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Trade stocks by day, and at night am writing a historical epic about the ancient Mayan civilization. "Maya: Spirits Of The Jaguar" is a sweeping saga set in the ancient and magical Mayan landscape where a wronged family struggles against prophecy, power, treachery and forbidden love,... More
  • Axion Concentrator 38: Beginning Dec. 27, 2011 182 comments
    Dec 27, 2011 12:41 PM
    I believe it is important to note in the Thomas Granville interview posted by jlyleluce in the past Concentrator that the PowerCube costs about $900,000 and uses just over 600 PbC batteries. Further, that the initial PowerCube at the Axion Power New Castle, PA plant was designed such that people could walk inside of the Cube to see it. With out the walk-in arrangement, the .5 megawatt PowerCube will have a 20 foot long imprint, which I assume can then be doubled to a full megawatt of over 1200 "transportable" batteries that can be hauled aboard a single tractor trailor bed.

    At the late November unveiling of the PowerCube, Thomas Granville told me that the PowerCube can be "moved" as a utility or company deems neccesary due to the change in the seasons.

    Beneath is the pasted in interview (and special thanks to jlyeluce for the link!):


    How Axion Uses Their Energy Storage Technology To Make Money From PJMinShare6

    Tom Granville, CEO of Axion Power International, discusses the battery solutions that his company offers to customers and how Axion is taking advantage of a new FERC ruling to generate an additional revenue stream from the the grid.

    Full Transcript:

    Ben lack:Briefly talk a little bit about the company why you guys are in business and what your typical customer is?
    Tom Granville:Axion Power International was formed in Toronto in 2003 and it was formed primarily to obtain license rights to a unique hybrid battery/supercapacitor technology. The long term goal, however, was to purchase the patents and the company from the actual scientists that did the years of research on the carbon and actually came up with the concept and idea for this “hybrid”. We formed Axion in September of 2003. We negotiated a license agreement with the scientists in November 2003 and as part of that license agreement, in order to buy the patents with cash, shares of stock and options, we needed to be a public company according to the inventors. So, we found a clean shell, Tamboril Cigar Company which was a Hunt Brother’s shell. The shell expired at the end of 2003 and that’s actually how I spent my new year’s eve in 2003. We closed that 10:30 at night Eastern Time. With a group from Switzerland who had ownership of a public Hunt Brothers shell and we became a public company at that point in time. The first week in January of 2004, we bought the patents and the following week, we bought the company and moved forward to develop a product that was commercializeable.We were all great believers in the technology, the potential of the technology but what the scientists had developed and what was commercially feasible were two different things.

     

    In the process of moving the technology forward, we found an opportunity here in New Castle, Pennsylvania to obtain a full blown laboratory and a battery production company called New Castle Battery Company. A 75,000 sq/ft plant, equipment and inventory was being foreclosed on by a bank with a first position. We moved forward, we closed with the bank and bought everything for literally pennies on the dollar. We made the bank whole and the bank dealt with the other creditors. We were then able to transition the company down here, so that by the beginning of 2007 the entire operation was here in New Castle, Pennsylvania.

    The old New Castle Battery Company had been making SLI batteries and other products for decades, literally. So, we inherited the line and some of the key personnel from the old company. We signed a long term lease on the property and began to truly move toward commercialization of our propriatary lead-carbon product. We continued to make other specialty battery products that New Castle had made for years. Things like the 16v race car battery and collector car batteries for antique cars, but that was a very limited market and still is. We still continue to make those products.

    We make other specialty lead acid battery products as well, but our real task here and our real reason for existence is the PbC® battery, our proprietary PbC battery which is comprised of an activated carbon negative electrode, which gives the battery its unique properties. Those unique properties include long cycle life, 3-4 times longer when compared to lead acid batteries; much greater charge acceptance than lead acid batteries, especially in partial state of charge applications, 10-20 times better charge acceptance; and a much less expensive price than lithium-ion or nickel metal hydride – a third to a quarter of the price of those technologies. Our product incorporates the lead acid battery structure, in that we use the same case, cover, separator, electrolyte and positive plate. Everything is the same as a lead acid battery except for the proprietary negative electrode that utilizes activated carbon in the construct of the negative plate.

    These negative plates can be stacked, and are stacked, in our manufacturing process right on the line, so that as a battery comes down the line, one of the new activated carbon plates is utilized instead of the traditional lead plate negative. It’s the same form factor. The battery is the same footprint as a standard lead acid battery. In fact, when you weld the cover on, you can’t tell the difference between our battery and a lead acid battery. That is until you actually pick it up and you realize it’s about 30% lighter because we’ve taken the lead out of the negative side.

    Ben Lack:Axion is in a unique position to take advantage of current energy storage opportunities because you really play in the States. Talk to us a little bit about the recent FERC regulation that’s allowing small electric providers to supply power to larger power grids and how small businesses are taking advantage. Your company is one of two companies to kind of take advantage of this new ruling. Tell us a little bit about how you found out about the ruling, what the ruling is and why your company has decided to take advantage of it.
    Tom Granville:Well, we were actually assembling the PowerCube™, our trademark PowerCube™, in advance of the FERC discussions. We received a grant from the state to help us develop that PowerCube. The PowerCube™ has wide range application for utility, for wind, for solar and for other storage applications.About a year ago, Veridity, a strategic partner of ours from the other side of the state, (Philadelphia area is where they are headquartered now – they were in Valley Forge) , approached us and we began discussions about the anticipated new FERC regulations and how we might be able to participate in conjunction with PJM in utility market applications. In addition to that, Viridity has been a strategic partner of ours, and we have submitted several RFPs with them for other applications for that Cube product. Applications such as military bases, replacing gensets that burn diesel fuel , also an oil rig application again doing the work of existing gensets. These applications can be satisfied using the Cube technology. The specific application that we’ve entered into with PJM is here at our New Castle plant. I’m sure you’re familiar with PJM , they are the largest RTO in the world literally. It’s pretty amazing what they generate. They delivered 682 terawatt-hours of electricity in 2009, for example. They are ahead of the curve on the opportunity generated by the FERC ruling that now allows systems smaller than 1/2MW to connect to the grid. PJM was confident this change would happen and that it would be a first step for them in moving to take advantage of things like community storage, and to take advantage of the opportunity to work in the demand-response and curtailment markets as well. So, the FERC regulation, for the first time allowed power to come directly on the grid from smaller sources and allowed for the RTOs to take advantage of power systems that were less than a half a megawatt, all the way down to 100kva. Our Cube is actually a half a megawatt but we’re starting out at lower levels and building from there. We’re starting out at 100kva, 100 up and 100 down so literally 200, and building on that until we reach our capacity here on the PJM network. Our battery also has unique properties in that it can respond in milliseconds. The requirement is to respond in three minutes or less, but our ability to respond in ~50 milliseconds is going to be very important to the structure of demand-response beginning in 2012, when the RTOs will begin to “pay for performance”. In other words, the faster you can respond to their signal for curtailment, or frequency regulation, the more they will pay for that service.What we will do, how we will utilize it in the beginning, is we’ll bid to PJM through Viridity’s proprietary electronics. We’ll bid into the PJM system the night before as to what pricing we’ll accept for curtailment or for frequency regulation. We can bid it that way with a specific number, or we can bid at PJM’s suggested value and take what they are offering that day. So far, we’ve done both.
    Ben Lack:What’s been more profitable?
    Tom Granville:It’s been more profitable when we price it out. However, we haven’t always been successful in obtaining our bid price. We found that it’s gone for lower pricing.
    Ben Lack:What would you say was your success rate?
    Tom Granville:It’s very early. We just started this literally 9 days ago. The first day in action was the 28th. We did a trial run on the 22nd, I believe it was, but really the first day was on the 28th. So, it’s very early and we’re still doing some testing, as well with Viridity. We are the first ones to utilize their system with a PowerCube™ actually. Our Cube will be bi-directional, it will be different than the waterworks project for example, which can’t provide energy back to the grid. We can do that. We’re not set up to do that right now but we will be doing that in the next several weeks. Right now, we can do is curtail the power use that we have in the plant, when PJM requires it or when they ask for it or when we’re the successful bidder and then we run the plant with our Cube batteries until we can come back online. We will recharge the batteries in off-peak time, so that we’re prepared for the next event. Of course we can also accept power from PJM as part of our frequency regulation service and be paid for that. In the future, we’ll be able to both curtail power as well as respond to a need by PJM for more power on the grid, and we’ll accomplish that by feeding our power from the Cube right into the grid.
    Ben Lack:In the 9 days that you’ve been testing, has the testing gone smoothly?
    Tom Granville:As smoothly as one could expect, I guess. If the truth be known, it’s gone smoother than I thought it was going to because it was so brand new and, you know, we were working 20 hours/day in the days leading up to going on line as we worked out the bugs with the utility and with Viridity and since it’s the first time they had done this , you can imagine the software nightmares that were incurred. Our Axion team deserves all the praise on this end, for bringing this project to fruition. So, I’m very encouraged by the way it’s gone. Certainly it’s not been without pot holes but it’s gone much more smoothly than I anticipated, let alone hoped for.
    Ben Lack:In the 9 days that you’ve been testing “inaudible-14:04” initial phases, you mentioned that you are, the night before, putting in your own pricing for what you’ll accept and then there’s also a pricing that PJM recommends. What’s the difference in that range between the pricing you’ll accept and the pricing that PJM is recommending?
    Tom Granville:I’d rather not get into that but you’re not talking about 25%, you’re talking about a number much lower than that. Just to give you a range.
    Ben Lack:Why are you in this business?
    Tom Granville:We are in the business of showing the application for the Cube and how the Cube can be of service to a utility, or to a plant, or to a wind farm, or a solar farm, or to a number of other applications. We’re going to be able to do, with this Cube, much more than just demand-response and frequency regulation. We’re going to be able to do power smoothing, UPS backup and be able to try our hand at peak shaving. All of the above will be items that can be accomplished through the Cube. The oil rig application, which we see as a big opportunity going forward. It will give oil well drillers the ability to shut off ancillary motor generator sets that they just run on idle standby. They run these in the event that they need a quick boost of power if the bit gets locked in the hole or for some other reason they might need fast power. It takes the motor generator set, depending on the manufacturer, between 6-8 minutes to power up completely including the lead time for someone to manually go over and start it assuming that the automatic transfer, for some reason, would fail. We can provide instantaneous power for them, so they can shut those gensets off and they don’t run idle and they don’t emit all kinds of CO2and NOX emissions and burn literally thousands of gallons of diesel doing nothing.

     

    This Cube is the test tower, if you will; it’s our display model. The reason we made it over size, was so that people can get into the Cube and walk around and look at it and see exactly how it operates. This is a 40 foot container that we have here on site. Future containers will only be 20 feet and they’ll be able to contain the same amount of power. Future electronics will be separate from the Cube. They’re in our Cube right now, but for larger storage projects, we’ll have multiple pods, if you will, all connected to the power module. We’re actually doing testing, in the Cube, for the Norfolk Southern hybrid locomotive application. In that application, we will have large strings of batteries similar to those that are contained in this Cube. It’s important to have the batteries equalized and in sync, if you will, and this Cube provides us with the opportunity to test that string equalization feature of our proprietary PbC® lead carbon battery. The batteries, and battery strings, work in unison in providing uniform discharges resulting in less reliance on our propriatary battery management system.


     
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Comments (182)
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  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Last comment in the previous Concentrator by John Petersen:

     

    The sell side transactions are generally pretty large and the buy side transactions are more numerous but smaller. My guess that people who bought at $0.57 in December of 2009 and have grown tired of waiting are selling and people who pay closer attention to the company's performance than the market price are buying.

     

    In the last concentrator Futurist reported that a number of the people he'd heard from wanted to increase their positions and were hoping the price would stay low long enough for them to do so.

     

    The important thing to remember is that sellers make themselves irrelevant because once they've sold they can't impact your future. Buyers, on the other hand, are going to be your comrades in arms for a while – hopefully for a long while.
    27 Dec 2011, 12:43 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    Great read, super encouraging to see the PC testing process is going smoother than could be expected. It sounds like Axion took a painstakingly long time to quality test their products. Because of that we could have a product that rolls out quickly commercially.
    27 Dec 2011, 01:15 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    The management team has always limited public communications to talking about goals accomplished instead of plans. They understand that promising boxcars and delivering wheelbarrows undermines confidence, while promising nothing but delivering performance builds confidence. It's not fun for those who want to see a press release a day, but it's comforting to know that when management speaks it's got something worthwhile to say.
    27 Dec 2011, 01:48 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    By the sounds of it, we may be getting a few more press releases come the second half of the year. The proof is literally in the pudding here. In all applications tested it sounds the the PBC is meeting or exceeding expectations. The product is literally going to sell itself.
    27 Dec 2011, 01:57 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Please remember to "thumbs up" this and all the following Concentrators. The thumbs up tab can be found right above the first comment made in this thread.

