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  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (714) | Send Message
     
    Hallo!
    6 Mar, 12:25 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Does anyone know the source of the pictures in the first link? Do we think that "LC" is a generic description of "Lead Carbon" or is that only a logo found when describing LC Super Hybrid technology?

     

    **Also it could be the article below might just have pulled some random pictures and neither the PbC nor the LC hybrid system are in the KIA.

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR (Battery is middle picture in top row)

     

    http://bit.ly/1cGCwUA (Logo seems the same to me as above)
    7 Mar, 02:15 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Here is another picture of the KIA hybrid display so it confirms these aren't random pictures.

     

    So it seems like the only mystery is who makes the battery pack with the LC logo on it.

     

    http://bit.ly/1lEfbv5

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR

     

    http://bit.ly/1lEfbv7
    7 Mar, 03:32 AM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1766) | Send Message
     
    Looks like the logo from the ALABC LC super hybrid system to me.
    7 Mar, 05:14 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    This page from the ALABC makes it pretty clear that the LC logo is an ALABC trademark – "Low Cost. Life Changing. Lead Carbon."

     

    http://bit.ly/NHuOEm

     

    The picture in the Korean Car Blog clearly shows that the 48-volt battery is four AGMs wired in series. Since there are six fill ports in a line along one side of each battery, they are not spiral wound orbital batteries that would have a 3 x 2 fill port pattern.

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR

     

    This was probably a good tactical choice by KIA. They got the benefit of being the first to trumpet a new lead-carbon battery technology without hitching their wagon to any particular technology. That leaves them plenty of room to wear brass knuckles in negotiations with a battery supplier.

     

    For those who haven't looked at it recently, I'll once again point to this slide from Banner Battery's ELBC-Paris presentation that shows how AGM with carbon paste additives holds up under the Axion-BMW micro-hybrid duty cycle test.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    7 Mar, 05:16 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    JP,

     

    So your saying the LC logo does not signify LC Super Hybrid technology inside? Rather, it can be any of the ALABC members' battery inside the KIA system?

     

    Also does the AGM fill ports mean that it's not the PbC (at this time) or "could" it still be as pictured?
    7 Mar, 05:26 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    For all we know, the batteries on display are garden variety AGM with nothing more than an LC label. The only conclusion I can draw from the six ports in line is that it's not an orbital battery which uses six cylindrical cells that are wound like jelly rolls and arranged like a six pack.

     

    As I understand the dynamic, KIA has some real problems with its CO2 emissions and has to do something. My view, with apologies to Winston Churchill, is that "You can always count on automakers to do the right thing - after they've tried everything else."
    7 Mar, 07:23 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Kia's new hybrid tech does some big things for the lead-carbon battery niche. Among them:

     

    It tells the other automakers that a huge, rising star company known for cost-effectiveness thinks lead-carbon is the best choice for the upcoming mild hybrid passenger vehicle. You go w/ a more costly solution and they'll keep taking mkt share.

     

    It uses multiple batteries. Every vehicle sold gives the battery supplier 3-4 times the sales of simple s/s. Let the battle begin. Nice to know we have the lead-carbon battery that performs the best.
    7 Mar, 07:47 AM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1212) | Send Message
     
    JP, after they've tried everything that costs less first
    7 Mar, 07:48 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/O1iFJK
    7 Mar, 07:51 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Slightly off topic article but germane for those who don't understand how hard it is for a small battery company to land a big oem fish.

     

    Also shows how the big boys always have a Plan B and Plan C in place and will do what suits them (as SA member IIndelco has said many times =).

     

    http://bit.ly/19f2EKl
    7 Mar, 08:10 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Bazoo, Nice to get confirmation from a customer insider, JP at ePower, that the PbC really is a great advance.
    7 Mar, 09:08 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Agreed, but the article gives insight to the type of support and demanding deadlines the big boys will give (i.e. GM gave Envia 2 million a quarter) and also needed their battery finalized 2 years in advance. Also it shows that just because there is action behind the scenes, you're often prohibited from speaking about it. Finally it shows that the big boys will triple check everything and if they don't like something they will spit you out and go with Plan B. Often all these things can happen and most of us will be none the wiser. Safe to say Axion is engaged in a similar dance but hopefully ours has a happy ending.
    7 Mar, 10:29 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1401) | Send Message
     
    Great read. With the amount of BS in the industry it is great to have firsthand knowledge and customer feedback about the PbC.
    7 Mar, 10:32 AM Reply Like
  • Edmund Metcalfe
    , contributor
    Comments (1462) | Send Message
     
    Bazoo! - chuckle - that'll be the name of my next dog.
    7 Mar, 06:45 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Sorry, bazooooka, wasn't sure how to abbreviate your alias.
    7 Mar, 08:01 PM Reply Like
  • Edmund Metcalfe
    , contributor
    Comments (1462) | Send Message
     
    geez, I meant no disrespect whatsoever, hadn't even occurred to me. I hope I didn't chase him away. I have a knack for that, I guess - after 24 yrs my wife split.
    Please, reload and return, bazoooooka!
    7 Mar, 08:27 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    I like Baz, Bazoo, Bazooks, Zooker... or any other way people type it up =)
    8 Mar, 02:39 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    EM,

     

    Much of the fun on this board is how we all short hand each others handles at times.
    8 Mar, 02:41 AM Reply Like
  • Edmund Metcalfe
    , contributor
    Comments (1462) | Send Message
     
    The lied, stole and cheated Government Motors and still got a government contract??
    8 Mar, 10:51 AM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (245) | Send Message
     
    Bridesmaid?
    6 Mar, 12:27 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Three's a crowd. I like crowds.
    6 Mar, 12:28 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Miss Congeniality, again.
    6 Mar, 12:29 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Bronze medal is ok. I'll take it.

     

    I look forward to your updated estimate of the PIPErs' remaining shares and their final exit date.
    6 Mar, 12:34 PM Reply Like
  • Patrick Young
    , contributor
    Comments (947) | Send Message
     
    Can't wait to see those charts once they've been updated for February and the last two days in particular.
    6 Mar, 12:29 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9584) | Send Message
     
    APH: Back in the day, I had to fire up a new APC about every 150 comments or so. That was because of "loading issues." I'm no longer experiencing them, even if a thread has 500 comments.

     

    Maybe on the busier commenting days, you can let a thread run a little longer since it seems SA has conquered the loading issue?

     

    As always, great job, and I very much appreciate what you do!
    6 Mar, 12:34 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Maya and APH, a year ago I moved from IE to Chrome on my PC to get faster Concentrator load times and it worked great, even for the biggest comment Concentrators. However, on my Samsung tablet, the load time is slow on those biggest comment Concentrators. Over, say, 300 and it slows a lot; over 400 it almost freezes.
    6 Mar, 12:43 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17254) | Send Message
     
    MrI: I hope we don't have to live with large ones. I assume lots of folks have older equipment, or less memory or slower 'net connections. They would suffer. Fortunately my only holdup is the ESR version of Firefox doesn't seem to play well when I have it open in four instances spread across four desktops and each instance has multiple tabs open where some of the crap we look at has various scripts, ads, ... hogging cpu time.

     

    HardToLove
    6 Mar, 01:31 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    I'm with u, HTL, if it's ok w/ APH. Hopefully it's not too much more work creating, say, three Concentrators a week instead of the current two, if this higher flow continues, and some more moderating as the increased attention draws some disruptive posts.

     

    Was also much easier to find comments. That 500+ comment #309 was a bear, searching all over the place.

     

    Either way, another shout out to APH for a terrific job.
    6 Mar, 02:02 PM Reply Like
  • greentongue
    , contributor
    Comments (732) | Send Message
     
    Too much interest in this Concentrator is a good problem.
    I also like the mood here a LOT better than the last few months.
    6 Mar, 01:52 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1401) | Send Message
     
    I dunno, I kinda liked the freedom in my life when I didn't check the Concentrator compulsively :)
    6 Mar, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Months? More like days =) Seems like the all time low was only last week or so?
    7 Mar, 06:22 AM Reply Like
  • raleigh731
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    IO'm still keeping an eye on "followers". We're up to 338, we had dropped in the last week or so from 335 to 333.In my mind it is an indicator of interest in the stock. Like that is moving up!
    6 Mar, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • raleigh731
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    WOW!! My leading indicator is up to 441 this morning! Lurkers becoming followers! I like it. C'mon choo-choo! C'mon light bulb! C'mon KIA! Who says PbC can't be used in a 777!!
    8 Mar, 06:59 AM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (864) | Send Message
     
    Oops posted this on the earlier concentrator by mistake. Here it is again.

     

    To continue the discussion on belt-integrated starter generator capabilities from the last concentrator, here is some info on a 48-volt BSG system from Controlled Power Technologies (CPT). The spec sheet says it can generate power at 5kW continous and can deliver 4kW of cranking power to the engine. Since it is designed for 48 volts and CPT also makes an electric supercharger, I wonder if this is the system Kia is going with.

     

    http://bit.ly/1iectYv

     

    This quote from the spec sheet sounds a lot like the article on the Kia.

     

    "At 48V the machine becomes even more capable, combining start-stop performance and efficient generation with high levels of recuperation, to recover more kinetic energy through regenerative braking, as well as higher levels of motoring performance or electrical torque assist. The level of low engine
    speed torque assist together with the flexible control strategy introduces possibilities for all electrical traction, or e-drive."
    6 Mar, 02:48 PM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (864) | Send Message
     
    Digging a little deeper, I learned that CPT sold an electric supercharger technology to Valeo in 2011. And, get this, Valeo also makes a dual clutch system and several kinds of belt-driven starter-generators. These are all of the components mentioned for the new Kia design. They don't mention their system voltage, though.
    6 Mar, 03:14 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    ngs, that's a great find, and it lines up eerily well with some of the rough numbers I was trying to play with--about 5KW worth of motor and 10KW worth of generator. I'd say almost a match made in heaven for a 3x16V or 4x12V PbC string...

     

    Add up all the parts: cheap and sturdy 48V power battery that doesn't need coddling, electric supercharger, 7speed dual-clutch transmission, an appropriately down-sized engine, and this here robust liquid-cooled ~5KW motor-generator...combine these elements in the right way and Kia/Hyundai could have themselves a real winner. Good driveability and probably very good economy, all without NiMH or Li-ion costs and headaches. And one that could scale out big time.
    6 Mar, 03:31 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    I wonder, any chance that Axion and ALABC may have re-engaged with each other WRT using PbC in these follow-on generation developments?

     

    Axion turned them down once. As JP has indicated because 1) it was at that time all about the supercharger, and 2) Axion's limited support resources had other, better places to be deployed. But perhaps one or both of those items have evolved beyond that to the point where it made more sense for Axion to engage than demur? Especially with Vani in the picture. And if the 48V version starts to be much more a showcase for the battery, BSG, and enhanced SS, and not just the electric supercharger, I would think Axion might see some benefit to getting involved. An Axion sticker on the door wouldn't be bad PR, especially if the thing starts getting more attention and visibility...
    6 Mar, 03:46 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    you know, when you see a page like this:

     

    http://bit.ly/S3VYiX

     

    where there's a graphic front and center of ultrabattery and they talk about lead carbon this and lead carbon that...and NO mention of Axion... well..

     

    it just hurts is all.
    6 Mar, 06:28 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/1g3W89P

     

    This is pretty interesting. They talk about how quickly the speed-start unit can deliver re-charging energy more than sufficient (three times more really) to cover the next stop-start event, but they fail to mention the battery capability that will be required to fully realize the kind of performance that the speedstart can deliver...

