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16

May

Tesla Las Vegas Service Center Expands but Corporation Lays Off 3,600 Employees during June 2018.

Author: stanhanel
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The Tesla Service Center in Las Vegas has moved from its original Badura Road location to a new, expanded facility at 7077 West Sahara Avenue, within the heart of the city’s auto row.

New Tesla service center in Las Vegas relocated to 7077 West Sahara Avenue.

The new 26,000 square-foot building is twice as large as the company’s original retail store in Las Vegas.

Service entrance ramps at new Tesla customer facility at 7077 West Sahara Blvd in Las Vegas.

The new facility has more exhibit space and seven service bays that provide a larger service area than the previous location.

Six Tesla High-Power charging stations are available for refueling by Tesla owners at the service center.

Six Tesla High-Power charging stations are available in the outside parking lot for Tesla customers, as well as lots of additional parking spaces for staging vehicles and showcasing Model S, X and Model 3 vehicles for sale.

Tesla Model 3 (left) awaits delivery next to Tesla Model S at Las Vegas service center on 7077 West Sahara Blvd.

According to Tesla statements during a previous earnings call, there are still about 400,000 Model 3 vehicles that have been pre-ordered by customers online who have placed a $1000 deposit to reserve their place in line.

A local sales representative at the Tesla store stated that there is at least a 12-month wait from the time of placing an order for a new Model 3 sedan online until actual factory construction and delivery, now anticipated sometime during July to December 2019.

The company has been able to ramp up production during the first six months of this year, with a target goal of 5,000 vehicles a week by the end of June 2018.

Also during June, Tesla, Inc, announced layoffs of 3,600 salaried positions from its total of approximately 40,000 employees across all its divisions. This was about 9 percent of the workforce.

Tesla Chairman and CEO Elon Musk stated that the downsizing and consolidation of departments since the acquisition of SolarCity during 2017, was necessary in order to regain a position of profitability from its ongoing operations:

https://www.cnbc.com/2018/06/12/reuters-america-update-3-tesla-cuts-9-percent-of-workforce-in-search-for-profit.html

Production personnel for the Tesla Motors division were not affected, according to the Chairman and CEO, in order to continue to meet weekly target production goals.

The Tesla Gigafactory in Storey County, Nevada at the Tahoe-Reno Industrial Park (east of Sparks), employs about 2,417 people, where 1,636 are direct Tesla employees, according to a state audit in September 2017.

Tesla has projected that it will hire up to 6,500 employees for the Gigafactory by 2024. Tesla and Panasonic have invested over $3.27 billion to construct and operate the plant.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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11

May

Volkswagen Electrify America EVSE Program Update

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

A website for the Volkswagen Electrify America program has been updated with a map showing the locations of a proposed network of DC Fast Charge and Ultra-Fast Charge stations across the United States, including the first sites that have become available on the east and west coasts:
https://www.electrifyamerica.com/locations

Volkswagen Electrify America map of proposed DC Fast Charge station site locations within U.S.

During April 2018, the VW Electrify America program announced partnerships with Greenlots, Walmart, Target and other large corporations to roll out phase one of its national network of DC Fast Charge and Ultra-Fast Charge electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE). Site installations are planned to be completed by June 2019.

DC Fast Charge System manufactured by ABB for VW Electrify America program.

The initial network will include 2,000 DC Fast Chargers or Ultra-Fast Chargers at 484 charging station location sites by June 2019.

Walmart will host 100 sites at locations in 34 states that have been planned for installation.

Other corporate partners that have agreed to host EVSE stations for the VW Electrify America program include Target Corporation, Brixmoor Property Group, Kimco Realty Corporation, Sheetz, Casey’s General Stores, DDR Corporation, and Global Partners LP’s Alltown.

Each charging station site will offer from four to ten DC Fast Chargers, outfitted with both SAE Combined Charging System (CCS1) connectors and CHAdeMO standard connectors. The charging station cables and connectors can transfer electric power to vehicle battery packs equipped with a battery management system that can accommodate a fast charging rate of 50kW, 150kW, or “Ultra-Fast” 350kW. These charging station sites will be located in 17 metro areas, as well as along highways in 39 states.

DC Fast Charge station manufactured by BTC Power for the VW Electrify America program.

Volkswagen has partnered with four international electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) manufacturers of DC Fast Charge and Ultra-Fast Charge 350 kW stations to provide more than 2000 EVSE with CCS1 and CHAdeMO standard connectors. These include ABB, BTC Power, EFACEC and Signet.

More information about the EVSE charging station technologies was provided by the VW Electrify America program in a press release announcement on April 17, 2018:

“The chargers have been custom-designed for Electrify America and have several advanced features including liquid-cooled cables. This is the first time that liquid cooled CCS1 charging cables have received certification. The cooling is a key factor in enabling higher-amperage charging without a significant increase in the cable thickness for charging power at and above 150kW from 350 amps.

The majority of Electrify America’s ultra-fast charging systems will utilize the RADOX® HPC (High Power Charging) System from HUBER+SUHNER which features a much smaller cable cross section than the traditional high-powered cable option. These cooled cables are thinner, more flexible, lighter and easier to handle. The chargers will have an all new intuitive and informative 15-inch touch screen display, to provide a simplified “Plug-Pay-Charge-Go” experience, including opt-in text notifications for in-session monitoring and receipt delivery.

In addition, the chargers will also feature redundant physical buttons below the display to navigate through the various screens. Credit card readers are included for universal driver access to the Electrify America network. Functionally, the chargers are up to eight feet high designed for optimal visibility and easy vehicle charge port access without complex, maintenance prone mechanical cable management systems.”

Each charging station site will also offer SAE J1772 level 2 chargers for older EVs not equipped with the CCS connector standard.

Greenlots will become the network administrator for this $2 billion EVSE network within the U.S. through its existing SKY(tm) EV Charging Network Software. SKY can provide EVSE site managers with host-configurable apps and services for GPS location, station communication, 24/7 online maintenance, payment systems, and historical usage reports:

https://greenlots.com/solutions/operating-platform/

EV drivers visiting the charging station sites can download a Greenlots mobile phone app from both the Apple App Store and Google Play Store that provides several useful services and features.

With the Greenlots mobile phone app, EV drivers can locate the nearest DC Fast Charge station along their driving route, use their mobile phones to activate the stations and make payments if required, monitor the charging progress of their EV battery pack in real time while their car is connected, and also receive a charging history log from the Greenlots network for each user account:

https://greenlots.com/ev-drivers/

The Greenlots mobile phone app also interconnects to other EVSE networks outside the VW Electrify America program, that are also supported by the SKY network worldwide.

VW Electrify America Program History

Volkswagen Group had originally released a public version of the first cycle of its 10-year Electrify America program during April 2017, as part of a $1.2 billion settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Justice, and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for violation of the US Clean Air Act after a “defeat device” scandal that involved 500,000 Volkswagen Group diesel vehicles sold into the US between 2009 – 2015.

Volkswagen and Audi cars that employed the company’s “turbo direct injection” TDI diesel engines actually exceeded emissions standards required by the U.S. Clean Air Act, under real-world driving conditions.

Deceptive software tuning of emission controls was employed within the TDI engine when each vehicle was undergoing smog emissions testing in a stationary position. However, once the vehicle began moving, the engine was automatically retuned for performance on the fly. Resulting real-world driving emissions, particularly Nitrogen Oxide (NOx), significantly exceeded standard emissions required by the US Clean Air Act, in some cases more than 30 times higher.

Volkswagen of America claimed in its advertising documents at the time that it did not need additional devices on its TDI vehicles to suppress NOx and other harmful emissions, as its catalytic converter and filtration system were of superior design to its competitors, who were employing more expensive liquid additives (e.g. BMW AdBlue systems), in addition to their catalytic converter systems, to meet both US and European emission standards.

The Volkswagen Group advertising claims were proven to be false by a University of West Virginia research study, that uncovered the “defeat device” being used to fool the federal smog testing system nationwide. The U.S. FTC, Department of Justice, and EPA sued Volkswagen Group through separate billion-dollar lawsuits, to recover damages to U.S. consumers and residents because of both fraud and environmental impact.

A PDF copy of the National Zero Emissions Vehicle (ZEV) Investment Plan can be found at the U.S. EPA Enforcement webpage:

https://www.epa.gov/enforcement/epa-approved-national-zev-investment-plan-public-version

A downloadable copy of the PDF file is available through this link:

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2017-04/documents/nationalzevinvestmentplan.pdf

The 10-year plan will be implemented in four 30-month cycles over ten years, with each cycle funded at $500 million, for a total of $2 billion. Implementation of the first cycle is scheduled between Q1 2017 to Q2 2019.

The Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy had submitted proposals to the U.S. EPA that complied with the National ZEV Investment Plan, in order to use the Electrify America program funding to build out its Nevada Electric Highway program by 2020, along highway corridors throughout the state.

However, the most recent announcements by Volkswagen Group to implement its Electrify America plan have established partnerships with national chains of “brick and mortar” retail stores and convenience stores within the U.S to implement its network of DC Fast Charge stations nationwide over the next year.

Nevada statewide coverage through the VW Electrify America Phase 1 program that should be completed by June 2019, will include DC Fast Charge and Ultra-Fast Charger stations along interstate highways I-15 and I-80 running east to west.

Strategic locations along US Highway 95 that connect Reno and Las Vegas north to south will also host DC Fast Charger sites from the Electrify America program, in order to create a high-speed charging corridor for electric cars between the two largest metropolitan districts within the state.

NEVA Blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach
Coordinator

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25

Apr

Earth Day 2018 Events in Nevada

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

Earth Day on April 22nd each year is an annual celebration of the global environment, that also calls attention to worldwide problems that potentially threaten the future of the earth’s ecosystem.

Supporters of the planet’s natural habitat use Earth Day as a platform to challenge the world’s population to live more sustainably, so that all residents benefit from a healthy, more natural environment.

Nevada Earth Day celebrations in Las Vegas and Reno both showcased electric cars.

Las Vegas

GreenFest 2018 celebrated Earth Day at Downtown Summerlin in Las Vegas with over 120 exhibitor booths.

On Saturday, April 21st, the Green Alliance of Nevada staged its annual GreenFest 2018 festival at Downtown Summerlin in Las Vegas from 9 AM to 5 PM:
http://wwww.greenfestlv.com

A BMW i8 plug-in hybrid car parked at Las Vegas Cyclery while staging a Green Vehicle Procession.

The NEVA program organized a Green Vehicle Procession to kick off the event. Alternative-fuel vehicles staged in the parking lot of Las Vegas Cyclery about 3/4 of a mile away and drove in a caravan to Downtown Summerlin.

Ray Malkewicz prepares to lead a Green Procession in his Tesla Model 3 during festivities at GreenFest 2018.

The caravan was led by Ray Malkewicz who drove a Tesla Model 3, accompanied by several Tesla Model S electric cars, a Kia Soul EV, a GEM Neighborhood Electric Vehicle, Zero electric motorcycle and a customized electric bicycle.

NEVA outreach coordinators also helped organize a Clean Energy Drive zone within GreenFest 2018, that included an alternative-fuel vehicle car show. The NEVA booth featured a Tesla Motors Model S, that was demonstrated by Jeffrey Price of the Las Vegas Tesla Owners group.

Clean Energy Drive was an exhibit at GreenFest 2018 organized by the NEVA program that featured alternative-fuel vehicles.

Local dealerships featured hybrids, plug-in hybrids and battery-powered electric cars on Clean Energy Drive.

2018 Porsche Panamera S e-hybrid is a plug-in hybrid electric vehicle with a turbo-charged V6 engine that can produce 650 horsepower when combined with the electric motor drive train.

Gaudin Porsche exhibited two 2018 Porsche Panamera S e-hybrid and a 2018 Porsche Cayenne S e-hybrid. All of these vehicles are plug-in hybrid electric cars that have been built for performance as well as gasoline efficiency.

Findlay Chevrolet featured a 2018 Chevrolet Bolt EV and 2018 Chevrolet Bolt plug-in hybrid within the Clean Energy Drive.

Findlay Chevrolet showcased a Chevrolet Bolt EV and Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrid electric vehicle.

Under the hood of a Chevrolet Bolt EV.

Lexus of Las Vegas featured three high-performance luxury hybrid vehicles.

Lexus of Las Vegas featured three high-end Lexus hybrid vehicles.

Las Vegas Electric Vehicle Association exhibited a 1974 Aztec 7 kit car by FiberFab that had been converted to run on electric power.

The Las Vegas Electric Vehicle Association, a local chapter of the international Electric Auto Association, exhibited a 1974 FiberFab Aztec 7 kit car that had been converted to run on electric power, as well as a 2012 Nissan LEAF, and a customized electric bicycle.

Xtreme Green Sentinel Personal Mobility Vehicle

Xtreme Green Citadel Pro All-Terrain Vehicle

Xtreme Green Electric Vehicles from Las Vegas displayed two of their rugged EVs for security and military applications, that included an off-road all-terrain vehicle as well as a one-man security patrol transport.

NV Energy Renewable Generations trailer in Clean Energy Drive Zone featured a walk-through display of photovoltaic solar and solar heating programs.

Other exhibitors in the Clean Energy Drive zone included NV Energy with a walkthrough trailer that highlighted the electric utility’s Renewable Generations program. This program includes photovoltaic solar generation services, as well as energy storage and “time of use” rate programs specifically for electric car owners:
https://www.nvenergy.com/cleanenergy/electric-vehicles

Bus-sized mobile display by Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada showcased public transit programs.

The Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada showcased a walk-through bus exhibit with video monitors that highlighted public transit options for residents of the Las Vegas valley.

Southwest Gas exhibited a 2015 Chevrolet Impala and a 2016 Ford F-150 pickup truck fueled by Compressed Natural Gas (CNG).

Southwest Gas showcased two vehicles that used compressed natural gas (CNG) as fuel for their internal combustion engines, instead of gasoline. These included a 2015 Chevrolet Impala and a 2016 Ford F-150 pickup truck.

Solar distributor Sol-Up also displayed a BMW i3 electric car at its booth.

Reno

On Sunday, April 22nd, the Reno Earth Day 2018 celebration was staged at Idlewild Park from 11 AM to 6 PM:

http://www.renoearthday.org/

Cynthia Ryan, President of the Electric Auto Association of Northern Nevada (EAANN) blogged about the event:

https://www.electricnevada.org/new-blog/2018/4/25/eaann-encourages-driving-electric-at-reno-earth-day-celebration

EAANN encourages driving electric at Reno earth day celebration

A new location at Reno’s Earth Day celebration (April 23rd) at scenic Idlewild Park, on the banks of the Truckee River, drew even more crowds as EAANN members showed off their cars and spoke to the many benefits of driving electric. Earth Day organizers said there were more than 350 booths, and the event was attended by about 30,000 visitors!

On hand: Chuck Swackhammer with his 2017 Chevrolet Bolt, Cynthia Ryan with her 2017 Chevrolet Volt, Humberto Valencia with his much anticipated Tesla Model 3 and Chevrolet Spark, Greg Wilson with his 2014 Chevrolet Volt, Ken Andrews with his Tesla Model S, Bob and LeeAnn Marsh with their iconic (and show stopping!) Tesla Roadster, and Rafael Garcia from Nissan of Reno with the all new 2018 Nissan LEAF – the world’s bestselling electric car!
We wish to thank everybody who brought a car!

