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  • Axion Power Concentrator 126: July 12, 2012 231 comments
    Jul 12, 2012 4:08 PM | about stocks: AXPW

    These instablogs and the people who maintain them have no relationship whatsoever to Axion Power International. To our direct knowledge no person with a current relationship to Axion Power International other than being a shareholder participates in these instablogs.

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    HTL's New Chart Tracking Insta from July 7th

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    Axion Power's Weighted Moving Average Price and Volume:

    Today's price and volume graph includes a new "support line" for trading volume that I think may prove to be important. Volume fell off a cliff after the Q-2 and Q-3 conference calls last year and only peaked near year end because of relentless selling. Once the selling stopped, volume continued to recover until the February direct registered offering spooked a lot of people and volume fell off for a second time.

    It looks like we may be seeing a reversal of the pessimism with this latest bounce off the long term volume support levels. There certainly seems to be an improvement in the mood on the Concentrators over the last few days as people begin to realize that many Axionistas are sitting on their hands, but lurkers and other strangers that we don't know about are not sitting on theirs.

    (updated through July 7th)

    (click to enlarge)

    Axion Power Concentrator Comments:

    (updated through July 7th)

    (click to enlarge)

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    Links to valuable Axion Power research and websites:

    The Axion Power Concentrator Web Sites created by APC commentator Bangwhiz it is a complete easy-to-use online archive of all the information contained in the entire Axion Power Concentrator series from day one; including reports, articles, comments and posted links.

    Axion Power Wikispaces Web Site, created by APC commentator WDD. It is an excellent ongoing notebook aggregation of Axion Power facts.

    Axion Power Website, the first place any prospective investor should go and thoroughly explore with all SEC filings and investor presentations as well as past and present Press Releases.

    Axion Power Chart Tracking, HTL tracks AXPW's intra-day charting.

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    Be sure and either follow the Axion Power Host ID on Seeking Alpha or click the check-box labeled "track new comments on this article" just ahead of the comments section!

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    WARNING: This is a troll free zone. We reserve the right to eliminate posts, or posters that are disruptive.

    Enjoy!

    Disclosure: I am long OTCQB:AXPW.

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Comments (231)
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  • A lead in with thanks to the APH for the attention paid to managing this form for all of our sakes.
    _

     

    There have been a couple of European companies proposing this architecture for some time. Never took off. I suspect all that weight in the wheel might have something to do with it. Also perhaps that it gives up too much content to the supplier. Anyway, more engineering to the Chinese for nuttin.

     

    UK-developed wheel motor system wins $84m of funding to enter production in China

     

    http://bit.ly/OeR5ky
    12 Jul 2012, 05:37 PM Reply Like
  • A weird technology...and a lying/misleading press release.

     

    "promise fuel economy improvements up to 30%" I don't understand. All electric motors are over 90% efficient; you can't make the motor 120% or even 117% efficient.

     

    Auto engineering for decades has been toward lighter wheels for better suspension response.
    12 Jul 2012, 05:54 PM Reply Like
  • "Auto engineering for decades has been toward lighter wheels for better suspension response."

     

    Rick, Understood.

     

    Maybe if they are comparing electric drive through a transmission and a 90 degree gearbox for RWD? And they are considering mass reduction associated with some old hardware set? That might get them a little closer to a white lie.
    12 Jul 2012, 06:01 PM Reply Like
  • Rick: I see how they weasel the words: "They provide regenerative braking, allowing up to 85% of the available kinetic energy to be recovered during braking ...".

     

    If they compare to a setup with no re-gen, great gains are possible.

     

    Also, I presume that different conditions would allow fewer or more wheels to be powered, depending on circumstances - another few percent.

     

    Power loses during heavy maneuvering can be substantial - power each wheel appropriately for the turn being executed - another few percent, ... you see where I'm going. There are some real gains possible and then the gains by comparing apples to oranges.

     

    Iindelco- thanks for the link - has more detail than an earlier article DRich discovered and linked in my UQM insta - I'm going to steal your and add it over there.

     

    HardToLove
    12 Jul 2012, 06:55 PM Reply Like
  • John, "This Bud's for You"

     

    The tease: "... In addition to setting a new lap time record, the KleenSpeed EV-X11 took first place in the Open Prototype class, beating a Tesla Model S Prototype and other vehicles. ...".

     

    And the "meat on the table": http://bit.ly/NbC7Ro

     

    HardToLove
    12 Jul 2012, 05:44 PM Reply Like
  • Tesla brain teaser.

     

    http://onforb.es/MnjlCi
    12 Jul 2012, 05:55 PM Reply Like
  • Wow, the garbage that gets published in Forbes...

     

    A good example of why the mainstream media has lost the trust of the thinking public.

     

    D
    13 Jul 2012, 09:18 AM Reply Like
  • Well we have to realize it is a contributor piece. But if their vetting process is no better than this it makes you wonder about the balance.
    13 Jul 2012, 09:42 AM Reply Like
  • China waking up to the reality of vehicle electrification. For a number of years their policy was not supportive of anything other than EV's. Now we see;

     

    "The central government's plan calls for producing 500,000 electrical and hybrid cars by 2015, with output of both types of vehicles slated to grow to 2 million units by 2020, the Chinese government website said."

     

    http://bit.ly/NsTbNE
    12 Jul 2012, 08:55 PM Reply Like
  • You know we haven't heard from Kirk in awhile. I miss his RAKs (Random Acts of Knowledge) ...
    12 Jul 2012, 10:21 PM Reply Like
  • I fear we (guilty myself) may have drawn KT a bit further out over his skis on occasion than may have been prudent. The RAKs are/were sure appreciated, but I recall he remarked at least once how he hated getting those certain kinds of phonecalls that would sometimes result...
    12 Jul 2012, 10:32 PM Reply Like
  • Potentially invigorating tidbit from http://bit.ly/Mo1qLA

     

    "...SEPTA recently received a $1.44 million grant from the Federal Transit Administration (FTA) to install a second storage device at the Griscom Substation in Northeast Philadelphia. The FTA grant will also be used to test the viability of an alternative battery technology to determine the best fit for SEPTA's propulsion system."
    12 Jul 2012, 10:48 PM Reply Like
  • Interesting. The press release on the $1.4 million by the local Rep says that the money will be used to purchase more buses? Not what this article says. Someone got their facts wrong.

     

    http://prn.to/M66vvo
    12 Jul 2012, 11:29 PM Reply Like
  • I think if you go to the link embedded in the first article posted it's clearer.

     

    http://bit.ly/M6aacE

     

    I suspect your release is a dyslexic compilation of the facts. Hope I'm right. :)
    13 Jul 2012, 12:06 AM Reply Like
  • Think I will explore getting some info from the Federal Transit Authority.
    13 Jul 2012, 12:34 AM Reply Like
  • Hopeful on Fort Meade and this. Thanks D-inv for link.
    13 Jul 2012, 12:51 AM Reply Like
  • notice it's "alternative battery technology", not alternate manufacturer's battery, nor competitor's battery, nor alternate Li-ion chemistry... it's certainly too easy to want to believe we see the likelihood of "PbC" somewhere in between the lines, but at least nothing in there seems to preclude it (yet).. so, like DR, I've got my little talons crossed: "maybe this time.. just maybe." ;)
    13 Jul 2012, 01:03 AM Reply Like
  • It would not be good for the Viridity/SAFT relationship - so was thinking it may be different SAFT battery.
    13 Jul 2012, 04:57 AM Reply Like
  • I would really enjoy seeing a side by side test of a PbC system against a Li-ion system ...
    13 Jul 2012, 09:40 AM Reply Like
  • IINDelco,
    Actually, I did read the link. However, if you go to the bottom of it, you will find the press releases by the US Senator and US Rep on the funding. The press release by US Rep Chaka Fattah is the one I linked above where it is indicated that the money is for buses. So either the Rep is wrong or the article writer is wrong, but someone's got their facts wrong.
    13 Jul 2012, 09:46 AM Reply Like
  • LT, looks to me as though the Rep's PR is wrong. The Senator's PR references two grant components - $5 million for buses, $1.44 million.
    <
    SEPTA was also awarded a $1.44 million grant for energy storage devices on the Market-Frankford Line through the Department of Transportation’s Transit Investments for Greenhouse Gas and Energy Reduction (TIGGER) Program,
    <

     

    My original comment on the matter referenced and quoted a page on SEPTA's web site.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:16 AM Reply Like
  • "Think I will explore getting info from the Federal Transit Authority."

     

    FOIA submitted. Have only been able to confirm today that $1.44 million grant was definitely awarded for "Wayside Energy Storage" project and covered less than total cost.
    13 Jul 2012, 04:08 PM Reply Like
  • Lol, I submitted one right after you posted the article ...
    13 Jul 2012, 04:10 PM Reply Like
  • Metro, my sense of the chain of events here is that initiative for the second energy recovery system and federal funding was SEPTA's (and maybe Viridity Energy's or Axion Power or ... behind the curtain). But the cost of Li-ion battery packs, ongoing energy requirements for thermal and battery management, and possible charge acceptance limitations give plenty of incentive to explore other prospective battery solutions. I say possible charge acceptance limitations simply because I know mobile phone and laptop computer batteries don't tolerate too rapid charge rates well. The Philly Inquirer's article on the first "Wayside Energy Storage" project suggested that brakes on a six-car train "produce about 3 million watts of power during the 15 seconds it takes" to stop a transit train. That strikes little ol' me as a bunch of power to capture in a short window.
    13 Jul 2012, 04:42 PM Reply Like
  • Any of you Pennsylvania guys willing to drop a friendly line to your Congress-Critters?

     

    Not sure if the company would appreciate that or not ...

     

    Thoughts?

     

    We certainly don't want them making "scientific/economic" decisions or applying unwarranted pressure, but having them "encourage" of fair opportunities to compte/make a case seems appropriate.

     

    Although for all we know Viridity and AXPW might not be on the same page in this particular case/application ... who knows?
    13 Jul 2012, 07:52 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv ... I've got my fingers crossed.
    12 Jul 2012, 10:54 PM Reply Like
  • For any of you Kandi fans.

     

    China to build largest electric car and smart grid deployment ever in Hangzhou

     

    http://bit.ly/LNnrsy
    13 Jul 2012, 12:24 AM Reply Like
  • Paul posted an article about this a couple concentrators ago, but he must have deleted it afterwards. My comment, at the time, is that the electric company is going to pay for the charging stations and the batteries and pass the cost along to all their customers, which they should just be "thrilled" about. It would be interesting to find out how much the average electric customer's rates go up each month to pay for this project.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:04 AM Reply Like
  • Iiindelco, I am, and thanks for that! I love the Kandi concept and would get one of the 45mph top speed vehicles if they were available here...
    13 Jul 2012, 03:50 PM Reply Like
  • The one that looks like a really fun toy is the Renault Twizzy.

     

    It's low speed and two passengers, but borders on sensible.

     

    http://bit.ly/MrQUCi
    13 Jul 2012, 05:16 PM Reply Like
  • All, I'm a big fan of "neighborhood vehicles". Just like I'm a fan of E2wheelers. The problem I have is when you mix them all up and of coarse the ramifications of the lack of protection with the latter at certain speeds.
    13 Jul 2012, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • Just this evening rush hour I saw (Chicago area) a very tiny car I've never seen before.

     

    I think the label said something like Aboult, but Google is not co-operating with me to find it. It had a "European" looking insignia on it as well, but I wasn't close enough to read what was on it.

