Sunday, October 24, 2021

Dream yatch … electric!

The first mega-yacht with hybrid propulsion Bintador is in Tankoa Genovese yard, shipyard specialized in the construction of fully customizable metal mega yachts.
Number one in the S501 range featuring 50 metres of the yard, the boat is powered by a state-of-the-art hybrid propulsion package based on a pair of diesel 895 kW (1200 HP) MTU and two electric 300 kW motors assisted by two 250 kW variable-speed generators.
Among the various operation modalities, it is worth underlining DEM (Diesel Electric Mode) that assures a notable fuel saving and leads to decrease noise levels: the electric motors are powered by two variable-speed generators and allow reaching a speed of 10.5 nodes, with maximum autonomy of 4900 nautical miles. In hybrid modality, instead, the two diesel generators are off during the navigation and one of the two main motors works to power the second electric motor that shares in the propulsion and to satisfy the energy requirements for non-board services. At 12 nodes, the yacht will have a cruise autonomy of about 4000 nautical miles.
The choice of navigating in Full-Speed modality sets in operation both main motors and the generators to power the two electric motors and on-board services: in this case, the yacht reaches a maximum speed of over 18 nodes.
The yacht has been already awarded: it won the Boat International 2020 World Superyacht Award as it is the best “Displacement Motor Yachts Below 499GT – 40M and above”.
Are you wondering how much does it cost? About 31 million Euros!

Separate waste collection in the electric sector

To implement its first electric vehicle for the sorted waste collection, Nord Engineering, protagonist in the sector of the smart waste management, has chosen Volvo Trucks, more precisely Volvo FE 6×2 Electric. The vehicle is fully electric, with a maximum power of 540 HP, total ground mass of 27 Tons and it is equipped with four battery packs, with 66 kWh batteries. Moreover, it is configured with the Easy collection system, innovative automated green solution for the intelligent waste management according to smart city principles.
«We have ideated and patented Easy – explained Andrea Fissore, Marketing Manager of Nord Engineering – an automated system of waste collection unique in the world, which includes both the equipped vehicle and collection containers. Our system has been chosen by municipalities and companies in over 20 Countries in the world, from America to Dubai, which have acknowledged our capability of developing smart, safe and efficient collection technologies. We have chosen Volvo Trucks because it shares our same awareness of the environment, the unceasing evolution is a constant factor of its history and its electric vehicles, immediately available, have a technological edge».
Easy system permits to optimize the entire collection process in full safety: without leaving the cabin, through a joystick, a single operator activates the equipment that automatically hooks, empties and repositions the container.
Moreover, due to the cloud, containers communicate with vehicles and the center to be emptied when they are almost full.

Here are the three new motors for General Motors

Excellent performances for the electric vehicles where they will be installed and lower manufacturing costs are the targets of the new Ultium Drive motors signed by General Motors, which are part of a scalable family.
Besides the new motors, GM has revealed details on the controllers that share in determining more efficient ways to distribute the torque in three-motor systems: it seems the artificial intelligence and the machine learning are exploited, so permitting a broad array of vehicles, from high-performance cars to work trucks. Moreover, the American player has announced the inverter and other electronic components are directly integrated into Ultium Drive motors precisely to decrease the complexity of its production, then lower costs.
The units featuring 180 and 255 kW are permanent-magnet motors designed with the target of minimizing the dependence on heavy rare earth materials, whereas the 62-kW motor is induction type.
«Twenty years – said Mark Reus, General Motors President – of electric drive system development and more than 100 years of high-volume vehicle engineering are helping GM pivot quickly from conventional vehicles to EVs. Our vertical integration in this space, encompassing both hardware and software, helps give us control over our own destiny and a significant competitive advantage».

Yamaha Motor: new motor for the nautical world

The latest novelty by Yamaha Motor in the segment of electric propulsion is Harmo, an integrated motor equipped with brand-new innovative steering control, with new very interesting functions. Harmo is an outboard motor conceived with the target of integrating with nature, no matter whether they are seas, lakes or oceans. Besides, the motor mission is offering an experience, in both soft and salt water, to enjoy the peace of the surrounding environment silently and without polluting.
The technological solution is composed by an electric propulsion unit, by a remote control and a joystick for a more intuitive operation. The motor is equipped with RIM-drive technology and is mounted around the external edge of the propeller, allowing more thrust at lower speeds compared to equivalent conventional motors.
The steering offers smooth manoeuvres and sharp reactive turns, due to a broad steering angle, whereas the joystick control offers an intuitive control and a complete effortless boat management, permitting to enjoy the navigation without worrying about manoeuvres. The installation of HARMO is similar to the one of conventional outboards, that is to say by means of a bracket positioned on the transom and it is equipped with the tilt function to raise it from water when it is not used or if a boat requires grounding.
This motor is already in operation on a boat: Respiro by Venmar, manufacturer specialized in the design and production of taxi boats and pleasure boats.