This event is always a favorite, since we can reach a large number of folks who are already inclined to be receptive towards driving electric to save the planet, combat climate change and save money.

NEVA blog post by Stan Hanel, Educational Outreach Coordinator, and Cynthia Ryan, EAANN President

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25

Apr

Boulder City Adds Solar-Powered Charging Station at City Hall

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

Boulder City in southern Nevada began as a company town that housed the builders of Boulder Dam, later renamed Hoover Dam.

The city grew and became a popular tourist destination for visitors who stopped to tour this marvel of 1930’s engineering and construction that is still impressive today.

Hoover Dam has the capacity to generate 2000 Megawatts of electric power everyday from huge electric generators spun by the falling waters of the Colorado River. That electricity is distributed to nearby Boulder City, as well as to the Southern Nevada Water Authority, whose electric pumps maintain the flow of clean water throughout the Las Vegas valley.

Boulder City installed four Aerovironment SAE J1772 AC Level 2 EVSE within City Hall parking structure.

During 2017, Boulder City installed a solar-powered charging station with four SAE J1772 AC Level 2 stations available to the public during the day, as well as multiple 110 VAC outlets mounted to the support posts of the photovoltaic solar structure.

The charging stations and solar-covered structure are located in the parking area near City Hall, on the corner of Arizona Street and California Street.

A Sunny Boy Inverter changes DC voltage from photovoltaic solar panels to AC for use by Level 2 charging system.

The stations also provide electric power and shade to the city’s fleet of Nissan LEAF electric cars, that are used daily by city employees.

Boulder City fleet vehicle is a Nissan LEAF.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Educational Outreach Coordinator

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16

Mar

Hawthorne DC Fast Charge Station Installed Along Nevada Electric Highway

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

The Nevada Electric Highway program, administered by the Governor’s Office of Energy, added a DC Fast Charge site in Hawthorne near the intersection of US Highway 95 and US 50 Lincoln Highway.

The installation is a key part of a statewide plan to enable electric car owners to be able to travel more easily on long-range road trips over Nevada highways. The first leg of the Nevada Electric Highway will connect Las Vegas and Reno along US Highway 95 with DC Fast Charge stations located every 100 miles at Beatty, Tonopah, Hawthorne and Fallon:

http://energy.nv.gov/Programs/Nevada_Electric_Highway/

A DC Fast Charge station can provide electric power at a rate of 50 kiloWatts, about eight times faster than an SAE J1772 AC Level 2 electric vehicle supply equipment, usually rated at about 6.6 kilowatts.

A Nissan LEAF or Chevrolet Bolt EV can recharge at a DC Fast Charge station in just 20 minutes to add a range of 100 miles, compared to 4 to 5 hours of time required to recharge at a J1772 AC Level 2 station.

CHAdeMo plug for Nissan LEAF and other Japanese electric cars can provide DC Fast Charge at 50 kW.

Each DC Fast Charge station will have two different connectors that are compliant with both the Japanese CHAdeMo plug-in standard, as well as the SAE Combined Charging System (CCS, also known as SAE Combo) that is popular in the US, Europe, and South Korea.

SAE Combo (Combined Charging System) for EVs manufactured by US and European companies, including the Chevrolet Bolt EV and BMW i3.

Another DC Fast Charge site sponsored by the program is located at the Eddie World Gasoline station at 900 East U.S.-95 in Beatty, supported by Valley Electric Association co-op utility.

The Fox Peak Gas Station, located at 615 E. Williams Avenue on Fallon Paiute-Shoshone tribal land in Fallon, also hosts a DC Fast Charge site.

Rest stop area in Hawthorne includes both Chargepoint DC Quick Charge station and SAE J1772 AC Level 2 EVSE

The new site in Hawthorne was installed at a rest area administered by the Nevada Department of Transportation, with funding and support from NV Energy, as well as the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy.

The electric car recharging site also includes an SAE J1772 AC Level 2 charging station with two plugs and is located at:

400 10th Street, Hawthorne, NV 89415.

More details about the Hawthorne site, including the proximity of a McDonald’s restaurant, can be found through the Plugshare mobile phone app at:

https://www.plugshare.com/location/144823

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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07

Feb

Starman Rides Tesla Roadster Electric Car to Mars

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

SpaceX made aerospace history on February 6, 2018 by launching its first Falcon Heavy rocket into outer space while retrieving two of the booster rockets as they simultaneously landed under their own power near the original launch pad at Cape Kennedy.

http://www.spacex.com/falcon-heavy

The payload for the launch was a cherry-red Tesla Roadster, owned by SpaceX founder and CEO Elon Musk, The two-seat electric sportscar was accompanied on its space flight by a mannequin named Starman, who was positioned in the car’s driver seat while wearing a SpaceX crew flight suit.

Starman mannequin rides Tesla Roadster to Mars.

Three cameras were positioned around the Roadster convertible with its “top down”, on the hood of the vehicle looking back towards the driver’s seat, within the driver’s cockpit looking out through the windshield, and on a mount outside the left door looking in and over the Starman mannequin.

Starman and the Tesla Roadster orbited the earth for several cycles, before pointing the payload towards Mars and igniting the final upper stage rocket engine to send them on their way.

Streaming video of the earth orbit from all three camera views looking back at earth, were recorded by SpaceX during that time of planetary orbit:

The future is electric and rocket-powered!

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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23

Jan

Automotive Highlights from CES 2018 in Las Vegas

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

CES 2018 brought more than 175,000 international attendees and 4,000 exhibitors to Las Vegas during January for this annual consumer electronics tradeshow.

The automotive exhibits within CES this year included over 170 companies and eleven major auto manufacturers, rated as the 10th largest car show within the US. Each year, the newest innovations in electric drive trains, advanced driver assistance systems, and autonomous vehicles are usually unveiled for the first time at this venue, ahead of the North American International Auto Show in Detroit, Michigan that is usually staged two weeks later each January.

Ford Motor Company

Jim Hackett, Ford Motor Company CEO, gave a keynote speech about transportation infrastructure during the first day of the tradeshow that showcased a new approach from the company. Hackett came to Ford from outside the car industry and has been spending time with Chairman Bill Ford to rethink how automobiles can be interconnected with urban environments.

Hackett emphasized that company founder Henry Ford’s original vision of providing freedom and progress for American citizens through cheaper transportation succeeded greatly in moving lifestyles outside city limits onto open roads and into “sub-urban” housing expansions. However, urban centers lost their human connections and “shared sense of belonging”, as populations and traffic jams became more dense, requiring the need for more parking regions in a city that displaced gathering spaces, small service businesses, and interactive communication among residents within downtown city centers.

“What is the point of building amazing technology solutions if they don’t improve the destination where you are going?” said Hackett. “How should we live? What is a good life? What kind of cities do we want? How should we communicate with each other?”

Hackett observed that, as technology has gotten faster, bigger, and “more”, it has also become more invasive. People have become anxious about the impact on their private lives and even on civic life in general. How can Ford Motor Company harness changing automotive technologies to improve lives, serve human needs and re-establish a general sense of community within urban city centers?

The company is currently proposing and leading several engineering solutions aimed at improving the quality of life for both urban drivers and residents, a concept that Hackett calls “living streets”. How can roads become hospitality curbs and transportation corridors that improve the quality of life for small business owners and employees who live, work and play in the same location?

One automotive solution is to enable smarter transportation in cities by creating a software tool called a Transportation Mobility Cloud (TMC) that would be open for interactive usage by city managers, local non-profit organizations and business developers alike. Data acquisition by the TMC would be aided by installing data connectivity into all of Ford’s new vehicles, a development program the company calls Connected Vehicle To Everything (CV2X). Ford is also increasing investment in the electrification of its product line by $11 billion through 2022.

Ford will be partnering with Domino’s Pizza and Postmates to develop self-driving vehicles and fleets that can move food and package deliveries autonomously.

Ford Fusion Hybrid Equipped with Self-Driving Technology

Ford Fusion Hybrid Equipped with Self-Driving Technology

Ford has also partnered with business developers to brand personal “last mile” transportation for urban travel, such as electric bicycles and electric scooters.

Ford Motor Company Brand Partner Shows E-bike

Ford Motor Company Brand Partner Shows E-bike

OJO Scooter Company Partners with Ford Motor Company Branding

OJO Scooter Company Partners with Ford Motor Company Branding

Honda Emphasizes Friendly Robotics Technologies in Automotive Platforms

Honda considers itself a robot company, as well as an automotive manufacturing company. The CES 2018 display in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center emphasized the need to make the robotics technologies within cars more friendly, intuitive and empathetic while being connected to people and the surrounding world.

Honda emphasized its empathetic and friendly robotics technologies.

Honda emphasized its empathetic and friendly robotics technologies.

Toyota Unveils Autonomous Shuttle Bus With Adjustable Living Space

Toyota autonomous bus with advertising billboards on side panels.

Toyota autonomous bus with advertising billboards on side panels.

During CES 2018, the Toyota booth featured a concept of an autonomous shuttle bus that included see-through LED display billboards on either side panel of the vehicle. The internal space within the shuttle bus could be reconfigured as more than just rows of seats. The display billboards pictured the vehicle as a traveling office space, sleeping quarters, or mobile party room.

Daimler SMART electric car gets a new look with scissor doors

Daimler SMART car redesigned for the 21st century.

Daimler SMART car redesigned for the 21st century.

Daimler SMART car with scissor doors

Daimler SMART car with scissor doors

Mercedes-Benz always brings remarkable styling to its concept cars

Mercedes-Benz concept car

Mercedes-Benz concept car

Hyundai and Kia Concept Cars

Both Hyundai and Kia automotive companies from South Korea were showing advanced concepts of the two companies’ electrified automotive platforms. Hyundai unveiled its “Nexo” fuel-cell powered electric vehicle while Kia gave a closeup look at its “Niro” battery-powered electric car.

Hyundai unveiled its Nexo fuel-cell EV at CES 2018.

Hyundai unveiled its Nexo fuel-cell EV at CES 2018.

Hyundai displayed a cutaway version of its Nexo fuel-cell electric car, including the hydrogen fuel tank and electric-motor drive train.

Hyundai displayed a cutaway version of its Nexo fuel-cell electric car, including the hydrogen fuel tank and electric-motor drive train.

Kia already makes a hybrid and plug-in hybrid version of the Niro. The company introduced a new all-electric model during CES 2018, that will complete the drive train options available, similar to the three Hyundai Ioniq product lines.

20180109_104637

Kia introduced its Niro Electric Car during CES 2018.

Kia introduced its Niro Electric Car during CES 2018.

Delphi Technologies and Aptiv

Delpi Technologies displayed internal component systems that will enable 800-volt electric drive trains.

Delpi Technologies displayed internal component systems that will enable 800-volt electric drive trains.

During November 2017, Delphi spun off its automotive drive train division as a standalone company called Aptiv, that has focused on developing autonomous, self-driving vehicles for major automotive manufacturers.

During CES 2018, Aptiv partnered with Lyft ride-hailing company to give demos of Level 4 autonomous cars, developed on BMW platforms, that could drive themselves to passenger destinations around Las Vegas. During the demonstration, a driver was always behind the wheel, but driving operations were performed without human intervention within real-world city traffic during a busy CES 2018 trade show that welcomed over 175,000 additional visitors to the Las Vegas Strip and convention centers.

The Lyft service office was temporarily based in an Airstream trailer on the Gold lot of the Las Vegas Convention Center where ride-hailing app menus were demonstrated to potential passengers by Lyft employees. When an autonomous vehicle arrived at the Gold lot hub, passenger destinations were entered into each vehicle’s GPS system. These included trips to Caesars Palace along Las Vegas Blvd, as well as 19 other destinations.

During the five days of CES 2018, Lyft and Aptiv offered over 400 rides to passengers in their autonomous vehicles. Tech Crunch shared a YouTube video about the autonomous driving experience at CES 2018 in Las Vegas:

Aptiv-labeled autonomous research vehicles were also found at other exhibit booths of major automotive manufacturers within the Las Vegas Convention Center, including Audi.

Aptiv has partnered with Audi to develop autonomous vehicle driving systems.

Aptiv has partnered with Audi to develop autonomous vehicle driving systems.

Delphi Technologies has continued to develop the internal component systems that will power the next generation of electric-drive vehicles. Within the next three years, Delphi engineers are anticipating that traction battery pack sizes will increase from 400 Volts DC to 800 Volts DC, along with larger power transistors and inverter modules to convert and carry this higher power from the battery pack to the electric drive train. Larger battery packs with more power should continue to improve the range and performance for electric cars, while also encouraging faster recharging rates of battery pack modules up to 350 kilowatts.

Delphi Technologies Display touts benefits of 800-volt electric drive train components.

Delphi Technologies Display touts benefits of 800-volt electric drive train components.

New power transistors made from silicon carbide (SiC) materials inside Metal Oxide Silicon Field Effect Transistors (MOSFET), as well as silicon-based Insulated Gate Bipolar Transistors (IGBT) are already capable of high-speed switching and control of 800-volt electric motor systems.

The venerable 12-volt auxiliary battery that normally provides power to all the peripheral electronics in a vehicle will also go through an upgrade over the next few years to a standardized 48-volt system. These higher-capacity batteries will more reliably carry low-voltage currents to vehicle lighting, sensor, computing, and actuator systems that will be included in new vehicles, from stop-start mild hybrid systems to fully autonomous electric-drive vehicles.

A 48-volt standard auxiliary battery system is still considered a low-voltage power system (blue and yellow cabling) for third-party product implementation on a vehicle, compared to more rigorous standards required for high-voltage traction battery packs (orange cabling).

Continental

Continental exhibited its integrated electric-motor drive train capable of supporting 800-volt traction battery systems.

Continental exhibited its integrated electric-motor drive train capable of supporting 800-volt traction battery systems.

Continental is another automotive tier-one components supplier who is also developing systems for electric car drive trains. The company exhibited some of its integrated electric motor and inverter systems, that employ boost electronics to help regulate 400-volt as well as 800-volt drive systems. The company has also partnered with ABB to enable DC Fast Charge systems for quicker recharging of traction battery packs.

Velodyne Displays Multiple LIDAR Sensors mounted on NAVYA Autonomous Robotaxi

Rear and side views of LIDAR sensors from Velodyne mounted on NAVYA autonomous Robotaxi.

Rear and side views of LIDAR sensors from Velodyne mounted on NAVYA autonomous Robotaxi.

Commercial versions of LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging) sensors have become more popular for implementation on autonomous cars because of their capability to quickly detect both shape and depth of oncoming vehicles, obstacles or people. Velodyne has been a leader in this development space and rolled out several different products, that were showcased on a new NAVYA robotaxi platform.

Velodyne exhibit showcased LIDAR sensors mounted on NAVYA Robotaxi

Velodyne exhibit showcased LIDAR sensors mounted on NAVYA Robotaxi

Interior of NAVYA Robotaxi with two passengers, no steering wheel and no human driver.

Interior of NAVYA Robotaxi with two passengers, no steering wheel and no human driver.

NVIDIA and Artificial Intelligence

NVIDIA CEO Jen-Hsun Huang delivered a keynote speech during CES 2018 that dived deeply into Artificial Intelligence, particularly the company’s efforts to create an AI development platform and software ecosystem for autonomous, self-driving cars:

NVIDIA is a 25-year old company that started up in California’s Silicon Valley to make graphics accelerator chips to improve the quality of visual displays for personal computers. The company developed a graphic processing unit (GPU) that could enhance the central processing unit (CPU) microprocessor in personal computers by offloading compute-intensive graphic modeling tasks. The company became a driver in the computer gaming industry with its graphics accelerator printed-circuit boards that could plug into expansion ports in PC-compatible computers.