     

    (Yes, I have something up my sleeve with this idea.)
    27 Dec 2011, 02:01 PM Reply Like
  • CO3
    , contributor
    Comments (252) | Send Message
     
    Maya: until we get "trained" you may want to include that note at the bottom of each concentrator intro ...
    27 Dec 2011, 02:08 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » CO3: I'm not a big fan of imploring or begging, or myself gaining some form of noteriety from my running these Concentrators. But in this case, I think you have a good idea.
    27 Dec 2011, 02:13 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    Maya - I don't remember which Concentrator you were speaking about numbers of batteries Axion had on pallets. But I remember hearing either a 27k or 54k number. Correct me if I'm wrong, but if we have 54k PBC's produced and it only takes 600 per .5MW Powercube you're looking at a potential of $40.5M-$81M (54,000/600*900,000) in revenue sitting on pallets. Granted those sales aren't happening tomorrow, or without some discounting. But we are looking at a large amount of revenue already ready for rollout. Just food for thought... :)
    27 Dec 2011, 02:14 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Articula: I'm pretty sure the "small mountain" of empty battery cases exceeded the 54,000 number. I'd have to go back and check.

     

    The question is, were they headed for the flood acid line, or, to be made into PbCs?

     

    Here is the link to that particular Concentrator:

     

    http://seekingalpha.co...
    27 Dec 2011, 02:21 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    Great memory - I guess I'd be interested in knowing more about whether they were producing that amount in flooded acid batteries in the first place. Do we know the price of those? We should be able to deduce if they were flooded batteries given their quarterly revenues and matching vs. inventories.

     

    It's probably silly to produce that amount of PBC's given they want to let mass amounts be produced by the OEM's.

     

    John - would Axion be producing all PBC's for 2012-2014 contracts with the eventual game plan being manufacturers with higher capacity fulfilling larger orders?
    27 Dec 2011, 02:26 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Articula, That would be nice but, perhaps, more pessimistically (keeping expectations in check) those cases would be for the ongoing contract they have making traditional lead acid batteries. On the most recent 10-Q TG talks about the modernization of their second lead-acid production lines as well as rebuild of casting machines. Granted this is all for future ramp up of PbC batteries but for now and until I am told differently from Granville himself, I will be safe and assume the majority of those cases are for the lead-acid contracts. It will still show a substantial increase in revenue for 2012, but probably not the 4-8 times figure you have.
    27 Dec 2011, 02:28 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    Understood, just thinking pie-in-the-sky. From an inventory standpoint it doesn't make sense to have that many sitting on site unless BMW was going to sign a contract Jan 1, 2012
    27 Dec 2011, 02:30 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    A typical flooded battery price is in the $50 to $60 range, so 50,000 cases would represent $2.5 to $3 million in flooded battery sales. Mayascribe has previously said he thought the 50,000 estimate was on the conservative side. I just wish he had better eyes so that we'd know whether the cases were 31HT or something smaller.
    27 Dec 2011, 02:40 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    To bad I wasn't there, since I had Lasik 5 years ago I have 20/15 vision. That makes plenty of sense given their revenue runrates then.
    27 Dec 2011, 02:43 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    It's way too much inventory for the annual revenue run rates we know about. The inventory build last quarter is way out of line with prior periods which makes it pretty clear that something is happening. We just don't know what that something is yet.
    27 Dec 2011, 02:52 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » JP: It wasn't that my eyes were bad. Heck, I was one of the only few at the ribbon cutting ceremony venturing around the back side of the skids, trying to figure out what I was seeing ensconced in white plastic wrap.

     

    Rather, it was that I did not know who I was venturing around with. Rudy Barrio and I were taking a mock tally, and I knew who he was. What I did not know was Pic, from Rosewater, was part of the triad checking out the battery cases. Would have loved to have popped him the question of which line those casings were heading for.

     

    Rudy quipped to me something like...all these visitors here, and you're the only one who has noticed these skids of casings.

     

    Pretty quickly, Chuck Trego summoned us into the PowerCube. At the time, I kind of had a feeling I wasn't supposed to be doing what I was doing.

     

    At least we know they exist, and we also know that "likely" there were more than 54,000 casings than I had then reported.
    27 Dec 2011, 03:31 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » John: Do we know the exact width and length dimensions of the 31HT? If we do, then we can determine which battery would amount to 24 batteries per layer, resting on a 4 X 4 common wooded skid.
    27 Dec 2011, 04:13 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    The Group 30HT battery from BD Batteries has the following dimensions.

     

    Length - 13.46
    Width - 6.77
    Height - 11.95

     

    http://bit.ly/sYM4Qf

     

    The real problem is that case sizes are so similar. For example a Group 27 case:

     

    Length - 12.50
    Width - 6.81
    Height - 8.94

     

    Without Superman class eyesight, it would be tough for a non-expert to tell the difference on a shipping pallet.
    27 Dec 2011, 04:35 PM Reply Like
  • jlyleluce
    , contributor
    Comments (260) | Send Message
     
    "...Viridity has been a strategic partner of ours, and we have submitted several RFPs with them for other applications for that Cube product. Applications such as military bases, replacing gensets that burn diesel fuel , also an oil rig application again doing the work of existing gensets."

     

    From the TG interview. I take the above to mean that Viridity/Axion have submitted "bids" or proposals on several unnamed projects that we yet don't know about. Is my interpretation correct?
    27 Dec 2011, 02:45 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    That is how I read it, Jlyl
    27 Dec 2011, 02:46 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    SHB: It looks like the engineers understand. It’s very good news to hear the PowerCube is going "modular".

     

    "Future electronics will be separate from the Cube. They’re in our Cube right now, but for larger storage projects, we’ll have multiple pods, if you will, all connected to the power module."

     

    This means each module can advance at its own rate but still meet specifications. The Control Module (electronics) can advance at a different rate than the Power Module (batteries) and visa versa.

     

    For example: a version 1 Power Module may require intelligence to control the proprietary BMS where a version 2 understands the Power Module has been equalized and is in sync and management is not needed.

     

    The modularity also allows you to add capacity by stacking Power Modules to meet your needs and possibly to isolate capacity to serve different needs (UPS,FR…).

     

    Although not specifically mentioned, modularity of the Power Module could also lead to the Power Module being used with someone else’s Control Module. As the standards emerge the silver bullet turns into silver buckshot and the players emerge.

     

    It’s good to know that cheap beats cool…
    27 Dec 2011, 02:47 PM Reply Like
  • jlyleluce
    , contributor
    Comments (260) | Send Message
     
    On the Rosewater Energy site they have what appears to be a diagram of the modular system.
    Link:
    http://bit.ly/uSyn7p
    27 Dec 2011, 02:54 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    It's also my understanding that PbC batteries are less temperature sensitive than the control electronics. There's no sense in using heavy climate control for batteries that don't really need it if you can centralize your cooling power where you do in fact need it.
    27 Dec 2011, 02:57 PM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2391) | Send Message
     
    Tim: I am very pleased to hear of the coming "full modularity" of the PowerCube SYSTEM. Having the Inverter and other electronics always on board the Storage Module is very limiting for application changes and/or updates.

     

    An obvious example of the advantage of the fully modular concept is the ability to modify a Power Quality PC system into a combined Power Quality AND UPS system by adding on additional Storage Module(s). That's one added trailer, as opposed to hauling off one or two trailers and replacing them with 2-3 trailers.

     

    Air conditioning the power electronics also becomes straightforward. You don't need to HEAT the electronics trailer, for example :-)

     

    Nothing about this change would prevent the construction of a "single trailer" solution for customer specific applications. It just makes the "mix and match" system design much easier.
    It should also allow a quicker "preliminary estimate" to be made for a customer who wants a ballpark cost figure for planning use. System engineers love a block diagram with labels in each box and arrows showing how the boxes conceptually connect together.
    27 Dec 2011, 04:50 PM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2391) | Send Message
     
    JP, I thought you weren't an engineer. That cooling comment is suspiciously close to something a system's engineer would say ;-)
    27 Dec 2011, 04:54 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Tim: The PowerCube is scalable to 20 megawatts. I do like your notion that some or even all 20 megawatts can be designated for different "intelligence" applications.

     

    No shot to women overall, but if had only found one with that abilitity. Probably did, and therefore she/them was/were way too good for me!
    27 Dec 2011, 06:26 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » JP: Yes. As I learned inside the PowerCube, the only temperature sensitive part of the whole Cube that needs to be monitored and controlled, are the, as you write, "the control electronics."

     

    Though the Cube is built inside an enviromentally protective shell, the temperature as well as (likely the) humidity concerns, are no longer a concern of mine.

     

    Neither rain, nor sleet, nor snow....
    27 Dec 2011, 06:32 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): Today would be the last day for tax-loss selling, if that's what's happening, as settlement must be complete by EOY. Standard settlement is T+3 - so today is it.

     

    If others are selling to rid themselves of losers to look better at EOY, ditto.

     

    If others are selling just to get out, well I guess they could extend into the next year, but why wouldn't they want the tax advantage of recording a loss?

     

    So I'm expecting a drop in volume to appear and, beginning in January, a change in price and volume behavior.

     

    Further, if some tax-loss sellers were/are believers in the company, we *may* see a surprise at/after EOM January.

     

    Just some thoughts.

     

    HardToLove
    27 Dec 2011, 02:58 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    It looks like somebody's going methodically down the price scale to take out all the offers folks have sitting out there. It sure seems like a determined seller.
    27 Dec 2011, 03:36 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    John,

     

    I was just going to ask, with today's 900K+, what's that do to your estimate of the distressed sellers? Looking like SS may be totally out?

     

    If you think SS, and their ilk, are out now, combined with my thoughts about tax-loss and seeing $0.27 (last seen 12/19), does it look like we did have some tax-loss action? If so, the combination of volume spike, time (EOY- 3 days), makes me pretty certain this is the end of downward pressure.

     

    HardToLove
    27 Dec 2011, 03:44 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I'll need to spend some time looking at the numbers, but they've got to be at or near the very bottom of the barrel. The volume today has really surprised me because I expected it to drop off between Christmas and New Year.
    27 Dec 2011, 03:54 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    POSSIBLE CORRECTION: I was just informed that long position sellers have until the last calendar day of the year to take their loss - settlement doesn't matter.

     

    Does anyone know if this is true? If so, I may have been premature in my thoughts!

     

    Thanks,
    Bill
    27 Dec 2011, 07:42 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (1119) | Send Message
     
    As a small investor I've used the last date of the year in my calculations as the sales are included in my year end statement. YMMV.
    27 Dec 2011, 10:31 PM Reply Like
  • AAxion
    , contributor
    Comments (6) | Send Message
     
    John, I have been quietly reading this concentrator and I must say it is filled with people who are really into the company! I too had bought into Axion a couple of months back, after doing a little homework.

     

    Today, the stock price is around $0.3 and my faith in the company is wavering. There has been tons of optimism by various people in this blog before each conference call, but for some reason the calls are always poorly managed and the stock just keeps coming down.

     

    John, you have been an avid supporter of this stock. And you have been saying sellers once they have sold their stock is no longer relevant for the longest time. The stock keeps dropping and everyone is always quoting some sort of technical reason why.

     

    There are a couple of questions I like to ask you John.

     

    One, what do you see as a near-term catalyst to the price of Axion and when do you see that happening?

     

    Two, I believe you hold substantial positions in the stock with an average price of over a dollar or so. Have you been adding on to your positions substantially since the price has been coming down and you believe so much in the company?

     

    Three, what gives you the sheer faith that the company will be able to deliver what you think it can and not fizzle off like one of the many wanna-be Silicon Valley start-ups?

     

    Lastly, if you could hazard a guess of the market cap of Axion in 3 years time, what would it be? Do you see it as a <$100mil, $500mil, $500-1000mil or over $1bil type of company?

     

    Thank u.
    27 Dec 2011, 03:54 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    As I recall the calendar Mayascribe's first entry in his Axion Concentrator series was a report from Axion's stockholders meeting on July 21st. While there was some buzz among the early participants about asking hard questions during the August 15th call, no questions were asked. There were a series of probing questions lined up for the November 15th conference call but a technical problem with the call center didn't let the questioners through. To rectify that technical problem the CEO got on the phone personally with many of the callers and spent hours answering their questions. There was one call with technical problems and a heroic effort by the CEO to make amends. I find that hard to criticize.

     

    The stock has been falling for two very clear reasons; the Quercus Trust and the Special Situations funds. In public companies, large stockholders cannot account for more than 10% of market volume without pushing the price down. Exide's had a problem with that for the last couple years where a holder who accounted for about 5% of volume was enough to crush the price. In Q-2 and Q-3 Axion's big sellers accounted for 22% and 22.6% of total trading volume. While Special Sits won't report again till mid-February, every indication is that their sales are the primary reason for the Q-4 price decline. The law of supply and demand will not be mocked and when big stockholders want to sell more stock than the market wants to buy prices fall. Likewise when the market wants to buy more shares than holders want to sell prices rise.

