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Tesla lawsuit alleges ‘defective battery pack’ in car death blaze

Mon, 01/14/2019 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel
Tesla S sedan

A lawsuit has been filed against Tesla in the US alleging that a “defective battery pack” led to a fatal car accident last year.

Chicago law firm Corboy & Demetrio has filed a product liability and negligence lawsuit, alleging that a 2014 Tesla S sedan “had a defective battery pack that caused the burning death of an 18-year-old passenger”.

Corboy & Demetrio partner Philip Corboy claimed: “The Tesla S battery was prone to extremely intense fires incapable of being timely extinguished.”

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CATL opens first US office in Detroit

Mon, 12/17/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

Chinese lithium-ion manufacturer Contemporary Amperex Technology Limited (CATL) is opening its first North American sales and service facility, in Detroit, Michigan, as the company looks to stake its claim on the US battery market.

CATL has established “a series of partnership agreements with world-renowned car manufacturers” such as BMW, Daimler, and Jaguar Land Rover.

The Detroit facility will help CATL to “improve the supply of lithium-ion batteries to the US auto market and to support the expansion of EV manufacturing.”

 

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Joint Venture for pipeline solar-plus-storage projects

Mon, 12/17/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

8minutenergy Renewables, JP Morgan, and “an affiliate of Upper Bay Infrastructure Partners”, announced that they have entered a joint venture to support 8minutenergy’s 10.7GW pipeline of utility solar-plus-storage projects.

The joint venture will, along with investment from 8minutenergy’s owner and CEO, Tom Buttgenbach, will raise over US$200 million in capital commitments.

“We have been the largest and most successful solar developer in California and have expanded our cost leadership across the US”, commented Buttgenbach. “A testament to our low-cost leadership is the 420MW Eagle Shadow Mountain Solar plant in Nevada, which at 2.3 cents/kWh fixed for 25 years, holds the record for the lowest-price solar PPA in the nation.

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BMZ selects new US Headquarters in Virginia Beach

Mon, 12/10/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

German lithium-ion manufacturer BMZ has selected a new location in Virginia Beach, where it is currently headquartered, to expand its manufacturing operations.

BMZ— a “global leader of lithium-ion battery and charging systems”— opened its US headquarters at a 16,500 sq. ft. facility on Lishelle Road, Virginia Beach in 2011.

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US and Israel Cooperate on Clean Energy

Mon, 12/10/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

The US Department of Energy (DoE) and Israel’s Ministry of Energy (MoE) have together selected seven clean energy projects, to which they will grant US$6 million under the Binational Industrial Research and Development (BIRD) Energy programme.

Qualifying projects must involve one US and one Israeli company, involve energy-related innovation, and be of mutual interest to both countries. At least half of the project costs must be contributed by the companies’ involved themselves.

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Sun rises on US-Japanese partnership for solar-plus-storage

Mon, 12/10/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel

US-based solar-plus-storage specialist Sunnova Energy and Japanese sogo sasha (general trading company) Itochu have entered a business alliance “to promote the service and capabilities of solar plus storage solutions in the United States.” Under the agreement, Itochu has made an (undisclosed) equity investment in Sunnova.

The two companies have indicated intentions to evaluate “GrideShare Client”— the AI software of UK-based residential energy storage firm Moixa— for use in Sunnova’s solar-plus-storage systems.

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US transport chief to form lithium safety groups

Mon, 12/03/2018 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd
Elaine Chao

The US government is forming groups of experts to study lithium-ion battery safety issues in manufacturing and transportation.

Transportation secretary Elaine Chao (pictured) is spearheading the formation of two expert committees on the batteries as part of a package of measures included in the 2018 Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act that was recently signed into law by President Donald Trump.

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Investment boost for Massachusetts battery start-ups

Mon, 12/03/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel
24M Technologies manufacturing process

Two battery technology start-ups in Massachusetts have filed paperwork indicating that they have each raised more than US$20 million in new investment.

24M Technologies, a Cambridge-based firm that produces semi-solid lithium-ion cells, filed a Form D with the US Securities and Exchange Commission indicating that they raised more than $21.8m through an equity release.

Woburn-based SolidEnergy Systems similarly filed a Form D indicating that they raised more than $28.8m, also through an equity release.

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Former EPA chief to chair electrolyte tech advisory board for Tydrolyte

Mon, 12/03/2018 - 00:00 -- John Shepherd
Stephen Johnson

The former head of the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Stephen Johnson is to chair the advisory board of novel electrolyte technology company Tydrolyte.

Tydrolyte said the newly-formed advisory board would support the company in its “mission to replace toxic sulfuric acid in the US$40 billion-dollar lead battery market with a better performing, non-toxic substitute”.

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SK Innovation battery project targets US automotive market

Mon, 12/03/2018 - 00:00 -- Hugh Finzel
Governor Nathan Deal

SK Innovation plans to invest 1.98 trillion South Korean won (US$1.01 billion) to establish an electric vehicle (EV) batteries production base in Jackson County, Georgia as they look to establish themselves in the US, “the largest battleground of global automakers”.

The plant will be built on a 278-acre site in Commerce City and is expected to have an annual production capacity of 9.8 gigawatt-hours.

The announcement confirms speculation of such a project reported earlier this year.

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