the ask. Until they showed this A.M., as with many mornings, NITE and BTIG pretty-well held their ground.

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 11:19 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    MrI: Another thing, maybe notworty - unsure - is that ARCA was in only a few minutes and then disappeared. BTIG shortly moved back to where they were before ARCA appeared, ask $0.20x6K. NITE stayed put now at $0.1588.

     

    OK ARCA just now came back in at $0.155 ask, let's see what happens.

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 11:40 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    My post was let folks know that during this several day bounce NITE has been a big factor on the buy side. Bidding for a ton of stock, which is great to see, IMO.

     

    The sell side stuff has already been mentioned already by both of us, if not others.
    18 Jul 2013, 12:11 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    INFORMAL SELF DISCHARGE TEST RESULTS

     

    Yesterday we were in the ePower shop and I noticed a pallet of first generation PbC batteries sitting in the corner so I asked Jay to throw a voltmeter on a couple of them. After sitting for three months or so, the batteries had self-discharged into the low 10.x volt range. It's only one data point, but it's worth sharing since many have worried about high self-discharge rates in the past.
    18 Jul 2013, 07:22 AM Reply Like
  • metroneanderthal
    , contributor
    Comments (1500) | Send Message
     
    Thanks for that info John, as I was thinking about this yesterday. I had wondered if any of the recent improvements in the PbC had bettered the self-discharge rate. Was it Kirk who brought up, mentioned, or confirmed something about self-discharge? Just can't remember how it became a concern. How would this rate of self-discharge compare with lead-acid?
    18 Jul 2013, 07:36 AM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (734) | Send Message
     
    Is it assumed or confirmed that they were initially fully charged. It would be good to confirm the starting point.
    18 Jul 2013, 07:56 AM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2173) | Send Message
     
    That is about expected, a 25% loss of energy. If someone was using this as a starting battery, this almost certainly would be considered a fail, since starters don't work very well below 11 volts. Of course, the PBC. is NOT a starting battery, and is not expected to hold a charge to pass an "airport test".

     

    A healthy LAB sitting for a few months would still have over 12 volts, and perhaps 85-90% of its energy.

     

    Thanks for the datum, JP.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:46 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I think 12.5 to 10 is more like 20%, but it's not too bad when you remember the batteries were PbC1.0 that had been sitting on a pallet in a warehouse for three months.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:50 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Metro, Capacitive devices, which is part of the energy stored in the PbC, have move self discharge than LA.

     

    I was wondering though. If you have to have a DC-DC converter anyway, could the PbC battery still meet the airport test with its higher level of self discharge? Would it still have enough energy to cycle the starter X times after the required rest period?

     

    We do have to recognize though that sitting on a pallet in an open circuit condition is not the same as what we would have installed in a vehicle with things like the security system working and other devices using energy in sleep mode.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:19 AM Reply Like
  • nakedjaybird
    , contributor
    Comments (2658) | Send Message
     
    Open-circuit voltage is one thing; the voltage drop under load after sitting on the shelf for 3 months is another thing. Unless, of course, the PbC characterisitcs are unlike normal batteries.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:52 AM Reply Like
  • metroneanderthal
    , contributor
    Comments (1500) | Send Message
     
    iindelco, rick,
    thanks for responses.
    18 Jul 2013, 12:29 PM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2173) | Send Message
     
    JP, one of Axion's semi-secret data sheet says power is gone at 4 volts, so I used 8 "usable" volts, eg, 4-12, as the denominator. Sure would be nice is Axion PUBLISHED their data. It might even make them look good. :)

     

    What about a table of voltage to capacity? That shouldn't be confidential. I have never seen one.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:46 PM Reply Like
  • nakedjaybird
    , contributor
    Comments (2658) | Send Message
     
    rick - it's pretty common in the battery industry to provide voltage discharge curves at various rates plotted against Ahr capacity. They also at time provide the same following various periods of open circuit following recharge (normally called or related to shelf life). When it is important and necessary to provide, I spose Axion will provide it, if they have not already, especially to their "partners".
    18 Jul 2013, 03:53 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Rick> That logic works for me. All I care about is explanations that are clear enough for others to follow.
    18 Jul 2013, 04:17 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    John, Do you have any feel for when we might expect some level of durability feedback like a technical assessment or some soft side customer feedback on job #1?

     

    Does job #1 have a fixed design rev. level or are they still tweaking it?

     

    Hopefully the customer is running that rig hard.
    18 Jul 2013, 04:32 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The customer isn't running his tractor yet because he wants a unit that will haul 80,000 pounds at 75 mph and he'd rather leave his tractor for ePower to use as a development laboratory than settle for less.

     

    With the John Deere four banger running the genset, 50 to 55 mph is pretty much the limit for an 80,000 pound GVW without savaging fuel economy by over-reving the engine. With the big boost in useful horsepower Jay expects from the Cummins six cylinder, he thinks he'll be able to satisfy the customer.

     

    That's when the durability testing will begin in earnest. Jay wants to build ten tractors and get them in the hands of several freight haulers who are willing to use them as daily fleet vehicles. He figures a year of driving in ten vehicles should aggregate 1.5 to 2 million miles and give them a solid basis to demonstrate durability.
    18 Jul 2013, 04:44 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    RK, a hearty concur. On the one hand it's understandable to want to protect the PbC from harsh public judgments while it was still in its adolescence... kinda why junior-high yearbooks aren't a big thing--like any proud parent of a typical 14 year-old with uh, a few flaws, we just know (hope) the picture is bound (got to) to still get prettier from here...

     

    (note, timely paragraph break ;)

     

    But on the other hand.... (and I know I keep harping on this), it *is* kinda awkward for Axion to be claiming they've made the jump from development stage to commercial enterprise while *still* not really publishing the performance specs of their primary product. It just doesn't quite compute.
    18 Jul 2013, 05:09 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    OK, I thought that ePower swapped rigs with the customer and they were going to put the first one in service while a second was upgraded with the Cummins engine and the permanent magnet generator as soon as ePower could negotiate a deal. Or utilize the current generator if the new permanent magnet generator could not be acquired on time. For some reason I thought the customer was running the rig pre-Axion involvement when the VRLA batteries had a thermal event. This design iteration would have had the same lower than 75mph restriction.

     

    ETA target for a Cummins 6 banger rig at the customer?
    18 Jul 2013, 05:17 PM Reply Like
  • obieephyhm
    , contributor
    Comments (1558) | Send Message
     
    "(note, timely paragraph break ;)"

     

    much appreciated, big guy!
    18 Jul 2013, 05:25 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Pretty cool... even with the cummins six, they'd still basically be using what amounts to only a pickup-truck size engine to haul 40 tons of freight down the highway at viable highway speed. If that can indeed be done safely and consistently with a several-years-durable platform (and achieving the looked-for economy) it will be (IMHO) quite a significant achievement indeed.

     

    And if it all proves out, such a triumph and vindication for the serial-hybrid concept is not going to be an achievement ignored for long, nor will it remain for very long confined to just this application.

     

    And at last PbC will be recognized for the key enabler that it is...
    18 Jul 2013, 05:50 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Iindelco> The first step will be using the 240 hp Cummins six with the current generator and drive motor pair from Marathon. While it may happen more quickly, they're hoping to have the six cylinder on the road by September to verify whether the engine change and other enhancements get them where they want to be in terms of load capacity and cruising speed. With that confirmation in hand, they'll place the first ten trucks with users who can then prove performance for themselves while generating tons of reliability and durability data.

     

    Jay really wants to work with the Cummins and a rare earth permanent magnet generator, but getting all the internal Cummins approvals to set ePower up as an authorized OEM is going to take some time. At this point I tend to think of the first REPM builds as a 2014 event.
    18 Jul 2013, 05:51 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    John-

     

    Do you know or can you comment on the 10 test fleet. Will these be in 10 different customers hands or something like 2 customers with 5 each? 10 customers with one each may lead to scalable orders quicker for e-Power than two customers but then again if I am e-Powers #1 tester who has been working with them for a year I want some sort of head start on my competition.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:00 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Thanks John. Now it's clear to me.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:30 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    mrholty> In an ideal world it will be five to ten different fleets so that ePower can collect as much and as varied real world data as possible.
    18 Jul 2013, 07:29 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2487) | Send Message
     
    I think I am confused ... from a starting point of 10 trucks, how could it be five to ten different fleets?
    18 Jul 2013, 08:42 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    If you deliver two trucks each to five different operators you have exposure in five fleets. If you deliver one truck each to ten different operators you have exposure to ten different fleets.

     

    Truckers hate batteries and they don't believe anybody's claimed fuel economy until they've done their own tests. They also value reliability and durability above all because that trucks that are broken down or have lots of repair issues simply aren't worth the headache.

     

    Given the industry's hard nosed Missouri skepticism, ePower believes that the best way to get broad exposure in the industry is to build the first ten trucks on its own nickel and make them available to risk averse users on a short term lease with a 30 to 60 day money-back walkaway clause.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:59 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2487) | Send Message
     
    Ahh, I read your post wrong. I like the approach.

     

    edit - but given that the Cummins hasn't been installed yet, is September a realistic delivery time frame?
    18 Jul 2013, 09:12 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    JP > "The customer isn't running his tractor yet because he wants a unit that will haul 80,000 pounds at 75 mph and he'd rather leave his tractor for ePower to use as a development laboratory than settle for less. "

     

    One interpretation of that info is that John Deere equipped trucks are either sitting idle or the engine of one has been replaced with a 6-cylinder Cummins and the 2nd Deere powered truck idled or reworked as a conventional rebuild and returned to service.