     

    Anyone seen this?
    13 Jul 2012, 08:16 PM Reply Like
  • >wtblanchard ... I'll bet it was a Fiat 500 Abarth

     

    http://bit.ly/MrrhlQ

     

    My daughter wants one but is sold out until the 2013 line comes out.
    13 Jul 2012, 08:21 PM Reply Like
  • When I reported about SAFT/SEPTA/Viridity about a month ago (we all knew about this already), I ran into this story about SEPTA hybrid buses:

     

    http://bit.ly/MliOWA

     

    Hoping both are true. And that maybe, just maybe, SEPTA is giving a PA business, rather than a France-based business.

     

    If what I believe is true, the PbC can charge and discharge 2 to 4 times as fast as SAFT's batteries, and the PbC should be cheaper, too. Both "may" last equally endurance wise.

     

    We have to recall, the PbC (or the PowerCube) was not yet a real product when SEPTA was going forward with SAFT and Viridity.

     

    Like I wrote a month or so ago, there are lots of trolley stations in Philly. We may be in the works for the next "trial."

     

    This is truly a great application for the PbC.
    13 Jul 2012, 01:00 AM Reply Like
  • "If what I believe is true, the PbC can charge and discharge 2 to 4 times as fast as SAFT's batteries, and the PbC should be cheaper, too. Both "may" last equally endurance wise."

     

    I'd rather engineers not take advantage of PbC's charge/discharge advantages if these virtues do exist because that scenario would only need a much smaller battery pack while require much more reliability. Let's just keep PbC as good as competitors, not more not less in this case as long as we are cheaper.
    13 Jul 2012, 06:22 AM Reply Like
  • "I'd rather engineers not take advantage of PbC's charge/discharge advantages if these virtues do exist because that scenario would only need a much smaller battery pack while require much more reliability. Let's just keep PbC as good as competitors, not more not less in this case as long as we are cheaper."

     

    If the PbC can accept charge 2x - 4x as fast as Saft's li-ion product I expect the same size or larger PbC pack would have a much higher rate of return. That expectation assumes the Saft energy recovery system does not capture and store all of the energy recoverable. As I read it, a NYTimes Green blog article (June 27) suggested that SEPTA train motors turn into generators in braking with some of the power generated returned to "the third rail" with 3.5 to 4 kWh per stop routed to battery packs and excess power shunted into heat dissipation devices under the trains.

     

    Philadelphia Inquirer reporting suggested train braking produces 3 million watts in 15 seconds. That rate of power generation produces 12, 500 kWh in 15 seconds (check the math) by my calculations.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:41 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv... I think you may in fact have a typo or math error... 3 million watts for 1/4 of 1 minute, which equals 1/240th of an hour... yields 12,500 Watt-Hours or 12.5 KWh, not 12,500 KWh...

     

    Another way to look at it.. 12,500 KWh at 10 cents per would be $1250 worth of electricity in every braking event... which seems like quite an opportunity indeed.. ;) 12.5 KWh is more like a buck, but if multiplied by the total number of trains and stops all day and all year that could add up too...
    13 Jul 2012, 10:55 PM Reply Like
  • >481086 ... Don't overlook the ability to accept power from the 3rd rail from other stations within the resistance limit of the rail. Economic rate of return would be $1.00 for each train brake event at "X" no. of stations. I wonder how much money that might work out to be?
    13 Jul 2012, 11:02 PM Reply Like
  • DR, absolutely... clearly if each and every braking event would normally waste a dollar's worth in converting kinetic energy to heat, and interconnected storage would allow each and every one of those event's energy to be recovered, stored, and reused... I would think the numbers could be fairly decent if integrated over all the trains, stations, stops, and days...
    13 Jul 2012, 11:07 PM Reply Like
  • >481086 ... Opps, timed out. I really meant to add that when figuring the economics, I know we immediately leap to train stops. There is also a similar energy saving from train accelerations. This is job for a capacitor.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:21 PM Reply Like
  • Well, aren't the accelerations just going to re-use the same captured energy? (time shifted usually of course)

     

    In my mind, each deceleration/stop event is matched by a roughly energetically equal launch/acceleration event (differing somewhat due to varying numbers of passengers aboard)...
    13 Jul 2012, 11:25 PM Reply Like
  • >481086 ... Well of course an acceleration event uses some/all the time shifted charge from the stop event. I was just fiddling around with the lowered resistance in the 3rd rail from not having to carry the excess charge from a grid substation and heat stresses on the transmission infrastructure. Wonky stuff. Though I'm not any great shakes with the electricity, I do understand there will be reduced wear maintenance over a 10 year period from the localized application brake rotor power per acceleration. A shorter extension cord.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:49 PM Reply Like
  • DR, roger all. Didn't mean to insult. Probably several 2nd and 3rd order effects / benefits to be realized over time over the whole system...fun stuff...
    13 Jul 2012, 11:57 PM Reply Like
  • I respectfully disagree. This is a job for a really good calculator, or a computer that can do spreadsheet algorhythmic data. ;-)

     

    How much fun would it be to write an Axion Power proposal to SEPTA titled "The Buck Stops Here."

     

    So, so many variables in comparing what SAFT can do, versus what the PowerCube can do. It would be perhaps a 30 page proposal, maybe 100.

     

    Nuances, nuances, for instance, is that the SEPTA line that runs from Temple University through 30th Street Station, and on to the Philly Airport, has 380 stops per day. I checked out the SEPTA schedule here:

     

    http://bit.ly/Nndqk8

     

    I would expect the last stop, at the Philly Airport, to have the most potential, because of more people on the train. That's a nuance. So is time of day, in figuring how many people ride, get off one stop, get on another. Stopping a train with an extra hundred or two on board should create some dynamic as well, every stop heading to the airport, the train carrying more and more paasengers.

     

    More charge acceptance needed!

     

    But then, there's more people leaving this airport station, too, requiring more power.

     

    Traveling at all times of the day, allows SEPTA/Viridity to choose to use the electricity generated to get the train back out of the station, or rather, to sell the electricity into the grid at peak times. Who would decide this? And this decision would likely have to have some weather-related input, too.

     

    How does one divide up how many stations per PowerCube, or PowerCubes, are needed in order to make the PowerCube a money making viable investment?

     

    I am having a hard time trying to figure out what Viridity/SAFT/SEPTA says about the payback period.

     

    Because there are so many nuances. But it's good fun to consider the intracacies....
    14 Jul 2012, 12:08 AM Reply Like
  • >481086 ... It's all good. Electricity baffles me. So I play with the 2nd & 3rd order things I understand or at least can figure out.
    14 Jul 2012, 12:18 AM Reply Like
  • "D-inv... I think you may in fact have a typo or math error."

     

    :-) Call it a mental disconnect. I wrote 12,500 kWh while thinking that amounted to 8.5 to 9.0 kWh more than the 3.5 to 4.0 kWh recovered and stored in the Saft batteries used in the pilot project.

     

    I note that http://bit.ly/On1M4G states that the energy recovery and storage project feeds all energy output to "the third rail" and when voltage there tops about 800V, excess is fed to the Li-ion battery pack which has about 1.5MW of charge and discharge capability. The article describes the battery pack as Li-ion with nickel-cobalt-aluminum chemistry providing high-power rather than high-energy capability. Size is given as roughly equivalent to 280 Toyota Prius battery packs and consisting of 290 modules containing 14 cells rated at 30A-H.

     

    It occurs to me that each and every one of those trains pushes a lot of air aside (or ahead) and creates a backwash as it passes. Seems to provide potential for windpower generation as well as braking energy recovery.
    14 Jul 2012, 01:04 AM Reply Like
  • Just let a little of the air out of the balloon...

     

    I understand SEPTA already puts power back into the third rail. If a train is accelerating at the same time as one is braking (ignoring friction losses, electrical resistance, etc.) everything balances out. No battery needed. Already in place.

     

    The only time energy is wasted is when they have to use the electric resistors. According to this, 50% is already recovered. http://bit.ly/LWwDGw
    14 Jul 2012, 01:14 AM Reply Like
  • You just inflated my balloon a bit because I hadn't read that article in a while and I don't think I ever focused on the paragraph that says:

     

    "The Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority is underwriting the project with a $900,000 grant. Viridity will underwrite the remaining capital cost, Zibelman said."

     

    If SEPTA is not participating in the capital cost of the system and is merely providing the test bed for a percentage of the savings it changes the decision dynamic significantly.

     

    I feel much more optimistic about technology choices when the decision is driven by Viridity than I would if the decision was driven by the SEPTA board.
    14 Jul 2012, 01:27 AM Reply Like
  • In 2008 and 2009, Maxwell tested its BoostCap products on a subway system in Korea. – http://bit.ly/NnShn8 – Since it doesn't seem to be a talking point for them, I have to assume something didn't work out according to expectations.

     

    More recently, Maxwell has teamed with Bombardier for a wayside accumulator system in their tram system. – http://bit.ly/ywdqFb – I find it curious that the system has a maximum energy storage of 1 kWh (http://bit.ly/P5Kg9Z), but suspect it has more to do with vehicle size and weight than anything else.
    14 Jul 2012, 01:34 AM Reply Like
  • >D-inv ... If a wind generator was not already spinning, most of the power would be wasted getting to spin. Doesn't seem to have the economics.
    14 Jul 2012, 01:49 AM Reply Like
  • Tisk, tisk, tisk. John, John, John, Are you implying that the people in the public sector don't use the same analytical tools as the people in the private sector when applying resources?

     

    Or are you just implying that they use the same tools and apply the capital anyway? :)
    What's the payback? (mumble mumble) Proceed!.........When I'm elected........a chicken in every pot!
    14 Jul 2012, 10:05 AM Reply Like
  • Not really, but negotiating with a business to use a couple different battery types in the same application and test them side by side to see which works better is often easier than negotiating with a government organization that wants to make the *right* decision on day one and then defend it to the death.
    14 Jul 2012, 11:39 AM Reply Like
  • John. My read on this was that it was the government that was utilizing this channel as a test bed to determine the benefits of one or more types of wayside energy storage in electrified rail systems. This also being integrated into a smart grid via Viridity.

     

    The inclusion of a private sector entity like Viridity might add more of a litmus test for the total system cost since their treasury does not include access to things like our pockets or printing presses. As such they would also place more emphasis on actually thinking about a business case. Had this been Viridity show we would probably be lead based already.

     

    Or are you tying this to the governments lithium ion decisions and the fact that since they are all in on this bet they'd just say "lithium". Of coarse, as you know, there is a government partially funded Saft plant sitting in FL.
    14 Jul 2012, 11:58 AM Reply Like
  • iind > The existing system was configured from competitive bidding undertaken in 2010 - before Axion Power had a power cube like system.

     

    JP's reference reporting the system was financed by $900,000 Pa. grant with balance underwritten by Viridity appears to have wiggle room. http://bit.ly/PUqrnl concludes with a statement reading
    <
    The launch of this project was funded in part through a 2010 Pennsylvania Energy Development Authority grant program as well as support from Ben Franklin Technology Partners.
    <
    Viridity Energy may have "outsourced" their 'underwriting' of the project or maybe Viridity Energy itself is largely capitalized/financed by Ben Franklin Technology Partners.
    14 Jul 2012, 12:36 PM Reply Like
  • Thanks D-inv.

     

    I wonder if the Ultrabattery was considered. While not having their platform verified as well as Saft the battery could have been ready in time.

     

    Concerning the Viridity thoughts. I was going to look back at some of my readings because I also remembered other agencies being involved. Thanks, I remember Franklin as one of the names.
    14 Jul 2012, 12:45 PM Reply Like
  • The Ultrabattery factory was built with a 2009 Doe battery manufacturing grant so they wouldn't have been ready for the first SEPTA implementation either.
    14 Jul 2012, 01:47 PM Reply Like
  • Thanks.
    14 Jul 2012, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • "If a wind generator was not already spinning, most of the power would be wasted getting to spin. Doesn't seem to have the economics."