     

    Over the last 18 months I believe substantially all the buying has been coming from people who are active in these Concentrators or quietly read them without commenting. Once the willing sellers run out of stock, the price will have to rise to levels the new holders find acceptable. I'm more than happy to leave my future in the hands of the investors you find around here who read and think and make decisions slowly, both when they buy and when they sell.

     

    The potential catalysts for Axion's business are too numerous to mention including orders from Norfolk Southern, orders for the PowerCube, orders from automakers and other projects the management team has been working on. With a flawless record of performance and execution stretching back several years, I have no reason to believe they'll stumble at this stage in the game.

     

    While my personal finances are nobody's business but my own, I have made small purchases from time to time. That being said, global recessions are tough on everybody and I don't have the free cash flow that I did during the salad days. If I did I'd be buying more.

     

    I have an eight year history with Axion, its technology and its management team. I was board chairman for three of those years. Eight years ago we knew what the PbC could do from a technical perspective and I personally have copies of reports from one of the best known electrochemists on the planet referring to the PbC as the holy grail. The challenge has always been industrial engineering, learning how to manufacture a consistent product at a reasonable price and prove the value of that product in the marketplace. That process typically takes eight to ten years so Axion is right on schedule.

     

    Eight years after the hard work got started Axion's principal industrial engineering is done. Over two and a half years of testing with first tier automakers have established that the PbC is the only battery that can stand up to the demands of stop-start for less than $1,000 per car. A couple years of testing by Norfolk Southern have established that the PbC can stand up to the rigors of railroad use that destroyed top quality AGM batteries from Enersys in weeks. Around Thanksgiving, we learned that the first PowerCube had not only been built, but had been qualified and put into service as a frequency regulation resource in the PJM interconnect.

     

    I learned a long time ago that you judge small companies by the company they keep. There isn't a battery developer in the world that can point to a list of disclosed first tier partners of comparable quality or, for that matter, point to successful multi-year testing programs with companies of that caliber.

     

    I don't predict market capitalizations or timing. Eight years ago I believed Axion was the first client I'd represented that had an honest shot at a billion dollar market capitalization. Today I believe I underestimated Axion's potential. At this point it's all up to the PbC which seems to be doing a wonderful job of proving its merit to careful customers who take their time to thoroughly test and evaluate new technologies before ordering them by the millions.
    27 Dec 2011, 05:23 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Excellent comment, John.

     

    Going to cut, paste and forward to some colleagues and friends, some who own Axion, some who don't...yet.

     

    Thanks.
    27 Dec 2011, 05:46 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Do me a favor and keep a close eye on future posts from that commenter. He is not a friendly. Use your delete function if he steps out of line.
    27 Dec 2011, 05:52 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): Well, 8 shares shy of 1M reported traded today.

     

    What a bunch of skinflints! :-))

     

    HardToLove
    27 Dec 2011, 04:26 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (859) | Send Message
     
    I'll take the over for tomorrow; at least equal. I'll be happy if I'm wrong, but my guess is there are still shares that someone wants to unload, and where that entity was patient earlier in the month, they now only have a couple of days left and it's time to just take what they can get.
    27 Dec 2011, 08:53 PM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (368) | Send Message
     
    I'll have a buy order in tomorrow for sub .30 shares. After I made a deposit today on my way to work I was kind of giddy thinking I will be able to get some shares at the Axion after Christmas sale. My best yet is .37.
    27 Dec 2011, 09:48 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    The picture of the big sellers has become a little more clear to me this past week. So, as we mull another high volume day albeit this time with more endless buying than endless selling, I thought I would share my thoughts.

     

    I recently read an interview with David Anthony (former Board member of Axion and Quercus Trust liaison/whatever you would call him). In it he bemoans the venture capital markets right now. Describing how difficult it is for venture's to raise capital in this environment. Keep this perspective in mind and consider the source...this is someone who has gotten smacked and hammered in the alternative energy sector for three years running, it is quite understandable he is a little more than pessimistic when it comes to risk assets. After all, a writer does not say, "I am a bad writer." He says, "being a published writer in this environment is really, really hard." (both statements are true from different perspectives)

     

    Anyhow, it got me thinking about standing in Quercus' shoes with David Anthony's mentality toward the market.

     

    Being Quercus at the end of 2010 looking into 2011, knowing a capital raise would be coming in 2012 and still feeling the pain from the PIPE transaction in 2009, I can easily see why they said enough was enough. At the time holding 18M shares that they had no chance of "averaging down", seeing their liquidity getting crushed from the pervasive economic malaise over the past three years and what could be much more uncertainty in the future, it is truly no wonder they bailed ship on the majority of their liquid shares in Axion. This action in lieu of committing to another couple years in the stock just to break even at $2 makes complete sense to me. Especially when considering they have another 10M in warrants exercisable at .75 that they can feel much more comfortable about leaving set for several more years. All rather logical from this Venture-captital-I have-taken-a-beating-a... perspective.

     

    Special Situations I imagine along the same lines but with the added dimension of knowing Quercus was selling. They were most likely looking for a quick turnaround (2 years) and when they saw they were not going to get it with Quercus selling and rather than face the prospect of another financing round pushing their time frame out another year, maybe two and not being at a place to "average down" on 8M shares and at the same time thinking of reducing their overall portfolio by 25%..."lets exit" again seems sensible.

     

    We as retailers are offered a far different scenario in light of the coming round of financing. We on the other hand can and have been averaging down and down and down. Huge holders like that can not average down unless they buy their own shares back from themselves (picture a dog chasing its tail while purposely starving itself). The discount Quercus and Special Sits, tax loss selling and others have created, I believe, is a far bigger discount than what the shelf offering would have or will give. This is the surprise coming next year, while we assume the shelf offering will knock us down further because of where we are, it was actually the prospect of the shelf offering that has already been taken into consideration by Quercus and Special Sits who preempted the offering so to speak, essentially pricing it in and along the way causing more hard selling...domino effect. In fact, I believe you can trace the beginning of the drop in price from 1.27 to the announcement of the shelf offering. Those big guys could never get their shares cheaper and rather than support the current $1+ price and allow the new investors to get the discount they began to heavily exit at $1.

     

    The consolation: I truly believe the pain we have felt is over or very nearly over and not much more additional pain will take place even with the offering. This pain was not just from the over-supply of the PIPE transaction but that in connection with the coming offering and it has been more than priced in with the addition of tax-loss selling as well as weak hands letting go under the pressure. I will bet dollars to donuts Granville has something in mind for January news wise. You guys are talking about those 50K+ casings that he has not spoken about publicly, he did not choose to release anything official about Rosewater yet, it sounds like the Oil Rig application could be farther along than what we might think according to the above interview etc.

     

    I know sellers don't matter when they have no shares left but for me to piece the puzzle together and to have logical reasons where none were found before re-enforces prior convictions.

     

    I know this is a long way of saying these guys didn't have or want to have the appropriate time frame in mind but I prefer this long drawn out repetitive version.:-) sorry for the ramble.
    27 Dec 2011, 04:38 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Ramble on...please, jakurtz.

     

    Will only add that investing houses are performance driven, in order to attract more investors to invest. We live in a "what have you done lately" society. The "lately" maybe lasts one calendar year, if that.

     

    All because of the 08' to 09' disaster, which makes everyone that more timid about their "long" view. As Mr. Anthony, from Quercus Trust, stated on June 20, for venture capitalist firms, the world did not change as we know it on 9/11, but rather, with the Lehman crises.

     

    What we have with Axion is an investment horizon that is rapidly approaching. None of us are sure what or when the inflection point, the catalyst will occur. But it is coming.

     

    What we've seen during this quarter is an increase of AXPW announcements, pernciously timed with an increase in selling coming from Special Situations.

     

    Today's lofty volume is a strong indication of a final rush to the door.
    27 Dec 2011, 06:05 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Correction: Mr. Anthony stated the above on July 20, not June 20.
    27 Dec 2011, 06:58 PM Reply Like
  • jlyleluce
    , contributor
    Comments (260) | Send Message
     
    enjoyed reading your comment. thanks.
    27 Dec 2011, 07:23 PM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (3606) | Send Message
     
    Jakurtz,

     

    SS liquidation was driven by redemptions while Querus had lost over 75% of its portfolio value since 07 so I imagine theyed need to keep their weaker holding afloat with cash infusions from their other holding that weren't down huge.

     

    However, they both could have averaged down by participating in the next placement if the green-tech field had not been so savaged (and I assume that was the original plan).

     

    That being said, I have no love loss for SS nor does it excite me whenever they'r part of any of my investments. However Quercus would have been nice to keep aboard the ship. I'll bet Q's warrants still will work out for them and us =)
    27 Dec 2011, 10:13 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    JAK: it was a worthwhile ramble. I'm glad you took the time. Little nuggets I had never considered (they can't average down, etc.) will be useful in my considerations in areas down the road.

     

    Another leaf on my educational tree!

     

    Having said all that, I can't pass up "I know sellers don't matter when they have no shares left but for me to piece the puzzle together and to have logical reasons where none were found before re-enforces prior convictions" without a caveat: watch out for "confirmation bias"! ;-))

     

    I've had to adapt my thinking to allow for the irrationality of the market where "logical" *seems* illusory - maybe just because I don't have "complete information".

     

    HardToLove
    27 Dec 2011, 05:21 PM Reply Like
  • Articula
    , contributor
    Comments (281) | Send Message
     
    Jak & JP - I've been reading these concentrators for awhile. Those were two of the best summaries I've seen of the Axion story. Thanks
    27 Dec 2011, 06:27 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): Form 4 filing. Quercus, 12/19-12/21/2011. Sold 90K. Check the 12/20/2011 sale $0.201 price! MM made a little of that batch!

     

    Although "Remarks" suggests it's an amended statement, the dates indicate this was a current filing. I guess they had a prior one covering these that we've not seen? It corrected the "Beneficially Owned" column after each sale.

     

    IIRC (I'd need to check my comment), that period is around the time I thought the market-maker(s) were heavy long in their portfolios? Seems supported by the short-sales percentage seen.

     

    1215 TotVol 0324683, Sht 00113909 35.08%
    1216 TotVol 0604796, Sht 00082990 13.72%
    1219 TotVol 0626525, Sht 00060821 09.71%
    1220 TotVol 0171087, Sht 00011207 06.55%
    1221 TotVol 0281522, Sht 00117627 41.78%
    1222 TotVol 0244924, Sht 00086179 35.19%
    1227 TotVol 0999992, Sht 00386219 38.62%

     

    When it got up around that 40% area I commented I wanted to see it get a bit higher yet. Today's short percentage still isn't where I want it and I suspect that the market-maker(s) were still a little heavy to the long side, most likely from shares that came in recently to cover sell orders that market-maker(s) had received either today (if coming from the broker that owns the market-maker?) or in the last few days if external to the market-makers' owners.

     

    Keep in mind that our *average since ~10/3 has been ~36%. We are still within "average" range.

     

    http://bit.ly/rSCVRd

     

    HardToLove
    27 Dec 2011, 06:32 PM Reply Like
  • AAxion
    , contributor
    Comments (6) | Send Message
     
    Thanks John for the comprehensive answer and the reassurance. I am not unfriendly, just a little frustrated at the stock performance. Let's see if you are right in a couple of months time!
    27 Dec 2011, 10:03 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I apologize if I jumped to a wrong conclusion because I do that from time to time. There are other unmonitored forums where convoluted compound questions based on inaccurate internal assumptions are the order of the day and defamation is commonplace. Since I'm not fond of being bullied, I'm vigilant to protect the integrity of this forum.

     

    I understand your frustration better than most because even I had no idea how difficult and time consuming the process would be when I got involved in Axion eight years ago. My experience in other industries led me to expect success or failure within two to three years. I would never have predicted an eight-year trudge to the first product. That being said I've been watching the Axion team for eight years and every step they've taken during that time has been the next right step. They haven't gone off on wild goose chases, run up blind alleys or spent like drunken sailors. While we like to think of technology as a question of science, the bulk of the heavy lifting has been the industrial engineering – figuring out how to make the PbC in a form that anybody can use and designing the equipment and processes to make it cheap enough to compete.

     

    We all want news – a definitive statement that the PbC is every bit as disruptive as it appears to be. We get that news regularly but don't recognize it because we want to think of testing as a 400 meter sprint instead of the marathon it is. The goal of all the OEM testing programs is to force failure at the earliest possible moment. Five miles into the race the risks were very grave. Ten miles in the risks were lower. Twenty miles in the probability of successfully completing the process looked certain. With every mile marker that passes the probability of ultimate success gets more certain, particularly when you realize that the same race is being run on at least three different tracks and all we really need is one solid success.
    28 Dec 2011, 01:55 AM Reply Like
  • bazooooka
    , contributor
    Comments (3606) | Send Message
     
    AA,

     

    I'd give it a year plus (not just months). As a 30M company your upside can be huge if you ride it until fruition and not worry about near term pps.