     

    Can you tell us whether ePower is now testing/working with a single class 8 truck?
    19 Jul 2013, 02:19 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    ePower has completed its characterization work with the four cylinder John Deere engine and is currently working to replace the four cylinder in one of the two second generation rigs with the six cylinder Cummins engine it just bought.

     

    Assuming the six cylinder performs as it should, the second existing Gen2 tractor will be immediately re-worked with a new six cylinder engine and PbC batteries. Ten more trucks for customer testing will follow in short order.

     

    AFIK the owner of the two second generation tractors is not running that rig in daily operations because it's still equipped with AGM batteries and does not have sufficient power to suit all his requirements.
    19 Jul 2013, 03:19 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    Thanks for the info.
    19 Jul 2013, 04:01 PM Reply Like
  • DaveT
    , contributor
    Comments (170) | Send Message
     
    Hi JP, about ePower,

     

    Glad to hear you will try to sort out the mpg morass.

     

    But maybe just 10 mins could be assigned to their website to delete the "ancient" material (a historic show event on the home page, a blog not updated since 2010). Of course more current content would be nice, and an email subscription list?

     

    And then maybe a couple of hours to define and explain the drive-train configuration, I'm afraid your post about using the "DC motor brakes" just doesn't leave me any more informed (and I passed an Engineering degree).
    "A picture is worth a thousand words."
    18 Jul 2013, 08:22 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    A website update is high on my priority list of desirable things for ePower to accomplish, but management's priority list of essential things to accomplish first is lengthy. They're not ready to sell trucks yet so it's far more important for them to get the truck fully developed than to update a website that nobody visits.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:55 AM Reply Like
  • DaveT
    , contributor
    Comments (170) | Send Message
     
    Not even 10mins to make it look less "bad"?
    And as for "no one visits", well I hope the site stats are being monitored, and given there have been press articles to me it does not make sense to write it off as worthless asset.
    People will want more info, they will go there.

     

    It would be better have just a single page that says "call us" if that is really their view.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:39 AM Reply Like
  • 12100606
    , contributor
    Comments (86) | Send Message
     
    I agree. Integrity is more important than anything else. Perhaps a trusted, longtime Axionista could be given the URL and the user name and password and at least remove the unsubstantiated claims. It can be done in the comfort of a living room. No travel required.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:57 AM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1456) | Send Message
     
    Agree with you DaveT, the website is badly done and unattractive ;(
    18 Jul 2013, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • DaveT
    , contributor
    Comments (170) | Send Message
     
    PS And it (ePower web) also reflects badly on AXPW, certainly there will people interested in AXPW who will be looking at ePower as part of their research, guilty by association.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:19 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    As I said, it's a high priority item with me but there are several items that fit into that class.
    18 Jul 2013, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • DaveT
    , contributor
    Comments (170) | Send Message
     
    And also about ePower.

     

    We still don't have any reliable data for the cost of the PbCs?
    At $20k per ePower battery set (AXPW PR), can we say $5K is gross profit? Or is that too much?

     

    It still seems we have to sell a lot just to get to CF+ with $2m/Q (IIRC) overheads? [This being the only "line" that seems to actually be going anywhere at present, so let's stay with reality.]

     

    But it does seem we could sell more than "a lot" if we open up the market to self-fitting by fleet owners (as ePower suggest on their "web site") on a global basis - they'll need a big training room though.
    Early days, but just wondering if anyone has done any analysis on what kind of size of market exists and what penetration could be achieved.

     

    It would be nice to have a projection that adds weight to an EPS * PE figure that is higher than the current sp.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:33 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    You're going immediately from R&D company valuation to earnings based established manufacturer valuations. The important middle stage, adolescence if you will, bases valuations on expectations rather than accomplishment. It's a time of unlimited potential for a precocious adolescent. The poster child for the adolescent company phenomenon is Tesla, although you see it throughout the financial markets where top line revenue growth is treasured even if bottom line losses are flat or increasing.

     

    The simple reality is that Axion won't be valued on the basis of earnings for another five years. So talk of break-even and PE ratios is incredibly premature.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:03 AM Reply Like
  • DaveT
    , contributor
    Comments (170) | Send Message
     
    I agree we are a long way away but we have also been going for a long time, and AXPW needs to stay alive to get there, and investors might want to see some reason for believing that even this low valuation could be supported.

     

    This is a business model that would seem to scale nicely and possibly much more quickly than five years, no point in not predicting potential earnings I feel.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:43 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    There is one simple reason why Axion isn't valued the same way as Tesla - the big banks don't have stock to dump.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:54 AM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1456) | Send Message
     
    If we get to the point where we grab interest from the Big Banks, then Axion would already be a mature, multi-hundred million dollar market cap, and in this case everyone on this blog will be selling to the newcomers :)
    18 Jul 2013, 10:23 AM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (367) | Send Message
     
    Not everyone
    18 Jul 2013, 10:32 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4428) | Send Message
     
    >Amouna ... Newcomers!!! Let them suffer on the upside. I've got a lot of grief to work through.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:41 AM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1224) | Send Message
     
    Once a Joke-battery powered airplanes are nearing reality
    http://bit.ly/151Dl8B
    18 Jul 2013, 10:47 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Grand standing title.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:21 AM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    I've been thinking about the plan to nominate ex-CFO Charles Trego to the board. I'm not sure I like the idea of having to pay one more board member; also not sure he will do any good in that position. I think it is just part of a golden parachute for him and I plan to vote my shares against it.

     

    All that got me thinking about why can't we shareholders nominate someone? There should be enough support from Axionistas alone to get someone who represents our interests on the board. That is, if we could all agree on who to nominate. How about bangwhiz? He has plenty of valid critique to offer and good knowledge of the company. Also, he know a little about SALES!
    18 Jul 2013, 11:08 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    If we really have 20% or whatever of the stock, that's a lot of power. Excellent idea to nominate one of us. Bang sounds good to me.

     

    Following procedure is vital. If someone wants to look into that it would be helpful. Not sure what the lead times are, etc.

     

    Would be interesting if cumulative voting is allowed. Bang could become a shoo-in.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:22 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    We must be careful that this doesn't become a money draining proxy fight.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:28 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Bang is a good choice.

     

    But then Johhny Rambo has been around the longest and has contacts that know what's going on in Toronto. Plus after a couple board meetings we'll have another shot at the cliff hanger "Who shot JR".
    18 Jul 2013, 11:45 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Ranma: I go a step further and say what would we gain? Would this new member have interests more closely aligned with ours? If they have a average cost >= $1.xx, maybe.

     

    Would they have more insight into the markets we are trying to address? Um, that seems a bit of a stretch. Technology? Unlikely.

     

    If we felt it's a specific skill problem, e.g. sales, I presume that Vani covers that. Is it PR? There may be room there, but that should be a company employee or a professional firm, no?

     

    You can see where my thinking flows - for the possible disruptions, of all types, what would this new member bring to the table?

     

    Unless we feel the BOD has been remiss in some substantive way and that we could make a big difference by having one "from our ranks" there, I think this is more of a grab at doing *something*, maybe anything, to try and hurry things along.

     

    And as you suggest, there could be some destructive consequences.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 11:49 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    I remember one case when a shareholder did get elected to the board (Blockbuster's final days). He promised to tell shareholders what was really going on. He was voted in, got a small compensation package that offset some of his losses, and promptly did nothing until the company finally went under. He said that they were already far along in the process when he got on board, but still his election did zero for anyone but himself.
    18 Jul 2013, 12:06 PM Reply Like
  • Treehill
    , contributor
    Comments (105) | Send Message
     
    The idea of the shareholders nominating someone to sit on the board also had occurred to me. No offense to Bangwhiz, but my preference would be Rick Krementz.
    18 Jul 2013, 12:38 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Ranma, that sounds like a risk with Trego, too. If we're being asked to vote HIM in, why not also be asked to vote for someone who more closely represents us? The proxy should make the company's case for why Trego should be voted for. I look forward to reading that.

     

    With the admittedly small amt of info I have, I think the Board made a mistake not replacing Granville with a biz development/sales expert. I think that one of us, with an emphasis in that area, if not outright expertise, would have pushed for that change. Would it have made a darn bit of difference? Dunno. But would have improved the odds, IMO.

     

    Of course, a lot of additional things would need to be discussed, like, is Bang even interested, lol.
    18 Jul 2013, 12:42 PM Reply Like
  • metroneanderthal
    , contributor
    Comments (1500) | Send Message
     
    I agree with HTL's reasoning that trying to elect a board member may not have positive consequences. Would be opposed to the idea for reasons HTL outlined and beyond.
    18 Jul 2013, 12:44 PM Reply Like
  • carlosgaviria
    , contributor
    Comments (783) | Send Message
     
    Excellent!

     

    My vote is for: RICK KREMENTS.