     

    That could be. OTOH, as a 'combined cycle' implementation where energy storage and a lot of the electronics is dual use with kinetic energy recovery it may be worth a looksee. Wind collectors could be viertical or spiral with horizontal alignment paralleling the rails.
    14 Jul 2012, 02:08 PM Reply Like
  • Don't miss the forest for the trees! If that energy is inserted into the third rail, it is also available to *other* trains within the limits of resistance that are accelerating or even doing a steady-state haul.

     

    If the scheduling and coordination is maximized, could be a lot less energy wasted as heat and less needing injection into storage at any particular event.

     

    Of course, I don't know the *practicalities* of all this, but as the learning curve is progressed, there should be *some* opportunities.

     

    HardToLove
    14 Jul 2012, 03:02 PM Reply Like
  • Rick: Shoot! I hadn't seen your post when I made mine above. We're on the same page again.

     

    HardToLove
    14 Jul 2012, 03:05 PM Reply Like
  • D-Inv: I think DRich has it right - lots of inertia to overcome as well as the resistance created by generation as it spins up. Windmills of any size take a long time to get going. Small low-inertia units may not have enough generation capacity to justify them in this application.

     

    I have seen some residential ones that have more of a vertical "squirrel cage" design (nicely crafted airfoils really), but never looked to see how effective they are or what they "nameplate" capacity is.

     

    HardToLove
    14 Jul 2012, 03:16 PM Reply Like
  • I share this article:

     

    http://bit.ly/MlNiI9

     

    Johnson Controls launching AGM battery line in North America for start-stop applications

     

    Have a nice day.
    Carlos.
    13 Jul 2012, 08:12 AM Reply Like
  • Easy to convert that new line over to the PbC design...
    13 Jul 2012, 08:30 AM Reply Like
  • Thanks Carlos!

     

    One of the advantages JCI talks about in this release, and it's not a small one, is their manufacturing process to make grids. They use a lead coil stock and run it through a progressive die vs a continuous casting process. This saves them considerable energy.

     

    This also could be one of the factors that causes them to shun carbon additives but I'm really just throwing out a hypothesis.

     

    http://bit.ly/NmbOo7
    13 Jul 2012, 08:44 AM Reply Like
  • When you say shun carbon additives, do you mean as opposed to carbon electrodes?
    13 Jul 2012, 09:18 AM Reply Like
  • Stefan, My meaning is tied to the twice previously posted presentations where JCI talks about the failure modes of adding carbon to lead based negative electrodes.

     

    What I am referring to here is the fact that a continuous stamping process vs continuous casting may negatively impact the ability to include the carbon additive in the lead based feed stock prior to processing. Shearing holes in the plates and perhaps coining different surface elements on the plates would yield a different electrode than would continuous casting.

     

    The Axion or East Penn negative electrode technology is another animal all together.
    13 Jul 2012, 09:36 AM Reply Like
  • Except for that (currently) 72 hour charging thing we heard about at the annual meeting ... wonder how that gets handled ... does JCI not charge at all and AXPW provide nearby dedicated facilities to handle that (and potential continuous improvements to the specialized PbC charging process?)

     

    Understand it's not rocket science to work out; it's still a little bit further away from "Easy."

     

    Somebody still needs to deliver them once they're charged, whoever is in "charge" or charging.
    13 Jul 2012, 09:42 AM Reply Like
  • The formation process takes 72 hours. It has nothing to do with top up charging time during battery installation.
    13 Jul 2012, 09:48 AM Reply Like
  • JP, can you share more information on the "formation process"? How is that different from charging?

     

    "Charging" often includes complex cycles at various voltages and amperage, and cycling charge and discharge. A battery may have multiple charging regimes: one for initial charge, one for routine charging, one for maintenance (equalization), and one for recovering "dead" batteries. Since car batteries are so cheap / disposable, the more complex cycles are not common. If you have $400k of batteries in your locomotive, you are going to use every tool available.

     

    Obviously a basic Wal-mart charger is not just plugged in for 72 hours for a Bio-Carbon battery.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:15 AM Reply Like
  • That's what I thought you were implying. Thanks!
    13 Jul 2012, 10:18 AM Reply Like
  • I'd be way out of my depth if I tried to describe what and why, but the last step in manufacturing an AGM type battery is formation charging to condition the battery. It's my understanding that the process takes about 72 hours, but it's only done once at the factory before the battery is shipped and is not repeated after shipping.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:26 AM Reply Like
  • John, So is it your belief that the time element only characteristic required to do the "formation process" for an AMG battery is about directionally the same as for an Axion PBC Asymmetric capacitor?
    13 Jul 2012, 10:32 AM Reply Like
  • iindelco, interesting link. That is high speed manufacturing, 10 electrodes per second. A three shift operation would produce about 250 million electrodes per year, good for about 3.5 million batteries. We will have to be patient until Axion's Bio-Carbon anodes are made and sold that fast.

     

    I asked the factory manager at Axion why their electrodes were cast, not stamped. He said his understanding was that cast electrodes had better grain characteristics. (He emphasized he was not a battery engineer, so for more technical info, go ask one)

     

    I think you are right that carbon additives would be complicated in their stamping line. Axionistas hope that means they will make only cathodes, and buy the Bio-Carbon anodes.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:44 AM Reply Like
  • No, I think the process takes longer for the PbC, about three days as opposed to one. It gives work-in-process inventory a slightly longer cycle life in the factory, but is transparent to the user.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:45 AM Reply Like
  • My comment came from my memory of Rick's report:

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    Perhaps he was mainly talking about the difference in formation time (and space required) between the flooded batteries that they're primarily making now, and I just missed the nuance.

     

    What I didn't understand then is to ask whether the PbC battery takes a significantly different amount of time (and process?) during "formation" w.r.t. initial "charging" than a "standard" AGM battery.

     

    If so, I'd like to understand that, and then we can talk about how it changes JCI's (or anyone else) ease of substituting "PbC inside."
    13 Jul 2012, 10:45 AM Reply Like
  • Thanks for the clarification.

     

    It would be interesting to know if some of the batteries with carbon additives start to require additional formation time in the factory.

     

    Darn the knowledge equation where the more you learn the more you realize you don't know. Oh to be young again and already know everything!
    13 Jul 2012, 10:53 AM Reply Like
  • It all seems to go hand in hand with that experience thing of having it 15 minutes after you need it. I suppose that's the reason I tend to dismiss price forecasts prepared by 20-something wonder kids at McKinsey who are all too happy to tell you what something "should cost" a decade from now.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:01 AM Reply Like
  • Rick, Yeah. If I were a betting man I'd put some pretty good money down that the electrochemical characteristics of the electrodes produced using the two different processes would be entirely different once carbon was added to the equation.

     

    I really have to think that once scaled the JCI process for plate mfg gives them a heck of an advantage until it doesn't. That could be why we see others adding carbon additives but not them (I've seen no sign yet that they have done this and I've looked quite a bit).
    13 Jul 2012, 11:03 AM Reply Like
  • I think we are making this sound complicated, when it isn't. What I called charging JP calls formation. It is a one-time, in the factory process. My understanding from the manager was the bio-carbon took significantly longer than both flooded and standard AGM, hence my comment on http://seekingalpha.co....

     

    Since this initial charging is the final step, except for packaging, I don't think it will be too hard to add charging WIP. Not free, but not too hard.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:10 AM Reply Like
  • The important point is that the 72 hour formation charging was an Axion factory issue not a user issue. It would be a problem if an auto dealer had to make a 72-hour issue out of changing a PbC battery.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:18 AM Reply Like
  • *I THINK* JCI's grid stamping technology would be useful with or without carbon additives. To the best of my knowledge, carbon is not incorporated into the lead that's used to make either cast or stamped grids. Instead, it's mixed in with the sponge lead paste that's spread over the grids and then cured prior to assembly. If the battery works properly, the chemical reactions are supposed to be confined to the pastes rather than the grids. Once the grids corrode the plates lose structural integrity.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:24 AM Reply Like
  • Thank John. I thought the plates were more homogeneous. My bad.
    13 Jul 2012, 11:31 AM Reply Like
  • The way battery plates are made is pretty simple. The start with a cast lead grid that provides structural support.

     

    They then apply lead-dioxide (positive) and sponge lead (negative) pastes to the grids and let them cure.

     

    http://bit.ly/PVwMQs
    13 Jul 2012, 11:54 AM Reply Like
  • I just watched the entire Enersys battery manufacturing video that I linked in the preceding comment and it's a wonderful description of the process from raw lead to finished product.

     

    The only manufacturing difference between a PbC and a straight AGM battery is that carbon electrode assemblies are used instead of lead-based negative electrode assemblies during the plate stacking process.

     

    This video does a far better job of explaining why I refer to the PbC electrodes as "plug-and-play replacements."
    13 Jul 2012, 12:14 PM Reply Like
  • Thanks!
    13 Jul 2012, 12:22 PM Reply Like
  • Great video, JP. Axion's plant is not quite so big or automated, but is similar.
    13 Jul 2012, 01:26 PM Reply Like
  • If I remember correctly paraffin is the material Delphi is using in their proposed cooling system for storing energy in SS vehicle cooling systems to release energy during its phase transition. Anyway, good stuff for the EV boys -N- girls.

     

    Researchers develop better cooling for EV batteries with new mixture

     

    http://bit.ly/NfyIRB
    13 Jul 2012, 08:34 AM Reply Like
  • IINDelco,
    Interesting. I would think they would need to keep the coolant constantly circulating. Otherwise one could picture a situation where the paraffin is melted in one section of the cooling system and then hardens in another section, causing a build-up of paraffin, which would then cause the cooling solution to lose its adsorption properties. I assume the PEG helps to prevent that, but who knows.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:28 AM Reply Like
  • >LabTech ... Think ... Lava lamp. Who would imagine ... a "hippy" entertainment system as science.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:40 AM Reply Like
  • I always wondered how they did that. Thanks DR.
    13 Jul 2012, 10:46 AM Reply Like
  • All, Here is a better article on the topic.

     

    http://bit.ly/NIePRK
    13 Jul 2012, 01:03 PM Reply Like
  • OMG heat death of universe doesn't need any help!
    13 Jul 2012, 04:09 PM Reply Like
  • (AXPW): 7/13/2012 EOD stuff
    # Trds: 25, MinTrSz: 160, MaxTrSz: 16000, Vol 89702, AvTrSz: 3588
    Min. Pr: 0.3220, Max Pr: 0.3420, VW Avg. Trade Pr: 0.3289
    # Buys, Shares: 17 62702, VW Avg Buy Pr: 0.3317
    # Sells, Shares: 8 27000, VW Avg Sell Pr: 0.3225
    # Unkn, Shares: 0 0, VW Avg Unk. Pr: 0.0000
    Buy:Sell 2.32:1 (69.9% "buy"), DlyShts 35802 (39.9%)

     

    There was a 5K "buy" @ $0.3420 just barely before the open, 09:29:38, that will not appear in the FINRA-reported daily volumes. With that, FINRA volumes indicate 42.27% short, higher than what I would report. *IF* that was a short sale, which we don't know, my calculated short percentage using FINRA numbers with the 5K added to both total and short volume, would be 45.5%.

     

    You can see retail buyers are apparently becoming a bit cautious as the average trade size was below the averages (10, 25, 50, and 100 day averages of 6293, 5543, 5362, and 4950 respectively) and the big seller (Mega-C shares trustee via Night Capital?) was forced to slowly reduce offers throughout the day.