A GPU speeds up the formation of graphics artwork on a computer monitor by processing electronic instructions and data through multiple parallel paths at the same time, compared to a CPU than processes a wider variety of computing tasks through slower sequential steps.

For many decades, researchers in the realm of artificial intelligence have been seeking to duplicate human senses and cognition inside computer circuitry. The two most important areas of research were in vision recognition and natural language voice recognition, in order to duplicate the way humans use their two keenest senses to understand and navigate the world about them.

During 2012, Geoffrey Hinton, Alex Krizhensky and Ilya Sutskever from the SuperVision research lab at the University of Toronto in Canada, pioneered the use of neural network software models coupled with GPU processing systems from NVIDIA to create AlexNet. The research team conceived that convolutional manipulation of input variables and output errors could create feedback that would make ongoing changes to the weights of AlexNet’s internal processing algorithms. The result was “deep learning” by the software model that could write its own software to modify how it would process and perceive progressive sets of incoming data.

The team focused its artificial intelligence research on graphics image recognition, in order to group similar digital images of objects together through eight processing layers of visual filtering. Instead of programming the image-recognition algorithms directly, Krizhevsky enabled AlexNet to “learn” the common characteristics of similar graphic objects by feeding the neural net massive amounts of images that it could compare, while the software model adjusted its own internal software processing algorithms with each error.

During an international ImageNet Large Scale Visual Recognition Challenge in 2012, AlexNet outperformed all other existing benchmark tests of image recognition models that had been previously hand-coded by humans, while running on two NVIDIA GPU graphics processing stations. AlexNet neural net software was capable of writing its own internal software more quickly than humans could do directly, achieving a recognition error rate that was ten percentage points less than its nearest competitor.

After the competition, large corporations like Google, Facebook, Amazon, and Microsoft began duplicating the GPU technology used in this image recognition model, to improve each company’s graphic image search and tagging engines. Microsoft’s ResNet was scaled to 152 layers of image filtering, compared to just eight layers in AlexNet.

At Stanford University, AI researcher Andrew Ng applied GPU processing to natural language voice recognition algorithms and succeeded in improving the ability of computer technologies to recognize and caption spoken words. Ng has since become a chief scientist at Baidu, where he has applied this technology to translate spoken Chinese words into readable Chinese characters.

NVIDIA also worked with Tesla Motors, who used its Tegra GPU in early versions of the Model S electric car to develop Autopilot driving features. The Autopilot system could quickly process and filter both images and input data from onboard sensors, that included a forward-facing camera, forward-facing radar and a 360-degree ring of ultrasonic sensors embedded around the body of the electric car.

NVIDIA unveiled sponsored RoboRace autonomous Formula E-sanctiond race car during CES 2018.

NVIDIA unveiled sponsored RoboRace autonomous Formula E-sanctiond race car during CES 2018.

Since 2014, NVIDIA has developed its own GPU technology, by creating products specifically for the automotive market. The company’s Volta GPU processor is focused on automotive applications. NVIDIA’s recent announcement for CES 2018 is that the company has integrated 512 Volta GPU processors along with 8 ARM CPU processors into a single silicon chip it calls Xavier, with lots of input and out ports to connect multiple sensors and actuators on a CAN automotive bus.

The company also includes a software development environment with Xavier that includes NVIDIA DriveWorks Operating System that can link Xavier’s internal processing AI to a cloud-based mapping systems with high definition for detailed route navigation references.

The Xavier driving platform can process 30 trillion operations per second (Tera-ops) while consuming just 30 watts of power, allowing the integration of a supercomputer on a mobile transportation platform. NVIDIA has linked two Xavier processors together on its Pegasus circuit development board that can achieve 320 TOPs of processing speeds for AI inferencing.

The single PC board can replace a supercomputer and will be used to test potential autonomous level 5 driving platforms by Volkswagen, Hyundai and Aurora, including some of the Robotaxi applications shown during CES 2018.

The Xavier GPU is undergoing certification for safety and resiliency through the automotive industry ASIL (Automotive System Integrity Level) standards committee, as well as the International Standards Organization’s ISO 26262 validation for the company’s integrated circuit manufacturing process and software platforms to insure transparent traceability of any supply chain or development problems that may show up later during actual applications.

The Xavier chip is currently rated ASIL-C while the Pegasus board has been rated ASIL-D. NVIDIA is striving to achieve ASIL-0 certification, that would be validated at the highest level of automotive functional safety.

To test the effectiveness of an autonomous vehicle design, NVIDIA has also created its AUTOSIM virtual reality 3D simulation environment for the automotive industry. Already successful in creating photorealistic images for the gaming industry, the company’s GPUs can create multiple simulation scenarios that can run an automated vehicle model through billions of road trip scenarios at supercomputer speeds.

This helps an automotive designer or engineer get a realistic feel for the effectiveness of sensor placement on a vehicle, as well as performance reliability during changing weather conditions, road conditions and oncoming vehicle traffic by creating as many test scenarios as the designer can imagine.

NVIDIA is also sponsoring a racing team and Robocar for Roborace, a proposed autonomous vehicle international racing competition that will be sanctioned by FIA, while co-staging events along the same international racing circuits as FIA Formula-E manned electric car racing:
https://roborace.com/

Intel Robotaxis Take Flight As Smart Drones

Intel CEO Brian Krzanich featured autonomous cars and drone technologies in unique ways during his keynote address to CES 2018, “Experience the Power of Data”. A swarm of 100 lighted Shooting Star Mini drones performed in synchronization, under the control of single pilot without GPS, to set a Guinness World Record. The Intel drones were showcased again during the following three days of CES 2018 in synchronized nighttime performances with the animated water jet fountains of the Bellagio during the week of CES 2018.

An automated Volocopter, capable of carrying a passenger, was also demonstrated by Krzanich inside the Park theatre during his keynote speech.

Intel recently purchased MobilEye, a pioneering autonomous driving instrumentation company that has been a leader in the automotive industry. The company’s EyeQ5 processor chip is a fifth-generation integrated circuit that is now coupled with Intel Atom CPUs to provide a hardware platform that integrates cameras, radar, lidar and other sensors to create advanced driver assistance systems, as well as level-4 autonomous vehicles.

The new hardware platform can process 24 Tera-Ops (TOPS) of computations per second while consuming just 10 watts of power.

Intel Senior Vice-President and CTO/Founder of MobilEye, Amnon Shashua, shared the stage with Intel CEO, Brian Krzanich, to talk about the company’s progress in this area.

The goal of implementing autonomous driving is to save over a million lives due to potentially fatal vehicle accidents caused by human error over the next 20 years, as well as lower the amount of fuel consumed in the US economy and save commute time for US workers.

MobilEye advanced driver assistance systems are already employed in 24 million vehicles on the road today with major automotive manufacturing partners that include Ford, GM, Audi, BMW, Honda, Nissan, and Hyundai.

Autonomous driving partners, who are refining MobilEye technology for SAE Level-4 self-driving applications, include BMW, Fiat Chrysler, and Aptiv, as well as Nio and SAIC in China.

These companies are developing the software ecosystem and validation testing to ensure that autonomous driving systems will continue to improve and become more robust over time.

Intel, like NVIDIA, has been redesigning the insides of computer chips to go beyond the 40-year-old microprocessor CPU that has defined the company’s leadership and growth over that time.

Krzanich noted that Intel now has researchers exploring both neuromorphing and quantum-computing architectures for silicon chip designs that can more closely mimic human neural processes in the brain, as well as quantum behavior in physics to radically speed up computing time.

Moving and processing high-speed data will define the world’s future, if it can be harnessed to solve problems that were considered impossible in the past, opening a new world of infinite possibilities.

Flying Air Taxis from Bell Helicopter

Piloted and autonomous flying shuttles are the next new mode of transportation envisioned by drone manufacturers and helicopter companies alike.

Bell Helicopters exhibited a simulated version of a future automated Air taxi.

Bell Helicopters exhibited a simulated version of a future automated Air taxi.

Bell exhibited a simulated version of its proposed Air Taxi shuttle service in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center next to autonomous vehicles being showcased by worldwide automotive manufacturers.

Bell flight attendants guide visitors through a simulated flight by air taxi.

Bell flight attendants guide visitors through a simulated flight by air taxi.

Outside in the Central Plaza parking lot area of the Las Vegas Convention center, other companies showed their full-sized air taxis along with the Volocopter previewed by Intel CEO Brian Krzanich.

Fisker Automotive Returns with Emotion

Fisker Emotion concept electric car with both gull wing and scissor doors.

Fisker Emotion concept electric car with both gull wing and scissor doors.

Henrik Fisker has revived Fisker Automotive after selling the Karma electric car design to a Chinese automotive manufacturer when the original company faced bankruptcy.

20180109_114709

The company’s second electric car effort is called the Emotion and a concept version of the vehicle was displayed during CES 2018.

Austin EV startup electric car company

Austin EV three-wheel electric motorcycle.

Austin EV three-wheel electric motorcycle.

Austin EV is a new startup company that has emerged from the capitol city of Texas during the last three years to develop electric utility truck platforms and three-wheel motorcycles. The company exhibited in the North Hall of CES 2018 for the first time.

Austin EV electric utility truck

Austin EV electric utility truck

The electric trucks and carrier beds are configurable as an urban delivery van or an off-road dump truck.

Ampere 1 Electric Motorcycle for $10,000

Ampere is a startup company from southern California that exhibited its Ampere 1 three-wheel electric motorcycle during CES 2018. The starting price of the vehicle is $10,000.

The Ampere 1 three-wheel electric motorcycle from Ampere

The Ampere 1 three-wheel electric motorcycle from Ampere

Chinese Electric Car Manufacturing Companies More Prominent at CES 2018

China is now the largest automotive market in the world as that country’s citizens purchase about 25 million vehicles a year. The Chinese automotive market is projected to grow to 30 million vehicles per year during the next five years. This sales figure compares to annual US domestic sales of approximately 17 million vehicles per year.

Byton Electric Car

Byton Electric Car

Just about every province in China has partnered with a worldwide automotive manufacturer to jointly build cars within this market. There are more than 100 Chinese automotive manufacturers in the country with about 20 companies dedicated to manufacturing electric cars and electric-motor drive trains.

Byton Concept Electric Car with 300-mile range, 5G connectivity and autonomous driving capability

Byton Concept Electric Car with 300-mile range, 5G connectivity, and autonomous driving capability.

Ningbo City in Zhejiang province, south of Shanghai on Hangzhou Bay, has become a hub of manufacturing and development for automotive components and replacement parts for all worldwide automotive manufacturers. Shenzhen in Guangzhou province is also one of the largest manufacturing regions of consumer electronic products for automotive applications.

Chinese automotive manufacturers and components suppliers are becoming more prominent each year at the annual CES tradeshow.

This year, Byton was featured in the North Hall of the Las Vegas Convention Center while XPeng exhibited a display in the Smart Cities Pavilion at Westgate.

Both companies introduced all-electric SUVs with 300-miles of range between recharging sessions for 95 kilowatt-hour battery packs. Each manufacturer is striving to install autonomous driving capability, beginning at SAE Level 2 and ramping up to Level 4. Both companies also plan to produce factory-built versions of these concept vehicles for the Chinese consumer market, beginning in late 2019.

XPeng Electric SUV Indenty X Concept

XPeng Electric SUV Identy X Concept

Startup company XPeng, formerly XiaoPeng Motors, has been funded by Ali Baba, one of the largest international consumer electronics trading companies in the world. XPeng unveiled its new Identy X all-electric SUV during CES 2018.

Xpeng Electric SUV

Xpeng Electric SUV

VR Driving Simulators Were Just as Flashy as Concept Cars

Virtual Reality 3D Driving Simulator by Hyundai

Virtual Reality 3D Driving Simulator by Hyundai

Mitsubishi Electric VR Driving Simulator

Mitsubishi Electric VR Driving Simulator

ChargePoint Booth Displays Latest DC Fast Charging Systems

ChargePoint has been an international leader in the deployment of networked Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE): https://www.chargepoint.com/

ChargePoint DC Fast Charge System with both ChadeMo and CCS plugs

ChargePoint DC Fast Charge System with both ChadeMo and CCS plugs

ChargePoint Powerbank modules can be stacked to scale the supply of electric power to DC Fast Charge stations from 50 kW to 350 kW.

ChargePoint Powerbank modules can be stacked to scale the supply of electric power to DC Fast Charge stations from 50 kW to 350 kW.

ChargePoint Exhibit Booth at CES 2018 displayed SAE J1772 AC Level 2 EVSE product lines for commercial and personal use.

ChargePoint Exhibit Booth at CES 2018 displayed SAE J1772 AC Level 2 EVSE product lines for commercial and personal use.

ChargePoint has now added an Alexa voice-controlled interface to its personal garage charging station, that also has more direct connections through a customize-able mobile phone app.

ChargePoint personal AC Level 2 EVSE available for home garages with mobile phone app and  Alexa voice-recognition commands connected.

ChargePoint personal AC Level 2 EVSE available for home garages with mobile phone app and Alexa voice-recognition commands connected.

Tellus EVSE Charging Stations

Tellus is a startup EVSE company that has been selling both SAE J1772 AC Level 2 public charging stations, as well as a new DC Fast Charge system that were both exhibited at CES 2018:
http://telluspowertech.com

Tellus DC Fast Charge Station

Tellus DC Fast Charge Station

Tellus SAE J1772 AC Level 2 charging station display during CES 2018

Tellus SAE J1772 AC Level 2 charging station display during CES 2018

Automated Robot EVSE Service Station Attendent by Electric Loading

In the Smart Cities Pavilion within CES 2018, Electric Loading displayed a Fanuc industrial robot arm that was portrayed as an automated electric car EVSE charging attendant. Two tool appendages were developed by the company for both CHAdeMo and SAE CCS Combo connectors for DC Fast Charging that could be electronically and pneumatically connected to the Fanuc robot arm.
With the aid of an onboard stereoscopic vision system, the robot could automatically plug either connector into the DC Fast Charge port of a stationary electric vehicle.

Fanuc industrial robot arm programmed as automated electric car recharging attendant

Fanuc industrial robot arm programmed as automated electric car recharging attendant

Power and control system for Fanuc robot recharging attendant integrated by Electric Loading

Power and control system for Fanuc robot recharging attendant integrated by Electric Loading

SAE CCS Combo connector for DC Fast Charger after insertion into charging port by Fanuc automated charging robot attendant

SAE CCS Combo connector for DC Fast Charger after insertion into charging port by Fanuc automated charging robot attendant

Nevada Governor Sandoval and City of Las Vegas Encourage Smart Transportation Infrastructure

Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval is now Chairman of the National Governors Association during 2018. He hosted a meeting of the NGA with over 20 state governors at a Lake Las Vegas resort at the same time as CES 2018. During the event, he showcased autonomous vehicles, including the new NAVYA Robotaxi.

NAVYA has partnered with Keolis to integrate autonomous shuttle buses and robotaxis into the Las Vegas Innovation district.

NAVYA has partnered with Keolis to integrate autonomous shuttle buses and robotaxis into the Las Vegas Innovation district.