     

    As a side, you may want to reread your question and ask yourself if you ass umed to much with your suggestion about conference call issues and stock cheer-leading. If you read up on this stock here on SA you'll find much more hard information than rah rah type talk.
    28 Dec 2011, 02:53 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2435) | Send Message
     
    You probably didn't predict a near world wide depression either ... or worldwide governments getting so totally and universally dysfunctional.

     

    Which is not to say things would have gone much faster, cause we're playing in fields that demand such rigorous and long lasting testing, but I dare say the price per share and capital raising would not be nearly so painful if things had been more "normal."
    28 Dec 2011, 12:51 PM Reply Like
  • AAxion
    , contributor
    Comments (6) | Send Message
     
    Thanks John and Bazooooka for the replies! I probably may not have been fair in my statements in the way that I made them. This forum is a rich source of info on Axion and is one of the reasons why I invested.
    28 Dec 2011, 01:06 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Amen to that WT
    28 Dec 2011, 01:38 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Can some one explain the Quercus sale of 10000 shares at .20 cents to me? Never saw this low on the charts.

     

    Common Stock 12/21/2011 S 10000 D $0.2001 3582451 D
    27 Dec 2011, 10:20 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Since it was a small sale and a round number my guess would be an off-market bargain sale to an employee or something of that sort.
    28 Dec 2011, 01:57 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2435) | Send Message
     
    Though it's improved lately, for a while on Fidelity the Web based quote bid and ask for AXPW seemed to be from the absolute worst market maker you could choose (from looking at Level II at ThinkorSwim) on either side. Very weird. I wonder if some family member or employee took what they saw on Fidelity as "Gospel" and sold according ... Don't know if it was a Fidelity issue, or the used some data supplier that really didn't have its act together and so may have been an issue for other brokers besides Fidelity.

     

    I always entered limit bids based on what I saw on Level II, so I don't know what actually happened if you entered a bid based on what you saw as the "quote."
    28 Dec 2011, 12:59 PM Reply Like
  • Pztrick44
    , contributor
    Comments (83) | Send Message
     
    Hi all,
    I haven't read all the concentrators or paid much attention to Quercus Trust and SS discussions previously, as I don't usually try to infer any new information from the actions of other "outside" investors that wouldn't have any privileged information, but I was curious tonight and read up on David Gelbaum and Quercus Trust. I beg your pardon if this angle has already been concentrated on =p

     

    He is the CEO/Chairman of Entech Solar (ENSL.OB) so I perused their filings for the past six months, and discovered these transactions between Quercus Trust and Entech:

     

    7/14: $300k investment [http://bit.ly/rYrHMR]
    8/31: $400k investment [http://bit.ly/tCXivZ]
    9/22: $100k investment [http://bit.ly/vgDgdc]
    10/4: $300k investment [http://bit.ly/sNRasd]
    12/1: $400k loan [http://bit.ly/uNptl8]
    12/22: $400k loan [http://bit.ly/v2aWpq]

     

    The total cash invested/loaned to Entech Solar by Quercus, as reported above, is $1.9 million.

     

    Over the same six month period (July to now), Quercus Trust has sold ~$1.4 million in Axion stock [http://bit.ly/v6PWZQ]... a comparable figure.

     

    Based on this, I am persuaded that the Quercus Trust' AXPW sales have everything to do with Entech's capital needs, given Gelbaum's role there, and are not motivated by bearish concerns for AXPW...

     

    However, I would be remiss not to point out that $7M mkt cap Entech Solar's difficulties in financing may be indicative of the financing environment facing $25M mkt cap Axion, too. If Entech must depend on a monthly drip from Gelbaum in equity and debt financing in lieu of capital markets (venture capital firms), the situation could be precarious for us, too.

     

    Do we have any clue as to what resources are available to Axion for cash, and on what terms? There was a $28 million "mixed securities shelf offering" reported in June of this year- what will that look like? Do we expect debt/loan or convertible bond deals, or open market sales? Is there any risk that we could find no venture capital firm that is interested in us? Do we have any unsecured assets that could be collateralized to support a deal?

     

    ---

     

    I do agree with Jakutz that it is expectations that drive stock prices, and not reality. We are at $0.30 today because of the fears/risk of dilution and the related selling. The anticipation. And anticipation may differ from what actually happens.

     

    I rather think that news of debt/equity financing that solves our cash flow needs for the next 1-2 years may actually lift the stock, in spite of any dilution that would be announced at the same time... It would give us time to further develop and market the PbC. In other words, the fear of dilution could be weighing heavier on the stock today than actual dilution will.
    28 Dec 2011, 04:41 AM Reply Like
  • LT
    , contributor
    Comments (5674) | Send Message
     
    If we could get enough cash to build additional gen3 lines and say supply cash burn needs for 2 years (3 years maybe) then I think it is positive. Really positive...The bigger the offering the better to me.
    28 Dec 2011, 06:45 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    The first law of small company finance may be "take the money," but the corollary is don't take more than you need for 12 to 18 months of operations unless the pricing terms are extremely attractive. Axion's board has been responsible with their fund-raising and parsimonious in their spending for the last eight years. There are no "if we build it they will come" types who will expand manufacturing capacity before they see a clear need for it.
    28 Dec 2011, 07:42 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Quercus has been the visible pressure on Axion's stock price since Q-1, but the bigger impact came from the Special Situations funds which sold 1.3 million shares in Q-1, 3.0 million shares in Q-2 and 1.4 million shares in Q-3. They had about 3.1 million shares left at the beginning of Q-4 and my sense is they've been our heavy Q-4 seller, even though we won't be able to confirm the theory till mid-February.

     

    David Anthony, a former director who had been nominated by Quercus spoke at the annual stockholders meeting and explained that Quercus was selling off its stronger holdings to keep the rest of the portfolio intact. While we know precious little about Special Situations their portfolio value collapsed from $850 million at year end to $650 million at 9-30, so I suspect they're getting hit with the same kind of redemption demand that other formerly high-flying hedge funds are seeing.

     

    While Jakurtz speculations about possible motives make sense, the thing that drove the price down was a couple big sellers pushing and shoving around the pay window. The latest example was when Quercus started selling again on the 19th. On December 16th, the closing price was $.31 and the ten day moving average sale price was $.34. As soon as Quercus started selling, the bottom fell out of the daily lows which fell to $.27 on the 20th and stayed there.

     

    Right now its all about supply and demand and has nothing to do with expectations. My fondest wish for the New Year is the ability to classify Special Situations as a former stockholder so that the market only has to deal with responsible dribble out selling from Quercus.
    28 Dec 2011, 07:54 AM Reply Like
  • f-kru
    , contributor
    Comments (263) | Send Message
     
    John, assuming for a moment that SS is indeed out of the game. Would you expect that Quercus now will start to sell more heavily or are they still restricted in their selling?
    I remember you posting that Quercus would have to file a document if they want to sell more than what they do right now... when would you expect this filing?
    I agree with what you posted a while ago, it is good to have Quercus around selling for keeping liquidity in the market, but with the stock price beaten down this level, it would be nice to see some relief from the pressure.
    28 Dec 2011, 10:09 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    F-kru: "...it would be nice to see some relief from the pressure."

     

    Literally LOL understatement of the year. "ummmm, sir, could you please remove the vice-grip from my nuts?"
    28 Dec 2011, 10:14 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    At the beginning of 2011 Quercus had two arrows in its quiver – a resale registration statement for 2.6 million shares and Rule 144. My current tally of their YTD sales is 5.4 million. Over the course of the year they've pretty much exhausted their resale registration statement so the only arrow in their quiver on a go-forward basis will be Rule 144. That means they'll have to slow down their selling activity and can't increase it.

     

    The known sales by Special Situations during the first three quarters were 5.6 million shares. They had 3.1 million shares left at the end of Q-3 and are my prime suspect as the heavy Q-4 seller because Quercus has been pretty inactive. Once they're out of stock that layer of selling pressure will disappear completely.

     

    If you assume a future where Special Sits has nothing to sell and Quercus has to reduce its selling activity by half, I think the supply and demand balance shifts in favor of higher prices.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:08 AM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2391) | Send Message
     
    P44: Entech Solar makes what I would call "cute" solar energy devices using focusing collectors. But Chinese driven cost reductions and thin film technologies have swamped the solar PV field. Any product that isn't a simple flat panel of silicon or thin film PV cells is effectively dead in that business. No one is talking about focusing collectors for solar PV recently.

     

    I feel sorry for David Gelbaum, CEO of Entech Solar. The company loses large amounts of money and makes almost nothing from product sales. Gelbaum keeps it alive with infusions of his own money. When he stops, it will be insolvent within one quarter. I think he is throwing good money into a "cute renewables" pit.
    28 Dec 2011, 01:56 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2435) | Send Message
     
    Sounds like Valence :-)
    28 Dec 2011, 02:07 PM Reply Like
  • lsd_lsm
    , contributor
    Comments (134) | Send Message
     
    "The first law of small company finance may be "take the money," but the corollary is don't take more than you need for 12 to 18 months of operations unless the pricing terms are extremely attractive."

     

    This model is playing out with ZBB currently. In my opinion, the ZBB board takes small cash infusions currently to fund operations b/c they expect the price to be materially higher in the short term and will therefore be able to raise funds at a higher price per share.
    28 Dec 2011, 03:16 PM Reply Like
  • f-kru
    , contributor
    Comments (263) | Send Message
     
    Thanks for answering this again... I'm sure hoping for a future with SS out of stock, Gelbaum holding tight, sales announcements and a listing on NASDAQ.
    28 Dec 2011, 03:18 PM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    I have respect for this board and management team. They have made a lot of smart strategic moves and while they have made a few mistakes (Exide DOE grant), they seem to learn from the mistakes. More importantly, they have made no fatal mistakes and the smart strategic moves have allied them with the likes of BMW, Norfolk Southern, GM, East Penn, PJM-Viridity and others.

     

    I think the stock price may be below the company's current value on a going concern basis, even without PbC. Secondly, the capital markets are better than they were in 2009. Given those two conditions I doubt there will be dilution from the impending capital issue, if in fact that is how the cash needs are met. If a venture capital firm wants to buy 15 million shares of Axion they cannot go into the market and buy that many shares without pushing the stock up considerably. A few million might have been bought over the past quarter to take advantage of the SS/Quercus/tax loss selling, but those issues are largely not in play going forward. Given that, I expect an offering, even today, could be above the current price, not below it.

     

    Management is privy to the order book. They know if NS or BMW or Viridity or Rosewater plan to order soon. If they see large orders or important good news coming soon, I doubt they will have a fire sale on the company. In their position I would use a bridge loan to get the company into an environment post good news, post large orders, to a point where the stock has risen back into triple digits. Then a capital offering makes sense again.

     

    Finally, I spoke with Tom Granville on the phone after the recent conference call. I discussed the cash flow issue with him at length. He said they have banks calling on them regularly to help with any financing needs. He said they understand their needs and options and expect no problem handling the cash flow requirements going forward. While he may have been blowing smoke, I did not get that impression and given the company's market potential (and strategic partners), I think he may have several good options. He did say that they are more concerned about getting a good fit with their capital partners than they are about squeezing out every last penny from a deal. So he may leave a little on the table in order to work with quality partners. I have no problem with that philosophy.
    28 Dec 2011, 08:28 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I have to take issue with you on whether the Exide situation was a mis-step or the right thing to do. Axion partnered with Exide in April 2009. When the grant was awarded, it was awarded to Exide on the strength of the PbC technology, which is why the award went to "Exide with Axion Power." Since Axion was in a weak financial position in the summer of 2009 and trying to arrange a good sized financing, Exide apparently tried to try and play hardball as a condition of sharing the grant. Management apparently took the position that Exide got the award on the strength of Axion's technology and Axion was not about to give up another pound of flesh simply because Exide was stronger and wanted to take advantage.

     

    That kind of decision takes a big brass pair, particularly when there was no guarantee at the time that the 2009 private placement would come together at the minimum level required by the institutions. I can't classify it as a mistake when David stands his ground against Goliath and remains master of his own destiny. I've never been so proud of Axion's behavior.

     

    There are lots of times I've seen Tom Granville refuse to discuss sensitive issues, but I've never seen him lie about sensitive issues. It's simply not part of his character.
    28 Dec 2011, 08:42 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    Wow, John. Where did you get accusations of lying out of my comments? My reference was to the fact that despite nearly universal expectations among shareholders, Axion did not get to participate in or receive the grant money even though they were a named participant. Clearly something went wrong there. My impression is that Exide played hard ball and Axion refused to give up the farm. I think the strength displayed by Axion management was admirable, but the original teaming with Exide appears to have been a mistake, given the outcome. How can you color the partnership with Exide as a success for Axion in the 50 million dollar grant application when Axion got none of it in the end? And when did I say anyone lied? To the contary, I specifically said I believed TG about his financing options. I do not like you accusing me of things I did not do, never intended, and actually did just the opposite of. Please stop doing that!!
    28 Dec 2011, 09:48 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >Richnplano ... TG told you what is expectations of the future looked like to him at the time of your call. At present, the future looks OK to him but subject to change ... he just doesn't know the future or have the solution in hand right now. A definitive answer is just not available but an optimistic "Maybe" is . A concrete binary Yes/No seems to be what you were looking for and didn't get.