     

    However, the buy:sell (69.9% "buy") remained strong, above the four averages of 60%, 62%, 57%, and 49%

     

    So we closed $0.019 down.

     

    However, the price drop after the open was big (~2 cents) and did not have significant movement lower during the day. So we closed at $0.3250 - not bad considering we think the Mega-C shares are here.

     

    All considered, it seems that retail investors are still bullish but perfectly willing and eager to take advantage of *stupid* selling behavior and even back off a bit to see if they can get it become even "stupider".

     

    If it gets "stupid enough" I, and many others I'm sure, will be gobbling up those "stupid cheap" shares (for me, my dry powder has to be ready for it).

     

    Haven't said it for a while so ...

     

    MHO, experimental, trying to learn and making my best SWAGs,
    HardToLove
    13 Jul 2012, 08:39 AM Reply Like
  • HTL, As always thanks so much for your exhaustive efforts in this area. I don't often comment on you posts in this area because your knowledge on the subject matter and your shared thought process, along with others, exceeds my own. That being said, I can assure you I fully digest the subject matter because it is accretive to the process of trying to better understand the crazy market sector we chose to dance in (Don't ask me why! Is this voluntary?). :)
    13 Jul 2012, 09:16 AM Reply Like
  • HTL- any idea ?
    100k shares purchased at .32 - by retail investor or by a fund???
    13 Jul 2012, 07:43 PM Reply Like
  • For a while, I think there was another 100k bid right behind that sale for .315
    13 Jul 2012, 11:58 PM Reply Like
  • Shoot: Wrong date though. again - should be 7/12/2012.

     

    Remind me to stop looking at my watch when posting and just get the date from the spreadsheet.

     

    Apologies!

     

    HardToLove
    14 Jul 2012, 03:19 PM Reply Like
  • No way to tell, but based on Albert's(?) comments about some folks he knows priming their pump, I'd suspect that first.

     

    I started my daily blab about it last night, but the the BBS showed a fault and I had to do (are you ready for it?) a "formation" - 12 hours plugged in and on with nothing drawing from it.

     

    I guess I'll break down and buy replacement batteries for my other 3 BBSs.

     

    Now that I understand LA batteries better, I can assure they will be lasting a lot longer now.

     

    Anyway, I should have my EOD post in the next hour or so.

     

    And I will not look at my watch to get the date!

     

    Here's what I had so far (minus the stats)
    ======================...
    Early action accounted for most of the notable things today. Through 10:03:57 we had the majority of our volume, 260,180 shares, thanks to several larger trades, including 100K, 35K and 50K and a few lesser that I suspect were part of these larger trades. Price ranged from $0.3125-$0.325, starting at the higher range around 9:40 and ending at $0.32 at 10:03.

     

    These took us through the day's first 17 trades. The rest of the day we had only 10 more trades with prices ranging from $0.3199 to $0.325.

     

    I think some of the action was the new buyers Albert(?) mentioned might be ready to enter. So I assume this is a one-day phenomenon.
    ======================...

     

    HardToLove
    14 Jul 2012, 03:31 PM Reply Like
  • For reasons that are unclear to me, SA decided they didn't want to run my quarterly column for Batteries International on the main pages. I've asked the editorial staff to reconsider, but there's no way to tell what they'll decide so I've posted it as an Instablog in the interim.

     

    Musings From The EV Black Knight – http://seekingalpha.co...
    13 Jul 2012, 10:51 AM Reply Like
  • Maybe their servers get overloaded everytime the White Knights of Elon enter the arena to do battle with you! ;-))

     

    Solution: don't publish!

     

    HardToLove
    13 Jul 2012, 11:45 AM Reply Like
  • >JP ... Here's one for the resource challenged fan club you have following you around. A new battery application for electronics ... ferroelectrics. If it's good enough for Apple then it is just a short hop & a jump to Tesla.

     

    Brookhaven engineered its own ferroelectric materials for the study, including germanium telluride and insulating barium titanate.

     

    http://bit.ly/Nvonfa

     

    Cheap ... huh!
    13 Jul 2012, 12:07 PM Reply Like
  • Unless I'm mistaken, they're talking about using ferroelectric materials to store data rather than energy. It's cool stuff but we can be pretty sure that germanium telluride won't be cheap any time soon. Barium titanate, on the other hand, shouldn't be anywhere near as resource constrained.
    13 Jul 2012, 12:20 PM Reply Like
  • I don't see what they are worried about. Just put steel mesh in peoples foot attire and we can charge their phones and cars at the same time. And if they don't drive enough we can add coils to the sidewalks.

     

    See EZ. Keep makin' those screens bigger and add more apps that keep the communications electronics fired up. Necessities.

     

    I'm just glad the low margin electronics/telecommun... industries are going to give up their resources for our 10 million/year Tesla habit.
    13 Jul 2012, 12:33 PM Reply Like
  • The author seems to be confusing data with electricity. By far the largest consumer of power in consumer electronics is the video screen.

     

    Ferroelectrics will enable much higher data densities and permit access to it with much lower current draw. Future iP*ds may have petabytes of memory, or mere terabytes.

     

    Screen technology is still the limiting factor of battery life.

     

    I suspect the impact of terabytes of local data will increase power consumption, as much more processor power will be needed to make the data useful.

     

    13 Jul 2012, 12:56 PM Reply Like
  • Rick K > "Screen technology is still the limiting factor of battery life. "

     

    That has been my understanding for some time and a prime factor underlying my holdings of PANL. OLED displays are taking market share in mobile now and I expect stationary displays and white light devices to follow.

     

    If both AXPW and PANL succeed as expected the grandkids will have a solid start on college expenses 12+ years hence.
    13 Jul 2012, 02:44 PM Reply Like
  • I can't see bid ask to level II depth, but hoping impatient seller lets go of a lot of volume before closing.
    13 Jul 2012, 01:03 PM Reply Like
  • If anyone's interested I see the Quercus Trust just did a recent buy of thermoenergy corporation. Haven't reviewed it yet. The QT paid .10 USD/share. Don't know how long they've been affiliated.

     

    Their home page.

     

    http://bit.ly/MmnZpe

     

    Here's the yahoo investors site page.

     

    http://yhoo.it/MmnWtB

     

    13 Jul 2012, 01:21 PM Reply Like
  • Q added 650,000 shares and now have total of 8,011,344 shares. In July 2008 trading at about 1.40 and has been downhill since.

     

    Quercus does have some history back when price was trading higher.

     

    From 10Q August 2008

     

    "On December 17, 2007 the Company entered into a Securities Purchase Agreement with the Quercus Trust (“Quercus”) a family trust for the family of David Gelbaum, non-affiliated accredited investors. Pursuant to the Securities Purchase Agreement, Quercus has committed to make a $12 million equity investment in the Company. In the initial closing under the agreement, Quercus purchased 6,666,667 Units at a price of $5,000,000. Each unit consists of one share of Common Stock, and a 5-year Warrant entitling the holder to purchase 1.5 additional shares of Common Stock at an exercise price of $1.50 per share. Subject to the satisfaction of certain conditions, Quercus is committed to make an additional investment of $7,000,000 in the Company. In that follow-on investment, Quercus has agreed to purchase an additional 9,333,334 Units at $0.75 per Unit within five days after the Company satisfies the closing conditions. "

     

    I guess this is one that is being supported by selling Axion shares: net loss latest quarter was 1.5 million.
    13 Jul 2012, 01:35 PM Reply Like
  • Quercus has been in TMEN for years, and I think it's one of several portfolio companies Quercus has on life support. It's tough being in their position, but a lot of the decision making is driven by "we have to sell something to keep these other companies from going bankrupt," so let's sell the stocks with the most liquidity even if we have to take a loss. Sacrificing one to save 10 or 20 may not work out, but I understand the logic.
    13 Jul 2012, 01:37 PM Reply Like
  • I mostly posted it to show that DG was still caught in the same trap as expected. Not a pleasant place to be but I'm not exactly shedding a tear for the guy. And I'm not too worried that he's goin' hungry.

     

    Well at least he doesn't have to feed Entech Solar anymore.
    13 Jul 2012, 01:58 PM Reply Like
  • Looks like this is a new Axion technical paper that will be published and for sale via SAE ...

     

    “Axion PbC(R) Lead-Carbon Battery Performance in Commercial Vehicle No-Idle Applications”

     

    http://bit.ly/NhFtSW
    13 Jul 2012, 03:15 PM Reply Like
  • Sure looks that way.

     

    Date Published: 2012-09-24
    Paper Number: 2012-01-2019

     

    Thanks. Something to look forward to.
    13 Jul 2012, 03:24 PM Reply Like
  • Appears, this will be Ender and Phillipe's second paper that they have published with SAE-

     

    http://bit.ly/SjIOk5

     

    A couple months ago, I commented on Axion potentially publishing one for IEEE with results from the PowerCube .... I hope they decide to do that as well. They clearly have the ability to present excellent research in an engaging way.
    13 Jul 2012, 03:27 PM Reply Like
  • Does the title of this paper (“Axion PbC(R) Lead-Carbon Battery Performance in Commercial Vehicle No-Idle Applications”) indicate that they have been doing in-vehicle, perhaps fleet testing of the Bio-carbon PbC in trucks, buses, etc?

     

    Perhaps I missed it, I know there has been some discussion of this in the past, but the title seems to suggest that they are further along in this particular application than I had thought.

     

    D
    14 Jul 2012, 09:24 AM Reply Like
  • If past accomplishments are any indication of future accomplishments, I would agree. The fact that mgt brought the application to the forefront would indicate that they are well into proving this application out.
    14 Jul 2012, 02:03 PM Reply Like
  • Things that make you go hmm ...

     

    Intersolar: Solar News, Clues, and Rumors

     

    Scuttlebutt heard in the halls and parties at Intersolar: Sunrun valuation, General Electric CdTe, NRG residential leasing, Satcon and eIQ

     

    ERIC WESOFF: JULY 12, 2012

     

    http://bit.ly/MmMByh

     

    "Faced with painfully high electricity prices on the the big island of Hawaii, consumers are withdrawing from the grid "in droves," according to a presenter at Intersolar. The price of solar panels combined with battery storage is a lot easier to justify when kilowatt-hour pricing is $0.25 to $0.35.

     

    "
    13 Jul 2012, 03:35 PM Reply Like
  • Chatted with my brother in law (just retired engineer) last night...EV...TSLA...AX...
    He stated a real ground breaker would be the supercapicitor.

     

    It has been mentioned several times in the AXPW comments, but a little bit out of my element...no pun intended!

     

    Then I google it...

     

    Elon Musk Says Super-Capacitors Not Batteries, Will Be Breakthrough For EVs
    http://tcrn.ch/NrogV1

     

    "...unless his company is at work researching the next big thing."

     

    As a non techie but good reader, I get the EV issues.
    I can't help but think Musk is too smart intellectually not to at least have other irons in the fire.

     

    Thoughts?
    13 Jul 2012, 04:52 PM Reply Like
  • magounsq, No doubt about it that higher energy density ultracapacitors would be a game changer. That's why people have been enamored with EEStor forever. They are promising great things that many people in physics are claiming is a scam.

     

    That being said, as an engineer has pointed out to me on another board, there is huge risk to in having an energy storage unit that will dump it's energy almost instantly during a many failure modes.
    13 Jul 2012, 05:10 PM Reply Like
  • Ok, gonna reveal my ignorance with this question but here goes.