     

    Saludos-Carlos.
    18 Jul 2013, 01:07 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The procedures for nominating a board member are cumbersome, and if you managed to get a board member elected, he would be subject to the same duties of confidentiality as all other directors. There are things that directors and officers just can't talk about with the public, even if their primary responsibility is to watch out for the public's interest. Nominating a director because you think he'll do a better job is one thing. Nominating a director because you hope he'll share material non-public information is a great way to get everybody in trouble.
    18 Jul 2013, 02:13 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    After thinking about it, I'd just rather not have ANY new board members. Either way, I'm voting against Trego. If he wants to quit, let him quit. He doesn't need to keep milking the company through a cushy BOD position. Bad enough they likely will be paying him double now as a part-time consultant.
    18 Jul 2013, 02:49 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Former executive officers are not considered independent until they've been separated from the company for three years. Directors who also perform consulting services are not considered independent if the value of those services exceed $60,000 per year. When I was serving as counsel for Axion, I received no additional compensation for serving as a board member. Unless things have changed dramatically, I'll bet that Mr. Trego will not be qualified for the outside director's compensation package.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:20 PM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2173) | Send Message
     
    Thank you.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:48 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    NGS Dude, with respect, that's pretty harsh. We don't know anything about his situation. My sense of it is that a BOD position is the best compromise win-win for both Mr. Trego and the company that could be found. He stays in the circle of trust. He gets needed relief from full time duties in order to be able to attend to whatever personal/family issues he has on his plate (and again we just don't know, these could be serious), and the company gets to retain him as an experienced asset at (presumably) much less cost. I would think also that having him around would reduce the urgency somewhat for the need to find a replacement CFO forthwith. As Bang indicated, that one could be tough fill, one we would want the company to get right. Having a bit more time to find (or perhaps train) the right replacement person seems like a good thing to me...
    18 Jul 2013, 05:08 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    As John has explained the Sr. Mgmt of Axion previously when concerns of age came up he spoke of the dynamic that many of them have put blood sweat and tears and long hours into this from Day 1. Its their baby and age isn't the problem. Also isn't 60 the new 40? As Mr. Trego has been CFO since 2010 and not since Day 1, he may not be like the others that John worked next to for a few years. As Mr. Granville said in the YE conference call they are moving from an R&D company to commercialization. That means a change in work not only for sales staff, hopefully engineering, etc. I'd assume that also means the CFO as well. Currently, Mr. Trego probably has not had to travel. Now if you are trying to work a few deal for BMW with 1 or 2 battery companies you are probably flying to their HQ. I'd assume that TG wants his finance guy with him to know what options and deals mean to AXPW's bottom line. We know he's cheap so he probably doesn't have the support staff that he probably would need and is not likely to do so. He's probably a great CFO for watching the nickels but a company that is (hopefully) going to undergo huge growth requires a different CFO, one that has huge brass ones as cash flow can get swamped quickly in you have to have capital for lines, staff, materials to make a product, ship the product, and then prey to get paid in 90 days (screw 30). Ugh, I'm tired thinking about it.

     

    A CFO of a small company is often, imo harder than the CEO. The CEO is driving business, providing leadership and has a general ideas of the numbers. The CFO has to know the numbers every which way and be on pace with the CEO and Sales to make sure cash flows are working out, etc.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4616) | Send Message
     
    I don't see where AXPW needed another BOD, they could have just paid him as a consultant until a new CFO was up and running.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:28 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I don't think Chuck will be paid for serving as a board member, although he will be paid for serving as a consultant. We'll know for sure when the preliminary proxy is filed. Let's withhold condemnation until we know what the facts are.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:43 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    Seems to me the proposal to appoint Trego to the board raises several questions.

     

    1. How does appointing Mr. Trego to the board advantage the company and its shareholders? Shouldn't his skills be largely, if not entirely, available to the board through whomever is hired to replace him?

     

    2. If the board is to be expanded should it be enlarged by one member? By multiple new members? Or is replacing some incumbent board members a better option?

     

    3. Is there advantage to appointing one or more outside directors with no perceived vested interests in protecting/preserving the historic business strategy?

     

    18 Jul 2013, 11:20 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4428) | Send Message
     
    >nogoodslacker ... Bangwhiz could use the distraction.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:16 AM Reply Like
  • Renzo
    , contributor
    Comments (349) | Send Message
     
    More depression for lithium battery fans. From the WSJ:
    -----
    Investigators said detailed examination of the top portion of the Ethiopian jet near its tail—which showed "extensive heat damage" to insulation and the fuselage itself—indicates the fire was most intense at the site of the emergency locator transmitter, or ELT.

     

    Damage to the plane's composite structure coincides with the location of the ELT and "its associated wiring," according to the report, and investigators determined "there are no other aircraft systems in this vicinity" that "contained stored energy capable of initiating" the fire.

     

    http://on.wsj.com/13mSfq6
    18 Jul 2013, 12:31 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Does anyone care about price any more?

     

    Hokkaido To Utilize 60 MWh Vanadium Flow Battery For Grid Storage

     

    "This battery is expected to last 20 years and cost $3,333 per kWh. This is substantially higher than today’s commercial lithium-ion battery banks, which have shorter lifespans (10 years in the case of lithium-iron phosphate).

     

    But the lithium-ion energy storage industry is fairly established, while the vanadium redox battery industry is in its infancy. Could the cost of vanadium redox batteries decrease if their production scale grows? Possibly."

     

    http://bit.ly/112dpJt
    18 Jul 2013, 12:49 PM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    HTL has it right here I think. This is a crucial time for Axion. Serious boat rocking is not a good idea. Too much potential for destruction we can ill afford.

     

    I think technically we're sitting in the perfect spot with excellent people making things happen. We've proven we can manufacture (to a limited extent) and stunningly improve the product along the way. FOR LESS ! ! We have two significant customers looking at us, and a start-up actually spending money on our product. We're negotiating a LT contract with the same folks. Meanwhile we've hired a battery sales superstar to push us down the road.

     

    Our PR stinks, but we also need to bear in mind that there is very little the BD or President can actually tell us. Either they don't know, or have been told to button it.

     

    Axionistas declaring war on our guy would be really silly in my opinion. Before this year is over we'll be giggly over the green glow. I have little interest in spilling the blood of someone who's carried us so far. We pay him to make us money. We do not pay him to be our dance partner.
    18 Jul 2013, 01:27 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    Sounds like Valleywood has a bounce in his step. The best case scenario for the next year could include moving into production partnership for BMW, getting an order for an OTR rail build for NS (or another yard switcher), selling two or three power cubes to island nations, and maybe 10 additional ePower trucks.

     

    How many PbC batteries you figure that amounts to? Maybe 10,000? 20,000 tops? I don't think that's enough to get a green glow going.

     

    Wake me up when you can talk about maybe 100,000 batteries, or maybe a few million electrode assemblies.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:03 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    A production partnership will assure the viability of this company. It could happen this year and is the single best catalyst we can hope for in 2013. It doesn't need to be a lot of batteries - future expectation will drive the stock once viability concerns are quelled.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:13 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    NGS> At about $365 a pop, 20,000 batteries would be seven million in incremental revenue and a massive YoY increase from the current PbC and other revenues of ~$1.5 million. Since the relationships with BMW, NS and ePower are all expected to ramp rapidly once they start, a start is all we need.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:25 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    Yes, but that is a best case scenario. It would be great if all that comes to pass. But even then, they will still have a long row to hoe, and that row includes another round of financing next year.

     

    I'm going to just be quiet for a couple of days because I'm starting to sound like a basher. I tend to offer a contrarian view whenever I see people getting irrationally exhuberant.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:39 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    ngs---we need good criticism like yours. Good debate is optimal. Everyone and his brother can smell when a blog is too pumpy and that scares away new money. And we still need new money.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:51 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    NGS> I don't understand how you figure 10,000 to 20,000 batteries over the next year between ePower, NS and BMW is a best case scenario. I agree that 10,000 to 20,000 batteries in trucking and rail would be outstanding performance. But if BMW steps up it's a whole different ballgame and facts we know suggest that they're trying to step up if they can resolve their supply chain issues.

     

    For example, when Peugeot implemented the Maxwell - Continental system, their initial order was a million units over three years.

     

    ePower wants to ramp to a hundred trucks in year two and five hundred to a thousand in year three, and that all assumes organic growth. If they meet their fuel economy goals, it's a fairly safe bet that demand from truckers will be insatiable and everybody's problem will be expanding capacity quickly enough to respond.

     

    Transition stage companies are not valued on their sales history because the history is always bleak. They're valued on future revenue growth expectations. $7 million would be a great start, but it will only be the start of something that could be immense beyond reckoning.
    18 Jul 2013, 04:28 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (866) | Send Message
     
    I'm just talking about in the next 1.0 years. BMW might be able to do some fleet testing and just start getting into some trial production models. I'm figuring maybe 10k total. Sure it would go up from there, but not in the next year. NS could possibly build another locomotive, so there is another 500 plus or minus. 10 more ePower trucks, another 500. If the sell a few power cubes as promised, there is a few thousand more. To me, all of that would be a best case scenario to me.

     

    The more likely scenario to me is that they just get as far as lining up a production partner for BMW and maybe they will get another order. As for NS, I frankly don't expect to see anything until about a year after the NS999 has been finished and put through the paces. Power Cubes? I hear a lot of talk, but will be pleasantly surprised if they sell even one this year. So, basically, all my hope is on BMW getting their design model for the PbC rolled out fast (i.e., before the next financing).
    18 Jul 2013, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    You're confusing the need for revenues and the need for a clear path to a substantial revenue ramp. Even if Axion's PbC revenues stay flat, a clearer path to a substantial year two, three and four revenue ramp with BMW, NS and ePower will be all the market needs.

     

    Today Axion stockholders do not see a clear path and the stock price is suffering. If they see a BMW plan to buy a million batteries over the next three years, nobody will care about flat historic revenues.
    18 Jul 2013, 05:55 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    VW > "We pay him to make us money."

     

    Really? Then seems to me holding "our guy" accountable for non-performance hardly qualifies as "declaring war" when neither profits nor share price increases have been realized and expectations for sales and "cash flow positive" operations "our guy" created have failed to materialize.