     

    "In addition to its start-stop capability, the SpeedStart technology has been designed from the outset to provide significant brake energy recuperation and is an efficient motor-generator. Despite the frequency at which the engine was continuously stopped followed by immediate re-starts, and with a regularity which the average motorist is unlikely to experience even in the most heavily congested urban traffic, the SpeedStart units still had sufficient time to generate more than three times the amount of electrical energy required to restart the engine following each stop event."
    6 Mar, 06:45 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    48,

     

    It amazes me that someone can write an article on lead-carbon batteries and not mention Axion. Something is amiss.
    6 Mar, 07:16 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    Exactly. It's just a riddle wrapped in a mystery, shrouded in enigma. One thing I notice when I looked at the list of ALABC members... JCI is conspicuously absent... unless I overlooked one of their subsidiary brands or something. It just seems to me that Axion should be leading the lead-carbon parade for the whole industry. With requisite visibility. I mean, they all virtually stand to prosper if LA can be made exceedingly relevant to the micro/mild hybrid transformation. (I mean boo, hiss lithium)

     

    And if the PbC electrode is indeed one of the most viable means to that success? Well, you would think they'd all be hoisting Axion on their shoulders... but Nooooo...

     

    Seriously, W. T. H.?

     

    It's just curious.
    6 Mar, 07:35 PM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    I think the answer might be found on ALABC's about us page ...

     

    "he ALABC is an international research organization comprised of lead producers, ... "

     

    Lead producers would not want to see the lead removed from the negative electrode. They are probably praying that carbon additive enhanced LABs will do the job in these new demanding applications rather than a carbon only negative electrode battery such as Axion's.
    6 Mar, 07:48 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    The ALABC is an industry funded consortium. It got involved with the Ultrabattery tests in 2008 because of its relationship with CSIRO, an Australian government agency that wanted to license the technology to industry. Until East Penn came along and snagged global rights to the Ultrabattery, the only countries that were not available were Japan and Thailand. Once the ALABC got involved in the project with CSIRO, it was very difficult to withdraw it support, particularly after a successful test.

     

    When it comes to the PbC technology. there is only one company on the planet that can commercialize the technology. Electrodes may be sold to industry players who are willing to pay the price, but the PbC is not and will never be a level playing field that can or should be supported by an industry consortium.

     

    Anybody in the industry can make a lead-acid battery with carbon paste additives and the last number I heard suggested that about 25 companies were out hawking their own special paste additive magic.

     

    Since the ALABC has to choose between promoting the best and promoting the best that the vast majority of its members can do, it's serving as a PR mouthpiece for the best that the vast majority of its members can do.
    6 Mar, 07:50 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1401) | Send Message
     
    RA: the vast majority of ALABC members are lead consumers, not producers. I think by omitting the rest of the quote you make it sound more ominous than it is.

     

    "Founded in 1992, the ALABC is an international research organization comprised of lead producers, battery manufacturers, equipment suppliers and research institutions dedicated to improving lead-acid batteries for use in a variety of energy storage applications. The consortium pools the resources of its membership in order to perform specific research on advanced lead-acid batteries that otherwise would not be possible by single entities."
    6 Mar, 07:51 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    JP,

     

    Should we read into the pictures associated with this article or do you think the author was just adding available pics to help explain the new KIA system. Anyhow, one of the pics does seem to have the LC Super Hybrid logo. Not sure if these means anything.

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR
    6 Mar, 08:22 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    CPT and LC Super Hybrid are partners right? Did their technology (along with Exide batteries - since Axion spurned LC way back) get engineered into the KIA? Seems like it is implied below but I'd like to see pics from the actual auto show.

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR
    6 Mar, 08:32 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Control Power Technologies developed both the supercharger and the belt driven starter generator that were highlighted in the LC SuperHybrid. In the middle of the demonstration project CPT sold the supercharger technology to Valeo. The last time I checked CPT still owned the BSG technology.

     

    I'm not sure how much I'd read into the schematics and I can't find the bit that looks like an LC SuperHybrid logo, but the size of the battery box under the trunk would be more than ample for three 16-volt L5 batteries.
    6 Mar, 08:53 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    The first row (middle pic) says LC. I figured that was their logo.
    6 Mar, 08:55 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    "And if the PbC electrode is indeed one of the most viable means to that success? Well, you would think they'd all be hoisting Axion on their shoulders... but Nooooo..."

     

    They would all be delighted to hoist Axion to their shoulders if Axion would just dispense with it's NDA policy and share the IP without costs.

     

    Petersen has expressed the viewpoint that the ALABC is about common development of technology that stands to benefit all the members. Such a "mission" is inconsistent with Axion's refusal to even publicly disclose basic performance specs on the PbC and, IMO, carries more weight in explaining Axion's refusal to participate in the micro-hybrid and super-hybrid ALABC demonstration projects than demands on Axion manpower and limited capital.

     

    6 Mar, 09:39 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    It's certainly a very good reason to be very picky about what you disclose to whom. Nobody wants to spend a decade developing an IP estate and then give it away to an industry consortium for the sake of a little PR, even if the stockholder are clamping for news and more liberal disclosure of information you want to keep out of the hands of competitors.
    6 Mar, 09:46 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1766) | Send Message
     
    48,
    I did find it interesting that when they talk about the Honda Insight or Civic EVs they specify that the lead-carbon batteries are the Ultrabattery. However, when they talk about the LC Super hybrid they don't specify where the lead-carbon batteries come from. This leads me back to John's argument that they are still using Exide's AGM batteries with carbon pastes, but want you to miss that little detail in the fine print.
    6 Mar, 10:04 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    I'm not sure if it's the same technology, but it looks like CPT is still selling their own electric supercharger--Cobra:

     

    http://bit.ly/NDlq41

     

    http://bit.ly/NDlrVV

     

    Maybe it's an improved version over the one they sold to Valeo...
    6 Mar, 10:30 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    In the photo it's clear that they're using four apparently full-size 12V batteries connected in series. No markings whatsoever other than what looks like flush filler caps...
    6 Mar, 10:32 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    IIRC, the original CPT supercharger was smaller and air cooled for passenger cars. The newer version seems to be water-cooled for medium duty commercial vehicles.
    6 Mar, 10:35 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    That's a good point John. I get a little over exuberant at times. I guess though that the keepers of the ultrabattery flame maybe don't have the same type/level of concerns?
    6 Mar, 10:38 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    John accurately states below. And IMO that is a big factor in what is slowing down adoption in automotive. And it's controlled by a financial mouse which also doesn't help.

     

    But if the industry needs it they will find a way to access it IMO. But if and how remain the million dollar question.

     

    "When it comes to the PbC technology. there is only one company on the planet that can commercialize the technology. Electrodes may be sold to industry players who are willing to pay the price, but the PbC is not and will never be a level playing field that can or should be supported by an industry consortium."
    7 Mar, 09:59 AM Reply Like
  • User 17609152
    , contributor
    Comments (2) | Send Message
     
    This article did:
    http://bit.ly/1mV68HF
    7 Mar, 10:20 AM Reply Like
  • tomcat818
    , contributor
    Comments (42) | Send Message
     
    My thoughts exactly 48... there is an awful lot of money out there now looking for the right investment given the feds easy money policy the last 6 years. It seems to me if it where the right technology the venture capitalists and who knows maybe even Buffett himself would have beaten Axion's doors down by now with cash infusion or buyout offers. The capacity issues, long term financial viability, and resource scarcity would disappear. As it is they now have 197 million shares outstanding and all the above mentioned roadblocks still in play. There are only two institutional holders of the stock as 12/31/13 and both combined hold just shy of 500K shares. Huh? I could afford to buy this amount of shares. Does not make sense to me!

     

    They don't even put out basic specs on their batteries like dimensions and weight much less performance. I just don't get it!
    7 Mar, 12:43 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    "Anybody in the industry can make a lead-acid battery with carbon paste additives and the last number I heard suggested that about 25 companies were out hawking their own special paste additive magic."

     

    John, I hear you. But then there's this--Our whole long-term strategy is to make sufficient electrodes for others so that: "Anybody in the industry can make a PbC using Axion's electrodes, and there are about 25 lead-acid battery companies out there who can do just that..." ;)
    7 Mar, 01:43 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    That's the plan. We just need to get folks to understand that using carbon additives is nowhere near as good for their future as using Axion's electrodes. It takes time, but so does anything worth doing.
    7 Mar, 03:29 PM Reply Like
  • axion-nl
    , contributor
    Comments (138) | Send Message
     
    I sent a mail asking about KIA's system.... now i have to wait for an answer....
    6 Mar, 02:59 PM Reply Like
  • anthlj
    , contributor
    Comments (227) | Send Message
     
    me too:

     

    'Thank you for your inquiry. As this concept hybrid system was developed by our R&D center in Europe, I will defer to Vladi Alexiev, our PR Manager at Kia Motors Europe.'

     

    Thus far nothing from Vladi. Maybe he's been soaking in a carbon paste hot tub with executives from Exide and ALABC.
    7 Mar, 08:04 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2382) | Send Message
     
    This wins the crown as longest URL I've ever seen ... wonder if SA will barf on converting it:

     

    http://bit.ly/1hQatr3

     

    This is the DOE Global Energy Storage Database for Green Charge Networks existing and planned installations
    6 Mar, 03:03 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2382) | Send Message
     
    OT, other than NSC has a lot of potential oil exposure, and we're interested in Energy:

     

    (Bloomberg)

     

    Too Much Propane Could Be a Factor in Exploding Oil Trains
    By Marcus Stern and Sebastian Jones Mar 5, 2014 3:58 PM CT

     

    http://bloom.bg/1hQcSlu

     

    "As federal regulators continue investigating why tank cars on three trains carrying North Dakota crude oil have exploded in the past eight months, energy experts say part of the problem might be that some producers are deliberately leaving too much propane in their product, making the oil riskier to transport by rail.

     

    Sweet light crude from the Bakken Shale formation straddling North Dakota and Montana has long been known to be especially rich in volatile natural gas liquids like propane. Much of the oil is being shipped in railcars designed in the 1960s and identified in 1991 by the National Transportation Safety Board as having a dangerous penchant to rupture during derailments or other accidents."

     

    ======================...

     

    some chicken and the egg here ... using rail cause there's no infrastructure that would be needed to environmentally responsibly take out most? of the natural gas liquids ...

     

    apparently, still no free lunch ...
    6 Mar, 03:13 PM Reply Like
  • Masi
    , contributor
    Comments (422) | Send Message
     
    I have a question about the sells by the PIPErs. Are the sells done by automation or is there a person for each of the entities putting in the amount of shares and the price? At 10:39 this morning there was a sale of over 303K shares. That was way over the 15% limit at that time.
    6 Mar, 03:19 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9584) | Send Message
     
    Guess what question I want to ask TG during the next conference call?

     

    Given that it appears Johnson Controls is heading toward making 48v batteries, and I've read that KIA is going to be producing cars with a lead/carbon 48v battery, have you made 48v PbC prototypes for the automotive market?

     

    I'll have my finger on the buy button within two seconds if he answers yes.
    6 Mar, 03:58 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    Maya, I don't think it's really that critical, or even advantageous, that they necessarily make a 48V battery that is all in one case. Not unless it was going to be for huge volume orders, volume for which it would be worth dedicating a whole factory or multiple lines to. I would think that three 16Volt L5 batteries connected in series should do fine in the auto application. It just doesn't seem that it would save that much space or weight to try to put all those cells in one larger, specially designed case. Keep in mind if you reduce the volume too much, make the battery too physically small, then there will be commensurate reduction in power and energy too. Might not make any sense to go to that trouble. And plus, there is a lot more experience and capacity out there with the traditional form factors than with something new. Plus likely better QC. Also, with three separate units, if it does happen that an individual cell or battery goes bad, it's only one of the three to have to replace, not the whole thing. Anyway, to my mind, it's the chemistry, not the form factor that's key. If Kia or whoever says they want/need say a 2KWh / 4KW battery, sure Axion will want to try to deliver that in the best, and most compact way possible. But 3x16V or 4x12V strings could still well be that best way...
    6 Mar, 04:15 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9584) | Send Message
     
    48th: Good points all around. Funny that your first two digits are 4 and 8.