     

    The term "blowing smoke" is to say something less than the truth, an obscured fact, a deception ... a lie ... pure and simple.
    28 Dec 2011, 10:57 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    And I said I did not believe he was doing that.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:12 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I apologize if I came off a bit harsher than I wanted to. I was trying to explain why I didn't see the Exide debacle as a management mistake and why I thought the things Tom told you were important.

     

    Your comment spoke of mistakes at Axion and then referenced Exide as an example. I think Exide behaved badly in the way they handled the grant, but Axion's management made me proud by sticking to principles at a time when they had to be sweating bullets.

     

    Your next point shows a little confusion. Axion did not team with Exide in a $50 million grant application. Axion filed an application seeking $50 million and Exide filed a separate application seeking $34 million. Exide's application got the nod and Axion's did not. In one of the weirdest turns that I've ever seen, the DOE worded the award as Exide with Axion Power. That decision only compounded tensions that were already beginning to simmer over the fact that BMW went directly to Axion instead of going through Exide as gatekeeper.

     

    I didn't read your comment as suggesting that Tom had lied and I'm sorry for choosing my words poorly. Tom usually keeps his cards very close so when he opens up and says something like he apparently said in your conversation, you can take his words to the bank.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:23 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    John, thanks for the clarification and apology. Accepted. As I noted to Bang, I may have read more into your words than was intended. I appreciate your friendship and support of Tom. He is lucky to have such friends. I could have better stated that while some might think that he was just blowing smoke, that I do not think he was, nor do I believe he would. I do not have the long term personal knowledge of the man that you do, but everything I have seen of him suggests that he is exactly as you said, a man whose word you can take to the bank.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:30 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    If I was 20 years younger I'd take a year of sabbatical for the privilege of carrying Tom's briefcase and learning the art of negotiation from a true master.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:32 AM Reply Like
  • lsd_lsm
    , contributor
    Comments (134) | Send Message
     
    Rick & JP -- Such comments and back and forth discussion are what make this board worthwhile. Thank you for the above exchange.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:54 AM Reply Like
  • magounsq
    , contributor
    Comments (995) | Send Message
     
    Agreed Isd_Ism...healthy discussion...some frustration seeping in ...timing and trolls subtle sneak attacks...handled very professionally and gentlemanly by JP and Rick.
    28 Dec 2011, 12:45 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2435) | Send Message
     
    While I'm good with TG, I'd love to hear more about the Rosewater connection. I know JP characterized the principal as a fantastic salesman and entrepreneur, but I'm a little concerned that a key sales component is not under TG's direct control, and thus he has to make decisions on what orders might be imminent (which would impact financing decisions) with at the least some "indirection" and possibly a natural "SUPER" optimistic salesperson giving him "data."

     

    I know Rosewater has (a lot of?) skin in the game, but I'm still a little nervous. Also a little nervous about "chicken and the egg" problem where the company (or Rosewater) quotes a price based on the order (and bank financing,) but the customer is nervous it has to happen that way ...

     

    Also wondering how big an operation Rosewater is ... how many folks are out selling and does the fact that they're private mean that a) we have a harder time telling what the order flow really is, and b) how publicity pro or con is impacted.

     

    Also a little confused about how Rosewater fits in with Viridity ... are they in the middle or not? For example, in comparing websites, the best info is really on Rosewater, and not Axion Power...

     

    Thoughts? Opinions?
    28 Dec 2011, 01:41 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Joe Piccirilli, the CEO of Rosewater, was one of the 10 original Axion founders, which is a polite way of saying he has a lot of skin in the game at a higher price than anybody who's bought shares in the last 18 months. In the early days we had thought that Joe might eventually step in as CEO of Axion, but he couldn't move out of Avad when Axion was ready. I don't know Joe as well as I know Granville, Averill and Patterson, but they're all top quality men with very similar outlooks and business character.

     

    Joe's last company, The Avad Network distributed high-end smart home technology nationwide before they sold out to Ingram Micro in 2005 for $120 million. http://bit.ly/v9tWrA You don't build that kind of organization by over-promising or blowing smoke up your partners skirt.

     

    Right now Axion needs a marketing team that can work with the in-house technical staff without wasting their time or tearing them away from critical tasks like finishing the industrial engineering and managing relationships with first tier customers like NS and BMW. There are only two ways Axion can fill that need. It can devote a huge amount of money and executive time to building an in-house sales force for the broader markets or it can partner with an organization run by men who've already proven their value in prior dealings with Axion and prior dealings with the rest of the world.

     

    As far as I know Rosewater is not involved with Viridity.
    28 Dec 2011, 02:24 PM Reply Like
  • f-kru
    , contributor
    Comments (263) | Send Message
     
    Here's some thoughts and speculation: Rosewater is probably a very small operation, my guess is it's just Joe Piccirilli and maybe a handfull of guys. But from what John said about him and given his history as serial entrepeneur, he must be very well connected and knows his stuff.
    Other than Axion they mention Amlak International Investment WLL as a partner on their website, who are very active in the middle east. Since Amlak is a finance company they will probably lease the cubes to the drillers or offer them with together with a loan so it will virtually cost them nothing, since the cube will pay for itself in fuel savings.
    Axion manufactures the cube and doesn't have to deal with the sales and distribution stuff.
    So, Rosewater really just brings the two together...
    Axion has been talking about an oil rig application years ago, so my guess is the deal has been in the works for a long time.
    28 Dec 2011, 03:00 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Rick> He must have reacted to "While he may have been blowing smoke". John seems a mother hen on this board at times. Or maybe a rooster. I had a rooster for a pet as a kid and it would drop one wing down like a shield and come charging against anything it viewed offensive. Roosted in the basement and would be crowing in the morning at 4AM up through the heating vents.
    28 Dec 2011, 10:42 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    Thanks Bang. Perhaps I over-reacted to John's over-reaction. :-)

     

    JP and I seem to agree on most things. Like John, I believe TG is a man of his word. However, unlike John I accept that even the excellent management of Axion can make mistakes. I cannot spin the partnership with Exide into a win. Had they partnered with JCI or East Penn the outcome may have been different. If another partner were not available, then no partnership at all would have been preferable to working diligently with a partner who screws you in the end, which is the result as it appears to this shareholder.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:11 AM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    If I were an auto manufacturer and had a choice of the expense of two AGM batteries that lose their stop start functionality in months, or the expense and risks of lithium ion, versus a PbC and a flooded battery that lasted years, the choice would be simple to make. The only question would be how woud I get my hands on millions of PbC's?
    28 Dec 2011, 11:11 AM Reply Like
  • amishelvis
    , contributor
    Comments (143) | Send Message
     
    With regards to the Honda lawsuit, even the sound of it should make auto mfgrs tremble a bit. I am hopeing that it is one of many stars that will line up in 2012.
    What I find really interesting,, is this board, and the attitude.. including yours truly, we are still positive on the future in spite of a horrible year. To be sure, it has been tough , but events are still moving in the right direction. Well, maybe if we were all negative, that would signal a bottom. In that case, I would suggest take a look at yahoo, if one wants to see negative. Looks like 98% negative over there, Maybe that is the signal?
    12-28 11:38 am
    28 Dec 2011, 11:43 AM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3442) | Send Message
     
    Honda lawsuit? Apologize for missing it or not keeping up, but anybody have a quick link/synopsis?

     

    Also, and this is just an idle thought, but given all the recent, ahem, interest in, and attentions to, all the wonderful and varied missteps of our illustrious DOE these past three years, perhaps it would be fun if some timely publicity light were shined on yet another embarrassing example of their amateurish fumbling--namely the very same joint XIDE/Axion grant that has given us such trouble-- the very one that sowed so much confusion and discord due to its inept wording. Given the solyndra and beacon debacles, it could be a sexy story, even if it's only $34million involved.. A plucky David gets hosed by the crony gov't yet again, taxpayer money wasted, etc etc... And while we certainly wouldn't want any negative connotations to attach to Axion, and indeed their conduct throughout has been exemplary, it's been said that any publicity is good publicity as long as they spell the name right. And such a story, if picked up by a few of those political blogs always looking for a red meat story, would certainly have the effect of getting Axion's name more out in circulation... and they might even come off as the hero. Again, just an idle, perhaps even evil, thought, one I'm hesitant to share, and not sure myself whether it would be good or bad, but something to think about still, because it might even happen on its own, given some random catalyst, despite being a very minor tempest in a teapot, and better for us to have thought about it a little beforehand, including ramifications, than to be blindsided....
    28 Dec 2011, 02:05 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    "Again, just an idle, perhaps even evil, thought"

     

    I'm sure you meant to say "Again, just an s/s, perhaps even evil, thought" didn't you! :-))

     

    HardToLove
    28 Dec 2011, 02:37 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3442) | Send Message
     
    HTL, good catch! See how hard it is to change entrenched thinking? ;)
    28 Dec 2011, 02:39 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Fun little Axion article:

     

    http://bit.ly/tX4Bb4
    28 Dec 2011, 11:49 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >JP ... That is funny. I've never viewed Axion as low-risk or defensive stock for troubled times in the overall market for risk averse investors. Seems I'm wrong.
    28 Dec 2011, 12:02 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    Hey Mr. Lawyer! Can I sue because he stole my 8 shares short of 1M line? ;-))

     

    I wonder if he's lurking.

     

    I'll have to read the other articles shown at the bottom and see if I see a pattern.

     

    Hm, probably can't get buy:sell or daily shorts on them though - I'll have to resort to trend lines!

     

    :-))

     

    HardToLove
    28 Dec 2011, 02:45 PM Reply Like
  • JRP3
    , contributor
    Comments (8787) | Send Message
     
    AXPW certainly has been consistent, consistently going down! I couldn't help myself and bought more yesterday, I do like a good discount.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:02 AM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2435) | Send Message
     
    This may be the final straw in getting me to selling my small losing CHK position and moving a little more to AXPW ....

     

    http://reut.rs/rOYixQ

     

    I support responsible Shale Drilling (yes, it's possible,) but it's crap like this by Chesapeake, one of the most well know in the business, that sets them up to get taken to the woodshed by the voters whenever they get the opportunity. Just stupid, stupid, stupid, and no matter how much advertising you do, it's a waste of money when you ruin your reputation (and by extension, that of the industry,) like this. Kudos to Reuters.

     

    I get trying to hide your identity when it costs you money, but welshing on deals, or not being clear about what the deal really is, well that's why we get Occupy Wallstreet ...
    28 Dec 2011, 01:54 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3442) | Send Message
     
    What you said, WTB.
    28 Dec 2011, 02:15 PM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (1119) | Send Message
     
    They deserve to get nailed for this. The landowners were due signing bonus checks and didn't get them. I've got a family member having a similar issue with not getting a signing bonus for a potential wind farm.

     

    Deal was $1,000/year for 1 acre of land that could potentially be used to site a wind tower. If it got built its $6k/year for 20 years with a 10 year option on the back end. He still waiting on years 1 and 2 of $1k each. He's a retired farmer who has recently filed in small claims court just to get a response from the shell.

     

    Edit: I switched my ownership from CHK to Sandridge and haven't slept better. Still have nat gas upside but its an oil company that is making money now while waiting for nat gas to recover.
    28 Dec 2011, 02:17 PM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    I am an expert witness in a lawsuit being tried on January 10th in federal court in Ft. Worth. Chesapeake Oil is one of the defendants. From what I have learned studying the case in which I am a paid witness, Chesapeake Oil is quite familiar with shady, unethical business practices.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:00 AM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (660) | Send Message
     
    Instead of a mother hen or rooster, I think John is more like an exhausted shepherd who has developed and brought a group of people across a wilderness. They are almost at the border of the promised land and everything looks dark and hopeless except to those with real vision. He is exhausted from 8 years of patience defending a technology he knows to be disruptive. He has had to answer the same questions over and over to potential converts and new believers who don't have the personal experience and knowledge that he has. He has had to defend the company as a board member and now as a lonely voice crying in the wilderness to all who will hear. The wolves have made frontal attacks and vicious deceptive assaults. Sometimes it is hard to tell who is friend or foe.

     

    John, thanks for having the patience to answer the same questions many times over. Thanks for trying to discern friend and foe. Please have patience with true seekers who are trying to get near the level of confidence you have in the company.