The City of Las Vegas also sponsored a prominent booth exhibit in the Smart Cities Pavilion during CES 2018, that featured vendor partners within the downtown Innovation District. Representatives from the Las Vegas Department of Information Technology, led by CIO Michael Sherwood, were on hand to answer questions about how sensors and autonomous vehicles could be integrated within city infrastructure to improve transportation and city services.

City of Las Vegas exhibit in Smart Cities Pavilion of CES 2018 at Westgate Hotel.

City of Las Vegas exhibit in Smart Cities Pavilion of CES 2018 at Westgate Hotel.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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28

Nov

DC Solar Installs 19 Portable ChargePoint Stations in Las Vegas Valley

Author: stanhanel
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DC Solar has installed 19 portable trailers around the Las Vegas valley that are equipped with ChargePoint AC Level 2 charging stations to provide electricity at no cost to electric car owners.

DC Solar provides a trailer with photovoltaic solar panels that power a ChargePoint CT4020 station with two SAE J1772 AC Level 2 ports. Lithium-ion battery and biodiesel generator systems inside the trailer also provide supplemental power to the ChargePoint station when required.

DC Solar provides a trailer with photovoltaic solar panels that power a ChargePoint CT4020 station with two SAE J1772 AC Level 2 ports. Lithium-ion battery and biodiesel generator systems inside the trailer also provide supplemental power to the ChargePoint station when required.

The electric power for the ChargePoint station on each trailer can be generated by three portable resources: adjustable photovoltaic solar panels, a battery backup storage system, and a biodiesel generator.

DC Solar provides digital LED advertising panel along the length of the trailer while charging up a vintage 1981 Jet Electrica.

DC Solar provides digital LED advertising panel along the length of the trailer while charging up a vintage 1981 Jet Electrica.

Each DC Solar charging station trailer also has digital LED display screens on both the ChargePoint station control panel and alongside the full length of the trailer that can be leased to businesses to provide advertising announcements. Advertising revenue can be used to offset any maintenance or biodiesel costs incurred by DC Solar while providing free electrons to electric car drivers.

DC Solar portable ChargePoint stations installed in the Las Vegas valley are located at:

1. 5965 W. Sahara Avenue
2. 4030 W. Charleston Avenue
3. 1555 E. Flamingo Road
4. 2151 N. Rancho Drive
5. 4880 W. Oquendo Road
6. Charleston Boulevard and Art Way
7. 9111 Las Vegas Boulevard South
8. 1094 S. Buffalo Drive
9. 276 N. Jones Boulevard
10. 1019 S. Decatur Boulevard
11. 2169 E. Tropicana Avenue
12. 3070 W. Sahara Avenue
13. 6730 Las Vegas Boulevard South
14. 3965 E. Charleston Boulevard
15. 5115 W. Spring Mountain Road
16. 1007 E. Cheyenne Avenue
17. 3100 Fremont Street
18. 7730 S. Jones Boulevard
19. 889 S. Valley View Boulevard

Locations of more than 300 ChargePoint stations in the Las Vegas valley and throughout the rest of Nevada can also be found through a map app provided by ChargePoint at this link:

https://na.chargepoint.com/charge_point

The Nevada Electric Vehicle Accelerator (NEVA) website also includes the Plugshare.com mapping service, that can be used to locate both ChargePoint and non-ChargePoint EVSE charging station sites throughout the state and around the country:

http://nevadaeva.org/evse-locator-map/

For more information about DC Solar and their innovative portable electric power solutions, visit the company website at:

http://www.dcsolarsolutionsmfg.com/

Update: During March 2018, the company removed all its trailers from local Las Vegas valley locations due to a billboard permitting requirement requested by the City of Las Vegas. DC Solar plans to re-install its trailers back to their original locations once the permitting issue has been resolved.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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28

Nov

Tesla Unveils New EVs While Fixing Gigafactory Automation Glitches

Author: stanhanel
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During November 2017, Tesla Inc. announced development of two new electric vehicles, the 2019 Tesla Semi and the 2020 Tesla Roadster, during an unveiling at its Hawthorne, California facility.

However, Gigafactory production ramp-up for the company’s Model 3 electric car was delayed three months, due to automation glitches while fabricating the integrated battery packs.

The Tesla Semi is a new electric tractor-trailer that will seek to exceed the performance of diesel-engine “big rig” shipping trucks that are required to pull an 80,000-pound gross weight trailer load:

A new Tesla Roadster was also unveiled during the event with a target production date of 2020, a top speed of 250 miles per hour, 620-mile range with a 200 kilowatt-hour battery pack, and acceleration from zero to 60 miles per hour in less than two seconds:

During the same month, Tesla completed installation of a new Supercharger station in Baker, California with 40 charging station sites that will enable more road trips by owners of Tesla Model S, Model X and Model 3 between Los Angeles and Las Vegas, Nevada. Pictures and directions to Supercharger site can be found at Plugshare.com:

Tesla Supercharger site in Baker, CA has 40 stations available.

Tesla Supercharger site in Baker, CA has 40 stations available.

The company also announced completion of a 100-Megawatt PowerPack installation that will provide electrical energy storage for a wind turbine generator farm installed by Neoen in Hornsdale, Australia. More information is available through this link to a Reuters article:

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-australia-power-tesla/tesla-cranks-up-big-battery-in-australia-idUSKBN1DN0B4

Powerpack battery storage systems and solar generation equipment totaling $250,000 were donated to a children’s hospital in Puerto Rico by Elon Musk and Tesla during October 2017, after Hurricane Maria damaged electric utility grid infrastructure on the island. This article from The Verge has more details:

https://www.theverge.com/2017/10/24/16536972/tesla-puerto-rico-hurricane-relief-solar-power-storage

However, not all went well with Tesla during an anticipated ramp-up of production for the Model S during the third quarter of 2017. The setback was due to a failure by a system engineering consultant to fully implement an automated production line for the vehicle battery pack at the Tesla Gigafactory in Storey County, Nevada. This article from Bloomberg has more information, after an investor “earnings call” for the latest company quarterly financial figures:

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-11-01/tesla-delays-model-3-goals-as-early-bottlenecks-worsen-cash-burn

Tesla engineers re-engineered the automated production line and its software programming, but the production stall created a delay of at least three months. Model 3 production is now projected to reach 5,000 units per month by March 2018, instead of December 2017. A backlogged waiting list of customers with prepaid deposits on the Model 3 will be extended even longer than previously announced by CEO Elon Musk.

Tesla has invested about $2.7 billion of capital into its Gigafactory in northern Nevada since 2014, hiring 1,400 Tesla employees directly, as well as through its partner battery component suppliers, Panasonic Energy (431 employees) and H&T Nevada LLC (44 employees).

By 2024, Tesla has set targets of $5 billion in capital investment with total employees of 6,500 once the Gigafactory is totally constructed and production ramped up to billions of battery cells per year.

The state of Nevada has awarded Tesla a total of $1.2 billion in tax credit abatements, if the company can achieve these goals, including incremental benchmarks reviewed over time.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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25

Oct

National Clean Energy Summit 9.0 Highlights

Author: stanhanel
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National Clean Energy Summit 9.0 was hosted by Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval and former U.S. Senator Harry Reid at the Bellagio resort in Las Vegas on Friday, October 13, 2017.

Jim Murren, CEO of MGM Resorts International, introduced both men and emphasized the #VEGAS STRONG motto that signified the local community’s resilience. A mass shooting attack on concertgoers at the end of the Route 91 Harvest Music festival was perpetrated by a single gunman, who fired automatic weapons from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay resort at 10 PM on October 1, 2017.

Governor Sandoval and Senator Reid both echoed Murren’s sentiments about the strong response of the Las Vegas community, as well as the nation, in helping victims’ families recover and heal from this senseless tragedy and loss of life.

Governor Sandoval and Senator Reid introduced Nobel laureate and former US Vice-president Al Gore, who presented a slide show that was the foundation for a recent documentary movie, “An Inconvenient Sequel”. Gore asked three questions every U.S. citizen should contemplate:

Question 1: Do we really need to change mankind’s global practice of burning fossil fuels to create energy?

Gore used a slideshow presentation to document the effects of climate change that include an increasing frequency of higher global temperatures, more natural disasters, civil strife and government upheaval, as well as a growing refugee crisis.

Question 2: Can we change?

Gore felt that new technologies already in the marketplace could help mitigate rising climate temperatures. These included LED lighting, battery systems, and renewable energy systems like photovoltaic solar panels and wind generators.

Question 3: Will we change?

Gore felt that political movements can ebb and flow but that “political will is also a renewable resource”.

2. Julian Castro, former HUD secretary, moderated a discussion panel with three city mayors: Dale Ross from Georgetown, TX; James Brainard from Carmel, IN; and Greg Stanton from Phoenix, AZ regarding their local response to fossil fuel/climate change issues. Texas and Indiana mayors were both Republicans in red state voting districts who still see a need to apply conservation, energy efficiency and renewable energy to their city planning to make their regions resilient. All three mayors felt that technologies like LED lighting, government building efficiency, solar power, wind power, and EV charging station infrastructure were just common-sense improvements to city infrastructure.

3. Tom Husted, CEO of Valley Electric Association, talked about rural and remote regional utility co-ops with Chris Deschene, an Energy Attorney representing the Navajo nation and a former Director of the Office of Indian Energy Policy and Programs.

As a non-profit organization, the goals of rural utility co-ops are reliability and affordability, compared to for-profit utilities that are obligated to make a reasonable revenue return for shareholders. VEA has worked with the Las Vegas Paiute tribe and its co-op members to pioneer the use of smart meters that can reduce electricity outage and repair response times in remote areas. VEA has the largest community solar farm in the country with 67,000 solar panels. These panels can generate 15 Megawatts of electric power that can provide electricity to 2,500 home. VEA also encourages its co-op members to harness the sun for heat by promoting an active solar water heater program. The utility has also worked to extend high-speed fiber optic connections to every business and home within its widespread rural region.

4. Tina Quigley from Southern Nevada RTC talked about how her team has been learning from other major urban cities about how to enable the legal framework to adopt more resilient city infrastructure, in order to cope with increasing volumes of tourists to the Las Vegas Strip and surrounding areas. In just eight years, the tourism population is projected to increase from 43 million visitors today to 53 million by 2025. Southern Nevada full-time resident population will also grow from 2.1 million today to 2.7 million by 2025.

Quigley emphasized that there was a need to implement smarter, integrated transportation and infrastructure systems to continue to move people around smoothly as population grows.

Technology solutions included placing sensors everywhere that can enable better traffic flow and other consumer benefits, such as smarter waste collection systems. Better roadway planning and funding with collaborative input from local stakeholders will also required from public/private sectors about light rail, autonomous bus shuttles, self-driving cars, and other urban planning issues.

Las Vegas has been a convenient test lab for autonomous transportation as all traffic infrastructure in Clark County is under one management agency compared to Los Angeles that has 133 separate traffic management centers.

5. Dr. Ernest Moniz, former U.S. Secretary of Energy, commented on a series of questions about
the future of energy resources in the U.S., as well as about Yucca Mountain as a storage site for nuclear power plant waste materials.

“Let’s face it: Just about everybody understands where we’re going. If you’re making long-term decisions and capital allocations, you’d be crazy to base them on a high-carbon future,” said Moniz.

Moniz emphasized that energy efficiency, renewable energy and electric car technologies have been an important step in changing US focus to help mitigate climate change problems, but that more research and new technology breakthroughs will be required to continue providing energy resource solutions and curbing climate change problems. He listed examples like hydrogen power development, biological plant modifications to absorb more CO2 effectively, and electrostatic vacuum cleaners that could remove carbon particulates from the air.

He pointed out that Yucca Mountain in Nevada as a storage site for nuclear power plant waste materials had “technical shortcomings” but that those problems may not be enough to prevent the Nuclear Regulatory Commission from authorizing usage of the site. However, states should consent to storing nuclear waste in their territories. If there are statewide objections from citizens about transportation issues, groundwater contamination and other problems, those objections should be respected.

Moniz felt that there were other geological solutions and technologies available for above-ground or basement-level hardened storage sites. The state of Texas has authorized nuclear waste storage within its borders.

6. Paul Caudill, CEO of NV Energy, talked with Colonel Victor Rodriguez of Nellis Air Force Base, who emphasized advantages of energy efficiency, renewable energy, and resilient systems to military base operations, when coupled with the NV Energy electricity grid as a reliable backup system. Nellis AFB is moving towards adding more photovoltaic solar plus battery storage systems to continue to make the Air Force base more resilient.

7. Sherri Goodman, former Deputy Undersecretary of the Department of Defense (Environmental Security Group), moderated a discussion panel with Lieutenant General Richard C. Zilmer (ret.) from the U.S. Marine Corps; Vice Admiral Lee Gunn (ret.) from U.S. Navy; and Brigadier General William B. Blaylock from the Army/National Guard, who emphasized that distributed renewable energy resources were a necessity for the country’s military operations both at large military bases and strategically, during combat operations and logistics in the field.

It is presently too difficult and life-consuming to manage large flows of fuel in caravans to remote battlefields, even just 150 miles away from base of strategic operations. Improvised Explosive Devices (IED), sniper, and even chemical agent assaults created many US military casualties during the Iraq war in 2006. 10 percent of all military casualties during that time were riding in military convoys when they were killed.

Comparison: During World War II, US armed forces were fueled by one gallon of oil/per soldier/per day. During today’s combat operations, 22 gallons of oil/per soldier/per day are needed to sustain high-tech armed forces with more sophisticated equipment and fewer soldiers. Fuel trains should not need to catch up to forward-moving platoons of soldiers.

The combined US military consumes 9 million barrels of oil per day for all operations, in all branches of service domestic and overseas. Diesel generators are currently the default power generators for refugee camps, remote operations, etc.

Extreme climate changes create natural disasters that create refugees that create political turmoil that create civil wars, terrorism and strife. Military commanders must adjust to these new types of changing operational requirements with more resilient and flexible forces, as well as energy-efficient resources, to help mitigate increasing conflicts.

Changes in Arctic climate and diminishing ice caps are creating a boon to Russian ice breaker Navy technology, allowing short cuts through surface ice flows that were impassable before. Russia now is also engaging directly and selling weapons to Saudi Arabia, after their involvement with Syria and Middle East conflicts. Saudi Arabia leaders are increasingly concerned about Iran/North Korea nuclear weapon technology proliferation and may seek nuclear technology from Russia.

The rise of cyberwarfare is a new challenge for US military technologies that can level battleflelds in favor of smaller countries against larger ones.

8. Nevada District 10 Assemblyman Chris Brooks introduced entrepreneur Hal Harvey, CEO of Energy Innovations, who talked about the falling costs of solar and wind renewable energy resources compared to existing fossil resources such as natural gas and coal. Battery storage systems are coming down in cost and getting better at extending the use of renewable energy to help smooth out utility grid operations.

Harvey emphasized that eleven western states need to consolidate and integrate regional grid management in the same way that Eastern states have already done to bring about cheaper energy costs for everyone involved.

Berkshire Hathaway Energy Services has been leading that effort by pulling together utilities in seven western states, including Nevada. He cited an example of a 728-mile Trans-West Express transmission line being built that will help connect a regional grid network from Wyoming to southern Nevada more directly.

Artificial regulation ceilings within political administrations like the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and individual state governments, need to be lifted and harmonized to allow regional utility grid cooperation and integration. Each state and area within the western region is different but creative stacking of renewable and fossil fuel resources can optimize power locally throughout a well-integrated western region.