In electric … also the Pope

During his official visit in Slovakia, Pope Francesco travelled on the electric SUV EnyaQ iV by Skoda, purposely modified. Among the modifications, there are the rear windows with transparent glasses, and not darkened, to allow faithful people to see him, the supports for the Vatican flag and the official logo of the papal visit on the housings of the outer mirrors and a further handle in addition to the standard equipment to make getting in and out more comfortable.
Waiting for seeing the new full-electric Papamobile (that will be manufactured by Fisker), Pope Francesco has already started the transition towards a zero-emission hyper-technological mobility. As witnessed by the choice of using two EnyaQ iV, Skoda electric SUV, for the official visit in Slovakia to which he is committed precisely in these days.
Skoda manufacturer has intended to enhance the technological interaction at the service of the Pontiff: they have created a specific website that allows faithful people to send greetings that Pope Francesco can directly read on board.
After the Slovak experience in electric, there are high expectations for seeing what will become the new full electric Papamobile. To discover it, we have to wait until 2022: Fisker is at work on a new fully-electric version of Ocean SUV, equipped with a large modern dome fully made of glass to allow Francesco to greet faithfuls. Autonomy will be 480 km and the overall power of 300 HP, due to the use of two electric motors, one for each axis.

Electric and solar technology in Utrecht

The Dutch city of Utrecht has turned into a virtuous place that can demonstrate how much the electric car sharing can be a winning choice. In this scenario, Munich-based mobility provider Sono Motors signed a cooperation agreement for a large-scale vehicle-to-grid (V2G) project in the city with We Drive Solar. Sono Motors will provide 100 Sion and thereby support the city in its goal of becoming the first metropolitan ecosystem to combine bidirectional charging and car sharing. Sono Motors’ Sion is pioneer for being solar electric vehicle (SEV) for the masses, enables V2G use-cases through its 54-kWh battery, unique solar technology, and the bidirectional charging system.
The region of Utrecht is to connect local energy generation via electric vehicles’ smart charging capabilities, the first project of this scale in the world, with 500 bidirectional charging stations available to the public. On top of the energy produced via the integrated solar panels, all Sion will be charged using sustainable energy and will also be able to deliver excess energy back into the grid.
«This is – said Christians, Sono Motors’ CEO and co-founder – the perfect project for Sono Motors to further our vision of a world free from fossil fuels as it is a clear demonstration that electric vehicles can support the transition of the energy sector as a whole. We are proud that the technology we develop is able to facilitate such a ground-breaking project, focusing on clean urban living, smart charging and shared mobility».
As part of the city-wide bidirectional charging and car sharing fleet it is planned that 100 Sion will be reserved by We Drive Solar. The aim is to develop this project on a larger scale in further cities and businesses in the Netherlands and other European countries.

XPENG flying car is incoming

XPENG, the manufacturer of smart electric vehicles, has recently revealed its forefront range, including its most futuristic innovation: XPENG X2 flying car.
Not released on the market, yet, it represents the fifth and last generation of flying cars, developed in collaboration with HT Aero. The car is provided with numerous hi-tech fixtures, such as the radar detection of distances, system of sensors to avoid obstacles and a parachute. It measures 4.97 metres of length, 4.78 metres of width and 1.36 metres of height and its arms can be folded, reducing the overall length to 4.79 metres and the width to 1.95 metres, while the propellers’ diameter is about 1.83 metres. With a structure fully made of carbon fibre, this flying car weighs 560 kilos, with a maximum weight at the take-off of 760 kilos. It will be able to fly for about 35 minutes at a cruise speed of 130 kilometres at a height of 1000 metres.
A brief presentation of the company headquartered at Guangzhou, in China: XPENG is strongly committed to the in-house research and development and to the smart production. More than 50% of its over 11,000 employees work in areas connected with research and development. To optimize its customers’ mobility, XPENG develops its complete technology XPILOT (Advanced Driver Assistance System) and the on-board smart operating system (Xmart OS), as well as all base systems of the vehicle, including the powerplant and the electrification/electronic architecture.

