Posts By: Michael Kent

Southwest Research Institute consortium conducts independent battery benchmarking

Comparing the spec sheets from different parts manufacturers is tricky business for engineers in any industry. However, the advanced battery market seems to be uniquely challenged in this regard. As Tesla CEO Elon Musk often points out, when it comes to batteries, the BS factor is outrageous. Even if you assume that every vendor provides… Read more »

Chroma Systems Solutions invests in the next generation of EV testing products

One major challenge that the EV industry has had to overcome is figuring out how to test its new products. No matter how great and innovative you think your new design is, if you can’t adequately test it, how do you know it’s truly great? Until recently, there were no standard operating procedures for testing… Read more »

An airbag for battery packs: PyroPhobic says its unique thermoplastics will stop thermal runaway

Engineers have been searching for ways to mitigate the risk of fire with Li-ion batteries since the technology was first commercialized. Chemists are creating new cell formulations that are less prone to problems, electronics experts are designing fail-safe battery management systems, and mechanical engineers are building complex cooling and fire suppression systems. A common rule… Read more »

Engineered Materials Solutions brings a century of clad metal experience to batteries

The methods that automakers use to join Li-ion cells together are almost as diverse as the sizes and shapes of the cells themselves. EV builders are using spot welding, mechanical fasteners, wire bonding and other joining techniques. It’s safe to say that there is no consensus on an ideal solution, and that there’s a lot… Read more »

Bender launches a new off-the-shelf automotive-grade isolation monitoring device for EVs

Traditional 12-volt automotive batteries are grounded to the metal chassis of vehicles for a few different reasons, mainly driven by cost. Using the metal frame as a common ground essentially reduces the number of wires needed for all of the 12-volt systems by half – saving money and reducing weight. For example, to power a… Read more »

WattZilla designs its high-power charging stations to be the first and last EVSE you buy

One size serves all. When interviewing the founders of technology startups, we often hear a common narrative as they recount the inception of the company. They go shopping for a product, find the available options lacking and then ask themselves, “Why doesn’t a better solution exist?” That’s Frank Gangi’s story. He bought a Tesla Model… Read more »

More motor options: TM4 launches new powertrain products with increased torque and speed ranges

TM4 designs electric powertrains for the most demanding vehicle platforms and duty cycles on the road. Formed as a subsidiary of the public utility Hydro-Québec, the company sells its motor and control products to manufacturers of heavy-duty trucks and buses around the world. In June, TM4 will release an update to its SUMO product line… Read more »

ChargePoint launches updated hardware and management platform targeting fleet operators

Large corporate and government vehicle fleets are increasingly turning to plug-in vehicles to take advantage of dramatically lower fuel, operating and maintenance costs. For the fleet manager, however, the EV infrastructure world is a lot more complicated than it is for gas or CNG vehicles, which can use a single refueling depot. In spite of… Read more »

Seaward’s new handheld charge point tester will help bring quality control to a new level

There is no doubt that the early days of charging infrastructure rollout had some bumps in the road. Plug-in vehicles interact with the outside world in a much more complicated way than legacy gas-guzzlers do, which led to early interoperability issues. The automakers needed to quickly learn how to work with many infrastructure and hardware… Read more »

Telefonix makes the case for free Level 1 workplace charging

Everyone who watches the sketch comedy show Portlandia knows that the dream of the 90s is alive in Portland. Our dream of the 90s was vehicle electrification, and we hoped the GM EV-1 would kick-start the trend more than a decade before the Tesla Roadster actually did it. Well, the vehicle electrification dream is alive… Read more »