     

    Could you not have many, many tiny ultracapcitors with a battery management system that coordinated their discharging such that the whole system can charge and discharge at virtually any rate you choose?

     

    For example, the system discharges 1 tiny ultracapacitor at a time for hotel loads but discharges 10 or 100 at a time during exceleration to add effective horsepower?

     

    Is this how ultracapacitors could be a 'game-changer'?

     

    D
    14 Jul 2012, 02:37 PM Reply Like
  • D.McH - One can control the power released from a single humongous capacitor. The problem is when you can't control it, in a fire or a crash or in a flood or from a manufacturing defect. If one capacitor blew, it would probably blow the rest of the pack rather spectacularly.

     

    A hypercapacitor analogy could be a very high pressure tank of acetylene. Acetylene is the dangerous and explosive hydrocarbon gas, read http://bit.ly/Nn5Nvd for details. The tank is just waiting to explode; as is a fully charged capacitor ready to release all of its energy in milliseconds.

     

    The other challenge with capacitors is very low energy density and specific energy, two orders of magnitude worse than batteries, and three orders of magnitude more expensive. Merely improving the energy density by a factor of 10 and 1/10th the price still is far from economic for an energy application.

     

    Other than that....
    14 Jul 2012, 03:02 PM Reply Like
  • mago > "As a non techie but good reader, I get the EV issues."

     

    :-) As a close lookalike there, my impression is that super capacitors have drawback similar to, but more severe in some respects, than li-ion and PbC. My understanding is that supercaps accept AND dispatch energy very quickly. A supercap large enough to hold enough energy to power a vehicle 100+ miles can rapidly cook bipeds, etc. that come in contact.
    13 Jul 2012, 05:06 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv, Yes....What you said! ;)
    13 Jul 2012, 05:50 PM Reply Like
  • Iindelco: Don't they have "leakage" issues too? Need some "Depends" to sit in a parking lot at the airport for a long time?

     

    'Course the Fisker and Tesla apparently had such a problem, not from "leakage", but from constant draw by all the "bling" provided in the cabin.

     

    HardToLove
    13 Jul 2012, 06:05 PM Reply Like
  • vaporize bipeds.
    14 Jul 2012, 03:03 PM Reply Like
  • HTL, Yes capacitors have a decay rate that is most often in excess of energy storage losses in electrochemical storage devices. Each device calls this out in its specification sheet and is a consideration for the intended application.

     

    As you know that is why the PBC is being offered as a solution for SS with a complementary flooded battery for starting the vehicle. It will not meet the "airport test" on its own because of its lower energy density and it's electrostatic decay rate.
    13 Jul 2012, 06:33 PM Reply Like
  • IIRC Siliconhillbilly was making a case for the BC/PbC to be used in forklifts. The following link to a SNL (not Saturday Night Live) document provides a schedule - from Aker Wade - for forklift use i.e. discharge and charge times. See page 44. Page 43 provides some background for the tests done on batteries with carbon additives. I'm thinking this document must have been linked before, but don't recall any discussion about it.

     

    http://bit.ly/Ac9sGQ

     

    Curious if after perusing the schedule, if the MKG's (More Knowledgeable Gentlemen) would be able to evaluate if this could be an appropriate market for the BC/PbC HSD (Bio-Carbon or PbC Hybrid Storage Device)
    13 Jul 2012, 07:43 PM Reply Like
  • As Crown Equipment (forklift maker) appeared on the list of client companies in Stefan's 2009 Axion presentation, I'm assuming this application has been explored, but as have heard no further mention, it seems use in forklifts may not play to the PbC's strengths.
    16 Jul 2012, 04:25 PM Reply Like
  • Sorry if this link appeared before, but since I googled Enders name as a result of Stefan's link, it appears Enders will be presenting at the Advanced Energy Solutions Conference on 25 October at Session 8: Stationary Energy Storage.

     

    I feel like I've turned into an Axion groupie, or a stalker.
    13 Jul 2012, 07:51 PM Reply Like
  • I thought this article might be of interest to the community at large:

     

    Making 'Renewable' Viable: New Technology for Grid-Level Electrical Energy Storage Developed

     

    A team of researchers from Drexel University's College of Engineering have taken up this challenge and has developed a new method for quickly and efficiently storing large amounts of electrical energy. The Drexel's team of researchers is putting forward a plan to integrate into the grid an electrochemical storage system that combines principles behind the flow batteries and supercapacitors that power our daily technology.

     

    http://bit.ly/NURquG
    13 Jul 2012, 09:46 PM Reply Like
  • The last paragraph of that story is a classic of energy storage journalism and very typical of ideas coming out of universities.

     

    ""We have observed very promising performance so far, being close to that of conventional packaged supercapacitor cells," Gogotsi said. "However, we will need to increase the energy density per unit of slurry volume by an order of magnitude, and achieve it using very inexpensive carbon and salt solutions to make the technology practical."

     

    In the last century, the energy density of batteries has improved from 40 wh/kg to about 200 wh/kg. Saying they need to improve their energy density by an order of magnitude requires a 10x gain, and they have to figure out how to do it *cheap*
    14 Jul 2012, 12:47 AM Reply Like
  • Thanks to Moore's Law, which applies to everything now, all we have to do is sit back and wait a couple years while the energy density increases all by itself.

     

    Ah, life is sweet.

     

    D
    14 Jul 2012, 09:28 AM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie "Ah, life is sweet."

     

    And that's why I've coined it S'more's Law.

     

    Just give me s'more capital and I'll get there eventually. See S'more's Law! :) The properties of the law break down if you take economics or accounting. :))
    14 Jul 2012, 10:12 AM Reply Like
  • As we discover whenever we encounter the hopium addicted herd...

     

    Arithmetic is a "lagging indicator".
    14 Jul 2012, 10:20 AM Reply Like
  • Nice catch, John!
    14 Jul 2012, 10:31 AM Reply Like
  • Ah TB! LoL! "Arithmetic is a "lagging indicator"".

     

    Broken BBSs forgotten with that one!

     

    Thank you sir!

     

    HardToLove
    14 Jul 2012, 03:46 PM Reply Like
  • University professors create more "half-dead" gorillas than any other group on earth.
    14 Jul 2012, 09:45 AM Reply Like
  • Hello Axion/Rosewater.

     

    "The company has tendered for suppliers of battery storage."

     

    http://bit.ly/Opm5i2
    14 Jul 2012, 11:35 AM Reply Like
  • Yes, It is hard launching a battery venture.

     

    http://buswk.co/No9nUM
    14 Jul 2012, 01:27 PM Reply Like
  • "Yes, It is hard launching a battery venture."

     

    Hmmm, liquid sodium, quick to recharge, a bit slow to supply power, 500 F operational temp., works in -40F to 150 F temperature range.
    14 Jul 2012, 02:29 PM Reply Like
  • Check out this Axion power point presentation that I found from 2009 -
    You need to scroll down the page and click on it.

     

    http://linkd.in/NXX3IJ

     

    Halfway through the presentation, it has a slide on current customers ... the list is pretty impressive. Wish we could find out how many of those relationships are still ongoing. However, the only relationships that we are still aware of today are BMW and NS.
    14 Jul 2012, 06:54 PM Reply Like
  • Kinda surprised no one is commenting on the 36V wiring slide of the Saturn Vue or the only place where I have ever seen a "current" (in 2009) Axion customer list which includes:

     

    BMW, FIAT, Ford, PSA, Renault, Suzuki, Toyota, VW, VDA ... John Deere, Ingersoll Rand, Ryder, Penske, AT&T, Bell Canada, Crown Equipment, Emerson Network Power, NS, Lockheed Martin, York Electro-Mechanical Corp., Mitsubishi Electric Power Products.

     

    Notably, GM was not on the slide yet. However, the last Axion Investor Presentation in December said they were only working with one large North American Automotive OEM. So does that mean Ford fell off the list?
    15 Jul 2012, 12:23 PM Reply Like
  • The link is to TG's executive secretaries Linkedin page. But I've seen the slide you are referring to. I just took it as potential apps.
    15 Jul 2012, 12:57 PM Reply Like
  • If you scroll down her page, there is a power point presentation. I can't seem to save it or link directly to it.
    15 Jul 2012, 01:23 PM Reply Like
  • Anyonr else not finding the Power Point presentation link?
    15 Jul 2012, 01:53 PM Reply Like
  • You know what I just realized. Maybe I can see it because I am a member of linkedin and I have full access to her page b/c I am logged in.
    15 Jul 2012, 02:12 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan, one needs to be a subscribing member of linkedIn to see full profiles. I am a "basic" member (i.e. - don't pay a monthly/annual subscription fee) and can not access full profiles of other members.
    15 Jul 2012, 02:28 PM Reply Like
  • It's also interesting to note that Axion was promoting the PowerCube development and sales back in 2009. So I am not sure if the idea that they didn't have a PowerCube product until late 2011 is correct or not.

     

    I would hope that the extra three years of development and testing would ensure that Axion does not have an A123 type of mistake.
    15 Jul 2012, 02:28 PM Reply Like
  • BMW?

     

    From a recent BMW press release:
    "BMW’s 2013 BMW ActiveHybrid 3 will arrive in US showrooms this fall at an MSRP of $50,195 including destination and handling. (Earlier post.) The ActiveHybrid 3 blends BMW’s TwinPower Turbo 3.0-liter inline 6-cylinder engine and 8-speed Steptronic automatic transmission with an electric motor powered by a high-voltage Li-ion battery (cells from A123 systems, earlier post) housed under the luggage compartment between the wheel arches."

     

    BMW is also working with Toyota Motors to advance Li-ion Tech. batteries.

     

    Why isn't BMW racing to the forefront with the "proven" Axion battery?
    15 Jul 2012, 02:30 PM Reply Like
  • D-Inv

     

    ditto

     

    iindelco...do you have the link?
    15 Jul 2012, 02:40 PM Reply Like
  • Weird, I don't pay any fees ... I don't even really use it. I signed up in college five or six years ago.
    15 Jul 2012, 02:48 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan

     

    curious...what was the link context?

     

    "...a "current" (in 2009) Axion customer list which includes:

     

    BMW, FIAT, Ford, PSA, Renault, Suzuki, Toyota, VW, VDA ... John Deere, Ingersoll Rand, Ryder, Penske, AT&T, Bell Canada, Crown Equipment, Emerson Network Power, NS, Lockheed Martin, York Electro-Mechanical Corp., Mitsubishi Electric Power Products."
    15 Jul 2012, 02:55 PM Reply Like
  • It's a mid 2009 power point presentation that looks like it was made for a road show. When the presentation was made, there were only 26M shares outstanding and Ed Buiel was still CTO at Axion.

     

    Found a copy elsewhere

     

    http://slidesha.re/NpSVDE
    15 Jul 2012, 03:13 PM Reply Like
  • "Weird, I don't pay any fees ... I don't even really use it. I signed up in college five or six years ago. "

     

    :-) Must have been a "formation" charge before the product left the factory.
    15 Jul 2012, 03:17 PM Reply Like
  • Stefan: (AONE) made the mistake of trying to open a new factory too quickly without proper "shake-down" and QC assurance.

     

    It's not funny, but I don't think anyone imagines that is happening at (AXPW).

     

    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 03:48 PM Reply Like
  • That's not the market BMW and Axion have been addressing. Their testing has been only for start-stop. It's known by all that for that type of application you mention Axion's battery is not suitable.

     

    In a nutshell, the Axion PbC is intended to carry hotel loads while the engine is not running and then *very* quickly accept a charge before the next engine-off event.

     

    The PbC has a *big* cost advantage, along with some other benefits, in that application.