     

    Few things could make me happier than to see Tom Granville & colleagues successfully traverse the shoals and conclude some substantial commercial sales agreements before the annual shareholders meeting. But it is time to effect change, either through success of management or change in business plan and management.
    19 Jul 2013, 12:01 AM Reply Like
  • Charlieburg
    , contributor
    Comments (55) | Send Message
     
    VW,
    I am sorry I could only like your comment once!!

     

    Charlie
    19 Jul 2013, 07:58 AM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    Charlieburg, thanks.

     

    We'll be fine here. We must always remember this company came public way way too early. There simply was no other way to make all the principals happy.

     

    Meanwhile, we bought in anyway. Being too early can sometimes have the same result as being wrong. We were early.

     

    But today is today, and from where I sit, Granville and the BoD are staying the course that has given us the alignment we have today. Things are falling in line just fine. We're just angry because we're impatient and don't want to admit we were early.

     

    Meanwhile, I keep nibbling. Wish my wallet was fatter, because this is the first highly speculative company I've owned that has developed almost exactly as I expected. And right now I expect good stuff. August to March will be rewarding. Meanwhile, I keep nibbling. :>)
    19 Jul 2013, 09:33 AM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    >apmarshall62 --- RE: "Others have posted the calculations before, but for a truck driven 125,000 miles per year you're looking at $30-40k/year in fuel savings. The 1.5 to 2 year payback seems to factor in the payback for the entire kit (excluding installation presumably done in-house by the trucking company) rather than just the incremental cost of the rebuild which should be done anyway. If based solely on the increment you are probably talking about a 6-9 month payback."

     

    I think your above paragraph bears repeating. --- I've been thinking about this ROI calculation for quite some time myself, and agree with your 6-9 month ROI being much more accurate and realistic. Articles that use the 18-24 month ROI strike me as understating the value, and I think it would be helpful [and more accurate] if a lot more emphasis was put on the much shorter ROI of the incremental retrofit expense. Especially since more data is needed to better pin down actual mpg increases.
    18 Jul 2013, 01:33 PM Reply Like
  • Renzo
    , contributor
    Comments (349) | Send Message
     
    Wayne or AP, are the payback estimate based on comparison to the pre-retrofit rig mileage or is it a cost vs. mileage improvement comparison between the ePower hybrid retrofit and a standard retrofit?
    18 Jul 2013, 01:42 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    WiO and APM: "18-24 month ROI"

     

    This figure does have one saving grace - it on the conservative side that would make up for any potential over-estimation of fuel savings.

     

    My thinking is that *any* comparison will be done with a given set of parameters. Some buyer will see themselves as "pretty dog-gone close" or even at those parameters. So then he goes out and drives where there's a bit more uphill or a little more weight or the winds on the trip out and back are substantially different ... of n extended period.

     

    The conservative ROI and paybacks will allow some slack for the variabilities that can't easily be modeled.

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 01:48 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    I'd assume a sales packet that would go out would have both numbers. If e-power is humming they would want both.

     

    The incremental cost for the guy planning to do the refit so he can sell the boss that the refit lasts 10 years (or whatever) and will pay for itself in 6-9 month in additional fuel savings.

     

    The second set of payback for the guy who is planning on a retrofit in 2 years. This may be enough to have him jump his planned time and do it early.

     

    That said as a finance guy I always, ALWAYS doubled the cost savings that a sales guy was selling me. Multiple numbers and an open spreadsheet for a person to input their info would be a good sign to build trust and useful on the web.
    18 Jul 2013, 02:23 PM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (734) | Send Message
     
    Better to be conservative since you are using a "too good to be true battery" and getting "too good to be true ROI". Initial market share could be lost just from disbelief.
    18 Jul 2013, 02:53 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    doubled or halved?

     

    Sure seems to me that word of mouth mpg savings is what's gonna drive sales. ePower is selling to pragmatists in an industry where word spreads like wildfire. Can't imagine those guys putting up w/ bogus salesmen numbers for a second. If their bud is getting a lot of diesel fuel savings for his rigs, they're gonna want to try it out, too.

     

    Those are some of the keys to me---real-world pass/fail, relatively short time frames, rapid spread of news, install kit training/leverage all = big money way way faster than Axion is used to.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:15 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    >mrholty --- Good points. I liked your example of somebody planning on getting a retrofit in two years, and considering whether to get an upgraded retrofit right away. Saving $35-40K / year fuel costs for only an extra $20K retrofit expense would make a LOT of sense to do it now.

     

    In terms of how the ROI is represented in articles that are now coming out. I don't see anything wrong with putting the best face on things, especially when it's true and accurate. Perhaps they could say something like:

     

    "Based on the total cost of a retrofit, the ROI would be 18-24 months. Based on the the difference between a regular retrofit and an upgraded retrofit with PbC batteries, the ROI drops down to 6-12 months."
    18 Jul 2013, 03:22 PM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2094) | Send Message
     
    Mr I,
    I agree that most truck owners will go by what other owners tell them and word of mouth is the very best advertising. Truck sales people and their statistics are taken with a grain of salt ("lies, dam lies, and statistics"). The same with website numbers. While I would like to see ePower website updated and using more realistic numbers, nobody is going to believe even the realistic numbers until they hear from another owner/operator. Truck stops across the nation are rumor and gossip mills, bad news travels very fast, good news takes a little longer. ;-)
    18 Jul 2013, 03:28 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Thanks, Stilldazed. Your trucking experience carries a lotta weight here.
    18 Jul 2013, 03:31 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    I think the most important thing (among many important things) is to get some of these trucks out into operators' hands asap--out onto the roads hauling workaday freight for wages. When the operators see actual no-kidding fuel-burn deltas over familiar routes with familiar loads, the word will spread.
    18 Jul 2013, 05:08 PM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2094) | Send Message
     
    Hiya 86,
    Looks like you made it out of the penalty box.. I have to agree, but as JP stated today that an owner wanted to pull 80,000 lbs at 70-75 mph (currently 50-55 mph with the JD engine) before he accepted a truck means that the Cummins engine must have the kinks worked out as it is incorporated into the design. Sorry, more patience required.
    18 Jul 2013, 05:21 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    SD, my posts are all still time-late, by varying amounts. For reference, I'm hitting the reply button now at: 1429 PDT. Mark
    18 Jul 2013, 05:51 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The kink du jour is a great example. The engine ePower bought does not have a flywheel that matches the bolt pattern on the Marathon generator. As strange as it may seem, it doesn't appear that anybody's ever tried to mate a generator to a Cummins road diesel.

     

    They're hoping Cummins will be able to provide a fix from inventory. If Cummins can't provide a short-term fix, a new flywheel becomes a custom machine shop job.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:00 PM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    JP, y'gotta love that !

     

    And that's precisely the kind of stuff that makes all this " I want it today " demandimoniums so silly. And why all these things take so much time.

     

    Sigh.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:10 PM Reply Like
  • obieephyhm
    , contributor
    Comments (1558) | Send Message
     
    'demandimoniums' -- love it!
    18 Jul 2013, 06:29 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (835) | Send Message
     
    Mr I- Sorry for the mistake. I doubled the length of ROI or cut the benefits in half. I also agree that gossip at the Flying J is huge for the independents.

     

    But you need the numbers on a spreadsheet so that the fleet manager can go talk to the CFO/Controller with something other than gossip and whisper #s.
    18 Jul 2013, 07:02 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    mr h, no problemo, ok, great.

     

    Yep, probably still have to have the logical stuff that comes after the emotional buy decision has been made.

     

    I'd love to be a salesman for ePower if their ideas pan out. Easy money, at least until the quota is raised a bunch.
    18 Jul 2013, 07:19 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    John, so the Cummins engine currently in hand is *not* quite the same engine that will eventually be part of the anticipated Cummins-PMGenerator combo package?
    18 Jul 2013, 08:48 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I don't know whether it's exactly the same engine, but it's certainly in the same weight and performance class.
    18 Jul 2013, 09:02 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Thanks John, I was just confused by this:

     

    "As strange as it may seem, it doesn't appear that anybody's ever tried to mate a generator to a Cummins road diesel. "

     

    I had been thinking that it was the very same engine... Only somehow available readily (as evidenced by the fact that ePower has one in hand) as a separate item *without* the REPM Generator but *not* available so readily (ie subject to "all the internal Cummins approvals to set ePower up as an authorized OEM") when combined with the REPM...

     

    So is the one in hand now a "road diesel" and the other that comes mated with the REPM a "stationary diesel"? Sorry if that's getting too much in the weeds, but I'm just wondering if true if it will introduce any complications. I think maybe this has been asked before, but do we know if there will be any EPA hurdles to clear in order for ePower to use the REPM packaged engine on US highways?
    18 Jul 2013, 09:35 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I was mistaken in my original assumption that ePower had bought this first six cylinder from Cummins. While I was in KY I learned that they bought it second hand out of a truck that was wrecked after 8,000 miles (at about $15,000 off the new engine list price.) Cummins has agreed to sell engines to ePower, but this first one was too good a deal to pass up.

     

    I don't think there's a fundamental difference in the Cummins engines. It's simply a matter of making sure the bolt holes and bell housing on the engine match the generator. When ePower starts ordering the engine and REPM package from Cummins you can bet your bottom dollar that it will meet EPA specs.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:10 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    Here’s the way I look at it, and I would appreciate being corrected if any of this could be considered misleading. Using a hypothetical example [with less than accurate numbers] — If a “regular” retrofit costs $50K, and an upgraded retrofit with PbC batteries costs $70K, then the difference is $20K. If the $20K extra saves as much as $35K-$40K per year in fuel costs, then the ROI is approx. 6 months.