9. Rose McKinney-James moderated a three-woman discussion panel that included Barbara Hampton, President and CEO of Siemens Government Technologies, Inc; Heather Zichal, Executive Vice President of the International Well Building Institute (IWBI); as well as Cindy Ortega, SVP and Sustainability Director at MGM Resorts, to talk about building science and energy conservation. 70 percent of today’s existing buildings will still be in place by 2030, so any retrofits of technology to optimize building resource consumption and generate energy can create better workplaces and minimize urban energy footprints. A healthy, comfortable building and operations can also increase worker productivity, as well as general worker health.

However, changing employee work routines is not always an easy process and requires new business models and management policies, alongside technology changes that can eliminate barriers to productivity enhancement. “There is no single silver bullet but silver buckshot,” emphasized Zichal, in order to find unique solutions to each building work environment.

Ortega warned that future progress towards green programs at MGM Resorts International will require more complex and coordinated programs, as most of the “low hanging fruit” of energy efficiency and renewable energy savings have already been implemented at MGM resort properties.

10. Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval led a panel discussion with fellow governors Charlie Baker from Massachusetts and David Ige from Hawaii, about their efforts to “lead the charge” for renewable energy and energy efficiency in each of their states.

Hawaii has been the most aggressive because of their unique needs for energy and their small island footprints. These circumstances make EV transportation powered by photovoltaic solar panels and battery storage systems more viable.

Hawaii is the first state to commit to generating 100 percent of its electric power from clean renewable energy in the state as a portfolio standard. The state of Hawaii had previously imported and burned crude oil to run electrical generators, that supplied 95% of power to all seven of the main islands, costing the state $6 billion in imports every year. The state is actively pursuing community solar, wind generation, battery storage and microgrid investment policies, so that all residents can share in the benefits of renewable energy generation from the sun and wind. This strategy should also reduce ratepayer energy costs.

Hawaii laws now require that all large-sized parking lots in commercial malls, apartments and condominiums also have a minimum amount of EV charging supply equipment available for visitors and residents. Hawaii now has the highest registration of electric vehicles per capita, compared to the rest of the country.

During the state’s next legislative session, lawmakers will continue debating the benefits of establishing a timeline for phasing out the sale and use of internal combustion engine vehicles, in the same way that France, India, the UK and other countries have set goals and timelines.

Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker said that his state is investing $10 million into battery storage technologies but does not have the extensive sunshine available as a renewable energy resource like Nevada and Hawaii.

His state is implementing offshore wind power generation technologies from the Atlantic Ocean, as well as encouraging more energy innovation developed within state academic institutions. Smart grid technologies can continue to provide better value to utility ratepayers.

Because of snow, the distances that need to be traveled along the east coast, bad roads, and bad drivers, Massachusetts will most likely not adopt electric vehicles in significant numbers until battery pack ranges exceed 300 miles between charging stops.

Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval emphasized the need to continue developing solar generation within Nevada, as well as encourage the use of battery storage technologies produced by the Tesla Gigafactory in Storey County.

He is continuing to drive the adoption of electric vehicles on Nevada roadways through the establishment of a more comprehensive Nevada Electric Highway program. This statewide program will be integrated with a Regional Electric Vehicle (REV) plan that is being sponsored by seven cooperating western states to build out DC Fast Charge stations along shared interstate highway corridors. Governor Sandoval will become Chairman of the National Governors Association during 2018 and will be leading the REV interstate development effort.

During closing statements, the governors commented that renewable energy, storage systems, and EV transportation are becoming more established parts of mainstream infrastructure and transportation. The next summit in Nevada could drop “clean” from its title and just be called National Energy Summit 10.0.

11. An exhibition area accompanied the conference sessions during NCES 9.0 and featured booths with local businesses, government agencies, academic, and non-profit organizations that were encouraging the use of clean energy in Nevada:

A. The NV Energy utility showcased its Electric Vehicles program, as well as its PowerShift energy efficiency program, and Renewable Generations program.

B. Nevada Department of Environmental Protection discussed its government role in administering the Volkswagen Diesel mitigation funding that will provide about $25 million during 2018 to state fleets that want to upgrade their diesel engine technology or replace their transportation with zero-emission electric vehicles.

C. University of Nevada-Las Vegas showcased its renewable energy research efforts, led by Professor Bob Boehm.

UNLV Team Las Vegas was competing at the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon in Denver, Colorado during the same week as the conference. The team’s “Sinatra Living” home design won the Innovation part of the event, and placed second in both Architecture and Engineering. Their final scoring after all ten decathlon events placed UNLV Team Las Vegas in eighth position out of eleven international collegiate teams.

D. Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada exhibited a NAVYA autonomous, electric shuttle bus that CAT Bus system manager Keolis hopes to integrate into the Downtown Las Vegas public transit system, during a pilot test program that launched during November 2017.

This second pilot road test will operate for a full year within a more circular route, compared to the first pilot test project in January 2017 that just shuttled back and forth on East Fremont street from the Container Park shopping mall to Las Vegas Blvd bus connections.

The new route will circle the Container Park, bounded by Fremont Street to the north, Las Vegas Blvd on the west, Carson Street to the south and Eighth Street to the East. Side streets include Sixth and Seventh Street between Carson and East Fremont Street.

The City of Las Vegas has partnered with the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada, Keolis, AAA of Nevada, and NAVYA to operate the pilot program. There will be no fee to riders on the shuttle bus but AAA may conduct surveys of riders to get their reactions and feelings about riding in a driverless vehicle.

The NAVYA shuttle bus can hold up to eleven passengers plus an onboard attendant/chaperone who will provide oversight evaluation and answer questions from riders about the onboard technologies.

The NAVYA shuttle bus employs a wireless charging system, as well as an autonomous GPS navigation system, that can drive itself back to an assigned charging space overnight. By parking directly over a coiled transmitter, the bus not have to be plugged in to be recharged in time for the next day’s shuttle bus run.

Sensing systems include lidar and camera systems that can monitor 360 degrees of view and react accordingly.

However, during the very first day of the pilot program on Wednesday, November 8th, the shuttle was hit by a delivery truck that was backing into a narrow alleyway next to La Comida restaurant on Sixth Street. The NAVYA shuttle, with passengers onboard, stopped when it sensed the delivery truck backing diagonally in front of its sensors. However, the truck driver either did not notice the approach of the shuttle bus or misjudged its distance. One of the large trailer wheels grazed and crumpled the front left panel of the bus as the truck completed its backing maneuver.

The truck driver was cited for “illegal backing” by the Las Vegas Metro police department but questions arose as to whether the NAVYA shuttle bus could have been programmed to evade the oncoming vehicle by backing up a foot or two. Although the bus has an onboard horn, it did not trigger an audio warning to the oncoming delivery truck as it drew closer.

Murphy’s Law: “What can go wrong will go wrong”. More system shakeouts will occur over the next year as real-world traffic conditions test the shuttle bus programming algorithms.

None of the occupants of the shuttle bus or the driver of the delivery truck were injured, fortunately. Top speed of the NAVYA shuttle has been governed not to exceed 15 miles per hour and the shuttle bus makes very slow, deliberate moves when crossing streets to avoid oncoming traffic.

E. Tesla exhibited Model S and Model X electric cars while company sales representatives answered questions about the vehicles.

F. Clean Energy Project hosted bus trips on the following Saturday to visit different renewable energy sites around the Las Vegas valley, including Switch SuperNap Center, Las Vegas Cyclery, and Boulder City solar farm sites.

G. The Joint Apprenticeship Training Program (JATP) from the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) and National Electrical Contractors Association (NECA) featured a display of solar panels and a connected battery back-up system that had been used in local apprenticeship training classes. The organizations also provide an Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Training Program (EVITP) that provides educational resources to electricians about proper installation techniques for Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE).

H. MGM Resorts International provided information about its Environmental Division and the programs that are implemented under Senior Vice-President Cindy Ortega. MGM has been a partner in the NV Energy Shared Investment Program where multiple ChargePoint charging stations have been installed in the parking lots of local resorts on the Las Vegas Strip, as well as MGM resorts in Reno and northern Nevada.

I. Bombard Renewable Energy featured commercial and residential solar solutions. The company has pioneered large-scale installations of photovoltaic solar panels, including the largest community solar farm in the country.

Valley Electric Association utility co-op commissioned BRE to install 15 Megawatts of electric power, generated from 67,000 solar panels on 80 acres in rural Pahrump, in order to provide electric power to 2,500 homes throughout the Nye County area.

NEVA blog by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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06

Oct

Seven States REV up Electric Car Charging Infrastructure

Author: stanhanel
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During an October 2017 meeting of the National Governors Association, seven western states banded together to cooperate on the buildout of a Regional Electric Vehicle (REV) plan, that would promote electric car charging station infrastructure along shared major interstate highways:

Press Release:

Denver, CO — Oct. 4, 2017 — Today, the Governors of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to provide a framework for creating a regional electric vehicle plan for the West (“REV West Plan”). The Plan was announced today at the Energy Innovation Summit hosted by the National Governors Association.

The Plan spans more than 5,000 miles of highway across east-west Interstates 10, 40, 70, 76, 80, 84, 86, 90 and 94, and north-south Interstates 15 and 25. With more than 20,000 electric vehicles (EVs) and plug-in hybrids already on the roads in western states, the electrification of these major corridors is expected to reduce range anxiety and drive further adoption of EVs, while transforming the market to allow smaller communities to plug into the regional system.

The MOU calls for a coordination group to undertake the following actions:

Create best practices and procedures that will enhance EV adoption by promoting EV consumer acceptance and awareness by addressing “range anxiety”; coordinate on EV charging station locations to avoid redundancy and to ensure stations are sited at a frequency and locations so as to optimize utilization and to minimize inconsistencies between charging infrastructure in each state; and leverage economies of scale;

Create voluntary minimum standards for EV charging stations, including standards for administration, interoperability, operations, and management;

Identify and develop opportunities to incorporate EV charging station infrastructure into planning and development processes, such as building codes, metering policies, and renewable energy generation projects;

Encourage EV manufacturers to stock and market a wide variety of EVs within the Signatory States; and

Identify, respond to, and where possible collaborate on funding opportunities to support the development of the Regional Electric Vehicle West EV Corridor.

“This framework is another example of the innovation and bipartisan collaboration happening around energy here in the West,” said Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper. “Through this collaboration, we will drive economic growth and promote our outdoor recreation opportunities across our states. Our residents and the millions of visitors to our states will be able to drive electric vehicles from Denver to Las Vegas, from Santa Fe to Helena.”

“This is the latest example of states like Idaho being on the forefront of energy advancement,” said Idaho Governor C.L. “Butch” Otter. “In the West we pride ourselves on what we can accomplish by working together. This initiative will ensure that locals and visitors to Idaho and our neighboring states have the freedom to explore the West in the way they prefer.”

“This state-led effort shows how western states continue to work together to find innovative solutions and plan for a future where increasing numbers of people and families are traveling the West in electric vehicles,” said Governor Steve Bullock of Montana. “I am pleased to sign onto this bipartisan effort to take practical steps to realize the economic and environmental benefits of coordinated infrastructure planning that will benefit us now and well into the future.”

“It is important for Western states to work together and prepare as the use of electric vehicles grows,” said Wyoming Governor Matt Mead. “This initiative encourages infrastructure plans that allow people with electric vehicles to visit and recreate in Wyoming. Strategically spaced charging stations will allow these visitors to enjoy the same independence as traditional vehicles.”

“Utah is proud to take part in modernizing the ‘Crossroads of the West’ through working state-to-state to establish this strategic electric vehicle transportation network,” said Utah Governor Gary R. Herbert. “By knitting together the plans of seven key states through cooperative partnerships one to another, America’s travelers will soon be able to experience the wonders of the West while enjoying the innovations of our day and advancing environmental outcomes.”

“Our state’s portfolio encourages the use of all energy assets,” said New Mexico Governor Susana Martinez. “We’ve already begun to install electric vehicle charging stations at state-owned buildings, and we stand with other western states by making a bold commitment by supporting successful implementation of an EV charging station network along our main interstate corridors.”

###

The development of a western state EV corridor can extend California’s “Drive the ARC” project, that links Lake Tahoe in Nevada to Sacramento, the San Francisco Bay Area, and south to Monterey.

Interstate Highways 80 and 50 within California will feature DC Fast Charge stations from NRG EVgo with both CHAdeMO and SAE Combo connectors. The 26 recharging stations will initially offer electricity at no cost and can recharge a 200-mile range battery pack within about 45 minutes:

https://drivethearc.com/locations/

Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval will become the Chairman of the National Governors Association during 2018, also his final year as Nevada state governor. In this capacity, he will lead the REV corridor development efforts for the western region of the country.

Press Release:

Seven-State Electric Vehicle Highway Unveiled at Energy Summit

Meeting marks the first of Gov. Sandoval’s NGA Chair’s Initiative Summits
October 04, 2017

DENVER—Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper, plus representatives from more than 30 states, gathered for the first meeting of National Governors Association (NGA) Chair Nevada Gov. Brian Sandoval’s initiative, Ahead of the Curve: Innovation Governors. The meeting specifically focused on energy innovation at the state level.

At the meeting, Gov. Hickenlooper announced that seven states—Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah and Wyoming—will be working together to create the Regional Electric Vehicle (REV) Plan for the West, an electric vehicle corridor.

“I am honored to host such a diverse group of state officials focused on energy innovation,” Gov. Hickenlooper said. “I look forward to working with my colleagues in the West to create world-class infrastructure for electric vehicles as we look to the future of transportation.”

Gov. Sandoval, who was unable to attend the meeting due to the mass shooting in his state just days before, said, “As chair of the National Governors Association, I am pleased to announce the REV plan in the West with governors from both sides of the political spectrum. The plan shines a spotlight on how governors across the country are implementing innovative policies for the people of their states.”

In January, Gov. Sandoval will host the next meeting related to his initiative focused on transportation innovation in Las Vegas.

###

Note: The Electric Drive Transportation Association estimated that there were 18,982 EVSE stations installed across the US as of the end of September 2017, with a total of 50,748 charging outlets available nationwide.

NEVA blog written and compiled by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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10

Sep

National Drive Electric Week 2017 in Nevada

Author: stanhanel
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National Drive Electric Week was staged internationally in 270 cities from September 9 – 17, 2017 by organizers from the Electric Auto Association, Plug-in America, and the Sierra Club.

Nissan was an international corporate sponsor for the event and provided educational material and product information, including new brochures about the 2018 Nissan LEAF electric car. Other NDEW sponsors included Lyft, ClipperCreek, and the California Air Resources Board.

Nevada events were coordinated in both Las Vegas and Reno by local owners of plug-in electric vehicles.

Las Vegas

National Drive Electric Week in Las Vegas at Springs Preserve museum.

National Drive Electric Week in Las Vegas at Springs Preserve museum.

National Drive Electric Week in Las Vegas was staged at the Springs Preserve museum parking lot on Saturday, September 9th from 10 AM to 2 PM under a photovoltaic solar canopy that tracked the sun during the day and provided power to two ChargePoint stations, each with two SAE J1772 AC Level 2 ports.

A GM Chevrolet Spark EV, Tesla Roadster and Tesla Model X attract attendee interest during National Drive Electric Week.

A GM Chevrolet Spark EV, Tesla Roadster and Tesla Model X attract attendee interest during National Drive Electric Week.

