November 22nd, 2018 by Cynthia Shahan
Ben Pullen, the managing director of International EVRT, led a rousing day of informative e-mobility talks for the primary ever e-mobility session at Intersolar Center East final yr. It culminated in questions from the viewers. This query & reply session adopted shows on the accelerating transition to electrical automobiles, the facility of inflection factors, sustainable cities, and extra.
Ben notes that the UAE is a a brand new hotspot for electrical automobiles. “We’re on the cusp of an electric boom.”
In textual content type, I’m highlighting and summarizing a few of the most fascinating questions and solutions under.
Query: “My name is Caleb from India. Can you guys comment on the lifetime of the current existing batteries and what can potentially happen when they are not anymore in a usable state in terms of disposable?”
Zach responded that it varies with the producer. Tesla expects that its batteries will final 15 years. BMW’s batteries from Samsung SDI are anticipated to be comparable or present a fair higher lifetime. “There’s a lot of talk about reusing batteries for stationary storage or reusing them for other cars. There’s a lot of debate on the market. Tesla says that it makes much more sense to just recycle the battery and then use those materials again to create new batteries.”
Whereas Tesla doesn’t see a commercially viable path for reusing batteries for stationary storage on a big scale and focuses extra on recycling on a big scale, others EV producers differ, he provides. Recycling is straightforward. 95% of the elements within the battery can simply be used to construct one other battery. Some auto corporations, reminiscent of Nissan, have been extra targeted on probably reusing them as stationary storage. EV batteries and stationary storage batteries are totally different — despite the fact that they share so much in widespread. It’s totally different to optimize for a automotive than to optimize for stationary storage.
Caleb continued his line of questioning, “The reason I am asking this question is you guys are saying electric carmakers are — is gonna help to reduce carbon emissions and stuff like that … but at the end if the batteries are not properly recycled or properly disposed of, it can cause more fatal environmental disasters?”
Zach responded that certainly one of his foremost criticisms of many research evaluating how inexperienced electrical automobiles are is that they typically assume a single use of the battery, and all the elements within the battery. Zachary expressed the absurdity of this considering by once more highlighting that 95% of the elements of the battery might be recycled and reused. There are methods to only use the battery for stationary storage as nicely. “So, any evaluation, which is practically every evaluation, looking at the environmental impacts of batteries and electric cars is making a false assumption that these batteries won’t be recycled or reused — most definitely will.”
After a follow-up query on the subject, Zach responded that the market’s very small at this level. There have been some corporations effervescent up for recycling batteries, however it’s nonetheless too early since few electrical automobiles have gotten sufficiently old to retire from the street. In Tesla’s case, the corporate plans to convey all of the batteries again into its gigafactories and recycle them itself. For sure different automakers, some corporations will pop up that will probably be targeted solely on recycling and promoting the elements once more.
Ben Pullen jumps in, “There is a company in our office in London, a sustainable co-working space, Powervault. And they entered into a partnership with Renault to buy Renault’s second life batteries, so when the Zoe’s finished, they build home storage units. So, they’re offering home storage units at this point — they offer a home storage unit to their consumers. I think what’s really exciting, and you’ve probably seen some of the themes running through the last two days, is the role that storage has to play in grid management.”
The responsiveness of batteries is great, offering the power to dispatch power again into the grid a lot quicker than some other storage or manufacturing choice.
Whether or not by means of recycling or reuse, Ben notes that, “I think the electric car and second-life batteries will play a big role in home storage and grid storage units. So, that ability for Renault to sell the battery to Powervault helps them to reduce the lifetime battery costs by 30%. And the price that Powervault buys from Renault also allows them to reduce their costs for the storage. So, home storage then becomes cheaper. There’s a really nice relationship between electric vehicles and storage.”
Zach agreed, “Yes, they really help to bring down the cost of storage, which then helps to bring down the costs of solar plus storage, which opens up more and more markets for solar.”
Karim El-Jisr, Government Director of The Sustainable Metropolis, speaks as nicely. “If I may additionally add, sure, perhaps 15 years is the anticipated lifetime. However I feel most automotive producers in the present day will solely offer you a 7-year guarantee on the battery. So, after seven years, we nonetheless actually don’t understand how these batteries are going to carry out, however there’s nonetheless lots of juice in them — no less than 80–85%, and that’s thought-about depleted. It’s not ok for the automotive, however it’s ok for another use.
Zach turns into a questioner for an additional matter, turning to his left and asking Fatima Al Suwaidi, Venture Engineer at Masdar Clear Power within the UAE, “What are your commercial goals with the bus project. Is it to feed IP into large commercial players like BYD, Proterra, Volvo; or is it to develop something that you would then bring to market?”
She responds, “I mean, the motivation behind the electric bus is to look into the integration of the different components of the bus and to make it suitable for a climatic condition as the UAE. We are facing other challenges with transportation in general in a country like the UAE. So we wanted to combine or link between our R&D efforts, the industry, the main players; also, why we’re seeking to speak to the major international transportation players in this field — to be able to all sit together in one room to discuss.” They need to deploy within the UAE and have to tailor their tasks or prototypes to the distinctive circumstances there.
Zach interjects, “Is there a commercial goal or is it just research?”
She continues, “No, of course, the projected plan is we are taking every phase step by step. So now we are in the development phase looking into the development and commercial also. As we speak, even though we are still at an early stage of the prototype development, we are also, in parallel, speaking to different potential partners or clients that we hope to gain.” She confirms that they do need to discover a bus manufacturing firm.
Ben added, “If it is tested and launched here, lots of manufacturers are eyeing them closely, lots of them have been doing testing over the summer in the extreme heat. I don’t know any of the results. I’m not sure if they published them publicly but maybe they can provide some insights into how their car performance did in the heat.” Zach stated it’s a great signal that Dubai simply purchased 50 electrical automobiles from Tesla for taxi service.
Zach and Karim of The Sustainable Metropolis acquired right into a dialogue about electrical carsharing locally, and the group’s general electrical automotive targets.
“With The Sustainable City, you said you have 3% (EV share)?,” Zach requested.
“Yes, so — 500 villas, we have 65% occupancy, so 3% of 300 villas, that’s 9. … That’s just in 3 months. We expect a sharp uptake, especially after the announcements yesterday. Which only make a dent to the finances, but it makes you feel good. It’s nice to know that I can park for free, I can drive all the highways for free, I can renew my license for free.”
Zach: “And your projection of 15% would be higher than practically any city in the world, and almost any country.”
“We’re looking at 25% by 2020. This is our target as a community — 25% EV adoption.”
Zach requested concerning the carsharing as properly. “Have you put it out there to the community yet to find out how much interest there is?”
He defined that what was introduced the day earlier than on this matter was instantly posted to a group discussion board. “We have a community portal, so all that information is always communicated. And we have also a research dimension. We work with Georgia Tech University and the University of California–Davis. We have a travel behavior research project with them, so we have multiple surveys going on and we get feedback from residents.”
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