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Issue #77 - Grid power for film sets, Li-Ion Battery to exceed 6Twh/year, hydrogen plane sets altitude record, and >50% of American commercial vehicles can be electrified

The EV Musings Newsletter
Issue #77 - Grid power for film sets, Li-Ion Battery to exceed 6Twh/year, hydrogen plane sets altitude record, and >50% of American commercial vehicles can be electrified
By Gary Comerford • Issue #77 • View online
Welcome to the EV Musings Newsletter. If you’re new here why not check out some of the back issues.
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This is a companion newsletter to the EV Musings Podcast - a weekly programme about electric vehicles, renewables and things that are interesting to electric vehicle owners.

This Week's Podcast.
The EV Musings Podcast: 124 - The 5 Minute Fill-up Episode
The EV Musings Podcast: 125 - The 'An EVs not for me' Episode
Top Five EV/ Renewable Stories.
Film London Announces Commission of the Grid Project, Supplying Renewable Energy to Productions in the Capital
Most people have never spent time on a film set. So they won’t realise that it’s a huge logistical operation which runs - as does everything in life - on energy. For units that roam around the country filming in remote - and often relatively inaccessible- places, the only way of getting power there is through a mobile generator. These are huge engines literally carried on the back of articulated trucks. They sit there running almost silently in the background all day pumping diesel fumes out into the environment.
Large productions might have several of these. A recent production I was aware of had five of these just to supply all the cast and crew at a central location (‘Unit Base’) alongside another one or two at the actual filming locations. They power the lights, the cameras, the catering and any special effects that need to be used etc.
So it’s great to see a centralised, renewable solution being proposed.
Film London have announced the official commission of the Grid Project, a pilot supplying renewable energy to productions in the capital that will reduce CO2 emissions and noise pollution. Construction has begun at Victoria Park, Tower Hamlets.
The installation of electrical feeder pillars that productions can plug into instead would reduce CO2 (Carbon Dioxide) emissions by 100% and PM (Particulate Matter) and NO2 (Nitrogen Dioxide) emissions to zero from film and TV productions at point of use, as well as significantly reducing noise pollution. The cabinets will also be available for use during events, reducing diesel generator usage from other industries.
Forecast: Li-Ion Battery Market Might Exceed 6 TWh/Year by 2030
With batteries forming the bulk of movement in terms of renewables (They’re vital for storage and for electric vehicles) the market for them is set to increase quite dramatically over the coming few years.
Notwithstanding the growth in electric cars across the planet, the fact that people are now awakening to the fact that they can add batteries to their house to help with, for example, storing power from a solar array - is also adding additional demand to the market.
In general, the battery market expands faster than the electric vehicle market, because the average battery capacity per vehicle increases. Not only that, more and more batteries are envisioned for battery energy storage systems.
Benchmark Mineral Intelligence notes that the lithium-ion battery market not only accelerates but becomes more localized, as manufacturers intend to lower costs and reduce the risk of trade disruption
A side effect of the unprecedented increase in lithium-ion production is the surging demand for specific raw materials like lithium, and some cathode elements - like cobalt and nickel (it affects prices). The forecast says that the lithium raw material supply will have to expand by an order of magnitude to achieve 6 TWh battery production (5 million tonnes of Lithium Carbonate Equivalent - LCE)
HY4 Passenger Plane Sets Hydrogen Altitude Record
We’re big fans of electric aviation on the podcast and the newsletter. As we’ve said several times battery-powered flight is both possible and desirable, but does suffer from a number of issue for the longer flights.
That’s where hydrogen comes in.
While hydrogen does have issues with regards to efficiency, storage and leakage, the energy density is higher than batteries and it’s easy to see why an electric plane powered by hydrogen would be something to aspire to.
German aerospace company H2FLY has a new world altitude record with its four-seat HY4, which became the first hydrogen-powered passenger aircraft to reach an altitude above 7,000 ft (approx. 2,135 m) last week– less than a day after the HY4 made the first European flight in a hydrogen-powered passenger aircraft from one major airport to another when it traveled from Stuttgart to Friedrichshafen