Local supporting organizations included the Nevade Electric Vehicle Accelerator program from REA250.org, Las Vegas Electric Vehicle Association, Sierra Club Toiyabe Chapter, Clean Energy Project, Citizens Climate Lobby, SolarNV, NV Energy, Green Alliance of Nevada, Las Vegas Tesla Owners, Verdek, and ChargePoint.

NV Energy Renewable Generations Program provided educational trailer exhibit.

NV Energy Renewable Generations Program provided educational trailer exhibit.

An electric car rally featured about 40 plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and battery-powered electric vehicles from worldwide automotive manufacturers, including Tesla Roadster, Tesla Model S, Tesla Model X, Nissan LEAF, GM Chevrolet Volt, GM Chevrolet Spark EV, Ford Fusion Energi, Ford Focus EV, Fiat 500e, Daimler Smart ED, BMW i3, and Mitsubishi i-MiEV.

David Morse drove a vintage Tesla Roadster electric car to the Las Vegas event.

David Morse drove a vintage Tesla Roadster electric car to the Las Vegas event.

Informational booths provided educational outreach about electric vehicle technologies, EV infrastructure, and renewable energy resources available within Nevada.

NV Energy employee C'Les Jensema exhibited solar and wind generation systems inside a walk-through trailer.

NV Energy employee C’Les Jensema exhibited solar and wind generation systems inside a walk-through trailer.

NV Energy provided a demonstration trailer from the utility’s Renewable Generations program.

AC Inverter system provides 110 VAC from solar panels and wind generator.

AC Inverter system provides 110 VAC from solar panels and wind generator.


Walk-through trailer exhibits included a solar water heater system and electric generator systems for residential home applications that could be powered by both photovoltaic solar cell panels and a wind turbine.

Jane Feldman from the Sierra Club Toiyabe chapter shared a video of the event on her Facebook page:

https://www.facebook.com/jane.feldman1/videos/pcb.10155337926952771/10155337881287771/?type=3&theater

Mark Larsen drove his Nissan LEAF from St. George, Utah to the Springs Preserve in Las Vegas and back over the weekend, chronicling his journey both ways, as well as his visit to the NDEW gathering: http://bit.ly/ndewvegas

Mark recharged his Nissan LEAF in Mesquite at the Eureka Casino and Hotel and when he arrived in North Las Vegas at the College of Southern Nevada campus. The distance from Mesquite to Las Vegas is about 80 miles.

Reno

photo courtesy of Bob Tregilus

photo courtesy of Bob Tregilus

The National Drive Electric Week event in Reno was organized by Cindy Ryan of the Electric Auto Association of Northern Nevada:

https://driveelectricweek.org/event.php?eventid=1200

http://www.electricnevada.org/newsandviews/

It was staged on Sunday, Sept. 17th from 9 AM to 2 PM at the Pavilion on the west side of Virginia Lake Park, located at 1980 Lakeside Drive, Reno, NV 89509.

“We got featured on one of the local news shows (KOLO-TV – abc affiliate in Reno, NV) and they ran the segment at least twice,” said Cindy Ryan. “Also, US House of Representatives candidate, Rick Shepherd and his family came by and spent at least one hour.”

(Photo courtesy of Cynthia Ryan) KOLO-TV, Reno, NV learns about electric CARS from William Brinsmead of Reno, NV. He was at the NDEW with his 1972 Cadillac Hearse conversion - a familiar sight around the area.

(Photo courtesy of Cynthia Ryan) KOLO-TV, Reno, NV learns about electric CARS from William Brinsmead of Reno, NV. He was at the NDEW with his 1972 Cadillac Hearse conversion – a familiar sight around the area.

Jeb Bateman from Tesla Energy division presented information about Tesla’s Powerwall and photo-voltaic solar solutions.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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10

Aug

Virgin Hyperloop One Accelerates Technology in North Las Vegas

Author: stanhanel
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During July 2017, employees at Hyperloop One in North Las Vegas, NV completed a breakthrough test that proved a high-speed pod could accelerate and glide on waves of opposing electromagnetic fields while encased in a long, evacuated tube that minimized air pressure resistance.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uLh1alyhc1E

The DevLoop evacuated magnetic tube system, built in North Las Vegas, accelerated the XP-1 pod up to 190 miles per hour over one-third of a mile. The design and engineering team felt that the pods should be able to accelerate to even faster speeds with a longer distance test track that they will continue developing.

Hyperloop One DevLoop Test Track in North Las Vegas, NV.

Hyperloop One DevLoop Test Track in North Las Vegas, NV.

The proof of concept test opens the door to high-speed trasportation that can travel faster and cost less to construct than traditional magnetic-levitation trains in Japan and China.

Hyperloop One hopes to achieve speeds up to 750 miles per hour for cargo and passenger pod modules that zoom through evacuated tunnels within a seamless flow of other computer-controlled pods. That’s four times the speed of most existing mag-lev trains.

Hyperloop_DevLoop_image_05

Las Vegas could become a transportation hub and gateway to major cities in five surrounding states with that kind of connection speed. Once a cargo pod reaches its stopping point, automated drones or shipping trucks could complete delivery of each package to the “last mile” of a target destination.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAWEOwDDt_Y

At the North Las Vegas test site, individual sections of Hyperloop tube were mounted on top of concrete pillars and welded together to form the DevLoop magnetic tube system. The company obtained a large-scale vacuum-pumping system and began monitoring the amount of air pressure reduction possible.

The cargo and passenger pods have been equipped with permanent magnets embedded as a Halbach array within the base of their chassis platforms. Each design iteration has been developed and tested in smaller vacuum chambers within the company’s Los Angeles development center.

An aluminum track built along the bottom, inside floor of the DevLoop tube serves as a repelling surface for the Halbach array installed in the base of each pod. As the permanent magnets move at high speed over the aluminum surface beneath the traveling pod, they induce eddy currents in the metal track, that in turn creates a magnetic field of opposite polarity.

The repelling magnetic fields continue to suspend the pod above the aluminum track as it surfs on this magnetic wave within the low-pressure atmosphere of the enclosed tube system.

Unlike traditional mag-lev trains, the Hyperloop system does not require continuous electromagnetic propulsion points. Once acceleration reaches a fast cruising speed within the low-pressure tube through an active electromagnetic stator that generates strong electromagnetic fields, the need for additional acceleration or deceleration stator nodes can be spaced up to 18 miles apart along the length of the tube.

At full speed, each pod’s magnetic Halbach array glides over the aluminum track and induces eddy currents that create repelling magnetic fields for up to 18 miles until another active stator push or pull is needed to accelerate or decelerate the Halbach array.

Hyperloop One employs about 300 people at its Los Angeles and Las Vegas sites, with about 100 employees currently in Nevada.

The original transportation concept of using evacuated pneumatic tubes for transporting pods and people has been envisioned by engineers and scientists, like US rocket pioneer Robert Goddard, for over 100 years.

Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory defined component parts of the system during the late 20th century.

The most recent wave of Hyperloop development interest was christened and jump-started by Elon Musk, CEO of both SpaceX and Tesla, Inc. Musk published an open-source research paper during 2012 that outlined a vision for his Hyperloop system, with a design that employed linear induction motors and compressed air.

Musk also created The Boring Company to investigate and develop high-speed tunneling machines that would need to dig tunnels at least 3 times faster than existing systems, in order to make the Hyperloop tunnel systems less costly to build.

For more information about Hyperloop One, visit the company website at:

https://hyperloop-one.com/

Update October 12, 2017 Press Release:

“Hyperloop One has a new ally in our mission to reinvent transportation, and it’s someone who’s changed the industry a few times already in his career. Today we’re announcing that legendary entrepreneur Richard Branson and his Virgin Group have invested in Hyperloop One. Richard is also joining Hyperloop One’s Board of Directors, bringing along a proven track record of delivering breakthrough transportation experiences.

The Virgin Group and Hyperloop One will be developing a global strategic partnership focused on passenger and mixed-use cargo service. As part of the partnership, our company’s name will be changing to Virgin Hyperloop One over the coming months. Working together, Virgin and Hyperloop One present a differentiated brand that’s instantly recognizable around the world and lends tremendous credibility as we scale. Our global strategic partnership will focus on passenger and mixed-use cargo service, in addition to the creation of a new passenger division. Virgin will not be the only operator. We will work with a variety of operators globally, as selected by customers.

A partnership with Hyperloop One feels like a natural fit. Virgin has been at the forefront of transportation innovation for more than 20 years. It has entered major markets, competed with giants and won. We can’t think of a better person than Richard or a better brand than Virgin to be our true partner in the continued quest to make our moonshot idea a reality.

Onwards.”

NEVA blog by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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20

Jul

Tesla Begins Production and Delivery of Model 3

Author: stanhanel
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During July 2017, Tesla began producing its newest Model 3 electric car and started the process of delivering a mass market vehicle to over 400,000 people worldwide. These Tesla customers had pre-registered and made a downpayment of $1000 to join the queue of potential drivers who wanted to own this revolutionary new vehicle:

https://www.tesla.com/model3

The main selling features of the Tesla Model 3, listed on the website are:

1. Starting base price of $35,000

2. Designed for five-star safety rating in every class

3. Acceleration achieves zero to 60 miles per hour in 5.6 seconds

4. Seats five adults comfortably

5. Autopilot hardware (cameras, radar, ultrasonic sensors) are standard although software levels of implementation for Extended Autopilot and Fully Autonomous driving capability in the future will cost extra.

6. Access port hardware for SuperCharger network is standard, in order to access Tesla DC Fast Charging systems for cross-country travel. First 1000 miles are accessible at no cost but usage fees will be applied after that.

7. Co-efficient of drag around 0.21

8. 15-inch horizontal touch display screen standard as center console.

Consumer Reports published an FAQ to try to answer the most common questions about the Tesla Model 3 at this website link:

http://www.consumerreports.org/tesla/tesla-model-3-faq-everything-you-want-to-know/

Tesla CEO Elon Musk was also a guest speaker during the National Governor’s Association summer conference in Rhode Island. Musk sat down with Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval for a one-hour discussion about the future of electric cars, batteries and renewable energy over the next 20 years. He also took questions from other governors attending the conference.

A Youtube video of the discussion follows:

On July 28, 2017, Musk and Tesla senior managers staged a formal presentation to deliver the keys to the first 30 owners of the Model 3, featured in this YouTube video from the company:

Assembly line production will then ramp up exponentially through the end of the year, from 100 during August to 1000 during September and 20,000 by the end of December if Tesla can achieve its ambitious goals.

By 2020, the company hopes to manufacture 500,000 Model 3 electric cars every year. There are 10,000 component parts inside the Model 3. Two-thirds of the components come from within North America while another one-third come from outside the continent. Musk emphasized that any one component could stall the ramp-up of the Model 3 production line to 20,000 vehicles per month.

The Tesla Gigafactory in Storey County, NV produces the battery packs and other essential electric drive train components for the Model 3.

The first section of the Tesla Motors Gigafactory in Storey County is completed and unveiled to the public during 2016.

The first section of the Tesla Motors Gigafactory in Storey County is completed and unveiled to the public during 2016.

About 1,000 fulltime employees are building battery cells and integrated packs within the plant, with additional workers employed in the continued construction of the factory. When fully completed the Gigafactory will be one of the largest buildings on the planet by footprint and will employ more than 3,500 people full time. Nevada employees at the Gigafactory were featured and live-streamed while watching the Tesla Handover event during late July.

Tesla is also continuing to build out its Supercharger network for cross-country driving beyond the vehicle’s 215-mile base range. By the end of 2018, the number of Superchargers available in its network will triple in quantity with more penetration into all countries throughout the world.

NEVA blog written by Stan Hanel, NEVA Outreach Coordinator

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27

Jun

Faraday Future Puts a Hold on Factory Construction in North Las Vegas

Author: stanhanel
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On July 10, 2017, Faraday Future announced that it was putting on hold its plans to build an assembly factory for the company’s FF91 prototype concept car in North Las Vegas, Nevada at the Apex Industrial Park:

“We at Faraday Future are significantly shifting our business strategy to position the company as the leader in user-ship personal mobility – a vehicle usage model that re-imagines the way users access mobility. As a result of this shift in direction, we are in the process of identifying a manufacturing facility that presents a faster path to start-of-production and aligns with future strategic options.

Accordingly, we have decided to put a hold on our factory at the APEX site in North Las Vegas. As the land owner, we remain committed to the build-out of the APEX site for long-term vehicle manufacturing and firmly believe North Las Vegas is an ideal place to be.

We would like to thank our partners in Nevada for their continued support throughout this process. Governor Sandoval and his office of Economic Development, Clark County and Mayor John Lee and the North Las Vegas officials.

More details on Faraday Future’s new strategy will be shared in the coming weeks.”

Reactions to the Faraday Future announcement were mixed from Nevada government officials at the state and local levels.

According to a statement from Steve Hill, Director of the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development:

“Faraday Future has informed the Governor’s Office of Economic Development (GOED) that it has put the construction of its factory in North Las Vegas on hold.

Throughout the process of working with Faraday, the state recognized both the opportunity a large manufacturing facility could provide as well as the inherent risk associated with a start-up company attempting this endeavor. In order to protect the citizens of Nevada from risk, the agreement with Faraday requires the company to fully invest a minimum of $1 billion in order to receive any state incentives.

In accordance with this agreement, Faraday has paid all taxes owed to a Trust Fund established by the state. The agreement with Faraday held Nevada’s citizens harmless from the risk associated with this project,” GOED Director Hill said.

Nevada State Treasurer Dan Schwartz issued a harsher statement:

“We all make mistakes, but this one was obvious. Long after it became apparent that ‘a mysterious Chinese billionaire’ and Faraday Future could never build a $1 billion electric auto plant, Nevada state officials continued to insist that Faraday Future would magically create 4,500 jobs in North Las Vegas. Now that Jia Yueting, Faraday’s funding source, has had his assets frozen by a Shanghai court and is under increasing scrutiny in China for what amounts to fraud, the automobile plant is just a pile of sand in Apex Industrial Park, and the promised jobs are just another mirage in the Southern Nevada Desert,” Treasurer Schwartz said.

“The only good news is that the Treasurer’s Office continued to press for financial information from Faraday and refused to issue a $175 million bond without detailed information.

Welcome to Nevada, where good government takes a back seat to bad deals,” Schwartz said.

North Las Vegas Mayor John Lee sought to soften the impact of the hold decision, as well as find a silver lining, when he issued the following statement:

“The State, County and City are focused to ensure Southern Nevada has a large scale industrial park developed and ready for job creators to diversify our regional economy, and Faraday has played an important part by investing almost $50 million in land improvements and critical design and engineering work at Apex Industrial Park, creating a momentum that has attracted multiple Fortune 500 companies hiring 7,000 Nevadans and investing more than $1 billion, that has stabilized and transformed our community,” Mayor Lee said.

Faraday Future had hired Stefan Krause as the company’s new Chief Financial Officer and tasked him with raising $1 billion in additional capital to continue expanding the company, including the completion of an electric car factory in North Las Vegas, Nevada.

The company had sought to build a down-sized 650,000 square-foot automotive assembly plant within the city’s Apex Industrial Park, after previously grading and leveling the ground during 2016. Completion of the factory and the manufacturing assembly-line were projected to roll out the first production car models of the FF91 sometime in 2018.

Faraday Future slowed its development plans during 2016 and early 2017, after financial troubles beset the company’s primary investor, Chinese billionaire Jia Yue Ting.