     

    From my perspective, you are just as important to Axion in your "reporting" position as you were as chairman of the board. This group would have never formed without you. It has now snow balled as Maya started the Concentrator. I hope we all will soon bury our anxious frustrations in the promised land.
    28 Dec 2011, 02:24 PM Reply Like
  • magounsq
    , contributor
    Comments (995) | Send Message
     
    Well said jveal!
    29 Dec 2011, 09:11 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I never forget that there were times in the desert when the Israelites wanted to string Moses up by the thumbs. I've invested a lot more than just money in Axion at this point. I've invested my reputation too. Mercifully we've got hundreds of pairs of eyes scouring the Internet for every scrap of information they can find. They've come up with some truly surprising finds and its all been positive. My big advantage is knowing first hand what the PbC can do and knowing first hand what Axion has accomplished over the last eight years. It's never been easy but it has been impressive. Lesser men would have given up ages ago. This team will never surrender.
    30 Dec 2011, 12:13 AM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (660) | Send Message
     
    H.T., after a million minus 8 shares yesterday we have about 200,000 today. In your opinion could this be the beginning of the inflection point we have been looking for?
    28 Dec 2011, 03:38 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    JVeal: I've read that a big volume spike often signals the end of a trend, or very near one.

     

    I've observed this in multiple stocks over a long time and it does seem to have a high rate of success.

     

    Of course, things need to line up "right" - other times it suggests the start of a trend.

     

    My best assessment of this one is that we will be reversing and moving up (magnitude unknown ATM), but time-frame is indeterminate with all going on (suspected tax-loss selling by me, holidays, ... JPs looking for distressed sellers to be out of ammo, ...).

     

    This is *not* yet supported by TA oscillators, but there has been a divergence away (above) the falling trend support today. Along with a narrowing price range and reducing volume, the odds are looking like either another consolidation followed by a rise (most likely IMO) or we might go directly to another slog towards the up side.

     

    However, I wouldn't advise anybody to rush in - with the potential upside here (long-term - apologies to those that object ;-)) missing a few pennies of the lowest price and entering with a more certain uptrend showing (along with oscillator support) would seem wise.

     

    Disclosure: I'd love you to jump in *now* at $1.50! ;-))

     

    Keep in mind that I'm *experimental* and still learning big time.

     

    MHO,
    HardToLove
    28 Dec 2011, 03:59 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    New form 144 from Quercus. It says they plan to sell 850k from time to time beginning 12/19, which is when they started. However, the aggregate market value shows that it is worth $455,000, @ .29 that would be closer to the ~1.7M shares they would be allowed according to SEC 144 rules. 850k would be much nicer than 1.7M, but over 90 days I believe the market can take care of both without too much downside. He also sells consistently only 10% of the days total trading volume.
    28 Dec 2011, 04:24 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Let's hope SS is done or we are going to get pounded further. Whoever was buying all that was available at .30 seems to have run out of powder. Sounds like me. I had recent buys at .37 and .34 and was staring at that .28 price today, but I can never complete any purchase that isn't instantly underwater.

     

    Decided I am waiting for a reversal before committing anymore powder. I am over-extended on AXPW for my circumstances beyond all reason, but I'm not unhappy with the shares I own. However, enough is a enough.
    28 Dec 2011, 05:31 PM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2391) | Send Message
     
    Bang, all: I just bought my last block of (AXPW) at $0.28/shr. It dribbled in over the day instead of in one block. That finishes me until some significant news appears. Now I wait.

     

    All Power to the Axionistas !
    28 Dec 2011, 05:58 PM Reply Like
  • KentG
    , contributor
    Comments (368) | Send Message
     
    Someone correct me if I am wrong but I seem to remember the form 144 filed is good for 90 days? The best part of this is if SS is done by 12-31-11 we probably won't even notice Gelbaum selling since as of yesterday he has already sold 245K (28%)of the 850K in less then 2 weeks.

     

    Come on 2012!
    28 Dec 2011, 06:52 PM Reply Like
  • jveal
    , contributor
    Comments (660) | Send Message
     
    H.T., Thanks for your response. I've only been studying the markets and actively trading for a year now. I have an engineering degree so I love to compare graphs of different stock price histories. It's amazing what you can see with just a simple graph of price trends. I have gained a little knowledge of what else can be learned by reading your explanations as you have been "learning out loud" for us.
    28 Dec 2011, 04:37 PM Reply Like
  • wtblanchard
    , contributor
    Comments (2435) | Send Message
     
    Can anyone add some color to the following TG quote from the previous linked
    http://bit.ly/vujsiF

     

    "We’re actually doing testing, in the Cube, for the Norfolk Southern hybrid locomotive application. In that application, we will have large strings of batteries similar to those that are contained in this Cube. It’s important to have the batteries equalized and in sync, if you will, and this Cube provides us with the opportunity to test that string equalization feature of our proprietary PbC® lead carbon battery. The batteries, and battery strings, work in unison in providing uniform discharges resulting in less reliance on our propriatary battery management system."

     

    String equalization feature????
    28 Dec 2011, 05:40 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    WTB: My best guess is that if there are voltage imbalances (some of the) current leaves a battery (or string in this case) of higher charge and flows to batteries (or strings) of lower voltage. During charging, current flows to lower-charged first.

     

    So a BMS would have to try to keep strings "balanced" and this might be done by managing which are allowed to discharge and which are not, or having circuitry to manage current flow to charge lower-charge strings first or discharge higher charged strings first or many other things in which I'm ignorant.

     

    Only a guess though.

     

    Anyway, maximum efficiency is enhanced by having all strings at similar voltages and state-of-charge (SOC), which might be one-and-the-same thing for all I know.

     

    HardToLove
    28 Dec 2011, 05:52 PM Reply Like
  • siliconhillbilly
    , contributor
    Comments (2391) | Send Message
     
    wtb: I think I can help on that question.

     

    A battery string is a group of batteries all connected in series. That is, plus terminal of one connected to the minus terminal of the next. This produces a total voltage of hundreds of volts, 500-600V for the NS yard slug, IIRC.
    50each, 12V batteries=600V, for example.

     

    The output current, possibly 200Amps or more, must flow thru every battery in the string. Ideal efficiency occurs if every battery has exactly the same Charge State and same internal resistance. This rarely happens, in practice.
    Worse, in many types of batteries the CS differences between cells (and batteries) can diverge with each string charge-discharge cycle.

     

    This is where the "intra-string" battery equalization feature is involved. It is some mechanism, either electronics external to the (12V) battery or some inherent mechanism of the battery physics, that prevents and possibly reverses the tendency for the battery's CS to diverge. Ideally, the mechanism prevents any CS divergence from becoming a problem.

     

    If this equalization is NOT achieved, eventually one battery in the string could fall to zero charge state while the others all have finite charge in them. The zero CS battery would then have current forced through it BACKWARD while the others were discharging normally. A worst case result is the battery innards get very hot and blow open the vents, with acidic steam coming out. The outer housing might even burn, if there are no safety systems to spot the heat spike. (There ARE thermal sensors to prevent this type of catastrophic fault in any commercial system).

     

    So safety, reliability and efficiency are the reasons to be concerned about "string equalization".

     

    There is another problem when the voltage of the entire 50 battery string is not equal to the voltage of its neighboring string(s). This is more a problem for the Battery Management System. It should be much less of a problem with the PbC because of its "capacitor like" behavior.

     

    Remember that there is "battery to battery" equalization in a string and then "string to string" equalization. They are handled in different ways.
    28 Dec 2011, 06:40 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    FWIW, I recall several discussions from time long past about the ease of equalizing a string of PbC batteries. For reasons that I can't explain the chemistry is apparently self equalizing across cells within a single battery and across batteries within a string. So the equalization work is significantly easier than it would be in the case of NiMH or lithium.
    29 Dec 2011, 12:53 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    JP, I suspect that's a side-effect of the capacitor-like behavior of the negative electrode. Since it accepts and releases ions very quickly and easily, I would guess that small voltage variations would trigger this action, ultimately leading to "self balancing" to a large degree.

     

    Recall that the change in acidity is relatively small, so there would not be the impediment of having to trigger a large chemical reaction.

     

    Geez it's so much fun speculating about stuff I know absolutely nothing about! :-))

     

    I hope nobody objects too much.

     

    HardToLove
    29 Dec 2011, 08:53 AM Reply Like
  • amishelvis
    , contributor
    Comments (143) | Send Message
     
    LOS ANGELES — Heather Peters is an angry consumer who knows she has little chance of winning a war with Honda Motor Co. and its army of high-price lawyers.
    The Los Angeles resident is miffed that her 2006 Honda Civic hybrid doesn't get its claimed fuel economy. And she isn't satisfied with a proposed class-action lawsuit settlement that would give trial lawyers $8.5 million while Civic owners would get as little as $100 and rebate coupons for the purchase of a new vehicle.
    But Peters believes that she found a venue where she can win justice and where Honda can't spend a single dollar on legal help.
    On Jan. 3 she'll take her case to Small Claims Court in Torrance, where California law prohibits Honda from bringing an attorney. She's asking for the maximum of $10,000 to compensate her for spending much more on gasoline than expected.
    Honda said the Civic would get about 50 miles per gallon, but because of technical problems the car gets closer to 30 mpg.
    What's more, Peters is urging Honda owners across the country to do the same. Peters' http://bit.ly/vBTHKh website and a DontSettleWithHonda Twitter account include a link to state-by-state instructions for filing these lawsuits, which have low fees and minimal paperwork. Honda sold about 200,000 of the hybrids over a six-year period, and because of resales, as many as 500,000 people are eligible to file claims against Honda.
    "I want them to know they can file in Small Claims Court and that it is not so scary," Peters said.
    If she's successful in getting others to follow her example, Peters could inspire a whole new litigation strategy in the auto industry and other businesses. Working together but filing lawsuits independently, consumers could force companies to go mano a mano with individual plaintiffs in far-flung courtrooms nationwide.
    Call it a small-claims flash mob.
    "This could create a lot of problems in the industry," said Aaron Jacoby, the Los Angeles defense attorney who heads the automotive industry group at the Arent Fox law firm.
    Attorneys said social networking and the Internet make it easier for groups of claimants to find one another and map out tactics such as the one Peters has devised.
    Apartment dwellers for years have used a similar strategy, banding together to file individual cases against the same landlord in Small Claims Court.
    "You might have 10 plaintiffs suing the same defendant, but with different claims, and requesting that all the cases be heard at the same time," said Nicholas Aquino, Small Claims Court advisory program manager for the Los Angeles County Department of Consumer Affairs.
    He said mass filings could become a trend.

     

    Read more here: http://bit.ly/slXylM
    28 Dec 2011, 06:14 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3442) | Send Message
     
    Thanks Amish... will be interesting to see how she does...
    28 Dec 2011, 06:34 PM Reply Like
  • Al Marshall
    , contributor
    Comments (600) | Send Message
     
    It looks like the discussion has moved on, but I’d like to pull it back towards what Mayascribe wrote in the intro to this concentrator drawn from The Daily Energy Report interview of TG and the New Castle News article and elaborated upon by several folks early in the thread.

     

    First, I’d like to dig into the discussion that the powercube costs about $900,000 and uses 600 batteries. I did spot a reference to that in the New Castle News article but that seemed to be in the context that the test cube cost that much to make. Presumably a production unit would cost less than that, but with Axion’s markup, would at least offset that. Am I missing or misinterpreting something?

     

    But, going with those numbers, it would seem to imply that a PowerCube costs $1,500 per battery. If the batteries are worth $250 each, then the batteries themselves only constitute 1/6th of the cost of the system, not the 1/3rd I recall as the agreed upon assumption. Alternately, maybe $250 is too low a price for the battery…

     

    At such a low contribution to the total system, it raises issues about who should be selling these systems. This thought was sparked by the discussion at the beginning of the thread about how Axion is working to separate the batteries from the control electronics/inverters in future powercubes. Are the power management components (inverters?) pretty much commodity products or are they differentiated? With power management comprising a much larger portion of systems cost maybe those folks should be leading the sales effort. On the other hand, if that component is a commodity, then the party that differentiates the end system should take the lead. Could a potential customer put out separate RFPs for the two components? Could any inverter manufacturer “tweak some software” to make their product work with a bank of Axion batteries? It would be nice to hear if the inverter manufacturers are testing power cubes or if Axion is pursuing them.

     

    While I’m asking so many questions, here’s another one. The first Axion Powercube has a 2:1 Power to KwH ratio (is that the right way to think about it?) and of course in that case the batteries comprise only a small proportion of total system cost. What applications (time shifting for example) might have a need for say a 1:2 ratio. Of course, there might be a project size issue where say ZBB’s technology would make more sense in a large scale application.

     

    I guess this goes back to John’s article about the different grid applications. Which ones need the PbC’s quick response and rapid recharge capability? Which ones will emphasize the battery relative to the inverter? Which ones are mutually exclusive and which ones lend themselves to a multi-purpose system?

     

    This seems like a very, very complicated topic but I’m wondering if there are any contributors who are knowledgeable about how the grid works and all these applications. Thanks all. Sorry if I’ve asked too many questions.
    28 Dec 2011, 06:49 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    Well, well, well. Now we see another possible reason for the price action since early this year.