     

    If you base the ROI on the total cost of $70K instead of just the difference of $20K, then the ROI is 18-24 months. I'm all for using conservative estimates, but the wide disparity between 6 months and 24 months ROI is significant, and doesn’t seem to accurately reflect the value of an upgraded retrofit with PbC batteries. If a person did want to be conservative, then it seems a 12 month ROI estimate would suffice.
    18 Jul 2013, 02:16 PM Reply Like
  • Al Marshall
    , contributor
    Comments (498) | Send Message
     
    WIO: I was performing my calculations exactly as you describe here. I was operating under the assumption that a conventional rebuild would get the same fuel economy as a new vehicle.

     

    If you were to compare the ePower rebuild with a five year old truck, the economics would be even more compelling because the five year old truck gets worse gas mileage than a new truck.

     

    Some months ago I read a paper on the subject of gas mileage of tractor-trailer trucks. Fuel economy actually increases in the early months as the engine is broken in then starts to decline gradually. If I remember right it's 1 percent a year for the first four years then increases at a greater rate thereafter. I don't think it gets to 10% decline in fuel efficiency by year six. Unfortunately, I think the article was taken down as I've been unable to locate it again.

     

    Also, I'm a little disappointed to learn that the recent ePower fuel economy numbers (10mpg) reflects the four cylinder engine, which I think is irrelevant.

     

    JP: Does ePower think that the 6 cylinder engine will achieve 10mpg with a full load?
    19 Jul 2013, 01:11 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I've been discussing the ROI issue with ePower and think they've been using too harsh a metric. From my perspective a trucker who is considering an ePower retrofit will not have an option to 'do nothing' as an alternative. He'll either have to go forward with a conventional rebuild that will cost $50,000 to $60,000 or an ePower rebuild that will cost $70,000 to $80,000. In that scenario the ePower fuel savings arise from the $20,000 increment rather than the $70,000 to $80,000 cost. Using the increment as the ROI calculation base as opposed to total system cost, the payback periods will be measured in months rather than years.

     

    The standard hp to kw conversion factor is 0.7457. The 197 hp John Deere engine attached to the Marathon generator currently puts out a maximum of 94 kw after you account for parasitic loads like AC compressors, power steering and brake air pumps.

     

    The Cummins six cylinder is rated at 240 hp and since it's an on-road engine the standard parasitic loads are accounted for in arriving at the rating. ePower believes the Cummins engine will let the generator operate at its full rated capacity, instead of 80% of capacity.

     

    This Cummins engine consumes 6.3 gallons of fuel per hour when run at optimal efficiency.

     

    The real issue with mpg claims is that they're dependent on load weight and speed, which means that a number like 10 mpg is meaningless without both metrics. ePower has always claimed a 10 mpg average across the entire spectrum of load weights, but their numbers for a 25,000 pound GVW are better than their numbers for an 80,000 pound GVW. Likewise their numbers at 55 mph are better than their numbers at 65 mph.

     

    I'm still working on a better way to describe what the truck will do at different speeds and with different weights. When I arrive at a solution to my challenge I'll share my work product.
    19 Jul 2013, 06:45 AM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2094) | Send Message
     
    JP,
    Any mathematics majors around? Sounds like an X/Y vector chart.
    19 Jul 2013, 07:23 AM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (734) | Send Message
     
    Any idea how much "Silent Running" the ePower trucks do?
    Seems like the genset would shut off often on a down grade once the batteries are topped off. Might even shut off on level road after enough miles.
    I realize that the genset powers the truck and not the batteries usually, but still, there have to be times when the batteries are topped off and can power the truck alone. (Why let a full charge go to waste?)
    19 Jul 2013, 08:24 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The ePower genset never shuts off because it's primary purpose is to power the drive motor. If the tractor finds itself in a situation where the truck needs less power than the genset is providing, it will dial back the running speed of the genset to conserve fuel but it will never turn the genset off. The battery system is not designed to power the truck by itself and a fully charged battery pack will never go to waste because it will be used for the next acceleration interval or hill.
    19 Jul 2013, 08:41 AM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2173) | Send Message
     
    GT, as JP wrote, the ePower system is not designed to run without the engine. The battery bank is about 26 kwh, which net of losses, has the energy of about half gallon of diesel. It could be designed to perhaps run around the loading dock area (at low speed), but I doubt they would want to start/stop while actually descending. The change from descending to needing full power can be instantaneous depending on road conditions; I doubt a driver wants to wait for the engine restart. Perhaps a v. 3.0 would do that, with more energy storage.
    19 Jul 2013, 09:26 AM Reply Like
  • Al Marshall
    , contributor
    Comments (498) | Send Message
     
    Very thorough answer. Thanks JP.
    19 Jul 2013, 10:45 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    JP, it looks like you have a sales/biz development role with ePower?

     

    Anyway, there was a saying that I learned from my days prospecting for clients: "Take the easy ones; let the hard ones go."

     

    I am not a trucking sales expert, but I would say that if an operator is thinking of "doing nothing", then ePower will want to put that guy into the Plan B Bucket---call them only when you're Plan A Bucket is empty. Start with The Plan A Bucket guys---the ones who have already decided to make a change/spend money. Much smaller sales hurdle.

     

    It follows then that the presentation would be from their perspective: "how can I maximize the money I will spend?", and your A (spend for a traditional retrofit) vs B (spend for an ePower retrofit) comparo makes perfect sense.
    19 Jul 2013, 10:58 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    The last thing I'm interested in is sales or business development. My focus is developing a business model and strategy that will allow ePower to minimize their time and cost to market while maximizing their long-term profitability. From my perspective, its all about structure and business strategy. Once the strategy is developed and refined, the role of execution falls to others.
    19 Jul 2013, 11:10 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    That's what I thought. Congrats, I suppose, on expanding beyond the legal role.

     

    Take the easy ones; let the hard ones go.
    19 Jul 2013, 11:28 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I'm a big fan of the middle of the bell shaped curve who don't have extreme demands but do have pressing needs. That's why I like stop-start better than EVs. It's where the real money is.
    19 Jul 2013, 12:21 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    You should talk to my brother. He's a master at small business strategy, biz optimization and sales.
    19 Jul 2013, 12:52 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    John, not trying to overdo it on the perspicacity here, but are you quite sure that the running speed of the engine/generator is actually dialed back? I would think it would be kept at a constant rpm (to maintain output frequency) but with fuel flow varied up and down as the output load on the generator changes with drive motor demand...

     

    As I think about it more though, I wonder if as you say the genset rpm *is* dialed back... is that actually down to some speed (idle?) where the generator output is basically nil? Or does it vary over a range? Interesting. If down to nil, that would still mean that, for brief periods at least, the batteries would be functioning as the sole energy source.

     

    I think you stated a while back that when you rode in the truck and were stopped at a light, you did hear the engine throttle back (not stop).. do you think/recall if it went all the way back to idle? Again, if so, and generator output in that state is zero, then it would still be kind of functionally equivalent to a true stop-start event, just with a faster response time for the engine to come back up to required output speed from idle vice having to start and then rev up all the way from zero rpm to the required generator rpm...

     

    I guess there's just a whole host of possibilities opened when the only prime mover is an electric motor, but you have two energy sources to draw from, with one (the PbC bank) being such an excellently balanced and deep 2-way buffer. Lot's of space to explore in a v3.0...
    19 Jul 2013, 02:13 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    JP, apologies. Just now re-reading my post (I don't have the edit function back yet), it sounds too much like a skeptical examination. Not the intent. I'm certain you heard what you heard. I'm just trying to get a better sense of the system's differing behaviors during and throughout the range of different driving regimes: cruising, accelerating, coasting, braking, stopped at a light, launching, descending / ascending slight inclines...etc.

     

    I would guess cruising at highway speeds the engine *will* vary fuel flow to meet its varying electrical load while maintaining constant rpm, but then under heavy deceleration and/or at a stoplight it *will* throttle back all the way to idle or at least to some slower speed... anyway, the whole thing is just very intriguing. Thanks again for all you provide...
    19 Jul 2013, 02:45 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Last time I checked reducing fuel flow to a diesel engine reduces RPMs at the same time. The system is designed to keep the engine running at an optimal speed for the load and road conditions. I can't provide any more detail than that because I'm still a neophyte when it comes to how diesel engines work and how they interact with generators. I'm happy to share what I learn, but don't expect overwhelming expertise from me for a while.
    19 Jul 2013, 03:23 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    John: If the load varies proportionally, the RPM should hold steady. I.e. if fuel is reduced proportionally to a reduction in load ...

     

    HardToLove
    19 Jul 2013, 03:26 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    John, under a constant load yes. But not if the load is varying. Then I believe it's a more complex relationship. Looking at it another way, I imagine a burdened engine at steady state, driving some load (constant torque) at a steady state rpm...everything is running smoothly with pretty much a steady fuel flow... power-in (as represented by the fuel flow rate) is perfectly balanced by power-out (torque x rpm, ignoring friction). ....suddenly you remove or decrease the load...what happens?

     

    Well, if the fuel-flow rate doesn't change, I believe the engine will speed up, absent some explicit governor mechanism intervening. By conservation of energy, it has to. If power-in stays the same, but torque load goes down, then rpm has to increase to keep the power-out product of (torque x rpm) constant. This is kind of what happens in a manual transmission car when cruising down the road if for some reason you pop out of gear into neutral---the engine revs until you back off on the accelerator (reduce fuel flow)

     

    But of course now if there is a governor present to maintain the same rpm, it will reduce the fuel flow rate to match the new reduced load... Which is what I'm theorizing...

     

    Anyway, I know this in the weeds and promise not flog it any further, still, as I understand it, (and I welcome all schooling) fuel-flow is *not* simply proportional to rpm, it is rather roughly proportional to the product of rpm times the load...