Hydrogen for the fuel cells is stored at less than 5,800 psi in two carbon composite tanks (one in each fuselage), that feed H into the fuel cell. The fuel cell generates electricity to power up the lithium-ion batteries, which provide a power boost during moments of peak demand by the 80-kW (about 107 hp) electric motor. The H2FLY HY4 has a cruising speed of 90 mph (145 km/h), and a projected range of up to 900 miles (1,500 km).
More Than Half of American Commercial Vehicles Are Electrifiable Today
Despite the fact that there seems to be an underlying swell of sentiment dictating that trucks - especially in America - do distances too long to be electricifed, new research indicates this is not the case.
The North American Council for Freight Efficiency (NACFE) and RMI‘s latest research shows that vans and step vans in the US and Canada are 100% electrifiable today.
Electrifying vans and step vans would avoid about 43.5 million tons of CO2e emissions annually, equivalent to removing nearly 5 billion gallons of gasoline from our economy per year
Porsche Demonstrates Taycan Vehicle-To-Grid Capability
Vehicle to grid on cars that don’t run Chademo connectors is a little bit of the holy grail when it comes to EVs. It’s the ability to plug your car in to the grid and use some of the energy in the battery to help power the grid while also allowing you to have enough capacity left to get to work the following morning.
Technology like this exists at the moment but only on one vehicle: The Nissan Leaf (and the sister vehicle the eNV200 van). But Porsche are looking to make moves into this area too.
If Porsche can do this using simple software tweaks, how easy could it be for other manufacturers running the CCS standard to do so?
A cool EV or renewable thing
From Episode 124 :
In last season’s Round Table Episode Sara Sloman - a keen cyclist - mentioned this so I wanted to follow up on it.
One of the best ways of reducing our carbon footprint is by cutting back on travel and - when you are travelling - using the least carbon intensive methods. One of the least intensive methods is cycling.
Sara mentioned that she likes to take trains around the country but when she gets to her destination she needs to have some form of travel device.
Which is where today’s cool thing come in.
Brompton - the commuter cycle manufacturer - have rental stations around the country. For £10 per day you can hire a Brompton cycle and use it as your means of transport around a city. It’s app based and you can keep the bike for up to 30 days. If you pay a little more for yearly membership (£20) you can hire from £5 per day
Remember Bromptons are designed for commuting. They are sturdy, well geared and fold up into something that easily fits into a cupboard or under a desk when not in use.
They have 50 locations around the country including Elgin and Oban in the Scottish Highlands.
From Episode 125 :
At the end of 2021, 31 states and the District of Columbia had adopted renewable portfolio standards (RPS) or clean energy standards (CES). Both require electricity suppliers to meet a set share of their electricity from designated renewable resources or carbon-free eligible technologies.
In 2021, Delaware, Oregon, North Carolina, and Illinois updated their RPS or CES policies while Nebraska became the 20th state to commit to 100% clean electricity by 2050 or earlier.
While this sounds pretty good the devil is in the details.
Definitions of what constitutes ‘clean electricity’ or ‘renewables’ differ by state. For example Hydro power is excluded in California due to environmental issues and some states include nuclear energy &/or natural gas fitted with carbon-capture and sequestration (CCS) technology to count toward the state’s policy target while others don’t.
At it’s basic level it’s a pretty good starting point. In the absence of a federally defined standard it’s up to the individual states to make the move. Seeing so many start their renewables journey is quite satisfying
Something To Think About.
Finally...
This week marks the start of the Fully Charged Live exhibition in Farnborough, Hampshire. After a 27 month gap due to the global pandemic the show returns for the second time in a little over seven months. I’ll be there all three days so if anyone wants to come over and chat.
I’ll be wearing an EV Musings Podcast T-Shirt. Feel free to say ‘Hi’
Click the Mystery Box. See what’s hidden inside.
You'll like what's in here. I promise!
You'll like what's in here. I promise!
Did you enjoy this issue?
Gary Comerford

Topical stories about renewables, EVs and things that are interesting to EV drivers.

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