Electric Car News Roundup – 30

electric car news

Cambridge University Eco Racing Unveils Four-Seater Electric Car That Can Power The EV Using Just The Power Of A Kettle!

An undergraduate team, Cambridge University Eco Racing (CUER) have collaborated with top U.K. automotive companies and experts to develop and manufacture ‘Helia’ – a new solar powered electric vehicle

The students have created the vehicle to demonstrate current electric vehicle and renewable energy technology, with the aim being to inspire the next generation of engineers and science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) students. 

According to Xiaofan Zhang, CUER programme Director “It’s incredible to see how electric vehicle technology has developed so far in such a short time.  These innovations have allowed us to build a four-seat car that is much faster, more efficient and practical.”

Cambridge University Eco Racing Electric Car
Cambridge University Eco Racing Electric Car (credit: Cambridge University)

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Firstly, Cambridge University is close to my heart.  No, I am not an alumni and certainly do not have the mental prowess to walk through the hallowed halls of this prestigious institution.  However, my nephew is currently studying engineering at Cambridge.  So certainly close to my heart! 

For all those vociferous opponents of zero-emission transportation, it is a firm reminder, that the EV sector will continue to benefit from ‘momentous innovation‘ leading to the mass adoption of EVs globally.  

It is indeed an incredible achievement to power a vehicle with four occupants with just the power of a kettle.  It has given a whole new perspective to making a cup of tea!  

The electric vehicle can reach a speed of 50 mph and can achieve a range of up to 900 kilometers on a single charge i.e. equivalent to a trip from Edinburgh to London.  Perfect for those nervous about range anxiety.  The EV can be powered by both an EV charge and solar power.  

We will certainly continue to see significant more innovation in battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and as the market continues to develop rapidly. For those naysayers of zero-emission road transportation, next time you make a cup of tea, reflect on what Cambridge University has just achieved!

Electric Vehicle Charging In Under 10 Minutes 

Researches at Pennsylvania State University have developed a lithium-ion battery capable of adding 200 to 300 miles of zero-emission range to an electric car in just 10 minutes.  EV owners may soon be able to pull into a fuelling station, plug their cars in, go to the restroom, get a cup of coffee and in 10 minutes, drive out with a full charged battery, according to a team of engineers. 

According to Chao-Yang Wang, Director of Electrochemical Engine Centre at Penn State “We demonstrated that we can charge an electric vehicle in ten minutes for a 200 to 300 mile range.  And we can do this maintaining 2,500 charging cycles, or equivalent of half a million miles of travel.”

Penn State electric vehicle battery charging
EV Battery Recharge In 10 Minutes (credit: Penn State)

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Two issues have skewed the perception of potential electric car buyers: range anxiety and charging speed.  To a large extent, range anxiety is fast disappearing as newer all-electric car models demonstrate considerably higher emission free range in ‘real world conditions’.   Most EVs being introduced are capable of rapid charging, where such infrastructure exists.  This has certainly helped in alleviating the concern regarding the time to recharge electric vehicle.  Even though most EV charging is done overnight at home, those that need to charge at public charging points for longer journeys, want to achieve at least 80% charge in the time they can gulp down a coffee!   Certainly the news from Penn State is encouraging and we do believe, we will see significant more innovation in the immediate to medium term, that will enable charging an EV just as efficiently as refuelling an ICE car.  So those out there that are impatient like me but want zero-emission electric driving, the stars are certainly aligning in our favour! 

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Ashvin Suri

Ashvin has been involved with the renewables, energy efficiency and infrastructure sectors since 2006. He is passionate about the transition to a low-carbon economy and electric transportation. Ashvin commenced his career in 1994, working with US investment banks in New York. Post his MBA from the London Business School (1996-1998), he continued to work in investment banking at Flemings (London) and JPMorgan (London). His roles included corporate finance advisory, M&A and capital raising. He has been involved across diverse industry sectors, to include engineering, aerospace, oil & gas, airports and automotive across Asia and Europe. In 2010, he co-founded a solar development platform, for large scale ground and roof solar projects to include the UK, Italy, Germany and France. He has also advised on various renewable energy (wind and solar) utility scale projects working with global institutional investors and independent power producers (IPP’s) in the renewable energy sector. He has also advised in key international markets like India, to include advising the TVS Group, a multi-billion dollar industrial and automotive group in India. Ashvin has also advised Indian Energy, an IPP backed by Guggenheim (a US$ 165 billion fund). He has also advised AMIH, a US$ 2 billion, Singapore based group. Ashvin has also worked in the real estate and infrastructure sector, to including working with the Matrix Group (a US$ 4 billion property group in the UK) to launch one of the first few institutional real estate funds for the Indian real estate market. The fund was successfully launched with significant institutional support from the UK/ European markets. He has also advised on water infrastructure, to include advising a Swedish clean technology company in the water sector. He is also a member of the Forbury Investment Network advisory committee. He has also been involved with a number of early stage ventures.

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