During August 2017, the company announced that it was leasing an existing factory in Hanford, CA between Fresno and Bakersfield, located between Interstate Highway I-5 and US Highway 99. The company will fully move into the one-million square-foot plant during November 2017 and hopes to manufacture production versions of the FF91 by the end of 2018.

Faraday Future still owns 930 acres of land within the Apex Industrial Park in North Las Vegas that the company purchased for $29.4 million. Tentative plans are on hold to try to convert the property into a fully-owned, larger scale factory sometime in the future. However, first the company must achieve its short-term manufacturing goals at the Hanford, CA plant during 2018.

The FF91 electric car prototype unveiled during CES 2017 in Las Vegas had been built for performance. It integrated up to three AC motors in parallel, with electricity supplied from the company’s patented AC inverter electronics.

A 130 kilowatt-hour battery pack and the three-motor electric drive train could develop an equivalent of 1050 horsepower and accelerate from 0 to 60 miles per hour in 2.39 seconds, according to in-house company benchmark testing.

Faraday Future FF91 electric drive train includes three AC electric motors, a 130 kWh battery pack, patented AC inverter electronics and all-wheel steering.

Faraday Future FF91 electric drive train includes three AC electric motors, a 130 kWh battery pack, patented AC inverter electronics and all-wheel steering.

All wheel steering allowed for nimbler handling and performance through tight turns, as well as quicker avoidance of obstacles.

Faraday Future FF91 races at Pike's Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado Springs

Faraday Future FF91 races at Pike’s Peak International Hill Climb in Colorado Springs

During June, Faraday Future raced the FF91 in the Exhibition Division of the Broadmoor Pike’s Peak International Hill Climb near Colorado Springs, Colorado:

https://ev.ff.com/2s9UFNL

The challenging Pike’s Peak race course is more vertical than most, climbing 4,720 feet through 12.42 miles of continuously winding road, with 156 turns to reach a mountain summit 14,110 feet high.

Gasoline engine fuel mixtures become challenged in the thin air, so battery-powered electric cars have an advantage at that kind of altitude.

A Youtube video of one of the hill climb runs can be seen at this weblink:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m2mxpLKSdOU

The FF91 had a best time of 11 minutes and 25.082 seconds for the course, even though it stalled near the summit and had to reboot its onboard computer control system. Though coming in at 40th place compared to all the weekend’s competitor time slips, the FF91 performed well for an electric production car. The best timed run for the day eclipsed by over 20 seconds a 2016 Pike’s Peak time set by a stripped-down Tesla Model S P90D dual-motor electric production car a year earlier.

Faraday Future Dragon Racing Team race car driven by Jerome D'Ambrosio and Loic Duval during FIA Formula E competitions from 2016 - 2017 season.

Faraday Future Dragon Racing Team race car driven by Jerome D’Ambrosio and Loic Duval during FIA Formula E competitions from 2016 – 2017 season.

Faraday Future also partnered with Jay Penske’s Dragon Racing team to develop an electric-motor drive train that could compete against world-class racing teams through the FIA Formula E racing circuit.

Ten racing teams competed during the 2016-2017 season, including famous names like ABT Schaeffler AUDI Sport, Andretti, DS Virgin Racing, Panasonic Jaguar Racing, Mahindra Racing, NextEV NIO, Renault e.dams, TECHEETAH, and Venturi, alongside the Faraday Future Dragon Racing team.

Design rules during the third season of Formula E racing were loosened to allow racing teams to experiment more fully with the electric drive train beyond the fixed battery pack, to include multiple configurations of electric motors, transmission gear box design, AC inverter electronics, and rear mechanical suspensions.

As a first-time entrant during the third year of the FIA Formula E racing seasons, Faraday Future has found its technology integration has some “catching up” to do to compete at a world-class level against seasoned automotive engineers and racing teams from Renault, Jaguar, and Audi, while being tested in real world competition by Formula One veteran drivers Jerome D’Ambrosio and Loic Duval:


http://www.fiaformulae.com/en

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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01

May

Earth Day 2017 Nevada Celebrations

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

Nevada residents celebrated Earth Day 2017 throughout the state.

Sherry Swensk, Weather Anchor from KLAS-TV and Annette Bubak from Green Alliance of Nevada address attendees at GreenFest 2017 from center stage in the Pavilion at Downtown Summerlin.

Sherry Swensk, Weather Anchor from KLAS-TV and Annette Bubak from Green Alliance of Nevada address attendees at GreenFest 2017 from center stage in the Pavilion at Downtown Summerlin.

Two of the larger gatherings were GreenFest 2017 at Downtown Summerlin in Las Vegas on April 22nd and Reno Earth Day 2017 at Idlewild Park on April 23rd.

The entrance to the Pavilion at Downtown Summerlin featured two Chevrolet Volts and a Nissan LEAF on either side of a solar-powered generator that provided power to the GreenFest 2017 event.

The entrance to the Pavilion at Downtown Summerlin featured two Chevrolet Volts and a Nissan LEAF on either side of a solar-powered generator that provided power to the GreenFest 2017 event.

The Nevada Electric Vehicle Accelerator (NEVA) program worked with organizers during GreenFest 2017 to stage an alternative-fuel vehicle car show as part of a Clean Energy Drive exhibit from 9 AM to 5 PM on Saturday, April 22nd:

http://www.greenfestlv.com

Gaudin Porsche provided two Cayenne S E-hybrids, each a plug-in hybrid SUV.

Gaudin Porsche provided two Cayenne S E-hybrids, each a plug-in hybrid SUV.

Plug-in electric cars were provided by local automotive dealerships, including Gaudin Porsche who supplied two Cayenne S E-hybrid (plug-in hybrid SUVs), Findlay Chevrolet who provided a 2017 Chevrolet Volt LT and Premier models, and United Nissan who provided a Nissan LEAF.

2017 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrids included LT and Premier models.

2017 Chevrolet Volt plug-in hybrids included LT and Premier models.

United Nissan provided a LEAF electric car to display at GreenFest 2017.

United Nissan provided a LEAF electric car to display at GreenFest 2017.

Lexus of Las Vegas showcased three luxury hybrids, including the new Lexus LC 500h sports coupe.

Other clean energy cars at GreenFest 2017 included a 2016 Chevrolet Impala converted by Southwest Gas to run on methane natural gas. Lexus of Las Vegas also provided three luxury hybrid vehicles.

Other clean energy cars at GreenFest 2017 included a 2016 Chevrolet Impala converted by Southwest Gas to run on methane natural gas. Lexus of Las Vegas also provided three luxury hybrid vehicles.

Southwest Gas displayed a 2016 Chevrolet Impala that had been converted to run on compressed natural gas or CNG.

Verdek, LLC also exhibited a ChargePoint charging system for electric cars during Greenfest 2017.

NEVA also helped organize a Drive Clean Energy Las Vegas procession just before GreenFest 2017 that started in the parking lot of Las Vegas Cyclery and followed Town Center Drive north to the GreenFest 2017 event in Downtown Summerlin.

Vehicles participating in the alternative-fuel caravan included three Tesla Model S, one Tesla Model X, two BMW i3, one BMW i8, one Nissan LEAF, two Mitsubishi i-MiEVs, a Chevrolet Volt, Cadillac ELR, a Zero SR electric motorcycle, GEM electric NEV, and three propane-powered Toyota Prius hybrids provided by the Yellow Cab, Checker, and Star taxi companies.

GreenFest 2017 was staged at Downtown Summerlin by the Green Alliance of Nevada in conjunction with a Wellness Weekend event hosted by Howard Hughes Corp. The event was co-located with the Tour de Summerlin annual bicycle race and a Wellness Festival. Attendance for GreenFest 2017 was estimated at 20,000 people.

Reno Earth Day 2017 was staged at Idlewild Park on Sunday, April 23rd from 11 AM to 6 PM:

http://www.renoearthday.org/

Sponsors for the festival included the City of Reno, Truckee Meadows Water Authority, and Mercury Momentum.

Plug-in electric vehicles were exhibited by the Electric Auto Association of Northern Nevada.

NEVA blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach Coordinator

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14

Apr

Volkswagen Electrify America Program Releases Public Plan

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

On April 9, 2017, Volkswagen Group released a public version of the first cycle of its 10-year Electrify America program, as part of a $1.2 billion settlement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Department of Justice, and the U.S. Federal Trade Commission for violation of the US Clean Air Act after a “defeat device” scandal that involved 500,000 Volkswagen Group diesel vehicles sold into the US between 2009 – 2015.

These vehicles employed the company’s “turbo direct injection” TDI diesel engines, that exceeded emissions standards required by the U.S. Clean Air Act, under real-world driving conditions. Deceptive software tuning of emission controls was employed when the vehicle was undergoing smog testing in a stationary position. However, once the vehicle began moving, the engine was retuned for performance on the fly. Resulting real-world driving emissions, particularly Nitrogen Oxide (NOx), significantly exceeded standard emissions required by the US Clean Air Act, in some cases more than 30 times higher.

Volkswagen of America claimed in its advertising documents at the time that it did not need additional devices on its TDI vehicles to suppress NOx and other harmful emissions, as its catalytic converter and filtration system were of superior design to its competitors, who were employing more expensive liquid additives (e.g. BMW AdBlue systems), in addition to their catalytic converter systems, to meet both US and European emission standards.

The Volkswagen Group advertising claims were proven to be false by a University of West Virginia research study, that uncovered the “defeat device” being used to fool the federal smog testing system nationwide. The U.S. FTC, Department of Justice, and EPA sued Volkswagen Group through separate billion-dollar lawsuits, to recover damages to U.S. consumers and residents because of both fraud and environmental impact.

A PDF copy of the National ZEV Investment Plan can be found at the U.S. EPA Enforcement webpage:

https://www.epa.gov/enforcement/epa-approved-national-zev-investment-plan-public-version

A downloadable copy of the PDF file is available through this link:

https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2017-04/documents/nationalzevinvestmentplan.pdf

The 10-year plan will be implemented in four 30-month cycles over ten years, with each cycle funded at $300 million, for a total of $1.2 billion. Implementation of the first cycle is scheduled between Q1 2017 to Q2 2019.

It will target high-density metropolitan population areas with SAE AC Level 2 electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) and DC Fast Charge station installations.

240 DC Fast Charge station sites will also be installed by the end of Cycle 1 on national highway corridors across the country, including interstate and regional highways passing through Nevada.

The Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy has submitted proposals to the U.S. EPA that comply with the National ZEV Investment Plan, in order to use the Electrify America program funding to build out its Nevada Electric Highway program by 2020, along highway corridors throughout the state.

The National ZEV Investment program also sets aside funding for educational outreach efforts about the benefits of zero-emission vehicles, targeted at consumers and fleet managers.

Update 2018: During April 2018, the Electrify America program announced partnerships with GreenLots, Walmart, Target and other corporations to roll out phase one of its national network of DC Fast Charge Systems.

The initial network will include 2,000 DC Fast Chargers at 484 charging station location sites by the end of 2019.

Each charging station site will offer from four to ten DC Fast Chargers with the SAE Combined Charging System (CCS1) connectors, that can accommodate vehicle battery packs equipped with a charging capacity of 50kW, 150kW, or 350kW. These charging station sites will be located in 17 metro areas, as well as along highways in 39 states.

Each charging station site will also offer SAE J1772 level 2 chargers for older EVs not equipped with the CCS connector standard.

A website for the Electrify America program has been updated with a map of the proposed network, including the first stations that have become available on the east and west coasts:
https://www.electrifyamerica.com/locations

NEVA Blog posted by Stan Hanel, Outreach
Coordinator

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10

Apr

Electric Car Roadtrip Through Rural Nevada

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 0

Sao Ly Benson and Kayden Phan both own white Tesla Model S electric cars. They are also members of the Las Vegas Tesla Owners group, who meet once a month for lunch at the Lazy Dog Restaurant in the Town Square shopping center near the Las Vegas Strip.

The two women planned a 1000-mile electric road trip through rural Nevada and California with their companions, by using Tesla Supercharger stations in Beatty, Tonopah, Mammoth Lake, and Lone Pine. The four travelers and one dog camped in the back of their two Tesla Model S over four nights, at locations that ranged in temperature from 27 degrees F to 90 degrees F.

Here is a four-minute video travelog compiled by Sao Ly Benson, that she posted and shared on Vimeo, Youtube and Facebook: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OY_etUhFIuk

“March 31 – April 3, 2017. 4 people, 1 dog, and two Tesla Model S electric vehicles embark on a 1000 mile journey through Nevada and California. We slept under the stars in the back of our Teslas every night and camped in a different spot every night. We met a lot of other amazing Tesla owners at superchargers along the way and will never forget this incredible journey.”

Twin Tesla Roadtrip Nevada-California from Saoly Benson on Vimeo.

“So easy and affordable, especially not having to pay for gas!” (Kayden Phan).

July 11, 2017 interview by KLAS-TV in Las Vegas with Sao Ly Benson and Kayden Phan:

http://www.lasvegasnow.com/news/nevada-installs-electric-car-charging-stations-around-the-state/763311065

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09

Mar

Southern Nevada Strong Coalition Showcases Electric Vehicles

Author: stanhanel
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Marie Steele, Manager of EVs and Renewable Energy at NV Energy, Leads Tour of Electric Vehicles at Southern Nevada Strong event

Marie Steele, Manager of EVs and Renewable Energy at NV Energy, Leads Tour of Electric Vehicles at Southern Nevada Strong event

On March 8th, the Southern Nevada Strong coalition hosted an educational discussion about electric vehicles. The event was organized by Marie Steele, Manager of Electric Vehicles and Renewable Energy at NV Energy, with support from the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy and the Southern Nevada Regional Transportation Commission.

Electric School Bus Showcased by Adomani

Electric School Bus Showcased by Adomani

Electric School Bus Specifications by Adomani

Electric School Bus Specifications by Adomani

NAVYA autonomous electric shuttle bus exhibited by Keolis

NAVYA autonomous electric shuttle bus exhibited by Keolis

The location of the EV presentation was at the Mobility Training Center of the RTC in Las Vegas and featured electric buses from Proterra, NAVYA, GreenPower Bus, and Adomani, as well as electric cars from Nissan, Tesla, and BMW.

Nissan Regional EV Sales Manager Valerie Kornahrens and Roland Lewis, Fleet Sales Manager from United Nissan explain features of Nissan LEAF.

Nissan Regional EV Sales Manager Valerie Kornahrens and Roland Lewis, Fleet Sales Manager from United Nissan explain features of Nissan LEAF.

Ahern Energy provided portable solar-powered trailers that supported a ChargePoint AC Level 2 charging station to replenish the battery packs of the vehicles on display while parked.

Ahern Energy portable solar-powered trailer can recharge electric cars and also feature programmable advertising on a digital billboard display.

Ahern Energy portable solar-powered trailer can recharge electric cars and also feature programmable advertising on a digital billboard display.

NV Energy electrified fleet service truck

NV Energy electrified fleet service truck

NV Energy also showcased some of its electric-powered fleet vehicles, including a tool truck and a service rig with an electric cherry-picker lift basket.

Discussion Panel and Speakers

Introductory speakers included Tina Quigley, General Manager of the Southern Nevada Regional Transportation Commission, Joe Reynolds, Chairman of the Public Utilities Commission of Nevada, and Pat Egan, Senior Vice President of Renewable Energy and Smart Infrastructure at NV Energy.