     

    Maybe I should rephrase it as a 48v configuration?
    6 Mar, 04:52 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    Maya, some things are just fateful. ;) But that can cut both ways... which I am finding out.

     

    But oh yeah, if you only meant a 48V configuration, maybe some kind of Axion-developed standardized box/containerization for 3 or 4 individual standard-format PbCs with optimized internal interconnections, that I could definitely see as a positive. In that case, though, I guess Axion would almost be selling a full-on finished automotive component, which could introduce other complexities. But then again, I guess that's effectively what they're doing right now with ePower, though correct? IIRC, Axion is not just shipping ePower bare batteries, but in fact is shipping them completed and populated battery boxes with 14 PbCs each, isn't that right? So if we all were to find out that Axion is now also in the 3- or 4-boxed battery business that would be something...
    6 Mar, 05:19 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Should we assume that the announced KIA 48v battery is all in one case and thus even less likely to be an Axion solution. Do the articles imply battery strings or a singular battery? I just don't think its likely to have 4 PbC batteries in the trunk but maybe that's what it is.
    6 Mar, 08:10 PM Reply Like
  • festein
    , contributor
    Comments (78) | Send Message
     
    481086 - a quick question; do you think the move to 48V is going to be a mainstream move? I've seen a presentation from Ford where this has the 3rd lowest CO2 % reduction per $ of all the technologies they have at hand - only just beating BEV and PHEV. i.e. - don't hold your breath.

     

    I guess it will depend on the other fuel efficiency technologies they have to hand, and with the Ford econetic ICE, it may push out the economics for 48V?

     

    The luxury OEM's do have a clear (powernet stability) driver for this, but for the main stream? Thoughts?
    6 Mar, 09:18 PM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie
    , contributor
    Comments (1823) | Send Message
     
    If Kia decision-makers are smart and daring enough to choose lead-carbon over lithium-ion, doesn't it follow that they are also too canny to get rooked into the ultrabattery over PbC?

     

    Just sayin'.

     

    D
    6 Mar, 09:26 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    " Do the articles imply battery strings or a singular battery?"

     

    Most of the articles referenced to the APCs talk in terms of "a 48V battery", one I've read refers to a 48V battery pack.
    6 Mar, 09:45 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2483) | Send Message
     
    Bazooka,

     

    The Saturn Vue had 3 12v batteries in series to make its pack. I saw the picture you pointed out with the LC ... could that simply mean lead carbon?

     

    When I looked at the li-on pack in the back of the Kia Optima, I couldn't see the brand. I think you have to take the back seats down and remove the cover of the pack.
    6 Mar, 09:51 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Seems to be the same LC Super hybrid logo to me (compare middle top row in link one with link two). Hopefully this is a coincidence otherwise Axion missed out.

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR

     

    http://bit.ly/1cGCwUA
    6 Mar, 10:33 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    Bazoook, it's clear to me from the one photo here, that at least for the purposes of the exhibit, that it's four standard 12V batteries being ganged together in a protective enclosure... whether that's in fact what they intend to use in the car I think we can't know....

     

    http://bit.ly/1ovAmMR
    6 Mar, 10:42 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    festein, I'm certainly no authority... but sounds like from the presentation you mention that cost is a significant factor arguing against 48V implementation... ie it doesn't yield enough CO2 % reduction bang for the buck to make it compelling. But maybe it's just that Ford's costs are still out of line--perhaps they are using Li-ion in their own 48v system instead of cheaper Lead-Carbon and that's enough to negate the advantages. Just speculation on my part. But as far as a mainstream move to 48V? Well, I think it's clear that they're all moving to some level of greater electrification in order to comply with more stringent standards. And if the move to 48V can be made to yield sufficient benefits in that direction then it would seem like economic gravity would eventually drive them all there... provided of course fuel prices don't decline and regulations don't get changed.
    6 Mar, 10:57 PM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    "doesn't it follow that they are also too canny to get rooked into the ultrabattery over PbC?"

     

    I don't think it's that simple. While UB cannot perform or last like PbC, it may be "good enough". The carbon pastes do in fact curb sulfation, so while DCA performance may be lacking a 48v UB system may at least stave off the primary failure mechanism for some time.

     

    With PbC cost estimated at $350, a 4 battery system would cost a mfgr $1400 which is pretty steep to pass on to consumers in a market as competitive as autos. That doesn't include the rest of the cost of the hybrid system either. Further, if Kia can somehow brand the replacement batteries, it could a view a shorter life as actually a plus in order to profit on the replacement cycle.
    7 Mar, 03:01 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    48,

     

    I hear ya on the "can't know" part but I must say you made a nice case earlier when writing the below missive out; Heck you almost made my trigger finger itch to buy more even though I don't think KIA and Axion are co-joined (yet =)

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    ""Seems like an awful lot of trouble to make the leap to 48V, locate the battery in the trunk, overcome the cabling challenges, develop a seven-speed dual clutch transmission etc etc, all to power SS and the electric supercharger. Plus all the press accounts, as well as the short writeup on the kia website itself, clearly indicate some mode / level of electric-only motivation. John, I know you mentioned seeing peaks of 236 amps of regenerative charging currents into the ePower battery string, but what are the max boost currents out of it that you've seen? I remember Dr. Buiel writing that 100A discharges were within reason for the PbC so if we go with that, then 48V x 100A is 4.8 KW of boost power capability from the battery. If we discount for electrical, mechanical, rolling friction losses, let's call it 4KW to the wheels.

     

    Now if the typical BSG is around 2KW in size, it doesn't seem that outlandish that Kia could have developed one with twice the capacity. After all, it's a two way street there... a bigger BSG would not only enable a bit of electric-only drive, but it would also enable much more aggressive capture of braking energy. A 48V PbC string, by ePower's own experience, should be able to handle 200 amps of DCA or nearly 10KW... So if it's possible, why not beef up the BSG to be able to deliver that much to the battery? And if the BSG is indeed of that beefy a size, then it should have the capacity to deliver that much power to the drivetrain when in motor mode.

     

    Obviously, doing it right will involve the just the right kind of transmission/coupling logic. But since this appears to be a ground-up design, it seems reasonable to me that this could all be integrated.

     

    So anyway, the engineers now have like 4KW of power to the wheels, instantaneously, on-tap, in almost any regime, from the BSG. At least for several seconds at a time. What can that do?

     

    Well, one thing we have to allow is that with appropriate gear reduction, certainly enough torque could be generated at the wheels in a low enough gear to get the car moving. Maybe not fast, but moving. How fast is the question. Let's simplify by and just ask, what would 5 seconds of max motor output yield in velocity? Well, if the car is 1500Kg, and we get 4000 joules per second to the wheels, for 5 seconds, that's 20,000 Joules of energy added to the car, which equates to some amount of kinetic energy. Now KE = 1/2mv^2. So our final velocity would be the square root of (40,000 J / 1500Kg) = about 5 metres/second. So after 5 seconds of full electric power, the car would be moving at about 5 m/s on level ground.

     

    Note that 5 m/s = about 11 mph, which seems sufficient to me for some low speed maneuvering such as parking lots, stop and go traffic, backing up, etc etc...

     

    So how much impact would such an event have on the battery? If we assume it's 3x16V PbCs with 500 Watt-hours each that's 1500 watt-hours or 5.4 million watt-seconds (joules) of total energy stored. Since 5 seconds of full power to the motor would take 24,000 watt seconds, (48v x 100A x 5secs) or about 0.5% DOD, that doesn't seem like too big a drawdown for each application of the accelerator. Of course, do that 20 times in stop and go traffic and now you've drawn down to 90% DOD and then maybe the engine needs to come on to plus up the battery. Or then again, maybe not, considering that you have such a hefty BSG to recoup some of that energy as you brake to stop. ;)

     

    Anyway, all it tells me is that if you've got 4.8 KW to play with coming out, 10KW or so of DCA going in, a 4 or 5 KW or even slightly larger BSG or MG geared into the engine/transmission the right way, that with the right engineering, maybe you could make a fairly capable mild-hybrid out of it. But certainly not a heavy hybrid though. I mean 0-10 mph in 5 seconds is nobody's idea of snappy.

     

    Just for giggles let's note that 10 secs of full power gets you to about 16mph, and a full 20 secs of leadfoot e-flooring only gets us to 23mph. 0-23 in 20 seconds, yeehaw! And that's only on level ground. Add any incline to the equation and I'm sure it gets worse pretty quick. Plus, that would consume a full 2% SOC of our battery each time. So, if it is indeed made this way, it's probably limited in e-only speeds to maybe 10-12mph or so? Just enough for moderate stop and go traffic I would think.

     

    I agree though, that while it's fun to calculate, speculate, and argue, we won't really know until we see more from Kia...""
    7 Mar, 03:18 AM Reply Like
  • Stefan Moroney
    , contributor
    Comments (2483) | Send Message
     
    R.A. - At that cost, I think the batteries will have to be part of the warranty and they are with the lithium ion pack in the current Optima Hybrid.
    7 Mar, 09:47 AM Reply Like
  • Rick Krementz
    , contributor
    Comments (2164) | Send Message
     
    48,

     

    I agree, pictured are 4 batteries. Low risk. Regardless whether it bio-carbon, carbon paste, or AGM, a standard sized battery can be swapped in. A 3 x 16v arrangement, with an incomplete supply chain, is higher risk for unsatisfied customer.

     

    If you are stuck in Omaha, even flooded batteries would probably get you home. Heck, stuck in Pittsburgh you can't get bio-carbons to get home.

     

    The idealized, sanitized picture gives me zero information on what VRLA technology will be used.
    7 Mar, 10:16 AM Reply Like
  • nogoodslacker
    , contributor
    Comments (864) | Send Message
     
    @Rick. I've been saying for a long time that the fact that you cannot buy a replacement PbC off the shelf is something that will inhibit adoption in several areas of use. Unlike a high voltage lithium or NMH battery system, a 48v system should be something a home mechanic can change out themselves in a pinch.
    7 Mar, 11:14 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    Remember that we've talked at length about how Axion's strategy was to design and manufacture the PbC battery so that it could take advantage of the commodity scale manufacturing base that exists in the world for LABs. Might not make any sense at all to design and build a special format battery that does not leverage all these assets. Kind of hard to say to someone like JCI or Exide. Hey, Just scrap all those machines and build this. Auto margins make execs cringe when you suggest such ideas. Plus, as you scale PbC in your AGM lines you can flex the capacity to a fickle market. Me likey.
    7 Mar, 11:17 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    Rick, concur. My sense of the 12V vs 16V question for Axion is this: 12V is what the industry and customer base is standardized on. So of course the PbC in 12V version is going to be Axion's main product. That's what's in the ePower truck, the NS999, and the powercube, if I have it all right.

     

    But there are some issues with a 12V PbC as compared to conventional 12V LA especially in an application (IE SS auto) where they have to play together.

     

    One, I believe that a fully charged 12V PbC sits at a lower voltage compared to normal LA, something in the middle twelves, while a conventional LA is actually at 14.2V fully charged. Two, the discharge curve of the PbC is more steeply sloped than conventional LA, so a 12V PbC at some PSOC is going to be at a lower voltage still compared to conventional LA. Three, the nature of the PbC's internal resistance curve means that the sweet spot for efficiency of the PbC is at some PSOC, again a lower voltage than 12V conventional LA. So, take those three things together, and you have a somewhat different animal in the 12V PbC, compared to what everyone and everything is used to.