Hydrofoil makes electric fly

What do we mean with hydrofoil? We define hydrofoil a lifting surface – also called foil – that operates in water. The hydrofoil look, in fact, is very similar to aircraft airfoils. The physical operation is similar as well and it is subjected to fluid-dynamics and hydrodynamics laws. When the speed of the means on which it is mounted increases, the hydrofoil generates a thrust that is equal to the means’ weight – generally a boat but it is used on surfs or kites, too – pushing the hull out of water, in this way notably decreasing friction and then enabling higher speed. The advantage? More efficiency and a decrease of the fuel use, even up to 35% for motors; concerning surfs or kites, the possibility of reaching high speeds even with low waves or moderate winds.
Today the electric is trying to make its way also in the yachting sector but making fast electric boats is very difficult. To overcome the water friction, conventional hulls need enormous batteries to reach higher speeds. However, this increases their weight and cost, without anyway rising their speed proportionally, then standard electric boats have much lower autonomy than fossil-fuel competitors. For this reason, the Swedish electric Candela C-7 speedboat has been equipped with a hydrofoil and now it “imitates aircrafts to fly above the water”, reducing friction and finally permitting long electric autonomy at sea. This makes Candela C-7 the first electric boat in the world that combines long-range autonomy and high speed. The 6-passenger daycruiser flies above waves at a speed of 30 knots, using very little energy from its 40-kWh battery.
Hydrofoil is the secret of its efficiency indeed. The two-winged hydrofoil, combined with state-of-the-art computers, software and sensors, at speeds exceeding 14 knots, supplies a sufficient lift to lift the hull above the water, reducing the water friction by 80%. This allows an autonomy of 50 nautical miles at 22 knots, which is three-time higher than any other fast electric boat on the market.
If you combine the hydrofoil technology with state-of-the-art computerized control technologies, then the result is even more astonishing. In Candela C-7, for instance, the hydrofoil is adjusted by a computer resembling flight controllers used in modern fighter aircrafts. Hydrofoils are automatically regulated 100 times per second to assure stability. The result is an extremely smooth and completely silent ride, even in presence of wind and waves. Due to the efficiency of foils and to the aerodynamic electric propulsion unit, the operation cost of a C-7 is 95%-lower than a conventional fossil-fuel boat. At a cruise speed of 20 knots, the energy consumption per nautical mile is just 0.8 kWh, the equivalent of 0.2 litres of petrol. Hydrofoil is really a technology that can make the electric pleasure boating competitive.

Renault, beyond innovation frontiers

Renault Group continues its electric race and it accelerates the strategy by proposing competitive, sustainable and popular electric vehicles, with the target of releasing the greenest mix in the European market in 2025 and 100% electrical vehicles in 2030. «What we announce today – stated Luca de Meo, CEO of Renault Group during the recent Renault eWays event- is a historical acceleration of Renault Group’s and of ‘made in Europe electric strategy. Renault ElectriCity is a compact electric eco-system, able to offer efficiency and high technology in northern France, but also a mega factory dedicated to electric motors in Normandy. We will train, we will invest and will establish partnerships with renowned, but also rising, players, each in the forefront of its competence sector».
Ten new electric models will be released on the market and up to one million electric vehicles will be produced by 2030, from urban cars at competitive prices up to high-end sports models. Moreover, the Group will cover 100% of future releases of its electric vehicles, in all segments, availing itself of NMC (Nickel, Manganese and Cobalt) chemistry and of a standard-cell architecture, which will allow it to implement up to one million of electric vehicles. Going into technological details, Renault will progressively integrate new technological ameliorations starting from 2024 on its wound-rotor synchronous motor: fork stator, glued motor stack, hollow shaft and brushless rotor, to decrease costs and to improve the motor efficiency. Moreover, the Group will be pioneer with an electric axial-flux motor on a broad scale starting from 2025 and it is working also on a more compact powertrain, renowned as “all-in-one” system, which houses electric motor, reducer and power electronics in a single unit.

Mercedes Benz, the fully electric is close

The automotive brands that announce their complete conversion towards electric are increasing. Among the latest news, there is also the one concerning Mercedes-Benz player that will complete this course by the end of the decade, where market conditions will allow it.
Within 2022, Mercedes-Benz will rely on battery electric vehicles (BEV) in all segments where it operates. Since 2025 onwards, all new vehicle architectures will be exclusively electric and customers will have the opportunity of choosing a fully electric alternative for each model offered by the company.
«The transition towards electric vehicles – declared Ola Källenius, CEO of Daimler AG and Mercedes-Benz AG – is speeding up, especially in the luxury segment, to which Mercedes-Benz belongs. The turning point is getting close and we will be ready when markets will shift to the fully electric by the end of this decade. This step marks a deep reallocation of the capital. Managing this accelerated transformation and safeguarding our profitability targets, we will assure the durable success of Mercedes-Benz. Due to our highly skilled and motivated manpower, I believe that we will be successful in this new exciting era».
After reorganizing its powertrain activities to manage the planning, the development, the purchase and the production under the same roof, Mercedes-Benz will deepen the level of vertical integration in manufacturing and development and will achieve the electric transmission technology. This shift includes the takeover of YASA electric motor company headquartered in the United Kingdom.
Moreover, Mercedes-Benz will need a battery capacity of over 200-Giga-watts hour and plans to create eight Giga-factories for the production of cells, together with its partners worldwide.