     

    regret any strain on your patience. ;)
    19 Jul 2013, 03:52 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    You can flog it all you want, just don't expect me to know enough to answer your questions. I do know that ePower is deep into work on a cruise control system that promises to improve economy even further by taking the driver out of the fuel use equation as much as possible, but beyond that a man has to recognize his limitations.
    19 Jul 2013, 03:57 PM Reply Like
  • Stilldazed
    , contributor
    Comments (2094) | Send Message
     
    Hi JP,
    "a man has to recognize his limitations" Luv it, a near quote from Dirty Harry. Drawing on experience with old time welder/gensets, there would be a governor of some sort (used to be slow responding mechanical). With all the engine controllers currently in use on the big trucks I know that many have variable torq and HP can be changed in the computer settings (at least on the M11 Cummins and 14.7 Detroit). So I would imagine that an electronic governor would be fairly simple (famous last words) to set up. Basically a cruise control is a governor related to speed instead of engine rpm.
    19 Jul 2013, 04:27 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Sometimes movies can be very good teachers of life lessons ;-)

     

    One of the intriguing things about the ePower system is that the throttle controls the electricity delivered to the drive motor rather than the fuel delivered to the diesel engine. Since the drive motor can draw power from both the generator and the batteries, this characteristic alone goes a long way toward taking the driver out of the equation when he has a heavier foot on the throttle than necessary. It also tends to take the spikiness out of engine operations as the system adjusts to minute by minute variations arising from terrain conditions. As I understand the situation, the closer the generator runs to absolute steady state the better the fuel economy.
    19 Jul 2013, 04:39 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    Fair enough John, recognizing one's own limitations-- that's obviously something I have to work on as well.. ;)

     

    With all that's been said, it sure sounds like these ePower folks are just exactly the kind of innovative partners we want and could ever hope for...what you said about them planning to build and field the first test fleet of ten trucks basically on their own dime...that just strikes me as one awesome, admirable maneuver---like taking a frapping lightsabre right through the heart of that Gordian Knot.

     

    And it's one pretty good testimony of their faith in the PbC that they're going to do that.

     

    I mean, these guys are my heroes: Here they had a novel vision, a promising, yet difficult concept, and despite naysayers, they forged ahead, risked capital, tried new things, and brought that concept to life, gaining knowledge the whole way. Encountering a pretty major setback with the original batteries, they regrouped, took the lessons onboard, and tried a different tactic--they didn't reduce the goal, they only modified the plan. Ploughed ahead until they at last saw their vision validated. Now they're poised to commit even bigger. With upstart Axion batteries. On their own nickels. A lot of nickels. That shows real faith in what they're doing and what they have. And what we have. Gutsiest move I ever saw Mav....Turn and burn.
    19 Jul 2013, 04:48 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/18tcqr7
    19 Jul 2013, 04:58 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    48---four paragraphs! Keep up the good work buddy!

     

    And I see HTL is using the **()""s more sparingly, too.

     

    I just heard the Friday bell. Class dimissed! ;^P
    19 Jul 2013, 05:20 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    "As I understand the situation, the closer the generator runs to absolute steady state the better the fuel economy. "

     

    Heartily concur, and to my mind, that's really the true sheer beauty of the serial-hybrid system. Every ounce of diesel fuel has essentially a fixed number of BTUs of energy content. Turning those BTUs into useful mechanical energy (ton-miles of commercial load transported at hwy speeds) at the highest efficiency is the whole game. There's a sweet spot (rpm&load) for that ICE engine-generator to run, converting those BTUs to KWHs at again, highest efficiency, getting the most KWHs from every ounce of fuel... at the ideal steady state---that's how you get to double digit MPG.

     

    And THE key enabler? The PbC battery string... it's only that string which allows the ICE-GEN to run at optimal speed/output... that string which delivers at a moment's notice any extra power/energy that the traction motor calls for... and that string, most importantly, which absorbs, again at a moment's notice, any excess power/energy generated/present in the system, for reuse later so that none is wasted, whether due to coasting, braking, a little road decline, or favorable winds...

     

    And this string will do this all continuously moment by moment for hours on end over hundreds of miles on a real-world haul. Needing to be able to do this for tens or hundreds of thousands of miles for (perhaps) several years. All while on a rollicking truck, smooth road or rough, day in day out, heat and grime and lots of long duty. That's gotta be one tall order for any kind of battery. Even the most platinum exotic six-sigma kind you could ever dream of. Think about it. It's probably even rougher duty than railroad.

     

    Bottom line, ePower already tried what I'm sure were the best AGM's out there they could find. And those AGMs couldn't hack it. Simply couldn't hack it. Same as NS found out. Apparently PbC *can* hack it. Think about that again. The best the first-tier battery makers could provide fail and the PbC bests them. And at a price that is viable, a price which will return money to operators. And nothing talks like money.

     

    Too good to be true? Well, honestly I will be on pins and needles to hear how the upcoming fleet test goes. Because that will be really where the rubber meets the road. Sure the truck seems to work out the door. Will it work after six month's of hard road duty? After a year? How much fuel will it really, no fooling, save? That will become known. Will heat, vibration, DCA abuse, or sheer application demands kill the PbC and its wondrous but seemingly fragile carbon electrodes? All the testing we surmise by BMW and NS says no. Says the PbC will stand up to it. And I believe it. But once real truckers have had a chance to beat on the things for six months? Once we're talking 50,000 miles or so in their logs. Well then I'll admit, that's when I'll *REALLY* believe it. And anyone who doesn't at that point is crazy.
    19 Jul 2013, 05:25 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Proving durability will be a serious challenge, but the principal components have all the useful life a trucker could dream of. The weakest links in the chain will be the diesel and transmission (both small). The generators, drive motors and control electronics are largely off the shelf components with 2x to 4x the expected service life of the diesel and transmission. The big unknown (or at least unproven) is the PbC. Axion started out telling ePower three years but as testing progressed and ePower developed more data for Axion to work with the life cycle expectations grew from 'three' to 'three to four' to 'four to five.' It's still way early in the development process but the story ePower is getting is that the PbC is holding up beautifully. They still replace a battery a month and send it back to Axion for a tear-down examination, but everybody is very happy with the way the batteries are performing.
    19 Jul 2013, 05:34 PM Reply Like
  • Nicu Mihalache
    , contributor
    Comments (1020) | Send Message
     
    "http://bit.ly/18tcqr7"

     

    I will let you try my AWD Model S when the time comes ;)
    20 Jul 2013, 06:32 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I've spent enough time in Paris traffic to know it's the last place on earth that the acceleration of a Model S is relevant. I've owned really fast cars in really crowded cities and the charm wore off very quickly, leaving me stuck with a silly extravagance that I frequently felt embarrassed to drive.
    20 Jul 2013, 08:42 AM Reply Like
  • AlbertinBermuda
    , contributor
    Comments (694) | Send Message
     
    I suspect that a Smart Car, Twizzy, Motorcycle or better yet one of the rental bicycles will be a much better choice in Paris if you are traveling within the city. The best alternative is of course the public transit system. Beware pickpockets!!!!!
    20 Jul 2013, 09:51 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3300) | Send Message
     
    John, all that is just stellar information. Four or five years? Under that kind of duty? If that comes true it's simply monstrous.
    20 Jul 2013, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • Nicu Mihalache
    , contributor
    Comments (1020) | Send Message
     
    Markets and especially AXPW taught me patience. So I'll slowly advance to my goal of getting that car and everything that goes with it (at least a closed garage, maybe a house with garden). I will also wait patiently for your reaction after the test drive ;)
    20 Jul 2013, 10:51 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I'm sure the test drive will impress me mightily. That won't change the fact that the stock is a suckers bet at anything approaching current prices.
    20 Jul 2013, 10:53 AM Reply Like
  • Nicu Mihalache
    , contributor
    Comments (1020) | Send Message
     
    That crazy stock is the ideal playground for a bird of pray that I became after a few years of DisneyLand trading ;)

     

    I am out of any long position on TSLA. As soon as it approaches $130 before earnings, I will slowly get into Aug and Sep puts. May not work out as irrational exuberance can go on for a long time (see AMZN for example, a mature business with a P/E in the thousands), but I will not spend any significant amount on this bet either.

     

    My only horses now are AAPL calls (Jan 15) and AXPW.
    20 Jul 2013, 11:09 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    I'm always delighted when my work helps readers nurture their inner catfish, or in Tesla's case their inner vulture.
    20 Jul 2013, 11:32 AM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    Excellent dialogue 48 and JP. --- Thanks much!
    20 Jul 2013, 01:11 PM Reply Like
  • Nicu Mihalache
    , contributor
    Comments (1020) | Send Message
     
    Then I should thank you for teaching me how to spread my wings ;)
    http://bit.ly/13uelXI
    21 Jul 2013, 02:57 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    John, They need to get em out there. I fear the further they reach for better, the more risk for my #1 interest and all parties concerned. Turning into a science thingy.
    21 Jul 2013, 04:01 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    John, I remember driving by the silly guy in Mexico with a Lamborghini. Like being in the middle of the desert with no water but having a very nice bottle of single malt scotch whiskey.
    21 Jul 2013, 04:06 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    My wife once had a client in Houston who air freighted his Lambo to the Cayman Islands when he was going to be there for a few months. Zero to 60 seconds and zero to submarine in a couple minutes.
    21 Jul 2013, 04:40 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Equally valuable. Because they can.
    21 Jul 2013, 04:59 PM Reply Like
  • 12100606
    , contributor
    Comments (86) | Send Message
     
    Exide news:

     

    http://bit.ly/13nb5xh
    18 Jul 2013, 02:38 PM Reply Like
  • obieephyhm
    , contributor
    Comments (1558) | Send Message
     
    well, since I can't see the whole article, it doesn't really tell me anything . . .
    18 Jul 2013, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • 12100606
    , contributor
    Comments (86) | Send Message
     
    Sorry. I don't know why that happened. But if you go to the message board for XIDEQ at IHUB, you can find a link to the whole article near the top of the messages.