     

    But, I think this really only matters for single PbC implementations of automotive SS, whether it's the PbC + FLA, the one that Axion details in their charge acceptance white paper, or their earlier descriptions of a single PbC SS system (but one that still involves a nominal 12V system throughout the car) Now, in applications that are purely PbC *and involve multiple PbCs in strings* --ePower, 999, PC.... it hardly matters at all if the individual batteries are 6-cell twelve volters or 8-cell sixteen volters. They're all ganged up in a string anyway to achieve higher voltage so why depart from the norm and use the 16V version? To my mind, no valid reason. And that extends certainly, just as you point out, to the Kia type application. No advantage really to 3x16V vs 4x12V... I mean it's just packaging. You still have to have the same number of total cells to get you to that 48V so why make it more complicated?

     

    So where *does* the 16V version come into play? In my mind, it's solely for the basic MH/SS version that Axion describes near the end of their white paper. For the three reasons I listed above, it's better to have an 8-cell, 16V PbC in there if it has to play nice with a conventional 12V FLA and a car full of conventional 12V hotel loads. By keeping the 16V PbC at some lower PSOC, its voltage can be made to match up perfectly with the 12V FLA and the rest of the system. The PbC can operate in its sweet spot. It can be charged to the same level as the FLA, etc etc... Basically, using a 16V PbC matches its best operating range with that of the 12V FLA in the same system, and that, and only that, is why Axion made the effort to produce a 16V version in the first place. It's for single PbC SS systems (whether including a conventional 12V FLA or not) and nothing else.

     

    As soon as any application moves to a higher voltage, then I would think it much more advantageous to just use the more familiar standard 6-cell 12V version of the PbC, only just more of them. It's the total voltage of the entire string that matters anyway, and whether that system is going to operate at PSOC or nearer 100% SOC, it doesnt' really care about the number of batteries in the string, only the total voltage, power, and energy of the string. What does matter I would think is just that everything in the world is geared toward that familiar 6-cell 12V battery size and configuration--all the racking, test equipment, calculation tools, charging gear, manufacturing lines etc etc etc..

     

    So in sum, unless we hear differently and definitively, we probably shouldn't confuse ourselves by talking about the 16V version. IOW, I would say that the 16V PbC version, for most applications, is just NOT going to be the norm. The 12V version is.

     

    (Sorry, TLDR, I know. Fresh coffee...)
    7 Mar, 12:57 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1401) | Send Message
     
    Somebody is accumulating. Two days in a row where the price gets boosted at day end. Normal traders would have already bailed by mid day weakness.
    6 Mar, 04:12 PM Reply Like
  • dance621
    , contributor
    Comments (163) | Send Message
     
    My thought too Ranma. The is not a JP rise on PIPE exit with sellers drying up. This is a volume led rally. Defo looks like a position being taken up. Nice to see a move up today after yesterday's late move. Pity we didn't fill that gap between 13 and 14c. I think there is a gap there. Maybe Dr Love can add more?
    6 Mar, 04:49 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    There is a whole world of stock traders that only come in when floats are tight. IMHO, this run has much to do with PIPErs running on fumes. The KIA rumors are just fortuitous but ultimately may disappoint.
    6 Mar, 08:06 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17254) | Send Message
     
    Dance: ice took down trees, the power pole w/transformer, line and cable feed.

     

    At daughters house with only one of my computers.

     

    So I'll be hampered.

     

    I figure at least three days, maybe longer.

     

    The benefit: I'll likely be quieter! :-((

     

    HardToLove
    7 Mar, 02:18 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    Sorry to hear of that disruption in your life, HTL. May the grid and cable repairs come sooner than expected.
    7 Mar, 02:53 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (9584) | Send Message
     
    Ditto, HTL.
    7 Mar, 02:59 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2105) | Send Message
     
    My prayers go out to the Algore deities to send a little AGW your way this week, HTL.

     

    Will this mini-ice age never end?
    7 Mar, 03:01 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    HTL, I hope u were fully invested in AXPW or close to it, before this run!
    7 Mar, 03:08 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech
    , contributor
    Comments (1766) | Send Message
     
    Sorry HTL. We didn't lose power, but there are trees down around us here as well (luckily none of ours). I hate ice storms.
    7 Mar, 03:09 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    HTL, Sorry for your current painful experience.

     

    Enjoy the time with your family! The silver lining. :D
    7 Mar, 03:15 PM Reply Like
  • thotdoc
    , contributor
    Comments (1415) | Send Message
     
    Im traveling on business and trying to keep up. I maybe missed discussion of why the price is moving up. Sorry. Is there a nickel version beyond coming toward end of pipes and kia dreaming and the RFPs from the states that want storage?

     

    Thank you to whomever tales the time to answer
    6 Mar, 04:52 PM Reply Like
  • RuggedDC
    , contributor
    Comments (182) | Send Message
     
    Hi thotdoc!

     

    Happy to oblige! Turns out I have just written emails to several of my Axion followers offering them just such update!

     

    So… For those just in from a trip to Mars:

     

    Over the past three days Axion share price has increased by 56%, closing today at 15 cents per share.

     

    Multiple factors are likely:
    • Axion recently appointed a new director who looks to bring strong financing and management skills to the table
    • Axion just re-engaged one of its founders, a retired M.D. and former owner of a regional trucking business, to serve as executive consultant re: trucking applications (such as with ePower)
    • KIA cars has just announced development of a "lead carbon" based 48 volt mild-hybrid vehicle technology platform it will be using for new vehicle designs (no explicit tie-in to Axion has been declared, though Axion scryers and soothsayers feel portents are excellent that KIA will, in fact, incorporate Axion batteries, either sooner or later); significantly, KIA has chosen to AVOID the path of lithium-ion battery 'solutions' and chart a revolutionary new, smarter course featuring lead-carbon.
    • The "abusive" financing Axion has endured since last summer is coming to an end, and the financiers (PIPErs), are nearly - if not completely - out of Axion shares to sell, which had been severely depressing share price (they had been receiving discounted Axion shares towards payment of the original loan which they'd immediately sell, thus depressing prices)
    • Norfolk Southern Railway, which has long been developing electric locomotives utilizing Axion batteries, has announced that it will be making some major corporate announcements next week (it remains anyone's guess at the moment whether Axion and electric locomotives will be a topic, though NSC is falling behind on its previously declared corporate timetable for revealing the fruits of its electric locomotive work)
    • Alternative energy (especially battery sector) has become a hot investment theme
    6 Mar, 05:34 PM Reply Like
  • thotdoc
    , contributor
    Comments (1415) | Send Message
     
    Rugged-

     

    Thank you,

     

    G
    6 Mar, 08:59 PM Reply Like
  • dlmca
    , contributor
    Comments (334) | Send Message
     
    Guess my unfilled bid at $.095 two days ago is toast

     

    Good trade off

     

    Chart looking very interesting

     

    Next week...and hopefully well beyond will confirm

     

    A triple waterfall perhaps
    6 Mar, 05:49 PM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1401) | Send Message
     
    My first rendezous with PEIX was in the summer of 2011. I believe it took a month climbing day after day, but it did go from a low of .25 to something like 1.80. I was asleep at the wheel (break from trading stocks) and one day a friend messaged me about it. I never sold a stock so fast without thinking lol (1.60 or so).

     

    AXPW will also take time to rise but if we are right, prices higher than today will still look like a great deal.
    6 Mar, 05:52 PM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    I normally take hefty profits to redeploy money or to buy back the shares if they drop back. My AXPW position is totally different though and I am swinging for the fences. My latest thought on my AXPW exit strategy is $12 a share. I'm not kidding!

     

    My ePower thought is much higher, but my cost on it is also much higher than my Axion shares. ePower won't tempt me to hit the sell button since there is no quote or sell button. I think it will go public sooner or later though and likely be a hot stock when it does.
    6 Mar, 06:16 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    RA,

     

    I hear you on ePower. They're doing some pretty amazing things in Florence, KY. Plus, what's good for them is good for AXPW! In retrospect, my ePower investment was kind of an alternative path to doubling down on Axion. I guess I just like the tech too much. Oops.
    6 Mar, 06:24 PM Reply Like
  • dance621
    , contributor
    Comments (163) | Send Message
     
    "My latest thought on my AXPW exit strategy is $12 a share. I'm not kidding!"

     

    Just typed $12 into my calculator x my holdings. Wow. You can get some people to do some fairly unhygienic things for that sort of money!
    6 Mar, 06:27 PM Reply Like
  • dance621
    , contributor
    Comments (163) | Send Message
     
    "my ePower investment was kind of an alternative path to doubling down on Axion."

     

    How do you invest in ePower? Thought it was a private venture.
    6 Mar, 06:33 PM Reply Like
  • alsobirdman
    , contributor
    Comments (362) | Send Message
     
    Dance, that is hilarious. And actually, RA is thinking along the same lines as I. I do believe that we can see $10+ within a few years. Now I may have to time the top of the hype cycle correctly, but I do believe that I will sell some shares at that price or greater. I'll probably sell some before as well, but long-term, ten bucks, IMO.
    6 Mar, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • Alphameister
    , contributor
    Comments (1428) | Send Message
     
    Can't wait until ePower becomes a hot IPO because we can be absolutely sure its prospectus will disclose its existential dependence on Axion Power!
    6 Mar, 07:02 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    dance,

     

    PM me your email - will explain.
    6 Mar, 07:05 PM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    isthis> I also viewed ePower as ancillary to my conviction in the PbC. The difference being that if bad financing dilutes one stock badly the other could get by unscathed. So there's a diversification of sorts.

     

    Also differentiating is that Axion has many roads that could lead to sufficient success while ePower has only one path. But ePower already has working prototypes performing amazingly and soon word will spread. With Axion, who knows when or if any OEM will adopt anything. It could be years before we get any indication at all from some OEMs.

     

    dance> Not aiming for "unhygienic" here. But I've promised that if it appreciates that much I will gift a chunk of appreciated shares to charity. That's a good way to stiff the tax man BTW.
    6 Mar, 08:04 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    RA,

     

    the dilution factor played a role in my decision no doubt. I looked at it as a "mini-sector". ePower has a very focused market, which I find appealing because it keeps them from spreading their resources too thin. I am very bullish on this lead-carbon tech so my question is which stock will prove a better investment? I'm not sure. So I bought both in relatively equal amounts.
    6 Mar, 09:25 PM Reply Like
  • michaelga
    , contributor
    Comments (22) | Send Message
     
    why the secret? why not in public? we're all dying to know!
    6 Mar, 09:47 PM Reply Like
  • michaelga
    , contributor
    Comments (22) | Send Message
     
    sorry for any confusion...

     

    This comment was reply to:
    isthisonebetter Comments (131)
    dance,
    PM me your email - will explain.

     

    --> why the secret? why not in public? we're all dying to know!
    6 Mar, 10:57 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    michaelga,

     

    Anyone sincerely interested may PM me.
    6 Mar, 11:01 PM Reply Like
  • User462699
    , contributor
    Comments (101) | Send Message
     
    michaelga,

     

    The answer was covered in an earlier concentrator. Here's the link to ePower's investor page explaining: http://tinyurl.com/mgv...
    6 Mar, 11:08 PM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    michaelga> I think the reason to not post publicly information on investing in ePower is that it could be viewed as 'promoting' ePower's current fund raising and thus raise questions about motives. Given that an ePower executive is a major presence here and remains mum on the offering I think it's respectful to share information privately only with those who specifically ask for it.
    7 Mar, 03:20 AM Reply Like
  • michaelga
    , contributor
    Comments (22) | Send Message
     
    isthis, user46, RA,
    thanks: a little info goes a long way!
    7 Mar, 07:59 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    RA,

     

    Agreed, discussing it here should be discouraged but I don't think pointing someone in the right direction is "promoting". But yes, conversations are likely best done in private.
    7 Mar, 10:09 AM Reply Like
  • Billion003
    , contributor
    Comments (130) | Send Message
     
    I'm curious. What is your $12 figure based on?
    7 Mar, 05:27 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2382) | Send Message
     
    Bloomberg talks Ambri ... and of course Elon ...

