If Passed, EV Tax Credit Expansion Would Help Used EV Sales

With the current tax credits about to run out for some automakers, congress is starting the process of possibly expanding the program and lifting the 200k vehicle cap. Not only would this draft bill help sell new EVs, but the bill would also expand the program to help with used electric vehicles. For those unfamiliar, the current EV tax credit program allows a reduction of up to $7500 in federal taxes owed, but only for the buyers of the first 200,000 electric vehicles from a manufacturer. Once the 200,000 sales are reached, the credit phases out over several quarters until…
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What Makes More, EV Batteries or Storage Projects?

What Makes More, EV Batteries or Storage Projects?

A recent article from CNBC shows us an important struggle Tesla is going through. When they don't have enough battery cells, Tesla prioritizes vehicles over stationary storage, mostly because the vehicle business is more profitable. When batteries become more widely available, like they're starting to, then they try to do both businesses more. Tesla's large energy storage project in Australia. Image from Google Earth. While the report is mostly about Tesla, it does give us a broad variety of insight into the general state of the different industries that are starting to use large volumes of battery cells. Getting into…
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Geotab Just Gave Us All A Massive Treasure Trove of Battery Data

Geotab Just Gave Us All A Massive Treasure Trove of Battery Data

While EV batteries have generally proven to do better than the oil companies would like us all to believe, there's still a lot of room for improvement (we're looking at you Nissan!). On the other hand, the EV community has largely stumbled in the dark over battery life. Until now, at least! Geotab just released data based on the observed real-world degradation of over 6,000 electric vehicles. The good news: EV batteries are generally doing pretty good. Based on the data, Geotab tells us that the "vast majority" of electric vehicle batteries will outlast the rest of the vehicle. If…
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CleanTechnica EV Survey Data

CleanTechnica EV Survey Data

If you haven't noticed already, a lot of articles in this blog are about data different organizations, businesses, and governments are collecting. That's no coincidence. When it comes to making a good product, or more importantly, a product that matters, you have to sift through a lot of data and adjust accordingly going forward. Any entity that doesn't consider the data will get outmaneuvered by competitors who do. Information about batteries, vehicles, and other technological things does very little without data about the drivers and buyers of vehicles, and that's exactly what we see from CleanTechnica again in their latest…
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What We Will Be Doing Q1 of 2020

What We Will Be Doing Q1 of 2020

I hope you're as excited as I am about our CEO, John Bysinger's, recent announcement. In case you missed it, here's the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=848&v=oZ0TvnxK_OA&feature=emb_title For those of you who need a quick summary of his announcement, or a quick recap: One thing John said in his announcement really stood out: "How many of you get in your car, you push that 'on' button, and the first thing you do is look at your battery health gauge, and you wonder, 'Is today the day I'm going to lose another bar?'" he asked. "It is our job to help take that worry…
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World’s Biggest Battery is Making Big Money

World’s Biggest Battery is Making Big Money

The Hornsdale Power Reserve in southern Australia. Image by Google. A recent piece at Seeking Alpha explains that Tesla's giant installation of grid-connected batteries is doing very well financially. For those unfamiliar, the Hornsdale Power Reserve in southern Australia is a big bank of lithium-ion batteries located next to a large windfarm. The idea is to charge the batteries when power is plentiful and release the power back into the grid when extra power is needed. This is done in two ways: by giving big boosts of power (for 10 minutes) when there's a problem with the grid, and by…
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A 150 mile EV–50 Years Ago

A 150 mile EV–50 Years Ago

It's easy to get caught up in the hype and feel like we are at the pinnacle of technology today. In many ways, it's true, but in others, we aren't moving along as fast as we might think. People familiar with old AMC cars, like the Pacer and the Gremlin, will recognize this right away. This car didn't make it to production, but it definitely inspired the style of cars that followed in in the years later. Background While AMC didn't have the deep pockets of the "Big 3" automakers, several developments pushed them to produce this prototype. First, air…
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Nikola’s Battery Claims Draw Skepticism

Nikola’s Battery Claims Draw Skepticism

A recent article in Forbes shows us that there's a lot of promise in battery technology, but big promises draw big skepticism. Double the density, less than half the weight, and at half the cost--that's what Nikola Motors' CEO Trevor Wilson promised to show us in the second half of 2020. Such battery cells would revolutionize the industry, but only after giving Nikola Motors a big edge over the competition. Wilson's claims weren't backed with much other information, but he did tells Forbes that the improvements came from eliminating costly metals such as nickel, cobalt and magnesium, use of a…
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Lithium-Ion Batteries Are Hitting a Tipping Point

Lithium-Ion Batteries Are Hitting a Tipping Point

A recent article in Forbes shows us that lithium-ion batteries are about to hit a major milestone, and it's going to transform more than the EV industry. Over the last 9 years, prices for lithium-ion batteries have dropped considerably already. In 2019 dollars, we've already gone from over $1100 per kWh of storage to only $156 today. That alone is a major factor in the increasing affordability of electric vehicles. Further, it makes it easier and cheaper to keep existing EVs around, as it's cheaper to restore the battery packs with newer cells that are not only better, but cheaper…
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All EV Batteries Aren’t Equally Clean

All EV Batteries Aren’t Equally Clean

Image from Wikimedia Commons (public domain). An important thing we like to keep in mind at Fēnix is that all batteries aren't the same. While a battery cell's ability to hold energy, charge fast, and last a long time get most of the press, there are other factors we have to keep in mind. One of the most important is where the battery's components come from. A recent piece in Greentech Media illustrates this well. While many like to focus on the cobalt and lithium mining in battery production, one of the most common components in battery cells is graphite,…
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