     

    Try message #996
    18 Jul 2013, 06:05 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1406) | Send Message
     
    It just says that CA and TX regulators are worried Exide would skip out on any clean up obligations, in the event of another environmental mishap, should they be liquidated.

     

    I've been trading XIDEQ up and down, 3 round trips already, but I don't know how long the goodies will last. The bankruptcy could be a long process and I don't know when the next catalyst is. Hard to predict when speculation will ramp.
    18 Jul 2013, 06:22 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    07/18/2013: EOD stuff partially copied from isntablog (up in the A.M.).
    # Trds: 82, MinTrSz: 100, MaxTrSz: 37000, Vol 415591, AvTrSz: 5068
    Min. Pr: 0.1510, Max Pr: 0.1590, VW Avg. Tr. Pr: 0.1523
    # Buys, Shares: 26 101433, VW Avg Buy Pr: 0.1538
    # Sells, Shares: 53 296158, VW Avg Sell Pr: 0.1517
    # Unkn, Shares: 3 18000, VW Avg Unk. Pr: 0.1529
    Buy:Sell 1:2.92 (24.4% “buys”), DlyShts 47883 (11.52%), Dly Sht % of 'sells' 16.17%

     

    Week end & this week's daily estimated values (older dailys in prior EOD posts) for next share issue:
    06/14: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.2315, in 40 days: $0.1968 Wk cls VWAP $0.2122
    06/21: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.2176, in 40 days: $0.1850 Wk cls VWAP $0.1751
    06/28: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1956, in 40 days: $0.1663 Wk cls VWAP $0.1474
    07/05: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1805, in 40 days: $0.1534 Wk cls VWAP $0.1518
    07/12: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1657, in 40 days: $0.1408 Wk cls VWAP $0.1403
    07/15: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1625, in 40 days: $0.1381
    07/16: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1599, in 40 days: $0.1359
    07/17: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1579, in 40 days: $0.1343
    07/18: 85% x avg. of 20 lowest intra-day VWAPs, $0.1559, in 40 days: $0.1325

     

    Vol, in K (for above wks/days): 4,356, 1,934, 3910, 1,217, 2902, 1532, 982, 793, 416.

     

    On my original inflection point calculations, readings for 5, 10, 25, 50, 100 and 200 day periods:
    1-day change: 28.9%, -6.3%, 1.8%, -4.9%, -1.6%, 0.8%
    5-day change: 233.5%, -191.1%, 99.8%, 41.8%, 57.3%, 860.4%
    5-day rate of change change: 228.8%, -6.6%, 36.6%, 101.0%, 110.4%, 285.7%

     

    On my newer inflection point calculations, for those same periods:
    1-day change: 29.3%, -25.0%, -4.6%, -26.6%, -11.0%, -40.6%
    5-day change: 314.3%, 5.3%, 42.2%, 60.0%, 44.5%, 41.6%
    5-day rate of change change: 1329.9%, 18.8%, 18.9%, 44.5%, 32.6%, 27.6%

     

    ARCA was again on the ask from 10:48 on, and hung around all day, with a brief snack break slotted in. Late in the day they got really aggressive with knocking the ask down, taking it clear down to $0.1512 near the end of the day, from $0.1566 at 15:02. Either they intentionally want to drive price down or have absolutely zero discipline and patience. They are much worse than ATDF that tries to be first by 1/100th of a penny – ARCA chops it down in, sometimes, multiple-tenths at a whack.

     

    Yesterday I said “The price spread narrowing a bit, with reducing volume suggests consolidating though, ... Everybody needs a little breather. So I'm not looking for a near-term big move unless some news appears “. Our price spread narrowed again, dropping to 5.3% from the 10% yesterday and 25.9% the prior day. As I suggested yesterday, and it seems reinforced by today's behavior, it looks like we're entering at least a short-term consolidation.

     

    With the narrow spread and the near-constant presence of ARCA and ATDF and the other usual suspects on the ask, price context for the day's action doesn't seem warranted. So we'll skip it.

     

    Same deal for the context in time frames.

     

    My original experimental inflection point calculations continue to show reducing weakness. The newer version is reflecting this reducing weakness a bit more strongly. It lost a little of it's “near signaling a move up”, but since we noted yesterday “It's not there yet, but it's working on it” this is no surprise. We just want to see the trend stay intact.

     

    Details of “Dly Sht % of 'sells'” and inflection points omitted here.

     

    HardToLove
    18 Jul 2013, 06:17 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Freight yard expansion could pose lung hazard

     

    "With a massive freight yard expansion backed by Mayor Rahm Emanuel poised to bulldoze the northeast corner of Englewood, a new analysis suggests the project would substantially increase lung-damaging pollution in a neighborhood already plagued by high rates of asthma.

     

    Based on information provided by Norfolk Southern about diesel-powered locomotives, trucks and equipment at its expanded freight yard, the analysis by the nonprofit Environmental Law and Policy Center found that worrisome levels of soot could spread several blocks beyond the site."

     

    http://bit.ly/13D2jHi
    -
    NSC's sustainability report released 2 days ago. Didn't see nuttin' new on the NS999 or OTR apps mentioned.

     

    http://bit.ly/13D2jHk
    -
    NSC to report earnings July 23rd.
    18 Jul 2013, 08:50 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Iindelco: Deploying an NS-999-type loco ASAP to the Chitown yards would be a big plus, both in results and PR value for NSC and AXPW.

     

    How would it get from some place like Altoona or Roanoke to there? :-)

     

    Yes, as a "consist", albeit less powerful than one designed for OTR, but a useful demonstration regardless since a software re-load with an OTR theme accounting for the fewer batteries, etc. would be a very nice PR bump as well as providing an initial test of some basic functionality and assumptions.

     

    It'll never happen that way, but why let the likely reality spoil a perfectly good fantasy.

     

    HardToLove
    19 Jul 2013, 09:00 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    HTL, Never say never. I'm into killing two birds w/ one stone. Or in this case 864 new fangled batteries.
    19 Jul 2013, 11:06 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Design News article re: SS. Click on the pic for the slideshow. No Axion battery shown. :(

     

    Get Ready for Start-Stop

     

    "The auto industry’s largest-scale change over the next 10 years won’t be the battery-electric car, the natural gas vehicle, or the hydrogen fuel cell. It will be the move to the start-stop micro-hybrid -- a conventional gasoline-burning vehicle that uses an enhanced gear-based starter to enable its engine to shut down for short stops."

     

    http://bit.ly/1bMK4XL
    18 Jul 2013, 10:03 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    If you download the entire sustainability report you'll find this gem on page 30:

     

    "NS 999 LEADS THE CHARGE

     

    Norfolk Southern began developing a battery-powered locomotive in 2007, part of a larger initiative to explore alternative-powered engines to save on fuel costs, lower emissions, and reduce reliance on foreign oil sources.

     

    Generating the amount of battery power needed to run a locomotive is much more challenging than that needed to run an automobile, and current battery technologies pose limitations for rail-industry applications. Essentially, we are pioneering the field of battery-powered locomotives.

     

    In fall 2009, working with industry partners and scientists at Penn State University, we unveiled NS 999, a prototype electric four-axle switcher locomotive. The eco-friendly unit, built on a reused 1969 EMD GP38 body, was powered by a bank of 1,080 lead-acid batteries and equipped with a unique regenerative braking system designed to recharge the batteries during operation.

     

    Since then, we have reworked the battery management system to address technical challenges that arose during trial field operations. In 2013, we plan to roll out the next generation NS 999, outfitted with a bank of more technologically advanced hybrid lead-carbon batteries developed by industry partner Axion Power International.

     

    In addition to NS 999, we are continuing work on a prototype battery-powered road locomotive that would move freight over long distances.

     

    We are optimistic that our latest efforts will provide a foundation for development of affordable battery-powered locomotives.

     

    “We’re really excited about it,” said Gibson Barbee, our senior engineer of energy, who has been involved with NS 999 from the start. “It’s all about perseverance, to continue working and moving forward.”

     

    There's a "Download Report" link in the bottom right corner of the entry screen for everybody who wants to get a copy of Page 30 suitable for framing.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:18 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    Now that we have a brand new NS Sustainability Report highlighting the NS 999 as their premier Alternative Power Project and praising Axion's technologically advanced batteries can we please stop fretting that something must be dreadfully wrong with the relationship?
    18 Jul 2013, 10:20 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8794) | Send Message
     
    Thanks John. I didn't realize that the download was different than paging through the top level format. Oops! Glad you dug deeper.
    -
    And your reward for a job well done. lol

     

    My how far the mighty.....

     

    Akerson Demands GM Innovation to Blunt Tesla Threat

     

    "“He thinks Tesla could be a big disrupter if we’re not careful,” Girsky said. “History is littered with big companies that ignored innovation that was coming their way because you didn’t know where you could be disrupted.” "

     

    http://bloom.bg/13n6Lyh
    18 Jul 2013, 10:26 PM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    So NS considers Axion a partner in this. And they consider our battery to be advanced. Kinda state-of-the-art.