     

    I went and read the other articles linked at the bottom of this one linked above that goes to Hotstocked.com.

     

    http://bit.ly/tX4Bb4

     

    Reading the articles linked at the bottom of that one, one here

     

    http://bit.ly/uac8Bg

     

    contains this: "Axion pretends that it has developed and patented a next generation energy storage device in the field of lead-acid batteries. However, despite the impressive claims, ...".

     

    It also prominately mentions the "insider selling" with this: "Just yesterday, the company filed a form 4 with the SEC, pointing that Mr. David Gelbaum, a Director of Axion, has been disposing an impressive number of shares of the company's common stock with no explanation. To be precise, a massive disposing of AXPW shares happened last month and it also was not explained".

     

    I've not read the other two articles yet (I'm on four of five, IIRC), but the articles all have, IMO, negative connotations. And each article seems to offer more - I won't read them all, I'm sure.

     

    If this is a widely-read and disseminated net-rag, we might have been given a golden opportunity because these "authors" seem to have no ability to use Google effectively or do any basic DD.

     

    Maybe we should send them thank-you notes about this time next year, along with a few appropriate remarks about their competency.

     

    All MHO and speculation,
    HardToLove
    28 Dec 2011, 08:08 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >HTL ... I know nothing about this particular web site or its traffic, but I've probably read it before and dismissed it. This down beat reporting has been going on as long as I've been following AXPW. Dark clouds gather where the only thing looked at are price & volume (with a smattering of financials which they admit are surprisingly good for an OTC). I know the vast majority watch the chart & trading. I just don't know to what end. I've long ago quit worrying about it. I want news, design wins, sales but most of all I want third party confirmation the damn thing works.

     

    I think you've just wasted your time. I do have to admit that article JP link posted this morning was funny.
    28 Dec 2011, 08:33 PM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    I just sent a message to the editor giving him a link to this blog and suggesting they take a look at a recommendation of Axion at this point given significant news expected soon. I put more into the email but you get the jist.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:23 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): Latest Form 144 for Quercus.

     

    850K shares, someone mentioned it above.

     

    http://1.usa.gov/rWDlgz

     

    HardToLove
    28 Dec 2011, 08:27 PM Reply Like
  • maxkilmachina
    , contributor
    Comments (19) | Send Message
     
    Picture of NS 999 getting it's batteries replaced finally to PbC. This is done in Juniata Shop in Altoona.

     

    http://bit.ly/scAZbK
    28 Dec 2011, 09:01 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >maxkilmachina ... Not exactly. It is true that at the time this picture was taken it was waiting on new batteries. By Dec 2009, NS999 advanced batteries had failed and was exiled to the engine storage spur where it spent the next 6(?) months and this picture was taken.
    28 Dec 2011, 09:29 PM Reply Like
  • maxkilmachina
    , contributor
    Comments (19) | Send Message
     
    This picture was taken recenlty (couple of days). NS 999 is now being fitted with PbC along with the new BMS designed for PbC. What I don't know is when it will finish and what kind of announcement NS will do.

     

    Based on the picture create date, it was taken today.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:21 PM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >maxkilmachina ... OK, I'll not argue.
    28 Dec 2011, 11:32 PM Reply Like
  • battman
    , contributor
    Comments (373) | Send Message
     
    The picture shows some snow, so it had to be taken in the winter, and the weather report showed snow and rain for yesterday which is the date it said it was created.
    29 Dec 2011, 07:24 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Hi Max,
    Am I missing something? I don't see anything from the picture to tell me they are putting PbC's in the NS999. Were you told this? Did you go to Juniata Shop and see it being done? It is a fine picture of the train, I would just like to know if you have any further information.
    29 Dec 2011, 07:59 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >battman ... My computer tells me; "Modified: Thursday, December 31, 2009 6:00:00 PM" which I would believe. The last sighting I have been told of (with picture) was back in Sept 2011 when it was sitting on the spur on South St next to the Special Projects bldg.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:12 AM Reply Like
  • maxkilmachina
    , contributor
    Comments (19) | Send Message
     
    I apologize. I should have mentioned more about the picture. I took it from Juniata Shop's Facebook page. They said that they were taking NS 999 to the shop to get it's batteries and BMS upgraded.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:25 AM Reply Like
  • mrholty
    , contributor
    Comments (1119) | Send Message
     
    funny. I am a facebook fan of those shops just waiting for some news on this since the fall. During the research portion phase of my investment I tried to follow all the work on the PbC and I was unable to find any proof that NS had actually put PbC batteries in the NS 999. Bench testing -yes. BMS -yes. but not in the NS 999. This had always tempered my enthusiasm for rail being before autos but the facebook update which I believe they are using a stock photo is that the NS seems to be getting the PbC batteries installed and then hopefully some actual yard testing.
    The Q3 investor presentation by Axion was specific in its language

     

    "Purchase order filled with Norfolk Southern in Q2 2011
    • Order size sufficient to enable Norfolk Southern to
    platform test in large string configurations

     

    Norfolk Southern 999 Hybrid Locomotive Project
    • Originally built in early 2009 with lead–acid batteries
    • Lead–acid performance failed field testing requirements
    • Began working with Axion in October 2009
    • Additional yard switchers and OTR locomotives planned in 2012"

     

    As you can see it never stated that NS 999 had PbC in them which is why its been sitting idle for months. It was the plan and it appears we have moved from the bench to the actual field testing.

     

    Now if someone can turn up some proof or details on this line on page 11 of the investor presentation I would be very happy. Wonder if BMW is doing field testing of both 1 and 2 battery systems.

     

    "Potential for interim single battery solution for more rapid time to market"
    29 Dec 2011, 11:46 AM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    The caption for the picture just say's "Look at what's getting some attention at the back shop" with several comments following. No official statement just speculation on what the "attention" is all about. I think we have a pretty good idea.

     

    Here is the direct link (hope it works)...

     

    http://on.fb.me/rTqal6
    30 Dec 2011, 09:08 AM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    I've been playing with developing a website for us principally as a place to archieve all the information and links to the info we've been developing since the concentrators came into existence. Think of the site as the Concentrator Library and Archives. Been using Google Sites which put me in a straight jacket from a site development standpoint.

     

    It's just target practice so far, plus trying to get familiar with how Google Sites works from a development viewpoint. It might be worth it to me to buy a .info domain so I can code the site in pure html which is my normal mode, if only I could remember the damn stuff!

     

    For the latest look go here: http://bit.ly/rXixeb
    28 Dec 2011, 11:42 PM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    I was not sure about the idea when you first suggested it. However the direction you have taken the idea is appealing to me. I like a reference location for all things Axion and possibly a resource regarding battery tech as well. A section on competitors might be useful including investment articles as well as technological issues; for example, articles about lithium exploding or burning and about first responders requiring extra training to deal with lithium batteries, etc.. As we come across articles we could send you links and you could post if you agreed they were of general interest and relevant. Thanks for the effort.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:33 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    WOW! Looking to end up as a great resource. I've got to go back and navigate more.

     

    Before I forget, I think a couple of commas are needed.

     

    "... and taking collective action when helpful regarding the progress ..."

     

    "... and taking collective action, when helpful, regarding the progress ..."

     

    I'll PM any such suggestions in the future so as not to clog this list.

     

    HardToLove
    29 Dec 2011, 09:04 AM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    Looking good bang! do you have the ability to edit your instablog header so the link to the web site is available there as well?
    29 Dec 2011, 01:28 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    I'll do that - good idea.
    29 Dec 2011, 03:46 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Bang: With family now gone, and now that I have Internet back up and running, I give your site a looksy, too, from an editing perspective.

     

    I'll try to get to it over the next couple of days.
    29 Dec 2011, 05:23 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3442) | Send Message
     
    Bang, It's starting to look quite substantive to my unschooled eye. I can see it becoming quite a useful resource to us all. Thank you very much for undertaking it...
    29 Dec 2011, 02:53 AM Reply Like
  • battman
    , contributor
    Comments (373) | Send Message
     
    Looks good. Something that doesn't replace the Concentrator but becomes a central point of relevant information that would normally get lost over time is very good indeed.
    29 Dec 2011, 07:17 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    HAT Tip to IINDelco at Brand X for two good finds.

     

    Lux research wrote a story in Smart Grid News that talks about Viridity using demand response for frequency regulation and mentions Axion.
    http://bit.ly/v7Miwx

     

    He also found a teaser header from a September 1, 2011 article in Railway Gazette International that talks about the NS 999 retrofit with new batteries that cuts off as it gets to the good stuff, but specifies end of year timing.
    http://bit.ly/srmdGU

     

    Both are good bits of intelligence mining.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:18 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    I subscribed and read the full Railway Gazette article. Axion is not mentioned in the interview with Gerhard Thelen, Norfolk Southern V.P. Operations, Planning and Support. I cut the following from the article as the most relevant information.

     

    "This is one of the reasons behind the current reconfiguration of 999, which is looking to improve its energy storage performance by changing to a new type of battery and a second-generation control system. Three different battery technologies are being considered and are currently under test at Penn State, Roanoke and the battery manufacturers. Although still lead-acid, the new batteries have innovative features to improve cycle life and the ability to take higher regenerative power charges. At this stage NS is not proposing to install ultracapacitors on the locomotive, although Thelen confirms he would like to investigate this option in a future trial."

     

    The article implies they are still investigating numerous technologies and have not settled on anything as of the September 1, 2011 date of the article. It is of course copyrighted so I cannot just re-publish it, but I have pdf copies for anyone who requests if from me for private use.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:52 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I'm not sure what to make of that, but it certainly wouldn't make sense to have Axion build the BMS for a non-PbC battery.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:59 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    John, I will send you the full article. It goes into a lot of detail.
    29 Dec 2011, 09:03 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Thanks. I'll forward a copy to DRich who's forgotten more about rail applications than most of us will ever learn.
    29 Dec 2011, 09:18 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    I amn also wondering if the article misquoted Thelen or he spoke poorly. As I understand it, the Axion battery is being tested at the three locations mentioned. I wonder if Thelen meant three different configurations of Axion batteries are being tested rather than three entirely different battery technologies?
    29 Dec 2011, 09:17 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    I tend to think the writer was confused because companies like NS don't spend $750,000 developing a BMS for a particular battery until they've decided to use that battery. They also don't plan on having the retrofit on the road by year-end if they're still trying to figure out which battery they need.

     

    Since the Thelen presentation somebody found a couple weeks ago was made in October 2011 and specifically spoke to the unique capabilities of the PbC, I'm not concerned.
    29 Dec 2011, 09:27 AM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (859) | Send Message
     
    Did NS have a grant to work on the BMS or was it their own money?
    29 Dec 2011, 10:12 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    As far as I know it was their own money.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:13 AM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    I had the impression they were testing 3 battery technologies from another data source also but don't remember where I saw it. I don't think they've married Axion because they needed a BMS in order to test the PbC. What good would it do them to just test the batteries without it? NS can spend the money for a BMS out of the petty cash box. Just MHO.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:54 AM Reply Like
  • DRich
    , contributor
    Comments (4825) | Send Message
     
    >bangwhiz ... As pure conjecture, Norfolk (NSC) tested Li-on to failure, tested AGM to failure, tested PbC and on-going.

     

    It might make sense to test the General Electric (http://bit.ly/nZ6yti) molten salt (Zebra) battery which would have a BMS existing or a NiMH (?) which would also have a BMS existing. I believe this to be the over-the-road locomotive. The statement of NSC will not be using super-capacitors (but might at a future time) leads me to thinking that for the NS999 the "Zebra" & Ni are not suitable. It is my understanding (that's a stretch) that both batteries can handle regen surge but are of longer duration discharge and may not be good for standing start acceleration motor loads (thus the capacitors). Sooooooo, there is a chance that the road loco might be a mix of batteries for starts & grade climbing in a genset configuration.

     

    I'm just spit-ballin' here.
    29 Dec 2011, 11:27 AM Reply Like
  • D. McHattie
    , contributor
    Comments (1844) | Send Message
     
    I'm going to guess that they say they are testing 3 different batteries to avoid having to make a statement about having chosen a battery before the contract has been signed with Axion.

     

    Just guessing.

     

    Like John said, if Axion did the BMS then it's not for any other battery than the PbC.
    29 Dec 2011, 11:54 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    They could also be conducting Plan B and Plan C battery tests. After all, at the end of the day NS loves the 999 above all things and there's always a chance the Plan A won't work the way you think it will when steel wheels hit steel rails. You can be 90% or 95% confident, but until it on the road and tested that last 5% to 10% of doubt will always haunt your dreams.
    29 Dec 2011, 12:01 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    In NS's environmental impact study from Aug 2011 it reads this about the NS999 and battery testing...