     

    Of course, until contracts are signed, there's no assurance that BMW or any manufacturer will use the PbC for anything. But from all we can discover, the *combination* of cost, performance in the intended application, recyclability, familiarity of the basic underlying technology and *some* similar performance characteristics (e.g. temperature tolerance) by the automotive engineers, ... makes it seem that there is a decent possibility that the PbC will be used in its intended role.

     

    This seems to be supported also by the number of years of testing *without* disqualification occurring.

     

    The important thing is to keep in mind that any battery is not the solution for all applications. Also, the "mild-hybrid", as it's termed, and "heavy hybrid" seem to be the best fits. Things like the Buick Regal and the BMW you cite are not the applications for the PbC and are not as likely to be the *volume* markets from which Axion may benefit.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 04:02 PM Reply Like
  • The BMW ActiveHybrid 3 uses a 40 kw motor to provide 54 hp of boost. It's a performance car, not an efficiency car. - http://bit.ly/NIQCLq They've partnered with Toyota for future HEV systems and batteries, which is only natural since Toyota controls over half of the HEV market.

     

    BMW has been testing the PbC for use in micro hybrids that do not add any boost to the drivetrain. They use a better battery as an efficiency component to eliminate fuel waste during idling.

     

    The big difference, of course, its that BMW sells a few thousand HEVs a year, but it sells millions of micro hybrids a year.

     

    BWM can afford to make a mistake on a few million dollars of HEV batteries. It can't make a mistake on a half-billion dollars in micro hybrid batteries.
    15 Jul 2012, 04:07 PM Reply Like
  • Possible error in my reply: I think I should have said "micro-hybrid" rather than "mild-hybrid"?

     

    http://bit.ly/MrWSsY

     

    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 04:55 PM Reply Like
  • The terms are easy to get confused HTL since there are so many different varieties out there.

     

    About the only way to keep them straight is to think in terms of boost and no-boost.

     

    Mild hybrids like the LaCrosse add 10-20 hp of electric boost. Full or heavy hybrids like the Prius add >50 hp of electric boost.

     

    Micro hybrids don't add any boost to the drivetrain and achieve all their savings by not running the engine and running the generator opportunistically to take that load off the engine during acceleration intervals. Even when people talk about regenerative braking in the micro hybrid world, they're talking one to two horsepower, which is all the regeneration you can get out of the systems.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:10 AM Reply Like
  • Thanks John! If I see it enough times, it'll eventually stick.

     

    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 08:41 AM Reply Like
  • Was browsing through LC Superhybrid info and found the following about Control Power Technologies starter/generator:

     

    A class leading 12V Belt-driven Integrated Starter Generator (B-ISG) system, including all control and power electronics in a single housing. CPT SpeedStart is a liquid cooled Switched Reluctance machine, coupled to state of the art electronics, providing premium performance with a very high and efficient power output up to 205amps.

     

    It appears the PbC could make efficient use of that 205 amps.
    15 Jul 2012, 06:20 AM Reply Like
  • Allan Cooper told me they wanted to use the PbC in the LC Superhybrid but Axion was too busy to devote enough effort and attention to the project. In other words, the Exide spiral wound was Plan B.
    15 Jul 2012, 08:11 AM Reply Like
  • Can't get access to his papers but Mr. Cooper sounds like my kind of guy. Swinging the bat and getting solid singles -N- doubles vs swinging at hot air.

     

    Allan COOPER, European Advanced Lead-Acid Battery Consortium , UK
    INCREASING FUNCTIONALITY OF THE MICRO-HYBRID SYSTEM AT LOW COST

     

    http://bit.ly/NuAHiS

     

    Mild HEV Performance at Micro Hybrid Cost - A Low Voltage Lead-Acid Approach

     

    http://bit.ly/MrsrDm
    15 Jul 2012, 10:24 AM Reply Like
  • BTW John, Any idea what's up with the ALABC? I've been watching their site for news letters and it's pretty unusual for them to gap for as long as they have.

     

    http://bit.ly/M036M4
    15 Jul 2012, 10:27 AM Reply Like
  • My opinion is: Maybe AXPW is working with BMW, Ford or GM in something similar and therefore can not accept the proposal of A. Cooper (LC Superhybrid).
    15 Jul 2012, 10:59 AM Reply Like
  • With 13 ELBC coming in September, they may be holding off so they have something new to talk about.
    15 Jul 2012, 11:03 AM Reply Like
  • If the two batteries in the LC superhybrid were PbC, and if being recharged by the CPT starter/generator at 205 amps, would each battery have to be able to accept 205 amps, or would each battery only have to be able to accept 102.5 amps? Thanks.

     

    And I guess that would differ if two batteries configured to 12 volt system, versus 4 batteries in a 48 volt system - what is the term, hooked in series or parallel?
    15 Jul 2012, 11:15 AM Reply Like
  • 2 batteries in parallel for a 12v system and 4 batteries in series for a 48v system. In parallel the batteries would each get 102.5 amps from the starter/generator (minus engine and cabin needs)...
    15 Jul 2012, 07:39 PM Reply Like
  • >metro: Interesting.

     

    As I recall, switched reluctance machines have no power applied to the rotating parts. No, or very small, RE magnets. They should be cost effective using modern semiconductor power switches, which are cheap in the "under 100V range" needed in 12V auto systems.

     

    By not having brushes and commutater, the SG ought to last a long time. My guess it that the only portion that is "water cooled" is the semiconductor power switches. That stable thermal environment adds to cost will pay off in long life and low warranty failures vs air cooling. I like it.
    17 Jul 2012, 12:48 PM Reply Like
  • Thanks Tim and siliconhillbilly,
    Your responses were only highlighted as a new comment now. So if the PbC, from what we have learned, can accept 200 amps. For a heavier hybrid, i.e. 42/48 volt, it seems a much larger generator could be used. In an earlier post I referred to what systems could be remain running with discharge of 42 amps. I was left somewhat less than enthusiastic thinking that if drivers are not comfortable, then they will shut off the start/stop system, and/or the system does not work because of the temperature setting on the heater/air conditioner.

     

    What I do find exciting is the prospect of using the Ford/BMW protocol at 80/100 amps discharge where almost all systems could be left running. Consumers would not have to then put up with any inconvenience. For this to happen however, the generator is going to have to be able to produce more amps, and not sure if this is possible, or if it would be a real economy drain on the engine.

     

    I guess this would be the third or fourth generation of hybridization. What an interesting prospect that would be for Axion to have 3-4 batteries in every car using the PbC.

     

    All just my opinion.
    17 Jul 2012, 02:07 PM Reply Like
  • metro, They have already developed larger generators and also added integral clutches to activate/deactivate based on the batteries SOC. This allows them to charge quickly when the engine is running but underutilized, decouple for peak acceleration and also to decouple any time charging is not required or during coasting.

     

    Coasting is the next thing coming on some vehicles placing more hotel load events on the storage system but allowing for the vehicle ICE to be turned off under appropriate conditions. You can also utilize the dynamic brake to maintain cruise speed on a downgrade.

     

    Basically many of the things NS is looking to do on the OTR locomotive.
    17 Jul 2012, 02:18 PM Reply Like
  • Thanks iindelco for reply. Seems that a lot of technologies, i.e.those on the LC superhybrid already exist, but automakers are slow to adapt to these positive changes and it just feels like we are crawling to the future where Axion could have a place via the PbC tortoise - wouldn't offend you by implying sea turtles are slow.
    17 Jul 2012, 02:57 PM Reply Like
  • I share this article:

     

    Ford Thinks Hybrids Will Beat Electric Cars
    http://bit.ly/LSq10q

     

    Have a nice day.
    Carlos
    15 Jul 2012, 07:27 AM Reply Like
  • "Viera said Ford sees "electrics" comprising as much as a quarter of its total sales by the end of the decade -- but like the chief engineer at green archrival Toyota (NYSE: TM) , Ford expects nearly all -- 90% or more -- of its "electrics" to be hybrids, not purely electric cars."

     

    This is something I've been noticing more and more, which I like: when making sales predictions the automakers are lumping hybrids in with pure EVs.

     

    They are seizing upon the popular but unrealistic public desire for pure EVs, claiming leadership in 'vehicle electrification' by describing hybrids as though they were pure electric vehicles.

     

    Most people miss the fine print that almost all of their expected growth in 'electric vehicle' sales are actually hybrids.

     

    For once I find their subterfuge and doublespeak encouraging.

     

    D
    15 Jul 2012, 09:18 AM Reply Like
  • The most effective (vs ethical) marketing capitalizes on the target market's knowledge, but also their ignorance and laziness.
    15 Jul 2012, 09:36 AM Reply Like
  • I think they dynamic is more wanting to camouflage the failure of EVs for as long as possible by lumping them in with conventional HEVs to make them look more important than they are.
    15 Jul 2012, 11:05 AM Reply Like
  • I had posted this before. I think the word is out. Even the Chinese who have the most to gain from vehicle electrification have backed down on BEV's. Now including hybrids in their target numbers.

     

    "The world's largest auto market has set an accumulated production and sales target of 500,000 units of pure electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles by 2015, and that will be increased tenfold to more than 5 million units by 2020. "

     

    http://bit.ly/Lq6KCh
    15 Jul 2012, 11:12 AM Reply Like
  • "But, lest we get carried away with China’s embrace of EVs, let’s put things in perspective, shall we? Last year, 14.5 million cars were sold in China. Only 5,655 of them were electric vehicles, while 2,713 were hybrids. That hardly qualifies as a mainstream consumer trend."

     

    http://smrt.io/MwtpJj
    15 Jul 2012, 11:25 AM Reply Like
  • And most of it is not exactly personal uptake. For much of the first years sales of the BYD e6 the buyer was a taxi service. Started by.................BYD.

     

    http://bit.ly/LSKr9E
    15 Jul 2012, 11:46 AM Reply Like
  • Ran across this US company that installs combined MULTIPLE small windmills (which they also have patents for) and solar panels on farm building roofs. The top (9 minute) video shows the installation process, and also a brief view of the battery bank they use. No talk about cost (other than the tax credit,) but it was interesting to me to see some of the process.

     

    http://windenergy7.com

     

    They have a bunch of videos on their page. So far I've only looked at the first one.

     

    The top video directly on youtube is here:
    http://bit.ly/M00Cxa#!

     

    if you click on "show more" you'll get a lot of the company info and sales pitch.

     

    (note that you can get the full screen version of these videos if you click on the word "youtube" down in the right corner of the embedded video on a web page)

     

    Taking this back to JP's comment on the LC Superhybrid above, one wonders if the company at any point soon would try to get involved with companies like this. They've "outsourced" something somewhat similar to Rosewater.

     

    But expanding this further, how much resources would it take to say market inverter makers to use their batteries? How many different kind and levels of power engineers/integrators and installers should they consider some marketing outreach? Where's the best bang for the buck?

     

    IF the companies work activity with NSC and BMW is reduced while waiting for their "final jeopardy answer," might they have a few more resources available to some of these types of outreach, which clearly won't be huge sellers, but might be justified at some minimal level in working on "mindshare."
    15 Jul 2012, 10:02 AM Reply Like
  • I hope Axion never talks to this type of huckster. Total waste of time and oxygen. Doesn't work. Let me send you some emails from Nigeria.

     

    Note there is not a single energy or economic fact except for the 30% federal tax giveaway.

     

    For starters, the rule of thumb is the bottom blade of a wind turbine should be at least 50 feet above the nearest obstruction within 500 feet radius to get laminar flow. In turbulent flow, you have kinetic sculptures with absurdly low effectiveness. This is physics, not patents.
    15 Jul 2012, 11:24 AM Reply Like
  • "I hope Axion never talks to this type of huckster. Total waste of time and oxygen. Doesn't work. Let me send you some emails from Nigeria."