     

    Goodness gracious.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:35 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    If you were a cat I'd be checking your jaws for yellow feathers about now.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:45 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2487) | Send Message
     
    Link to page:

     

    http://bit.ly/153097V
    18 Jul 2013, 10:46 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4428) | Send Message
     
    >JP ... I'm done worrying. I've dialed back my freak-out-o-meter to about a 2 until I finally see it roll.

     

    I've never thought there was a problem between Axion and NSC (except for that little slip of the tongue thingy). My worry has always been internal politics of NSC between new tech batteries and the tried-&-true diesel in a genset. This is the only reason I came to buy into Axion in the first place and I'm really curious to find out if I was right. Maybe that would stem the growing number of graying hairs.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:49 PM Reply Like
  • WayneinOregon
    , contributor
    Comments (828) | Send Message
     
    RE: --- "In 2013, we plan to roll out the next generation NS 999..."

     

    In one fell swoop, I went from reading one of the more depressing recent posts about NS to one of the most optimistic. Thanks for digging deeper on this one JP, and discovering this gem. --- I hope this comes to the attention of Tom Konrad before he publishes his article on Axion.
    18 Jul 2013, 10:55 PM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (781) | Send Message
     
    I found this to be interesting from Mr. Barbee, he states:

     

    "We’re really excited about it,” said Gibson Barbee, our senior engineer of energy, who has been involved with NS 999 from the start. “It’s all about perseverance, to continue working and moving forward.”

     

    Here's an interesting photo of Mr. Gibson Barbee, it's his LinkedIn profile photo standing on the 999! I am guessing that the 999 might just be receiving his full attention and focus!

     

    http://linkd.in/15326l1
    18 Jul 2013, 11:08 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    Excellent confirmation that things are still a go. That's gonna be a major relief to some.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:11 PM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    Not too much politics involved in this. The government has demanded something must be done, so something will. The only question is whether NS will perfect their idea or use the ideas developed by other roads.

     

    This is braggin' rights stuff: "we developed a zero emissions locomotive" sorta braggin'. If adopted by other roads, well, you see where that can lead......... There are no guarantees in this challenging application. But today Axion is the gold standard for NS. If this idea is practical today, NS will do it and we'll do it with them.

     

    The only thing I know for sure is that NS will do everything they can to make it work. This is a very high priority item.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:14 PM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (781) | Send Message
     
    In the CEO report he states;

     

    "Three years into a five-year initiative to reduce carbon emissions per revenue ton-mile by 10 percent, we’ve accomplished nearly 69 percent of the goal".

     

    http://bit.ly/1533KTH

     

    Maybe a few 999's out running around along with a few OTR units they will be able to claim the other 31 percent needed to reach their 10 percent goal!!
    18 Jul 2013, 11:29 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2478) | Send Message
     
    RB, and Barbee is a member of both the Ultracapacitor Network and the Energy Storage Association. Put those two together and you have the PbC Club, lol.
    18 Jul 2013, 11:31 PM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (781) | Send Message
     
    Mr. I,

     

    That's about Perfect!
    18 Jul 2013, 11:37 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4428) | Send Message
     
    >Valleywood ... Politics, at least to me, is not restricted to government. It exists nearly everywhere people gather for a purpose. I feared the internal politics of NSC when I saw the NS999 sit in storage for 3 years while the company embarked on a build program on 17 gensets, aimed at a total of 27, to comply with the 2017 regs. I freaked when Thelen retired and a signals guy took his place. Seeing in the shop calmed me down. I still can't believe how slow it's going but seeing the mention in the 2013 Sustainability Report nearly slakes my suspicions.
    19 Jul 2013, 12:53 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    I had tried to download the report before reading your message, JP, but the result of a non-responsive computer system. So my remarks are limited to the context provided by passages you quote from NSC's 2013 sustainability Report. Those passages provide welcome confirmation that NSC is proceeding with development of the a PbC-populated NS999 and a "battery-powered road locomotive." BUT, "battery-powered road locomotive" is a general comment that is not restricted to PbC battery power. Given the recent DOE grant to NSC for purchase of a 104 kWh string of Corvus Energy Li-NMC modules, however, one must reasonably consider the subsequent remark ("latest efforts will provide a foundation for development of affordable battery-powered locomotives") to include possible use of the Corvus Energy battey pack.

     

    Reference to "industry partner Axion Power International" might or might not be construed to imply a continuing relationship beyond Gen-2 NS999 development.
    19 Jul 2013, 12:57 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3890) | Send Message
     
    VW > "But today Axion is the gold standard for NS."

     

    Maybe. And maybe not. I have little doubt it was the locomotive battery gold standard to NSC as recently as early 2012, but confirmation of that status today is really not self evident to me (as much as I would like to believe it so).

     

    And, I do not challenge your perception of Wick Moorman's commitment to development of electric locomotives if technically and economically feasible at this time. We disagree on whether that interest and commitment heightens, or eliminates, bureaucracy.
    19 Jul 2013, 01:16 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    "Since then, we have reworked the battery management system to address technical challenges that arose during trial field operations. In 2013, we plan to roll out the next generation NS 999, outfitted with a bank of more technologically advanced hybrid lead-carbon batteries developed by industry partner Axion Power International."

     

    Am I all wet, or is this a fantastic PR opportunity now. I think this is one of the pitons we should drive into the wall of worry to help our ascent.

     

    HardToLove
    19 Jul 2013, 06:26 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29471) | Send Message
     
    WIO> I made a point of sending a copy of the Sustainability Report to Konrad last night. I have to assume that he can't and won't overlook the negative aspects of the recent financing so I figure a very bullish 'on the other hand' statement from NS can't help but balance things out.
    19 Jul 2013, 06:52 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Notice the size of the cable on the nose in the picture of the NS-999 there? If that's what I think it is, looks to be able to carry a few amps.

     

    Although the image doesn't carry the original photo timestamps, the jpg image is 7/18 at 11:03 - so that view is fresh.

     

    If it's a new pic, maybe it's out of the shop?

     

    HardToLove
    19 Jul 2013, 07:07 AM Reply Like
  • metroneanderthal
    , contributor
    Comments (1500) | Send Message
     
    Re-checked the 2010-2012 NS Sustainability Reports and this is the first mention of Axion within - and as an industry partner. The official paint drying date lays somewhere between now and 31 December 2013.

     

    ##

     

    Additionally within the Sustainability Report, although apparently having nothing to do with Axion - but may be a future market, or perhaps we are already working with a crane company if this application would make use of the PbC's best characteristics. Don't know the cost of a crane, but the 45% more on cost seems a lot and they appear to be using lead acid based on the 108 batteries comment.

     

    "HYBRID CRANES SAVE FUEL, REDUCE EMISSIONS
    In addition to its green LEED design, the Birmingham Regional Intermodal Terminal at McCalla, Ala., is our first intermodal facility to use a new type of battery-powered hybrid crane intended to save fuel and reduce environmental impacts of operations.

     

    We purchased two of the hybrid rubber tire gantry cranes, known as RTGs, which are used to lift intermodal containers on and off rail cars. The hybrid cranes are powered by a bank of 108 batteries and are designed for continuous operation. During use, a low-horsepower diesel engine charges
    the batteries.

     

    We’ve been pleased with the results. Standard diesel RTG cranes we use consume 6 to 7 gallons of diesel per operating hour, compared with about 2 gallons an hour for the hybrid cranes. That reduces fuel costs and emissions.
    Our plan is to evaluate the performance of the two hybrid cranes over time and decide later whether to purchase more, based in part on return on investment. A consideration is that the hybrids are about 45 percent more expensive than standard diesel cranes.

     

    In addition to the low-emission hybrids, we purchased seven fuel-efficient RTG cranes in 2012 for use at other new Crescent Corridor terminals. Those cranes are outfitted with a power-on-demand feature that saves fuel by producing just enough horsepower needed to perform specific functions. On average, that saves about 2 gallons of fuel per operating hour for each crane."

     

    Note that I cut and pasted LEED correctly.
    19 Jul 2013, 07:08 AM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    I have been hoping that we would receive good news by my birthday. I turn 52 tomorrow, July 20. Confirmation by NSC that they plan to reintroduce the NS 999 in 2013 is very good news!!!
    19 Jul 2013, 07:19 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17266) | Send Message
     
    Jveal: Happy B'day and hope you have many more to follow!

     

    HardToLove
    19 Jul 2013, 07:35 AM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    DRich,

     

    Agree in principal with you. In this case however I think there is only one vote.
    19 Jul 2013, 09:49 AM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    D-inv

     

    You're right. There are no guarantees. Lots of bad stuff can happen.

     

    I have to admit however that if I had your depth of doubt and skepticism I would be unloading. All that would remain would be a tiny 500 shares or so, just to keep an eye on developments.

     

    I on the other hand know this is a highly speculative purchase I have made. I simply don't waste my time giving myself an ulcer. Worry makes me scurry for treasuries or blue ribbon companies with established track records.
    19 Jul 2013, 09:57 AM Reply Like
  • Valleywood
    , contributor
    Comments (649) | Send Message
     
    jveal !

     

    Happy Birthday !

     

    Enjoy dinner. And stop counting. I hear that's the secret to the Fountain of Youth. Y'know how you stop aging, etc.

     

    Hasn't worked for me tho................ I'll be 29 in March.

     

    And yes, I consider this good news ! So where are you going for dinner ? ? ? :>)
    19 Jul 2013, 10:03 AM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    Thanks HT and VW. My church just happened to plan a hamburger and ice cream social tomorrow night. That's where I'll be for dinner.
    19 Jul 2013, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4428) | Send Message