     

    MIT’s Liquid Metal Stores Solar Power Until After Sundown
    By Christopher Martin Mar 6, 2014 1

     

    http://bloom.bg/1cGl56B

     

    "liquid-metal batteries that will store electricity for less than $500 a kilowatt-hour. That’s less than a third the cost of some current battery technologies.

     

    ...

     

    Ambri won a $250,000 grant yesterday from New York state to develop and test a prototype battery with Con Edison Inc. The company, backed by investors including billionaires Bill Gates and Vinod Khosla, plans to install its first two prototypes by early 2015 at a Massachusetts military base and a wind farm in Hawaii. It opened its first manufacturing facility in November and is planning a larger one next year.

     

    ...

     

    They will compete against lithium-ion batteries, the same technology used in laptop computers and electric cars, which are becoming more common for grid-storage. AES Corp., the largest operator of power-storage systems, said today it’s now selling them to utilities and renewable-energy developers, for about $1,000 a kilowatt
    6 Mar, 07:47 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    ""liquid-metal batteries that will store electricity for less than $500 a kilowatt-hour. That’s less than a third the cost of some current battery technologies."

     

    And how do those liquid-metal batteries compare round trip efficiency wise with "some current battery technologies."
    6 Mar, 10:03 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Slow and low. Liquid metal charges and discharges slowly (several hours) and has relatively low round trip efficiency (under 85%) because of the very high operating temperatures. That being said if the technology has promise if you need to store lots of energy and can live with the slow cycling.
    6 Mar, 10:07 PM Reply Like
  • Patrick Young
    , contributor
    Comments (947) | Send Message
     
    http://bit.ly/1cGpE0M

     

    Kia presentation at Geneva, 2014

     

    Mild hybrid is discussed at 11:30, for about 1 minute. No mention of the battery. He mentions in the same segment that the Optima Hybrid received an "upgrade"...intriguing. Also of note at 9:57 he mentions the company-wide 7-year warranty and the importance of quality to the company. "Our sights are set on earning the reputation as the car company that offers the highest quality customer experience at every customer touch-point...ensure Kia customers enjoy the very best customer care in the market."

     

    That means the battery can't fail after a few months.
    6 Mar, 08:26 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    "Also of note at 9:57 he mentions the company-wide 7-year warranty and the importance of quality to the company. "

     

    :-) Also assures buyers use Kia dealerships for servicing their vehicles where labor charges of prices of oil, filters, brake pads, etc. just might cost a bit more than elsewhere.
    6 Mar, 09:57 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    This morning I promised an update on my PIPEr overhang estimate. When I ran the numbers using a spitball methodology I found that another day like we've had for the last three days should clean up the dregs.

     

    Since I hate cutting anything that close I went through an alternative approach that got me to the same answer.

     

    The detail is in this new Instablog.

     

    http://bit.ly/1cGsUcv
    6 Mar, 08:56 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Wow! The PIPE selling might be done as early as tomorrow. Fantastic news. Thx.
    6 Mar, 09:47 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    I've always thought of the inflection point as being a couple months to a few weeks away. It's really scary concluding that its hours or days. I sure hope my math and HTL's data are as good as I think they are.
    6 Mar, 09:56 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    In my mind I was thinking mid-March, best case. Nothing like big volume to speed that up a week or two.

     

    What a relief they should finally be done soon. I'm glad I decided to buy back in before they were out of shares. Although I built in some buffer time, I cut it much closer than planned!

     

    Although we've had a strong run this week, with the PIPE lid off, we may only be getting started.

     

    6 Mar, 10:13 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    MrI,

     

    That type of crazy talk was grounds for exile but a mere month ago. (actually, probably as recently as Tuesday)
    6 Mar, 10:31 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    Your instablog does allow room for PIPErs accounting for a somewhat lower percentage of shares sold by them than estimated for post-Jan trading. I tend to think non-PIPErs accounted for a larger % of shares sold in the past two weeks than in February.

     

    Your analysis points to PIPErs accounting for ~42% of shares sold between May and Oct, a time when some people (like myself) pared holdings due to expectations of further share price decline. For post-Jan. '14 your analysis suggests PIPErs accounted for ~47% of shares sold. It seems reasonable to infer that some Axion shareholders with costs bases < $.10/share have taken some quick profits on recent share price rises.

     

    With share prices rising on large volume, don't PIPErs have an incentive to change behavior a bit and sell in 'cruise' mode rather than "pedal to the metal" mode? They could revert to "pedal to the metal" at moment's notice if prices soften, but realize higher returns on remaining shares by easing back on the throttle.

     

    If PIPErs have no more senior notes to convert, does it make any difference whether they hold 1 million or 5 million shares? At 5 million shares they could dispose of 500k shares a day and be out of shares in 10 trading days.
    6 Mar, 11:11 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Since a 50% run in the stock price is enough to encourage some holders to flip their "trading blocks" I agree that there was probably some non-PIPEr sales over the last couple days. What I can't begin to estimate is the relative proportion of PIPEr selling and trading block sales. It *seems* to me that during the course of the day the price has run up and then been pushed down by about a penny or so, which would be a classic PIPEr tactic to keep other sellers away from the pay window, but I don't pay anywhere near as much attention as HTL and some others.

     

    My initial analysis of the likely PIPEr behavior was that they'd throttle way back once a low stock price wasn't going to get them any more shares. So far I haven't seen any evidence that they've acted the way I thought they would. After four years of overhang misery I don't think it makes a bit of difference whether the PIPErs run out of stock today or St. Patricks day. Green beer will flow in either event. I do think its critical to my education to pay very close attention.
    7 Mar, 05:32 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Isthis, true, lol. Things can change quickly in pennystockland.
    7 Mar, 07:10 AM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    MrI,

     

    You're right, at least for the weekend!
    7 Mar, 04:56 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    IsThis, I have no idea where we go day to day, but really like the three big changes: PIPEnd, heating up sector, and Kia's breakthru.

     

    OHRP had a strong day, too. I was hoping that one of these two stks would move before the other, so I could eventually roll into the remaining one before takeoff. Oh well, nice problem to have. Maybe I'll still get my chance.
    7 Mar, 05:07 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    MrI,

     

    I'd likely do similarly. I expect OHRP's liftoff to occur first but Kia could throw a wrinkle in my plans.
    7 Mar, 06:14 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    IsThis, well, I think the more unmatched the timing the better, but we only need a little difference in it for the roll setup to still work pretty well.
    7 Mar, 07:57 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    Very true, MrI. Exciting times for this board.
    7 Mar, 08:24 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    While I suspect we'll see more volatility without the dampening effect of the PIPErs' constant selling, I think it will be with an upward trajectory. How high we go, who knows? Even without news soon, I expect a retest of 30 cents, at a minimum. If TG & Co. can deliver some strong news, then much, much higher. The setup is coming together nicely. Give the sector players looking around for the next PLUG, FCEL, etc., a good reason to pile in, and that JP pendulum swings way the heck the other way in a heartbeat.
    7 Mar, 08:34 PM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    Can we coin "JP's Pendulum"? It should be an investment thesis used to describe companies undervalued by 10-fold or more.
    7 Mar, 08:42 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2105) | Send Message
     
    "The Petersen Pendulum" rolls better off the tongue.

     

    Murphy's Law. Schrodinger's cat. Petersen's Pendulum.

     

    All cardinal principles for investing.
    8 Mar, 12:35 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    I like it. Just don't abbreviate it!
    8 Mar, 01:30 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    I think there's way to much potential for off color innuendo to have people referring to Petersen's Pendulum.
    8 Mar, 07:40 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    Earlier today I mentioned memory of reading a U.S. Navy research lab report that gave energy density number for PbCs which I thought fell between the values given by Battery University for PbCs and LABs. The paper (written in 2009) can be retrieved from 1.usa.gov/vZ528s. On scanning the paper again today it is clear the effort was likely a survey of literature with little, if any, original physical research conducted in writing the paper.

     

    FWIW, in discussing PbCs on page 13 the paper gives the energy density of the device as 25Wh/kg before stating, "detailed specifications for power density and cycle life for the PbC battery system are not readily available."
    6 Mar, 10:16 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    I'm not entirely comfortable using the Rosewater energy density number because it's based on a one hour discharge rate instead of the 10 to 20 hour rates that are commonly used for flooded and AGM batteries. Since a fast discharge is less electro chemically efficient than a slow discharge, comparing a one hour rate to a 10 to 20 hour rate will accentuate the energy disadvantage and make it seem even worse than it is.
    6 Mar, 10:25 PM Reply Like
  • Masi
    , contributor
    Comments (422) | Send Message
     
    D-inv, aren't the PbC batteries that Axion produces now of much higher quality than in 2009 because of the automated carbon sheeting? Wouldn't that make that 5 year old study useless or is there no measurable difference from the older and the new batteries?
    6 Mar, 10:47 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    Masi, the automated carbon sheeting process may have improved PbC energy density a bit. However, IIRC Axion management has indicated they have the ability to 'tune' the PbC, choosing a bit more power or a bit more energy and that 'tuning' may be more important than the improved sheeting process (which should apply to 'tuning' tweak in either direction).

     

    Axion has released info on PbC energy density so we are working with inferences, Navy research lab paper or not.
    6 Mar, 11:22 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    "Axion has released info on PbC energy density so we are working with inferences, Navy research lab paper or not."

     

    Messed that one up. Intended it to read "Axion has released NO onfo on PbC energy density ...."
    7 Mar, 10:53 AM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (652) | Send Message
     
    D-inv, you must have missed your morning coffee to watch the price rise for Axion. :-)
    7 Mar, 10:59 AM Reply Like
  • isthisonebetter
    , contributor
    Comments (228) | Send Message
     
    D-inv,

     

    Thanks for posting this. Interesting read since I wasn't following this stock back then.
    6 Mar, 10:26 PM Reply Like
  • JamesBBecker
    , contributor
    Comments (172) | Send Message
     
    Looking at the BMW site tonight - where I'm looking to buy a car with my Axion winnings.......

     

    I found this under 3 series specifications:

     

    ==========

     

    Red lights, traffic jams, road works – in everyday driving situations there are many instances where the engine is idling, unnecessarily burning fuel. The Auto Start Stop function in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan – standard in all engine and gearbox combinations – switches off the engine when the vehicle stops temporarily and thus avoids unnecessary fuel consumption.

     

    The Auto Start Stop function in the new BMW 3 Series Sedan switches off the engine as soon as the vehicle is not moving and the driver disengages the clutch for manual gearboxes or operates the brake for automatic transmissions. However, intelligent electronics only deactivate the engine when no energy is needed by other loads and there is no adverse effect on your safety and travelling comfort.

     

    So, for example, the engine remains active until the optimum running temperature has been attained or until the interior climate has reached the desired range. Depending on the type of transmission in the vehicle, when the engine has been switched off by the Auto Start Stop function, either releasing the brake or engaging the clutch will cause it to start up again in a fraction of a second. The result is less fuel consumption and fewer emissions.

     

    ==============

     

    Of course, its just marketing material, but seems to indicate that they are implementing this feature without much battery upgrade, and just turning it off as the battery loses juice. Or - they are shipping this with some advanced battery technology other than Axion. Or maybe they put their own super-capacitor in there somewhere. Guesses - all guesses.
    6 Mar, 11:05 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    BMW launched its first generation stop-start technology in 2008 using AGM batteries and it didn't take them long to find out that dynamic charge acceptance was a major problem. By late 2010 they were deeply involved in testing the PbC and pleased enough with the results that they did a joint presentation with Axion at the ELBC in Istanbul.