     

    "Currently, we are working with industry partners on a
    second-generation lead-carbon battery system. We have applied for a patent on the technology developed to manage the pioneering battery system. The NS 999 features a regenerative braking system that captures and stores energy when the locomotive’s traction motors are applied, acting as axle-driven generators that help recharge the batteries during operation. In addition, we are working on a battery-powered road locomotive
    that would be paired with a diesel-electric locomotive to supply tractive power on line of road."

     

    It does not go on to name any other type of battery system they are working with other than the "...second generation lead-carbon battery..." that it is testing, and it also mentions applying for a patent on some aspect of the BMS system, which would seem silly if they are not very, very interested in using it.

     

    I would surmise that the term "battery technologies" in this case is being used to talk about different technologies. In this report it mentions two of the technologies being the regenerative braking system and the other "...battery-powered road locomotive that would be paired with a diesel-electric locomotive..."

     

    Two technologies that use batteries but not necessarily two battery technologies. I don't know what the third technology might be, but I bet Drich might have a guess....just plain stop/start perhaps (I do not have the expertise to know for sure if that would be considered a separate technology from the regenerative braking.)

     

    Semantics...oh brother :-)
    29 Dec 2011, 12:04 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    Jakurtz, DRich: Please explain how the following statement from the TG interview relates to the current discussion. Specifically on the topic of BMS, equalization and sync.

     

    "I will take my answer offline..." Tim say's as he asks the experts...

     

    "We’re actually doing testing, in the Cube, for the Norfolk Southern hybrid locomotive application. In that application, we will have large strings of batteries similar to those that are contained in this Cube. It’s important to have the batteries equalized and in sync, if you will, and this Cube provides us with the opportunity to test that string equalization feature of our proprietary PbC® lead carbon battery. The batteries, and battery strings, work in unison in providing uniform discharges resulting in less reliance on our propriatary battery management system."
    29 Dec 2011, 03:04 PM Reply Like
  • 481086
    , contributor
    Comments (3442) | Send Message
     
    ...wondering if the answer might include that there are two distinct applications that NS is contemplating---the (pure electric?) yard switcher and the hybrid over the road locomotive... it would seem that each will be asking somewhat different things of their battery systems...
    29 Dec 2011, 03:24 PM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Tim & All: I learned inside the Cube that the batteries were strung in "banks" of eight. If one battery starts acting up, I believe the whole 8 battery string is taken off line.
    29 Dec 2011, 03:32 PM Reply Like
  • Tim Enright
    , contributor
    Comments (1356) | Send Message
     
    I will take a stab at it...

     

    It’s one thing to test a battery as a single unit. Once you start connecting them together the dynamic changes. They must be connected together in strings to make the installation manageable. They must be tested as a string to learn the behavior so the information can be published and no longer proprietary. We want the battery type “PbC” to be in the configuration of every BMS on the market.

     

    I suspect that Axion built its propriety BMS for the sole purpose of learning how the PbC performed when in string configuration. It appears they have discovered how to equalize and sync the batteries at the string level and are testing their findings in the Cube (at the same time we get movement of the NS 999 into the back shop with the assumed task of getting its battery trays reworked).

     

    Basically, I see the last paragraph as an invitation to those folks who might consider adding the PbC to their lineup of possible battery options...
    30 Dec 2011, 10:26 AM Reply Like
  • lsd_lsm
    , contributor
    Comments (134) | Send Message
     
    Agreed, there was a power point in October referring to Pbc, but maybe we should ask?

     

    Editor Chris Jackson joined Railway Gazette International in 1982 after taking a degree in Transport Planning & Business Administration at the University of Aston. He is also a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Transport. Having pioneered advanced publishing technology for the title during the mid-1980s, Chris became Deputy Editor in 1991, and took over as Editor of the urban transit yearbook Metro Report at the same time.

     

    Email: chris.jackson [at] railwaygazette.com
    29 Dec 2011, 09:42 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    Did you email him? If not, I will be glad to since I actually have a subscription. :)
    29 Dec 2011, 09:59 AM Reply Like
  • lsd_lsm
    , contributor
    Comments (134) | Send Message
     
    No, I did not ... please pursue.
    29 Dec 2011, 11:12 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    Working on it. I got an "out of office until January 3rd" auto response from NS investor relations department on my question direct to Mr. Thelen.
    29 Dec 2011, 11:20 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    Can someone put up the link to the NS powerpoint presentation that mentions Axion. I can not find it. Thanks.

     

    I sent a request via investor relations at NS asking if Mr. Thelen meant three technologies or three configurations of Axion batteries mentioned in the powerpoint presentation. I did not have the powerpoint link, though. If I get an answer I will let everyone know.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:40 AM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Hi Rick,

     

    Here is the site where you can get the link to the powerpoint (I don't know how to do a direct link to the Presentation). It is called "Energy Savings, a Key to Successful Railroading" by Gerhard Thelen. Hope that helps.

     

    http://bit.ly/rsY9zR
    29 Dec 2011, 10:51 AM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    If you Google "Energy Savings, a Key to Successful Railroading" including the quotation marks, the presentation will come up with an ict.illinois.edu link.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:52 AM Reply Like
  • Ricknplano
    , contributor
    Comments (328) | Send Message
     
    Thanks jakurtz. Thanks to JP also. Both links worked.
    29 Dec 2011, 11:19 AM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Thanks for the feedback about the site. I am actually going through the Concentrators starting with the first pulling useful links that have been posted. Actually, the data I pull will help form the structure. When I get through pulling links from comments I'll look at the structure and decide what to create next.

     

    Not worrying about making it pretty yet, and not sure I'll leave it on Google Sites either. Like I commented, Google Sites puts you in a bit of straight jacket on site layout and structure. It is also invisible to the search engines. Hence my interest in putting it on a .info site of its own. Peanuts with some plain Jane hosting site.

     

    This is a revolutionary development in investing - 10%+ of the stock in the hands of ORGANIZED (Am I the next omyomy :<D) retail investors capable of taking collective action. The web empowers us, so I say we use it. We don't have to be just meek little bobble head investors.

     

    Don't forget I have a blog for the site if you want to post comments over there. I am head down and locked at the moment on pulling links from the comments, then we'll see what new sections to create next. I had a pretty photo of 999 at the top of the home page, but I pulled it out because it is copyrighted.
    29 Dec 2011, 10:44 AM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    (AXPW): Bid/ask, volumes and trades suggests that Quercus is in, and I'm thinking for more that 10% of daily volume ATM.

     

    Buy:sell 1:4.88 on 35 trades so far and volume 293.8K at 11:57:47.

     

    I may lose my sympathy for them.

     

    HardToLove
    29 Dec 2011, 12:17 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Do you think they could be making a push to maximize tax loss for 2011? Since they don't care about buying back in obviously.
    29 Dec 2011, 12:36 PM Reply Like
  • H. T. Love
    , contributor
    Comments (18495) | Send Message
     
    Well, that was my second thought and that might not be all Quercus.

     

    Volume now at 477K.

     

    HardToLove
    29 Dec 2011, 12:40 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Could be some people with stop losses kicking in who bought in the low .30's range thinking it was a bottom getting off the train, but pure speculation. In spite of JP's lists of potential catalysts (NS, BMW, Rosewater, Powercubes, DOD, etc) there isn't a dead certain catalyst except the earnings conference call in March. The price action since the November 15 earnings conference call and blown question and answer session left nothing solid on the table to hold up the pricing. Throw in the going concern remarks and it is exactly what I expected.

     

    The only question in my mind is do I have a big enough pair to buy more?
    29 Dec 2011, 12:53 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Also, during the 1M minus 8 share day on Monday it was not Quercus other than their 10%. I have to think it is people/Institutions who don't care about buying back in and are maximizing there tax loss, if it is Quercus all the better (of course, we wil know next week with there next form 4). Also, who works Friday before new years eve, no one, right?

     

    One more consideration, even though it is an up day in the market a lot of my small caps on my watchlist are in red and the ones that are not are only up very slightly. (...perhaps, I just have a bad list....no doubt. :-)
    29 Dec 2011, 01:16 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    If you don't plan to buy back in, it's not a tax loss. It's a loss loss.
    29 Dec 2011, 01:24 PM Reply Like
  • rgholbrook
    , contributor
    Comments (116) | Send Message
     
    Bang,
    Even as a buyer who acquires AXPW in small dollar monthly bites, the 100k shares portofolio (thanks to Q &S/S) is about to be realized. It would only take 40 or 50 other such "Petersen Piranha" to snap up 10% of the stock. Maybe your "collective", as a total of outstanding shares, is bigger than thought?
    29 Dec 2011, 12:49 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    Futurist is the tabulator, but I am sure we control well over 10% of the stock. If I could have the site I am working on fleshed out looking fantastic I'd make it a .info site in a heartbeat just to get some good Axion publicity in the public domain.
    29 Dec 2011, 12:57 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (859) | Send Message
     
    Well, I just snagged 4k @ .26,let's see if the other 1k fills
    29 Dec 2011, 12:58 PM Reply Like
  • pianomanshl
    , contributor
    Comments (313) | Send Message
     
    got some at 0.265
    29 Dec 2011, 01:03 PM Reply Like
  • jpau
    , contributor
    Comments (859) | Send Message
     
    I wouldn't be shocked to see 1,000,000 vol and low of .23 today
    29 Dec 2011, 01:08 PM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1930) | Send Message
     
    At the current share price, I wonder who would be willing to finance their next capital raise for more than 25c a share., if that!
    29 Dec 2011, 01:19 PM Reply Like
  • bangwhiz
    , contributor
    Comments (2250) | Send Message
     
    I suspect TG has an ace up his sleeve he's yet to play. Long way to go to the end of Q2 2012 and Axion will get through 2012 one way or another and within a year something will pop. Little to early to speculate what the next capital raise will go for IMHO.
    29 Dec 2011, 01:26 PM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1930) | Send Message
     
    I have been on AXPW for the last year and I must say it has been very frustrating, to say the least. In my opinion, it could be a very costly mistake for TG to wait until the cash has dried up to try raise some. The earlier it is done, the better !

     

    Just my two cents...
    29 Dec 2011, 02:21 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Amouna: "...The earlier it is done, the better !"

     

    That is only true if you have no further business prospects that would make your company worth categorically more than it currently is.
    29 Dec 2011, 02:30 PM Reply Like
  • Amouna
    , contributor
    Comments (1930) | Send Message
     
    Jakurz,

     

    So you think that TG is so confident in the prospects of AXPW's future business opportunities that he is willing to wait until last minute, knowing there would be no shortage of capital to raise?
    29 Dec 2011, 06:18 PM Reply Like
  • jakurtz
    , contributor
    Comments (1899) | Send Message
     
    Hi Amouna,

     

    Yes. If I did not believe that the management at Axion Power would choose the most advantageous time to raise capital I would not be invested in them. If I felt that I could in some way execute their business plan better than they, I would not be invested in them.

     

    I will not invest in Exide no matter how cheap they get because I do not fully trust the management there to execute properly. A business can have the greatest technology in the world and the perfect business plan but if they can't execute they will not thrive.

     

    You keep referring to it being "last minute" and I do not agree with that. Nano-cap companies can go a very long time without dying. If they wait until the end of the second quarter of 2012 I believe they will be waiting until the last minute and I will sweat. If they do it toward the end of the first quarter, I am comfortable with that. In 2009 during the largest credit crunch in modern economic times they had $700,000 in the bank and had to raise 18M after Exide left them high and dry withholding the DOE grant money, they swallowed that pill and executed the plan they needed to press on.

     

    I am very confident in management's ability to raise the capital next year at the most opportune time on the best terms available. You just don't bring a company through the wilderness of the past eight years like the management at Axion Power has to let it die at the doorstep of BMW, GM, Norfolk Southern, PJM and a number of other unnamed OEM's.
    29 Dec 2011, 08:11 PM Reply Like
  • John Petersen
    , contributor
    Comments (30629) | Send Message
     
    Last minute is a very subjective term. If you look at Axion's history it survived four years of just in time financing and the situation today is nowhere near desperate.

     

    At September 30, 2011, Axion had $4 million in cash, $6.9 million in working capital and $13.3 million in equity.

     

    At September 30, 2009, Axion had $0.8 million in cash, $0.3 million in working capital and $3.6 million in equity.

     

    Axion has additional financing needs. It also has time. In September 2009 the needs were urgent. Today's needs are very different.
    30 Dec 2011, 12:25 AM Reply Like
  • Mayascribe
    , contributor
    Comments (10662) | Send Message
     
    Author’s reply » Ack! Due to a faulty, overheating ceiling light in a closet, I had to turn off a fuse, which also gave power to the Verizon cable power box in my garden closet.

     

    Been without my home phone, TV and the Internet for two days.

     

    Apologies for not sooner flipping into another Concentrator.

     

    Now to catch up! 25 cents? Yeesh!

     

    This way to the next Concentrator:

     

    http://bit.ly/toRe5U
    29 Dec 2011, 01:46 PM Reply Like
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