     

    I agree Rick, but I also agree with wtb's fundamental point that resources no longer devoted to supporting NSC and/or BMW business development need/should be re-deployed to develop new integrated systems for Axion to market or to support marketing efforts targeting potential market sectors.

     

    How many times have we read on the APCs that the PbC is not a drop in replacement for FLA or VRLA batteries? I don't entirely agree with that assessment, but it is certainly valid for many mass market systems such as autos.

     

    One individual (in the person of Vani Dantam) is almost certainly unable to timely address the full range of industries comprising PbC markets. I would certainly not object to Axion working out distributorship or marketing support agreements with well established players in renewable energy markets. It did so with Scott Sklar's Stella Group and secured the Washington Navy Yard Net Zero Energy project award.

     

    I have seen nothing from Axion suggesting an ongoing working relationship with the Stella Group, but frequently hear/read about relationship(s) with Rosewater Energy with no visible evidence of marketing success therefrom. As the saying goes, "the proof of the pudding is in the eating" and the sales record to date raises question as to whether Axion would not be better served by a strengthened relationship with the Stella Group and/or other system integrator groups and less reliance on Rosewater Energy.
    15 Jul 2012, 02:10 PM Reply Like
  • I am all in favor of more business development. I think Axion should be working with all sort of inverter and charging companies. Today most better charging systems software select AGM or flooded charging regimes. I would like to see bio-carbon as another entry on the list.

     

    There are several ways to make bio-carbon effective with inverters, even with the significant voltage drop. The bio-carbon battery needs to be one of the options selectable on a wide variety of consuming devices.

     

    I just don't think under-financed kinetic sculpture fraudsters need to be part of the conversation.
    15 Jul 2012, 04:09 PM Reply Like
  • The marketing team needed for a rifle approach that focuses on a few select applications in a few industries can be small, centralized and extremely well trained.

     

    The minute you adopt a scattergun approach of marketing to every Tom, Dick and Harry that wants to test a battery you need an huge team ($$$) and an even bigger technical support staff ($$$) since the guy who only needs $5,000 or $10,000 of batteries wants as much hand holding as the guy who needs $1 million of batteries.

     

    Unless we're willing to see SG&A (and losses) skyrocket while a scattergun marketing group tries to respond to everybody who might be interested, the slow and measured approach is our only alternative.

     

    Axion has always been very deliberate in the way it approaches markets and potential customers. The goal is to minimize waste of time and money. I fully support sensible.
    15 Jul 2012, 04:31 PM Reply Like
  • Sensible is good, however the results outside of NS have moved at a glacial pace. I've placed all my near-term hope on rails because the PbC solves two problems - fuel and emissions and seems a glove fit for the application.
    15 Jul 2012, 05:06 PM Reply Like
  • "The goal is to minimize waste of time and money. I fully support sensible."

     

    As am I, and sensible includes awareness of Einstein's definition of insanity. 'insanity: doing the same thing over and over again expecting a different results.'

     

    Working with Rosewater Energy repeatedly has yet to produce any sales visible to shareholders other than owners of Rosewater Energy (if there are any).

     

    Working with the Stella Group yielded a sale. Is there a "rinse and repeat" in process or was the out reach to the group a one off? The head of that organization has been involved with renewable energy projects, manufacturers, etc. and familiar with renewable energy storage system strengths, weaknesses, and costs for decades.

     

    Rick K suggested working with "all sort of inverter and charging companies". That strikes me as an eminently reasonable, prudent thing to do. And, quite candidly, if Dantam or technically competent Axion staff working under his direction have not already taken undertaken efforts in that direction some things are amiss and need attention.
    15 Jul 2012, 05:24 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv: How long has Rosewater been around? A year or two? I can't recall. But if that's in the ballpark, ISTM that considering building from scratch can be expected to take a while.

     

    Had to follow *behind* Axion progress to define a marketable product, build staff, build customer base, start doing PR and marketing, ...

     

    I can't see getting impatient with them yet.

     

    At the same time, if it was possible for Axion to work with more groups, that would be a plus.

     

    AFAIK, we don't have evidence of them *not* working with others.

     

    Patience is needed.

     

    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 05:42 PM Reply Like
  • H.T. Love:
    Mucha paciencia!
    Saludos.
    Carlos.
    15 Jul 2012, 06:10 PM Reply Like
  • "Patience is needed."

     

    My ass, I vote to kill something! ;)

     

    Just kidding. As we know too well, each true Axionista is an utter paragon of patience. Only the old guard insiders have even a little bit on us.
    15 Jul 2012, 06:27 PM Reply Like
  • 48: "Vulture capitalism"? :-))

     

    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 06:36 PM Reply Like
  • Well, yeah. But it's sure gotta beat "Buzzard Diplomacy"... ;)
    15 Jul 2012, 06:45 PM Reply Like
  • I don't have any "problem" with Axion working with Rosewater Energy, per se, but I do question why it is we see/hear of marketing agreement signings between the two, and award of one-off contracts involving other companies otherwise.

     

    Looking at financial reporting, I see a sustained high level of R&D above $5 mil. for the past two years with sizable growth of SG&A in 2011 to $4.2 million from $2.3 mil. a year earlier. Annual rate of SG&A over the 12 months ending 3/12 was $4.3 mil. while R&D ran $5.38 mil. If manufacturing issues have been resolved as intimated by TG and Axion has product to sell, it is appropriate to reprogram some resources from R&D to marketing and business development.

     

    Viewed from the perspective of Geoffrey Moore's Technology Adoption Life Cycle thesis, PbC tech remains the province of earlier innovators and has yet to reach "early adopter" stage of the technology cycle. The only prospect it has of reaching "early adopter" stage is for Axion to sell batteries to system integrators and/or integrated systems.
    15 Jul 2012, 07:05 PM Reply Like
  • We're not selling cellphones and laptop computers here.

     

    There have been a handful of high profile grid storage installations that were paid for with Federal or local grant money, but there is no such thing as an established market that's generating recurring revenue for anybody in the industry.

     

    Criticizing Axion for a lack of obvious success in a market where nobody can point to an obvious success seems unreasonable.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:25 AM Reply Like
  • Everybody in the industry is facing the same problem. Many, including A123, Ecoult and Viridity are using their capital to build demonstrator facilities for customers that are unwilling to pay for a solution up front, but are willing to share revenue or savings on the back end.

     

    The R&D numbers were $5.1 million last year and $5.4 million in 2010. SG&A was $4.5 million last year and $3.5 in 2010.

     

    In comparison, A123 spent $20.4 million on R&D and $13.2 million on SG&A in the QUARTER ended March 31st. They, of course, have a scattergun marketing group that will talk to anybody who might want a battery.

     

    Axion can either spend like a sniper and take down the elephants like NS, BMW and the other potential customers we don't know about yet or it can spend like a drunken sailor and try to please everyone. It's only a question of the board's willingness to spend money – and by transitivity raise money in a difficult market.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:38 AM Reply Like
  • "Black arrow, you've never failed me. I had you from my father, and he from of old. Go now and speed well!"

     

    And may you fell that meaty pachyderm with a clean shot. ;)
    16 Jul 2012, 02:19 AM Reply Like
  • JP: "... can spend like a drunken sailor and try to please everyone".

     

    Based on some stuff I think I learned from you and others, if Axion did the drunken sailor thing, they would be getting ... "pleased" (insert your favorite pejorative verb there) by everyone, not pleasing everyone.

     

    That often happens to drunken sailors as well.

     

    So I'm comfy with the sniper approach.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 08:51 AM Reply Like
  • Yeah John, but lack of others success doesn't mean Axion will succeed, of course. Further just because others haven't succeeded doesn't mean we can't criticize Axion. :-))

     

    So impatient investors that we are, we have to critique, imagine better ways to do it, second-guess, ...

     

    Just the nature of the beast.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 08:56 AM Reply Like
  • The only problem is they are using a high power rifle with a scope and we can't tell how much they are hitting. Sure are shooting at some big game though.

     

    How do you like your locomotive? I'm guessin' not rare. :)
    16 Jul 2012, 08:58 AM Reply Like
  • When I was in law school and my eldest was five, we had a sign hanging on her bedroom door that said "Be patient, God isn't finished with me yet."

     

    Axion is hunting several big beasts with thick skin and a huge load of muscle that's hard to bring down – industrial grizzly bears if you will.

     

    Pulling the trigger too soon is a good way to get eaten when your goal was to bag a trophy.
    16 Jul 2012, 09:24 AM Reply Like
  • I certainly understand the problem of being spread too thin. I have written before that lack of focus in the electrical storage market is a sure path to failure. As Dilbert's boss said, "Why can't we focus on everything?" Duh.

     

    Building endless demos, especially on your own nickel, is expensive, and worse, distracts or dilutes talent and time, the two most important and most constrained assets of young businesses.

     

    Yet, I think by sequestering basic battery and charging information Axion is preventing novel implementations of bio-carbon batteries. If bio-carbon's numbers are well known, the battery can become a "drop in" replacement in all sorts of applications we may not have imagined.

     

    This might be stretching the analogy, but this a little like the Open Software movement. Obviously Axion retains all IP, patents, proprietary manufacturing information, etc. Only the basic charge and discharge curves, temperature curves, and such, are released. This information is strictly product information that anyone with the physical battery could reproduce and test, and nothing about manufacturing specifications or technology. If all additional information (other than that under a signed NDA) is public, including possible charging and inverter circuitries, and application findings, there becomes a good body of information to make devices that will thrive with a bio-carbon battery.

     

    This information is supplied without support or guarantee. The batteries are sold with only a most basic warrantee, if any at all. Perhaps it can be sold as a "beta" product. No access to Axion engineering staff allowed.

     

    The goal is that the developed algorithms become selectable on a wide variety of devices, not just the specific niches that Axion focuses on. Axion keeps laser-focused on just a few elephants, but watches (and hopefully learns) any the other ideas.

     

    One area that needs innovation is how to best use the very wide voltage range. My understanding is that nominal 12 volt bio-carbon battery still has Whrs available even when discharged to 4 volts or lower. Traditional lead acid chemistries are dead by 10 volts, so all consuming circuitry assumes there is no energy left. Bio-carbon still has substantial energy. Axion needs devices that can utilize this lower voltage energy.

     

    Axion's start/stop approach with a 16 volt battery is clever and cheap. As a power application it plays very well in the 40-80% PSOC. However, only a portion (about 40%?) of the entire energy range on the battery is being used. An example: for a more energy (as opposed to power) nominal 12 volt application, it is unknown (or at least unrevealed) whether using a extra-high voltage battery (such as 16 volts) and reducing the voltage, or using a 12 volt battery and increasing the voltage is more effective. The results may be completely different stringing 10 batteries in series for 120 volt DC application. Perhaps a mixed string of a 12 volt, a 16 volt, and two 12 volt in series has some interesting properties.

     

    Axion could do this type of testing, if it had lots of money and an excess of talented engineers, but it doesn't. I am proposing let “the community” do the testing, let the community *buy* the batteries needed for testing, and let the results be published and be legally accessible. Axion is only supplying standard bio-carbon batteries profitably.