     

    http://bit.ly/159EpWj

     

    The focus of BMW's work with Axion has always been a second generation stop-start technology that will be more aggressive in terms of turning the engine off at higher speed and recharging the battery when the engine has power to spare. AFIAK, BMW has not made any changes to their energy storage technology since 2008.
    7 Mar, 05:42 AM Reply Like
  • dance621
    , contributor
    Comments (163) | Send Message
     
    "Looking at the BMW site tonight - where I'm looking to buy a car with my Axion winnings."

     

    I wouldnt recommend a BMW. I hear their batteries are rubbish!
    7 Mar, 08:57 AM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    I think PbC could be perfect for BMW to differentiate itself as a premium brand and to regain the lost reputation due to battery problems in its past. Perhaps their car owners' battery problems was the embarrassment that motivated them to pursue Axion so early in the first place.

     

    If Kia and other hybrid OEMs start jumping on the carbon paste additive bandwagon, we know their cars will experience battery problems far sooner than PbC. Suppose you are BMW and only you and perhaps a few other premium brands use PbC. What better way to justify the high sticker price? You can point to the low priced competition and say their batteries will crap out on you in a few years and ours won't. Evidence of a better all around car that justifies the price.
    7 Mar, 09:22 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    RA, I've always been a bit confused over BMW and the PbC. A company that builds athletic "Ultimate Driving Machine"s for the well-off I would think would just suck it up and offer a presumably more expensive, li-ion solution, to save both weight and size.

     

    That they are still considering PbC says something, but I'm not sure what. Kia is saying, "“The development team selected lead-carbon batteries over lithium-ion equivalents as they require no active cooling, are more easily recyclable at the end of the vehicle’s life, and can function much more efficiently in sub-zero temperatures.”

     

    Maybe BMW is still just waiting to see how this evolves. Or, as has been mentioned here a lot, they like it but the support systems are not yet in place---battery supplier arrangements, final testing, etc. Or maybe they are but are in super double top secret stealth mode.

     

    Real head-scratcher to me.
    7 Mar, 10:05 AM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2105) | Send Message
     
    Mr. I,

     

    I am favoring the "super double top secret stealth mode."

     

    I have to say, in defense of BMW, that my 2013 x3 now has 15 months and 19K miles on it, and the ISS system still works perfectly when the ambient temp is above 3*C or 38*F, which is the algorithm's magic number for when to turn the system on. Although when I leased it used with 10K on it last July, the salesman acknowledged that many people turn the system off and ignore it because of the history of problems or their distaste for "feel" of the engine stopping and the microseconds of hesitation on restart.

     

    I am loving my little "baby space shuttle" (white with black undercarriage), Endeavorlita. Makes driving a real pleasure again. The dealer service is excellent (included in lease). I shall probably get another BMW after the lease is up. My 80 yo dad enjoyed driving it so much when he visited that he is considering trading his Lincoln for an x5. He has never before owned a "foreign" car for his own use, preferring the big roomy Crown Vic or Lincolns for comfort and weight.

     

    I would encourage anyone considering a Bimmer not to worry too much about the battery issues. I expect BMW will solve them soon. Go ahead and treat yourself to "The Ultimate Driving Machine." I always thought that slogan was hyperbole, but now can understand it. Gut pleasure to drive with its handling and amenities.
    7 Mar, 10:33 AM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    Mr I> Yes lithium saves weight and size and has more energy but its drawbacks are becoming increasingly clear and IMO looming ever larger compared to initial expectations that were set (hyped). I think PbC *is* the premium solution over lithium for stop/start (as well as gentle-push electric drive such as the new Kia). BTW I think Kia's "gentle push plus s/s hybrid" idea was brilliant and has a lot of merit.
    7 Mar, 10:37 AM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1212) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin
    Do you drive in the city? Stop and go traffic? How much does the Stop-start system get stressed? Thanks
    7 Mar, 10:42 AM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2105) | Send Message
     
    I do not go into Manhattan very often, but it seems to work just fine in city traffic. My driving in suburbia involves parkways and typical suburban sprawl stop and go on local roads. I live in the granite hills of upper Westchester Co, which makes for some great driving roads when traffic is sparse, both for motorcycling and for sports car fun.

     

    I have had no complaints at all with respect to the ISS system so far. The computer seems to manage it just fine. If AC is on high on a hot summer day, or heated seats and defrost are on, the system is disabled until the cabin temp is comfortable, then it comes back on.
    7 Mar, 10:50 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    SM, thx for the sharing ur experience.

     

    38 degrees. Wow, that's high. Here in Chicagoland, the system would have been off for almost the whole last 3 1/2 months. Granted, this is a particularly cold winter, but for a material percentage of the country, and probably other developed nations, like Korea and Germany, and oh, Sweden and Canada, the PbC's cold-weather superiority would be a decent advantage it seems.

     

    Yah hey der guten.
    7 Mar, 12:23 PM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie
    , contributor
    Comments (1823) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin, with all due respect, I think your expectations of your stop-start system are low.

     

    It sounds to me like you're praising the deactivation logic more than how the system actually functions when activated.

     

    The 'too hot, too cold, heat warmer, air conditioning' deactivation would have the stop-start system disabled at least half the time almost anywhere in the world. To me, that is a waste of the capital cost of the system.

     

    Imagine if you had a stop-start system that was actually robust, that functioned regardless of the weather or how the vehicle occupants are using climate controlling features.

     

    You could double the fuel-saving value of a stop-start system if it worked all the time.

     

    D
    7 Mar, 12:31 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2105) | Send Message
     
    D,

     

    No dispute there; the ideal ISS system would function in all weather situations. But for that, BMW must bite that bullet and adopt the best solution, from Axion.

     

    For now, their computer management of the AGM system they have has not been a "problem" for me. While the current ISS system is not high on the list of selling points for new Bimmers, as there is so much else to like about the vehicles, it has not been a negative point in my experience thus far. It is still working as it was designed to after 19K miles.
    7 Mar, 12:39 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin, So if SS was an option you would have bought it and been pleased with your expenditure? Ignore the sector interest aspect in your response.
    7 Mar, 01:01 PM Reply Like
  • SMaturin
    , contributor
    Comments (2105) | Send Message
     
    ii,

     

    I probably would not even have looked or test-driven a BMW if not for the sector interest and curiosity about the ISS system.

     

    I test drove a BMW wagon perhaps 15 years ago, and liked the feel of it, but could not justify the premium over Subaru wagons, that I drove for two decades.

     

    I am at a different stage in life now, and decided to stop being so spartan.

     

    Curiosity about the ISS systems got me to go peek at them in the dealership, but it was the test-drive experience and the vast difference from my then-dying Explorer SportTrac that sold me, not the presence of ISS. But if it were an option, I would have wanted to try it.
    7 Mar, 01:10 PM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    SMaturin, My impression as well. Great car with an irritating over priced feature that doesn't outweigh other aspects of the vehicle. Not optional but you can get it programmed not to function or keep pushing the button. But don't do it because it's educational in an area of interest. ;-I
    7 Mar, 01:38 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (17254) | Send Message
     
    MrI: IIRC, Li-ion has temp problems and can't charge as fast as PbC. Also requires collong systems, etc.

     

    Regardless, the DCA abaility may not be sufflicient to get the job done all around, including capturing braking enrgy.

     

    HardToLove
    7 Mar, 03:02 PM Reply Like
  • Patrick Young
    , contributor
    Comments (947) | Send Message
     
    A lot of people scooping "PowerCube"

     

    http://bit.ly/1e848mc

     

    http://bit.ly/1e84aKT

     

    http://bit.ly/1e84b19

     

    http://bit.ly/1e84b1b
    7 Mar, 12:26 AM Reply Like
  • User 393748
    , contributor
    Comments (216) | Send Message
     
    Occam's_Razor -->> So if I understand you correctly, there'd be little chance a Top-5 Asian Automaker (like, say, Hyundai/Kia) would dare take a chance with bringing a Lead/Carbon to market that uses "pastes" / "additives"...
    So this means a higher likelihood that it's Axion Inside?

     

    At this stage of the ongoing search for a battery, any battery, that will do what gasoline does, but without the environmental effects (a discussion for another time), as well as the price for a gallon or liter of gasoline, it is difficult to give a yes or no answer to your question.

     

    Presently, the term "lead/carbon" covers a very wide range of battery offerings, and the fact that the prospective buying public is not informed on this subject does not help the situation. The buyer hears an automaker enticing them with a "hybrid system" with a new lead/carbon battery and how it will offer them improved mileage, help the environment, and save them multi-dinaro, all at the same time, and the buyer does not know that all those promises may be true, but will all be broken within one year.

     

    The auto companies will be able to sell the public, or some portion thereof, on these promises. After a while, a small number of the buying public will begin to see through these false promises. Hopefully, that small number will grow to a critical mass. To get the automakers to provide a battery that will live up to the promises that the public is reasonably entitled to expect, it will take an informed consumer, or a class action law suit or a government pollution law or regulation that will leave the automakers no choice but to provide a battery (in whatever form) that does the job as advertised.

     

    So, to answer your question, I would have to say that the answer is - yes, they would take that chance, and they would do so for as long as they can. In fact, the automakers in Europe (BMW, Ford C-Max, et al) and the automakers in Canada and the US are taking that chance right now.

     

    Now, this is not to say that any automaker currently or prospectively going with a "lead/carbon" battery using additive or paste could do so for an unlimited amount of time. As soon as that Newtonian "opposing force" is activated with sufficient push, then the automakers will install the correct battery product. And, you know, when they do, they will advertise their new battery and inform the public on how it will offer them improved mileage, help the environment, and save them multi-dinaro, all at the same time. --""Its not like your old battery, its new and improved.""

     

    But allow me to add this: We know that BMW has been in testing et cetera with the AXPW battery, and that Ford within the last year or so was quoted as saying that they already knew about the AXPW battery, but that they did not go with
    it because the manufacturer (meaning Axion) was not able to manufacture large quantities of the PbC battery product. It seems to me that more than one automaker is watching BMW testing and working with the Axion PbC battery, and is simply letting BMW spend its millions of dollars on testing Axion's battery. I can imagine all the rest of the automakers waiting to see if BMW goes with the Axion PbC battery. My guess is that if BMW goes ahead with the PbC, then Ford, etc., will all say that if it is good enough for BMW, then it has to be good enough for the rest of us automakers.
    7 Mar, 01:16 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    Axion presumably is known by all the oems. BMW is mentioned most because they did a join presentation with Axion 4 years back. I wish it wasn't the case, but its almost certain that all oems will do their own testing and fleets tests (if things progress) regardless of what BMW does or doesn't do. The prevailing thought on this board is we would know about fleet testing before we get a design win. Thus the KIA news still seems far fetched (to me at least) even though it might make technical sense.
    7 Mar, 02:51 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3297) | Send Message
     
    To echo what some have said (MrI and a few others IIRC) I think what Kia is doing might prove to be of huge significance, even if the first versions of their cars with this new architecture go out the door with carbon-paste batteries or UB and not PbC... what they've done is made the huge cognitive leap from Li-ion to Lead-Carbon. They've lowered the thought barrier to Lead-Carbon and put it on the public radar. It has now taken a huge step towards legitimization. And if the actual vehicle turns out to be a success, it will really pave the road for further mfgrs and vehicle lines to go the Lead-Carbon route vs Li-ion.

     

    I think one thing that shouldn't be discounted is the temperature tolerance of lead-carbon including the PbC vs Li-ion. Think about Kia's implementation with the battery in the rear. Having to add a separate heating/cooling system for the battery would be a real PITA there. And this car will lean heavily on the 48v battery. It's gotta work right in the winter. Especially cold winter mornings. I know lots of people use block heaters for normal cars, but ISTM having an expensive vulnerable Li-ion battery pack onboard ups the stakes considerably. I think if you left one out in 5-10F weather overnight without one and then tried in the morning to get going, you're going to experience a pretty significant impact on driving performance and probably risk damage to the battery, unless and until it's warmed up properly. Major PITA.

     

    Likewise some difficulties in very hot weather. I mean, leave a car parked in the summer sun in most areas of the west, south, and southwest and without some kind of active cooling, that battery could be hanging out at 100+ F all day long... DoublePlusUnGood for Li-ion life.

     

    For this reason alone lead-carbon has to command some consideration. And once a decent company like Kia breaks the paradigm and leads the way, PbC has got to come into serious contention, even if it is the case that initially Kia goes with some lesser flavor of Lead-Carbon..
    7 Mar, 02:10 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1212) | Send Message
     
    "what they've done is made the huge cognitive leap from Li-ion to Lead-Carbon. They've lowered the thought barrier to Lead-Carbon and put it on the public radar. It has now taken a huge step towards legitimization. "

     

    Yes, exactly!
    7 Mar, 02:18 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Well put, 48. Watershed moment, seems to me.

     

    Among a lot of things, I'd really like to know what Kia's 'shot across the bow' does to the other automakers' plans. I've seen'em act like sheep many, many times before.
    7 Mar, 02:58 PM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    481> Absolutely, extreme temp performance is a huge benefit, or more properly, the inability of Lithium-ion to perform well at extremes, with the added risk of damaging the wildly expensive pack or even creating a fire, is a huge shortcoming.

     

    Kudos to us Axionistas for figuring this out long before the pack. Even greater kudos to Axion itself for having the vision back in 2003.
    7 Mar, 03:25 PM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    Speaking of dominos, many other industries behave that way, too. Utilities, being a biggie. One of the cornerstones of the portfolio (lol, at first I typed, "potfolio"; feel free to use that one for your cannabis investments) I managed way back when was debt and equity issued to finance nuclear plant construction. Once a few utilities bought into the concept, a lot quickly followed.

     

    Prob same for rail and trucks, I'm guessing. Get a first adopter or two and roll from there.
    8 Mar, 01:44 AM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    Digesting the recent concentrators and links, I'm inclined to think that the chances of "Axion Inside" the Kia are low. However it's still a win of sorts as Kia is the first auto OEM to eschew Li-ion for "lead-carbon".

     

    This win could have been the impetus for the pps and volume surge the last 2 days. Industry attention to lead. The auto show and Kia unveiling was on March 5th and that's when the stock took off. I think there's a connection.

     

    We know PbC is superior to enhanced carbon LAB, but the price is steep for OEMs to swallow. Too bad those coconuts are so darned expensive! (Must be the union power of the monkees hired to pick them.)

     

    PbC's day in the sun will come though.
    7 Mar, 03:55 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    After taking a hard look at what KIA showed in Geneva, I think the only real conclusion is we know they're going to use a lead-carbon device and we don't have any idea who's device they'll use. I think KIA played a very smart game of identifying a generic advanced battery technology while retaining the right to defer their supplier decision to a later date and negotiate with brass knuckles.

     

    For first generation micro-hybrids, the automakers made very modest fuel efficiency claims and knew their warranty claim exposure would be modest if the batteries lost DCA and the systems stopped working properly. Most consumers simply didn't care enough about a 3% to 5% fuel savings to go through the hassle of scheduling service for a low value system that didn't impact their ability to go from point A to point B.

     

    With second generation micro-hybrids like the new KIA system, DCA is going to be a much bigger issue because the hotel loads are higher and the battery will be critical to vehicle performance because it runs the electric supercharger. I may not complain if my engine doesn't turn off at a stop light, but I'll certainly complain if my supercharger isn't working properly.

     

    There won't be any *news* until KIA is ready to start selling cars with the new technology, but I do believe the PbC is the only sensible lead-carbon choice for this application.
    7 Mar, 05:59 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    JP,

     

    If an advanced lead battery hasn't been chosen/finalized then why did KIA even give a hat tip to the ALABC by using their "LC" logo in the display?

     

    Why not just keep the display generic unless it was giving credit to the LC Super Hybrid as inspiration for this new KIA system which were told could show up as early as 2015 (according to some sites).
    7 Mar, 06:16 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    From what I understand KIA has to do something to bring its emissions within regulatory limits. By using the LC logo they get to be the first automaker to claim implementation of a spiffy new lead-carbon battery technology and do so without locking themselves into a particular battery within the lead-carbon class. I won't be at all surprised to see them launch with carbon additives because that's the cheap thing to do. Ultimately I think they'll be forced to upgrade to the PbC because their mechanical systems won't work right with anything less.
    7 Mar, 07:31 AM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    bazooka> Maybe Kia knew that unveiling with a type of battery technology that's never been used before would bring the rollout a lot more attention and curiosity and thus sell more cars.

     

    Also by not naming a battery supplier and presumably not even informing their chosen supplier, the implication of this news that they in fact will be buying huge numbers of "lead-carbon" batteries could get battery makers salivating and trying to figure out just how low a margin is acceptable.

     

    So instead of Kia going to the chosen supplier and telling them "We're gonna use your battery" they get all the suppliers wondering and coming to Kia with their rock bottom bids. It's like the game the pretty girl plays to manipulate her suitors to get wined and dined.
    7 Mar, 09:38 AM Reply Like
  • Edmund Metcalfe
    , contributor
    Comments (1462) | Send Message
     
    That's not all she's after.
    7 Mar, 08:36 PM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4605) | Send Message
     
    Question...

     

    IMO the fast discharge of the PbC has limited it's adoption as JP mentioned earlier compared to the molten battery 10-20 hour test vs. PbC 2 hour test. I have had thoughts that this is one reason you don't see published specs on the PbC. It could allow the competition to launch a negative publicity campaign.

     

    So my question is: Many tests are on one battery, so if you take the Exide spiral battery or UB and wire 3 batteries to make it 48 V system, would these additional batteries "improve" these inferior batteries enough to compete ?
    Or would the comparison to PbC still be the same as a one battery test?

     

    The difference in price is a huge thing to the OEM's.
    7 Mar, 06:10 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Whenever you wire several batteries together in series the weakest cell in the string is the one that dictates system performance. Unlike all other batteries, PbC cells tend to self-equalize which supports the weaker cells and makes the string perform better. In general, a chain of 3 batteries or for that matter 56 batteries will perform worse than a single battery, not better, unless you're talking about a string of PbCs.
    7 Mar, 07:35 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (4605) | Send Message
     
    Do the "carbon paste additives" not self equalize at all ?

     

    Considering hypothetically....that there are no weak cells, does the extra batteries and voltage improve the UB or spiral wounds performance?

     

    I'm not nit picking, but I don't know the answers.
    7 Mar, 08:02 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Carbon pastes don't self-equalize because the electrodes are primarily lead and whenever you have both lead and carbon on a negative electrode the lead charges and discharges before the carbon. The specifics of the chemistry are out of my depth, but AFAIK the PbC is the only battery available that has a "concave down increasing" charging profile that tends to support the weaker links in the chain.
    7 Mar, 08:31 AM Reply Like
  • KCtwo
    , contributor
    Comments (12) | Send Message
     
    "Self-equalizing" implies that energy is somehow transferred to (or away during charging) the low capacity cell from the surrounding cell(s) to correct the cell imbalance. How exactly does this energy transfer happen absent an external electronic circuit? (A.K.A. a BMS)
    8 Mar, 02:46 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    The PbC does not require active battery management because of the unique nature of the cells. While we use the generic term battery in conversation, the PbC is technically an "asymmetric lead-carbon capacitor" that offers the energy storage of a battery and the power and cycleability of a capacitor in a single hybrid cell.

     

    A recent paper from Axion and Norfolk Southern described the self-equalization as follows:

     

    "When PbC® batteries start out at different states of charge, the batteries that are at a lower SOC get charged up faster, while those that are at higher SOC get charged more slowly, allowing the lower SOC battery to catch up, thus self-equalizing a string. This self-equalizing quality of the technology allows greater usable energy compared to lead–acid batteries and can eliminate the active balancing of battery cells in series."

     

    AFAIK the PbC is the only battery chemistry and architecture that behaves like this. All others require active cell by cell management.
    8 Mar, 06:00 AM Reply Like
  • carlosgaviria
    , contributor
    Comments (783) | Send Message
     
    Buenos dias!!

     

    "When PbC® batteries start out at different states of charge, the batteries that are at a lower SOC get charged up faster, while those that are at higher SOC get charged more slowly, allowing the lower SOC battery to catch up, thus self-equalizing a string. This self-equalizing quality of the technology allows greater usable energy compared to lead–acid batteries and can eliminate the active balancing of battery cells in series."

     

    AXION POWER PbC® batteries are a unique and unparalleled phenomenon.

     

    Saludos from Colombia-Carlos.
    8 Mar, 07:35 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    At this year's stockholders meeting Tom Granville said they were working with two multi-national battery manufacturers who had expressed an interest in using the PbC technology. He said one was customer driven (presumably a BMW supplier) and one was acting on its own initiative. As the first step, Axion shipped carbon electrode assemblies to both manufacturers who then built PbC's in their own plants using Axion electrodes as components. Both were apparently able to make batteries that performed just as well as Axion's, which is exactly what we wanted when we started down this path.

     

    It is entirely possible that the manufacturer that contacted Axion on its own initiative had an important customer (KIA?) who said "We want this technology for our cars but we want you to make our batteries," which is apparently the approach BMW is taking. That possibility goes a long way toward explaining why a second manufacturer might want to approach Axion in the first place.

     

    FWIW, one of the guys who attended the meeting noticed a VARTA brand battery in the test lab, although I don't remember whether it was hooked up to anything or simply sitting there.
    7 Mar, 06:22 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    In a recent conf call, TG said Axion wasn't including any sales to auto for a year or so, which means late 2014. That would dovetail nicely with gen 2 micro hybrid coming out next year, e.g., Kia.
    7 Mar, 08:09 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    Who knows? I feel more comfortable assuming that KIA will do it cheap before they decide to pay up and do it right.

     

    At the ELBC in Paris I had a fascinating conversation with one of Ford's top battery researchers. He knew the PbC well and freely admitted that it would offer far better micro-hybrid performance than the conventional flooded and AGM batteries Ford was using and planning to use. He explained that the business decision involved a weighing of potential warranty costs against the costs of an across the board upgrade. Since the anticipated cost of warranty claims on conventional batteries was less than the cost of an across the board upgrade, they were going to use the cheaper solution instead of the better solution.

     

    When we get into second generation micro-hybrids that put more demands on the batteries and add things like electric superchargers that increase the battery strain and directly impact the driving experience, I think the warranty cost vs upgrade cost equation will change significantly, but not before the automakers at least try to get by with the cheaper option.
    7 Mar, 08:39 AM Reply Like
  • JamesBBecker
    , contributor
    Comments (172) | Send Message
     
    It seems that automakers announce major product upgrades about 9 mo in advance of launch. IE. Ford says they are shipping an all-aluminum pickup truck in the fall.

     

    Kia hasn't really announced a real solution, they've just announced a concept - albeit a fully developed one. That means they are more than 9 mo from shipping, so a launch date of spring of 2015 - or fall of 2015.

     

    If that is the date of the launch of the actual product, they will announce and start ordering supplies fall of 2014. That's when the real announcement happens. We will have to wait until then. It would be nice if the announcement happens before the next capital raise.
    7 Mar, 08:55 AM Reply Like
  • Mr Investor
    , contributor
    Comments (2476) | Send Message
     
    I know none of us know. I still guess no PbC for v1 for Kia, but that they'll come to us eventually.