     

    Assuming Axion already has good charging and discharge data, the incremental time organizing this is probably just a day or two, plus legal counsel review to verify appropriate user agreements with IP protection. Most of the legal stuff has already been done and tested in court by the Open Software movement, so there is not much new territory. Every battery manufacturer who does publish their specs already has done the legal homework. Let a thousand flowers bloom.
    16 Jul 2012, 12:50 PM Reply Like
  • Rick K, thee and me are thinking very, very similarly. Whether one thinks in terms of an open software analogy or a MicroSoft software analogy, hardware sales follow proliferation of operating system and user application software developed with software developer creativity, initiative and expense.

     

    If PbC patent protection is as strong as represented, the only justifications I consider reasonable for non-disclosure of technical performance data are 1) an existing NDA precludes release of such data and 2) concern based on solid foundation that toll assembly contracts would disappear.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:39 PM Reply Like
  • Particularly with a product that hasn't yet established a sterling reputation for performance and reliability, putting it into the hands of strangers (or beards for competitors) who will undoubtedly do stupid things to the battery and then write white-papers about how their failure is the battery's fault seems like a great way to get all kinds of negative press.

     

    Since you really seem determined on the bio-carbon thing I thought I'd try to add a bit of perspective. A 30HT PbC is 10 kg lighter than a conventional AGM - http://bit.ly/sYM4Qf

     

    Dividing 10 kg by 11.34, the specific gravity of lead, and multiplying the product by 0.32, the specific gravity of activated carbon, tells us that the PbC uses 282 grams of carbon and effectively sequesters less than 1 kg of CO2. Touting that kind of insignificant sequestration would probably be a bad idea.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:39 PM Reply Like
  • Hell. That would be almost as big an overstatement as saying EV's are going to save the planet. :))

     

    I guess if you're going to spread BS you have to make it a little less obvious for the not so well read.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:56 PM Reply Like
  • "less obvious for the not so well read"

     

    LoL! Based on our share price, there's not many of them around!

     

    And we know the bigger the lie, the more effective it is!

     

    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 02:01 PM Reply Like
  • Thank you, John, for a carbon calculation.

     

    So, 10 million start/stop batteries a year incrementally sequester about 10 thousand tons of CO2. (Global car production is about 60 million). In a decade, 100,000 tons are sequestered. Plus all those start/stops are now emitting less CO2, too.

     

    Does not include other uses, such as trucks, PowerCubes, residential, grid application, etc.

     

    Granted, definitely does not "save the earth". The idea is not to save the earth by buying a battery, but to get the lead out of the marketing.
    16 Jul 2012, 02:10 PM Reply Like
  • > iind - "That would be almost as big an overstatement ...."

     

    :-) That?
    16 Jul 2012, 02:23 PM Reply Like
  • As an old veteran of the Axion product name wars I don't think the idea will get a whole lot of traction. We all loved the e3Supercell name but we couldn't get the necessary trademark protection.

     

    The dynamic may change if the PbC becomes a consumer product some day, but the advantages of telling an engineer who knows lead-acid that you're not changing his old reliable chemistry has more positives than negatives.

     

    Besides, the carbon savings are from using battery, not owning the battery.
    16 Jul 2012, 02:27 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv. Putting forth the claim that the PBC battery with it's coconut shell activated carbon was sequestering a relevant amount of carbon or CO2.

     

    HTL, You can say that again! And EV contribution to reducing much beyond moving the point of pollution is a whopper of a scam. Maybe some day I'll welcome eating those words.
    16 Jul 2012, 02:32 PM Reply Like
  • "Dividing 10 kg by 11.34, the specific gravity of lead, and multiplying the product by 0.32, the specific gravity of activated carbon, tells us that the PbC uses 282 grams of carbon and effectively sequesters less than 1 kg of CO2. Touting that kind of insignificant sequestration would probably be a bad idea. "

     

    :-) I don't recall anyone at any time suggesting anything related to touting the PbC as a CO2 sequestration device. Noting for marketing purposes the utilization of "politically correct" bio-carbon as a key building material is hardly "touting CO2 sequestion".

     

    Thanks for the physical parameter info.
    16 Jul 2012, 02:38 PM Reply Like
  • If you slay the dragon with the arrow, we will indeed have much gold to plunder. Of course there's that nasty business about the dwarfs and the goblins, but first things first! ;-)
    16 Jul 2012, 03:35 PM Reply Like
  • "When I was in law school and my eldest was five, we had a sign hanging on her bedroom door that said "Be patient, God isn't finished with me yet."

     

    I need a sign like that on my four year old daughter's room, but it would read, "If you wonder why we look/feel 20 years older than our age, please look inside."
    16 Jul 2012, 03:40 PM Reply Like
  • LabTech, And God isn't finished yet!
    16 Jul 2012, 03:45 PM Reply Like
  • D-inv,
    " I don't recall anyone at any time suggesting anything related to touting the PbC as a CO2 sequestration device. Noting for marketing purposes the utilization of "politically correct" bio-carbon as a key building material is hardly "touting CO2 sequestion". "

     

    I "think" someone in a past concentrator had suggested you could do this, since you were taking carbon from coconut shells, that otherwise would have been burned as waste fuel, and using them for PbC batteries.
    16 Jul 2012, 03:53 PM Reply Like
  • IINDelco,
    True, but after her, and her little brother, we are! ;-)
    16 Jul 2012, 03:57 PM Reply Like
  • Labtech, My wife and I chose the same number before we married and we stuck to it.

     

    Always remember, Little people, little problems. Big people,........
    16 Jul 2012, 04:08 PM Reply Like
  • Petty problems that get blown all out of proportion?
    16 Jul 2012, 04:12 PM Reply Like
  • "Be patient, God isn't finished with me yet."

     

    :-) Little ones are fascinating studies in evolving development. The closest thing to common denominator I have been able to discern is HIGH, HIGH energy level. A genius who could devise a means of capturing excess energy sloughing off the tykes and storing for later use just might become somewhat well off financially.

     

    Really good translators for parents, etc would also have a good market. (But then the parents might learn more than they want to know.) :-)
    16 Jul 2012, 04:27 PM Reply Like
  • An operators manual is needed ... along with a wheelbarrow in which to lug it around.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 04:32 PM Reply Like
  • Macro view UPS market. Not much detail.

     

    http://bit.ly/NUKj75
    15 Jul 2012, 01:02 PM Reply Like
  • Unless lighting has struck without any thunder I expect a very modest Q2 sales figure. That assumes NS is a Q3 event so it remains to be seen if my expectations are accurate.

     

    If my attorney can get the vampires off my throat I would hope to buy some more AXPW if the price declines further due to a lackluster Q2 report. Won't know if I will be able to buy anything or be forced to sell my AXPW for awhile. Sort of like waiting on death row for a phone call - it's not painful, but it isn't pleasant either.

     

    All the jokes about lawyers go out the window when you need one - then they become your very best friend.
    15 Jul 2012, 02:00 PM Reply Like
  • I've updated my intra-day chart stuff to include the latest chart and started back-filling some of the data. The chart is marginally smaller and only the most recent daily summaries are incorporated. This should make for a slightly more pleasant experience for some.

     

    The big change is in the header. Since my focus is on trading action for purposes of learning what we can about current and future sentiment, and therefore likely action, I went through a ton of stuff looking for discussions of the Mega-C trustee shares (and some Blackrock, but it wasn't my focus so I may not have caught them all) and closely related. I've added links to the start of "threads" about it so we can review thoughts and avoid some repetition.

     

    I'll update that stuff as it seems warranted.

     

    If I've missed any (quite likely), please feel free to post comments and I'll get them added in.

     

    I hope it proves useful.

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...

     

    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 04:22 PM Reply Like
  • Reading the article linked above, "5m greener vehicles on the streets by 2020" from Chinadaily.com

     

    http://bit.ly/Lq6KCh

     

    I see "The plan aims to lower the price of batteries used for electric vehicles to 2 yuan for each kilowatt-hour by 2015 and 1.5 yuan a kilowatt-hour by 2020 as part of a stimulus for the new-energy vehicle industry".

     

    Is this at all reasonable? As long as there's a peg of the yuan to the USD and we keep devaluing the USD, I think they've a difficult row to hoe there. Further, with their recent switch to taking care of environmental concerns, ISTM the non-labor component of battery manufacturing gets closer to parity with ROW (Rest Of World) costs, leaving only the labor component as a major cost advantage.

     

    We've heard that wages in China are rising so this advantage may disappear or reduce as well.

     

    Anybody see that cost/KwH as a reasonable goal?

     

    HardToLove
    15 Jul 2012, 04:52 PM Reply Like
  • I saw that HTL. I disregarded it.

     

    1.00 CNY (yuan,renminbi) = 0.156723 USD
    15 Jul 2012, 04:59 PM Reply Like
  • This is OT, but it just really chaps my ass. I know the reasons, but still just HATE to see waste like this. There. has. got. to be. a better way. I can't believe there's not some angle in there somewhere for cpst and/or axion, or somebody else, hell even gov't, to do some good....

     

    http://bit.ly/NIK3Zc
    15 Jul 2012, 04:56 PM Reply Like
  • We have a DOE who sees no transportation value in natural gas. They want us all to embrace electric vehicles. 1M EV's on the road by 2015 if the government has to buy them all.
    15 Jul 2012, 11:28 PM Reply Like
  • Flaring natural gas makes for great inflammatory headlines, but there is a reason for the waste. Under State law, an oil and gas lease is a "use it or lose it" contract.

     

    If you drill a well that's only able to produce gas, you can "shut-in" the well if there are no available facilities to transport the gas.

     

    If you drill a well that's able to produce both oil and gas, you must produce the oil even if you have to flare the natural gas. If you fail to produce the oil from a well that's capable of production, the landowner can terminate your lease on very short notice. That's a very bad outcome.

     

    Companies are not flaring gas because they want to waste it. They're flaring gas because they'll lose their leases if they don't produce the oil.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:44 AM Reply Like
  • Capstone markets a turbine to use unprocessed wellhead gas (economic or flare, sweet or up to 7% sour) to generate 3-phase, load-following continuous power.

     

    http://bit.ly/MzlfyQ
    16 Jul 2012, 12:11 PM Reply Like
  • Alasmaci: unfortunately most drilling is still using the diesel IC for power. The CPST stuff tends to be more attractive when infrastructure comes into play and pressurization is needed.

     

    I do seem to recall that there were some articles or comments somewhere that said one driller was starting to use it for drilling. But I don't recall any details.

     

    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 12:26 PM Reply Like
  • HTL, I also recall CPST sale of turbines to oil industry companies. But it was two or more years back. IMS, the planned use(s) were offshore drilling rigs and pipeline compression stations. Depending on distance (and terrain) between drilling pads, I could visualize use of NG produced from wells at an initial pad in a field development to produce power for drilling at subsequent pads Coordination with local power companies and public service commissions might be needed though, making local use of the gas a gigantic headache.
    16 Jul 2012, 01:50 PM Reply Like
  • That's what I recall about the drilling more bores near the first pad. Russia is very aggressive with the MTs, I bet that's where it is.

     

    If I get time I'll hit the PR at Cappy's site and see if I can find it.

     

    But time is short for me ATM.

     

    HardToLove
    16 Jul 2012, 01:56 PM Reply Like
  • 48: I am with you. Flaring is a huge waste, but considered necessary by drillers, and as well as the entire industry, so that pounds per square inch can ramp up to the level for capping, and therefore pipelining becomes profitable -- after enough pressure has been built up.

     

    Why the EPA lets this happen is beyond me. But as I understand things (very limitedly), if flaring were not permitted, the cost of drilling would soar to unprofitability, and hence, no drilling would occur.
    15 Jul 2012, 05:05 PM Reply Like
  • Author’s reply » Concentrator 127 right this way...

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    15 Jul 2012, 07:00 PM Reply Like
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