     

    The biggest value for AXPW, I think, is that the PbC is back on the table for auto. My strong sense was that the auto portion of the stk price was almost down to zero. Not anymore.
    7 Mar, 08:58 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4421) | Send Message
     
    >JamesBBecker ... If (& that is a really BIG "IF") Axion were to be involved we would see some sort of manufacturing capex this summer. Why? Because it will take about 12 to18 months for the setup to happen. There will be no surprises just popping out of the blue with one exception, a manufacturing partnership agreement. Auto makers want and need scale larger than their demand and presently Axion couldn't support Yugo or Saturn production needs.
    7 Mar, 09:03 AM Reply Like
  • Ranma
    , contributor
    Comments (1401) | Send Message
     
    Can the PbC be sold cheaper than 350? Did we account for the full labor savings? I don't understand how a carbon paste additive battery could be *that* much cheaper.

     

    I know you say the first deal could serve as a template for future deals, but a big first design win could still pay dividends by helping raise money. Could make some sense to have a short term cheaper pricing deal, shrouded by an NDA that cuts both ways.

     

    On the other hand, if Kia wants a battery partner, maybe the battery partner will be forced to absorb the bulk of the cost cuts, while Axion keeps the electrode margin or licensing fee. That would help Axion grow still.
    7 Mar, 09:42 AM Reply Like
  • Retired Aviator
    , contributor
    Comments (1446) | Send Message
     
    Ranma> Potential fly in the ointment of pursuing short term cheaper deals is the Robinson-Patman Act which says a business has to sell for the same price to customers of the same status or class. You can't pick favorites in pricing, though you can offer equal volume discounts to all, etc.
    7 Mar, 09:59 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    DR ... You may be hitting the target bulls eye on need for manufacturing capex, but ISTM it is possible Axion already has all the capacity it would need to support production of enough C electrodes for upwards of 6,000 12V PbCs per month.
    7 Mar, 10:43 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4421) | Send Message
     
    >D-inv ... True, Axion has the ability to produce enough electrodes to support a single auto model line but the supposition that it would fails for several reasons. First, the sole source issue raised by BMW. Second, margin forced upon the automaker would be prohibitive unless the model line was a premium one where customer MSRP was immaterial. Third, it would constrain Axion to a single industry ... no room to supply PowerCubes, APU's, the rails, even ePower and others if, God forbid, one of them actually put in a PO.

     

    All flexibility would be tied-up and margin profit fixed at a rate most likely lower than is desired by management and certainly by shareholders.

     

    As-is it ain't happening.
    7 Mar, 10:56 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    MR.I ... To me, TG's statement re- not including any auto sales was just another way of saying "business as usual folks, no change in relationships with auto OEMs to date."
    7 Mar, 11:06 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    Ranma ... I'm confident the PbC can be sold cheaper than $350, but necessarily by Axion. We probably need to keep Axion's business plan in mind -- produce electrodes for large scale battery OEMs that have efficient production lines. Also, PbC prices we have some price points on are for 30H and 30HT battery sizes. Auto batteries are a bit smaller IINM.
    7 Mar, 11:11 AM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    Geez again! "necessarily by Axion" should read "NOT necessarily by Axion."
    7 Mar, 11:24 AM Reply Like
  • RBrun357
    , contributor
    Comments (781) | Send Message
     
    D-inv,

     

    Time for another cup of coffee! ;-))
    7 Mar, 11:29 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    ePower is paying about $350 for PbC batteries in a "Group 30H" case for heavy duty vehicles that measures 13.92 X 6.75 x 9.95 (934 cubic inches).

     

    A "Group 27" case, which is the biggest available for automotive, measures 12.05 x 6.84 x 9.32 (768 cubic inches).

     

    Since battery costs are primarily related to the volume of materials you can put into the case, I'd speculate that Axion could sell an automotive size PbC battery for somewhere in the $275 range before future for learning curve effects and economies of scale. By the time we get to big time battery manufacturing in high efficiency plants, I think the cost will probably fall to under $200.
    7 Mar, 12:26 PM Reply Like
  • D Lane
    , contributor
    Comments (1212) | Send Message
     
    JP, Thanks for the numbers
    7 Mar, 12:40 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (2323) | Send Message
     
    JP,

     

    If that means the KIA system would need about $1100 of PbC batteries how does that compare to what they would pay for AGM w/paste? Do you think they save 50% by going with the far inferior battery?
    7 Mar, 06:01 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    DR ... a bit of follow up with a question for iinde perhaps.

     

    A lot of early APC discussion addressed PbC battery production capacity in wake of robotic electrode assembly line installation. IIRC, 300 - 325 PbCs per day was mentioned by TG and accepted in APC discussions BEFORE development of the automated carbon sheeting process. That production rate would yield 6,000 - 6,500 12V PbCs monthly (72K - 78K annually) or 18k - 19.5K PbC 4-packs.

     

    Somewhere in the APC discussion stream I gathered the impression 300 - 325 PbCs per day was likely constrained by batch carbon sheeting production capacity. If that perceived constraint was reality, the automated carbon sheeting production line relieved it and present production capacity would be constrained by either a much higher carbon sheeting production constraint, robotic electrode assembly line constraint or AGM assembly line capacity. Bottom line here is I strongly suspect current Axion output capacity exceeds 300 PbCs/day by a wide margin.

     

    Is it plausible an auto OEM would introduce PbCs into multiple models in the same year or into a single model with strong expectation of high volume in the first six months? Somehow I think not. Introduction of PbCs in a model in a defined geographical market area with expected first year sales volume of less than 10k vehicles strikes me as more likely.

     

    If one assumes 1st year sales volume of 10k is expected in a limited geographical area and sales exceed expectations, the OEM might want to seize opportunity and expand marketing area for the product. How much supplier reserve capacity (or supplier inventory) would the auto OEM insist on to assure availability of supply in event of 1) temporary production disruption and 2) stronger than expected demand for their end product?

     

    Aren't profit margins per unit typically a function of sales volume. Won't auto OEMs expect to pay parts suppliers more per unit for 5k units than for 20k units? Are auto OEMs unwilling to accept inventoried parts as alternative excess production capacity to buffer potential supply disruptions and serve as a bridge to capacity expansion if that need arises? Couldn't "sole source" supplier concerns be addressed by contingent electrode licensing or joint production agreements with one or more alternative suppliers (probably battery manufacturers)?
    7 Mar, 10:24 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv
    , contributor
    Comments (3886) | Send Message
     
    "ePower is paying about $350 for PbC batteries in a "Group 30H" case for heavy duty vehicles that measures 13.92 X 6.75 x 9.95 (934 cubic inches).

     

    A "Group 27" case, which is the biggest available for automotive, measures 12.05 x 6.84 x 9.32 (768 cubic inches). "

     

    Since battery size "L5" has been mentioned in the past as a size used in European autos and Vani Dantam displayed an "L5" sized PbC in MultiLink's exhibit at the cable industry's Atlanta conference last Fall, I tried to research that size a bit. "L5" is apparently some sort of container designator or family group name as Bosch markets at least six differently sized 12V batteries as "L5"s and one source labeled a 36V battery as an EN L5.

     

    Exide markets a "BCI Group Size L5/49", 90 Ah auto battery which has dimensions of 13.88" x 6.88" x 7.55" (721 cu.in.) and weighs 59.8 lbs. Working from Petersen's estimates, the battery's 721 cu.in. volume is 6.1% smaller than a "Group 27" case case suggesting a price in vicinity of $258 without full benefit of learning curve effects and economies of scale. The Exide battery can be purchased at http://bit.ly/1ciLUTL for $243 with "free shipping."
    8 Mar, 12:36 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (29446) | Send Message
     
    It's important to understand the nature of the electrode fabrication process and how that has evolved over time. The two major phases are (1) carbon sheet preparation, and (2) laminated electrode assembly fabrication.

     

    The first and second generation automated assembly lines were built for the second phase – laminating corrosion barriers on both sides of the current collector, sealing the edges to prevent acid intrusion, laminating carbon sheets to the outside of the corrosion barriers and preparing connection tabs on the finished parts. It's basically a pick and place process where a series of 10 or 15 robots each perform a single function and the capacity of a line is constrained by the amount of "dwell time" at each robotic work station. In general, pick and place lines don't offer much opportunity for faster throughput and the best way to increase production is to keep adding new lines at a cost of $2 to $3 million each figuring that each line will make enough electrodes for 120 to 150 batteries per shift.

     

    The tougher engineering challenge was the first phase, making the carbon electrode sheets that serve as electrode surfaces from finely ground carbon powder that starts with the consistency of flour. The sheets need good structural integrity so they don't turn mushy or fall apart over time, they need good permeability so that the electrolyte can access as much of the carbon surface as possible, and they have to be good conductors with low internal resistance.

     

    The first generation sheeting process was very labor intensive and similar to a french bakery. Carbon powder was mixed with a binder and the resulting dough was passed through pizza dough rolling machines. Since the binder tends to stretch and create fibers as it's manipulated, each pass through the rolling machine created more fibers to hold the carbon particles together, improve structural integrity, improve conductivity and reduce internal resistance. It was an iterative process where the dough was rolled out, folded over, run back through the rollers, folded over and run back through the rollers again. The roll and fold sequence had to be repeated about 40 times before the electrode sheet was suitable for use in the automated pick and place electrode fabrication line.

     

    The second generation sheeting process that was commissioned last spring does it all in a single step. The carbon particles and binder are mixed in a jet mill until the dough is the right consistency and then it's passed through the roller sequence once. The first sheeting line has enough capacity to support four pick and place electrode fabrication lines and replaces 40 of the first generation rolling machine work stations. While I don't know for sure and Axion isn't talking, my guess is that the sheeting process is scalable within a relevant range and it would be relatively simple to build a sheeting system that could support 10 or even 20 pick and place lines.

     

    Shifting gears, the Battery Council International is an industry organization that establishes standards for lead-acid batteries including case size and dimensions. The variety of shapes and sizes is really quite amazing as you can see in this summary list – http://bit.ly/rXeP68

     

    A similar list of standard case sizes exists in Europe.

     

    Because of the way PbC electrodes are made, using a straight volumetric conversion will probably lead to moderately inaccurate conclusions because the lead-cost will vary proportionally with case size but the PbC electrode cost depends more on the number of carbon electrode assemblies per cell. While material costs are important, it doesn't cost much more to make a 6x7 carbon electrode assembly than it does to make a 5x6 assembly.

     

    In a conventional lead-acid battery, the number of negative electrodes in a cell is equal to the number of positive electrodes in a cell (usually between 4 and 6 of each). In a PbC cell, there will always be one more positive electrode than there are negative electrodes.
    8 Mar, 07:06 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    D-inv. Here is the best article I've see on the CPT electric supper charger and the platform it's intended to service. I think you can garner from this article how the industry will potentially ramp this tech. It's primarily intended for the higher volume main stream segments not niche markets. But there are clues embedded in this article on how it kinda is intended to ramp and the time frame. I know the article has been posted before and it's why I indicated I was watching the tier 1 supplier news for clues on timing and opportunities.

     

    Fuel-Economy Squeeze Drawing OEs to Valeo’s Electric Supercharger

     

    http://bit.ly/WN7mSq
    8 Mar, 07:39 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco
    , contributor
    Comments (8767) | Send Message
     
    John, FYI, The industrial term for the type of transfer system Axion is using for the process you describe in manufacturing the carbon electrodes is a "Power and Free Transfer System". Individual work stations can be of just about any type but the base transfer consists of a powered belt or chain of some sort that moves free floating pallets along that are moved to various work stations and stopped by "pallet stops" that then release the pallet after work is completed. Pallets are sent on a loop from beginning to end of process and then returned empty via a return conveyor to the starting point. This differs from a "Synchronous Transfer System" where all stations must release and index at the same time.
    8 Mar, 07:59 AM Reply Like