Reynolds emphasized efforts by Governor Brian Sandoval’s administration to make the state friendly to electric vehicles at all levels of government as part of his vision for a New Nevada economy. PUC Commissioner Paul Thomsen is leading an investigatory effort to solicit suggestions for regulation reform from the Nevada EV community that will encourage ownership and transportation of these vehicles within the state.

Pat Egan, Senior VP of Renewable Energy and Smart Infrastrucuture at NV Energy introduces EV discussion panel at Southern Nevada Strong event.

Pat Egan, Senior VP of Renewable Energy and Smart Infrastrucuture at NV Energy introduces EV discussion panel at Southern Nevada Strong event.

Egan, a former member of the Oregon Transportation Commission, saw the benefits of promoting electric vehicles in that state, in order to make it a leader in EV technology adoption. These included reduced pollutant emissions, improved health environment, cheaper quality transportation, support for vehicle electrification, and development of strategic charging station infrastructure.

Egan noted NV Energy efforts to increase EVSE infrastructure through a Shared Investment Program begun in 2012 that helped build out partnerships with host sites to stage ChargePoint EVSE around urban areas of Las Vegas and Reno. Since 2013, the connected ChargePoint systems have recorded 95,000 charging sessions statewide that have reduced Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Nevada by 300 tons over three years.

Three discussion panel sessions during the morning event informed the attending audience about the latest statewide developments concerning electric vehicles and EV supply equipment infrastructure, as well as opportunities for fleet electrification.

Marie Steele, Manager of Electric Vehicles and Renewable Energy at NV Energy moderated discussion panels

Marie Steele, Manager of Electric Vehicles and Renewable Energy at NV Energy moderated discussion panels

EV Marketplace and the Nevada Economy

The first discussion panel, that focused on the EV marketplace and Nevada economy, was moderated by Marie Steele of NV Energy and featured Daniel Witt, Senior Manager of Business Development and Policy at Tesla, Inc. and Alejandro Zamorano, Clean Energy and Advanced Transportation Analyst at Bloomberg.

Steele noted that there were 2,896 registered plug-in electric vehicles through the Nevada Department of Motor Vehicles as of December 2016, that included 1,548 battery-powered EVs and 1,348 plug-in hybrid EVs. Total EV penetration was about 0.47 percent, compared to over 3 percent registration of plug-in electric vehicles within California.

However about 40 percent of the 43 million visitors to southern Nevada each year drive their vehicles from California, according to Tina Quigley of the Southern Nevada Regional Transportation Commission.

Nevada road and highway usage by these vehicles is not yet being compensated in the same manner as gasoline pump taxes are levied, to provide funds for roadway maintenance. As more EVs become available on Nevada roads and highways, some means will eventually need to be developed for EV drivers to pay their fair share.

Zamorano from Bloomberg highlighted his company’s financial analysis of the EV market globally, showing that global sales popped during the fourth quarter of 2016, with over 200,000 vehicles sold worldwide, a 55 percent increase over Q4 in 2015.

Bloomberg is projecting that one million plug-in electric vehicles will be sold worldwide during 2017, with a majority of sales in the Asia Pacific region and the two Americas. China is projected to have the largest growth in EV sales during 2017, while US growth will be steady but not as steep.

Factors that affect buyers to purchase EVs include fuel efficiency, technology, and mobility. Bloomberg predicts more US fleet sales of electric vehicles by 2025 with a total EV penetration of 5 to 8 percent. Zamorano felt that from 2022 to 2028 there would be an inflection point, where fleet operation costs of electric vehicles would be the same or cheaper than operational costs for vehicles with internal combustion engines.

This would be accomplished through reduction of lithium-ion battery pack costs for EVs due to economies of scale and improved battery cell chemistry that should drive costs below $90 per kilowatt-hour for EV battery packs.

For consumers, EVs compete well in the mid-price range, as well as for SUVs and premium cars, but do not yet compete well in the sub-compact car marketplace.

Tesla Model X is recharged from ChargePoint CT4000 mounted on an Ahern Energy solar-powered trailer.

Tesla Model X is recharged from ChargePoint CT4000 mounted on an Ahern Energy solar-powered trailer.

Daniel Witt from Tesla, Inc. emphasized that the Gigafactory in Storey County, Nevada is on the leading edge of battery development to help drive down lithium-ion battery pack prices. Tesla is now a Nevada company, employing over 1000 people within its Gigafactory, with another 2000 construction employees working to complete full build-out of the facility.

Tesla Model S featured at Southern Nevada Strong EV showcase.

Tesla Model S featured at Southern Nevada Strong EV showcase.

The Gigafactory is the key driver component for Tesla to be able to scale production of its Model 3, Model S and Model X electric cars at its Fremont factory in California from 80,000 vehicles a year to 500,000 vehicles a year by 2020.

Witt felt that since battery pack prices were dropping to allow more EVs to travel 200 – 300 miles range between charging cycles, the rest of the world has been starting to catch on to the innovative advantages of electric vehicle technologies. New electric car buyers worldwide are not just early adopters anymore, but also include mainstream automotive consumers from Middle East oil-production states like the United Arab Emirates. China and Europe have also been growing their EV markets, along with new investments in recharging station infrastructure.

Nevada Goals, Policies and Resources

Marie Steele moderates discussion panel with Joe Perreira, Staff Engineer at Nevada Division of Environmental Protection and Angela Dykema, Director of the Nevada Governor's Office of Energy.

Marie Steele moderates discussion panel with Joe Perreira, Staff Engineer at Nevada Division of Environmental Protection and Angela Dykema, Director of the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy.

The second panel discussion of the morning, entitled “State Goals, Policies and Resources”, also moderated by Marie Steele of NV Energy, featured Angela Dykema, Director of the Nevada Governor’s Office of Energy and Joe Perreira, Staff Engineer at the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection.

Steele emphasized that the NV Energy utility generation, transmission and distribution infrastructure in southern Nevada was designed to accommodate the hottest days of summer, when demand for HVAC cooling systems is at a peak in every building across the region.

Much of that electricity generation and transmission infrastructure capacity goes unused during the rest of the year and during the nighttime hours. The adoption of electric vehicles would allow for more efficient usage of those resources during off-peak hours, when EVs are normally recharging at night.

Steele emphasized that 80 percent of southern Nevada drivers commute less than 30 miles per day.
Workplace charging infrastructure and fleet electrification are big growth opportunities for the southern Nevada economy.

The NV Energy fleet is moving in that direction, with 100 electrified fleet vehicles currently in operation statewide. NV Energy can be a resource for other fleet managers in the state who would like to compare costs and benefits of fleet electrification.

Angela Dykema from the Governor’s Office of Energy highlighted Governor Sandoval’s published Strategy Planning Framework Goals. One of the goals is to “become the nation’s leading producer and consumer of clean and renewable energy”.

Nevada Electric Highway Phase II.

Nevada Electric Highway Phase II.

To help accomplish this goal, the Governor’s Office of Energy is promoting and funding a Nevada Electric Highway system that has been planned for completion by 2020.

Map of Nevada Electric Highway Phase II "Gateway East"

Map of Nevada Electric Highway Phase II “Gateway East”

DC Fast Charge stations installed at strategically-located sites along Nevada highways every 100 miles would enable electric vehicle owners to travel across the state, as well as to neighboring states of California, Oregon, Idaho, Utah and Arizona.

Seventeen state governors are leading this effort to build out a network of EV recharging stations nationwide.

The first leg of the Nevada Electric Highway system between Las Vegas and Reno on US Highway 95 should be completed by the end of summer this year, enabling DC Fast Charge station recharging points at Beatty, Tonopah, Hawthorne and Fallon, in order to connect the two largest urban areas of the state.

Phase II of the program will build out additional recharging station sites that will connect to surrounding states along highways I-80, US-50, US-95 and I-15. Governors in Utah and Colorado have agreed to align with Nevada to develop “Gateway East” corridors with strategically-located recharging station infrastructure.

Some of the funding for these recharging stations may come from Volkswagen, who is settling lawsuits brought by the US Federal Trade Commission, Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Justice, regarding misrepresentation of its diesel vehicle emissions for nitrogen oxide, or NOx, from 2009 – 2015.

Joe Perreira from the Nevada Division of Environmental Protection talked about federal money available from a Volkswagen Mitigation Trust fund, that was available to fleet owners who would like to trade up their older diesel engines and vehicles for newer, more modern engines or vehicles with cleaner emissions systems.

Under the federal Diesel Emission Reduction Act (DERA), the state normally receives about $120,000 per year for this program. During 2017, there is still $90,000 worth of funds available that fleet managers can apply for.

Once the US court system has appointed a federal trustee to manage the VW Mitigation Trust fund during the next few months, additional money from this program can become available to fleet managers. Perreira estimated that these funds could be as high as $25 million allocated to Nevada over the next ten years.

However, if fleet managers would like to upgrade to electrified vehicles in place of existing diesel vehicles, there is a second Zero Emission Vehicle Investment Fund from Volkswagen, that is promoting an “Electrify America” program.

ZEV funds are available for fleet managers to increase fleet electrification, as well as for states to build EV charging station infrastructure across the country, in the areas of workplace charging, long-distance corridor development, and educational outreach.

During the 2017 Nevada legislative session in Carson City, the NDEP has formed a Nevada Advisory Committee on Control of Emissions for Motor Vehicles. The committee consists of interested stakeholders, who are working to develop beneficiary certification plans that would be eligible for funding from the Volkswagen Mitigation Trust fund and the “Electrify America” program.

One plan by the Governor’s Office of Energy is to increase educational outreach, fleet electrification and EV infrastructure around large travel centers like McCarran Airport, that processes millions of visitors each year through its airline terminal gates. The electrification of rental car fleets at McCarran Airport could be accompanied by educational advertising campaigns and EV recharging station infrastructure in the airport parking lots.

Examples of electric buses and trucks were showcased in the parking lot of the RTC Mobility Training Center during the event.

A GreenPower Bus was exhibited by Adomani.

A GreenPower Bus was exhibited by Adomani.

Dykema emphasized that the Governor’s Office of Energy is continuing to look for grant funding for these programs through the US Dept. of Energy and US Dept. of Transportation. She encouraged fleet managers to coordinate with the GOE on any fleet electrification projects they might be considering.

Green Fleet Solutions for Nevada

The third panel discussion of the morning, “Take Charge: Green Fleet Solutions for Nevada”, was moderated by Jennifer Taylor, Director of the Clean Energy Project, with panelists David Perterson, Director of Fleet Solutions at ChargePoint, Tom Polikalis, Nevada Director for the South West Energy Efficiency Program (SWEEP), and Roland Cordero, Fleet Manager for Foothill Transit,a public bus transit system for 14 million riders each year that covers 22 cities in the San Diego Valley of California and parts of Los Angeles.

Taylor began the discussion by stating that Clark County, Nevada is ranked 15th among all counties in the US for Nitrogen Oxide (NOx) emissions that create smog. NOx emissions can be deadly because they create particles that can be absorbed inside people’s lungs and are mostly produced locally from high-temperature diesel engine emissions and coal-burning power plants. Closing the local Reid Gardner coal power generation plant by 2019 will help clean up some of the air but using alternative-fuel vehicles and electricity to fuel local delivery trucks and cars can do even more.

Tom Polikalis of SWEEP cited three policy measures that could assist in enabling more electric vehicles in southern Nevada: encourage EV-ready building codes, electric vehicle fleet purchases and group discount purchase plans for consumers.

Proterra FC model electric bus can accommodate fast charge connections at each passenger loading station.

Proterra FC model electric bus can accommodate fast charge connections at each passenger loading station.

Roland Cordero noted that Foothill Transit has grown its electric bus system from one pilot electric bus project during 2010 to expand to 30 buses in its fleet by the end of 2017. Motivation for the program came from the California Air Resources Board (CARB) that mandated Zero Emission Vehicles be implemented in public transit programs.

Los Angeles has the worst air quality in the nation and there was ample motivation to try to meet ZEV guidelines in this region to improve general health for all the population, including the 14 million riders on the Foothill Transit system every year.

Electricity is currently the only fuel that complies to CARB standards for zero emission vehicles.

Cordero began evaluating a Proterra electric bus in his pilot program and found that the Pomona boarding station was a good midpoint for a recharging site that could refuel an electric bus.

After successful testing, Cordero added 14 more Proterra buses to his transit system, some that included high-speed interlock charging that could replenish the capacity of the bus battery pack to 70 percent state-of-charge in just one hour.

According to Cordero, the electric buses have been reliable and also save his program about 25 percent in maintenance costs or about $160,000 per year because of fewer material supplies needed.

After putting 27,000 miles per month and over a million miles on his electric bus fleet by 2017, Cordero was convinced of the viability of switching his entire public transit fleet to electric buses by 2030.

ChargePoint Express Plus DC Fast Charge System will employ up to eight 50-kW modules to provide as much as 400 kw of charging speed.

ChargePoint Express Plus DC Fast Charge System will employ up to eight 50-kW modules to provide as much as 400 kw of charging speed.

David Peterson from ChargePoint mapped out some strategies for electrification that fleet managers might take to develop a five-year implementation plan:

1. Know Your Fleet: In order to evaluate energy savings and opportunities for recharging electric fleet vehicles, managers should study average fleet miles per day, individual routes, length of time that vehicle is parked, analyze each vehicle’s telematics information. By evaluating how long a vehicle is parked, the amount of power required can be minimized locally.

2. Know Your Electric Power Infrastructure: Evaluate electrical panel and transformer infrastructure in fleet coverage region, and consider utility Time-Of-Use rate programs to purchase electricity at the cheapest cost.

3. Implement: Develop a five-year implementation plan for investment in electric vehicles and electric vehicle supply equipment. Is funding available to implement changes all at once or should fleet electrification be phased in gradually by leveraging as much existing electric power infrastructure as possible?

Peterson cited a case study example of a fleet manager who wanted to phase in 70 electric cars over five years, but only had budget for eight vehicles during the first year. When looking at his power panel resources, he had enough remaining unused circuitry for 160 Amps for electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE).

Normally, a standard SAE J1772 AC Level 2 recharging station from ChargePoint, that can deliver 30 Amps of electrical current, requires a 40-amp circuit breaker. This would allow an existing panel, with 160 Amperes of current available, to normally just host four AC Level 2 ChargePoint stations for eight vehicles. However, because ChargePoint dual-port stations have a power-sharing capability, four Chargepoint stations with two plugs each could accommodate all eight vehicles on just 160 Amps of power.

By planning early and working with the EVSE vendor, cost-effective electric vehicle infrastructure can be implemented over time to achieve planning goals. Peterson emphasized that fleet managers should leverage existing power and route efficiencies before spending budget money.

Peterson also emphasized that EVSE systems should be scalable over time, especially as new EVs with bigger battery packs will require quicker charging systems.

The Southern Nevada Strong event was also profiled in the Las Vegas Sun and Las Vegas Review-Journal:

https://lasvegassun.com/news/2017/mar/09/summit-promotes-more-electric-vehicles-on-nevadas/

http://www.reviewjournal.com/traffic/nevada-officials-planning-charging-stations-electric-vehicles

Blog posted by Stan Hanel, NEVA Outreach Coordinator

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10

Feb

Nevada DOT Considers Land Ferry with EV Charging Onboard

Author: stanhanel
Comments: 3

(Graphic rendering courtesy of UNLV Transportation Research Center)

Steve Merrill at the Nevada Department of Transportation has been promoting the concept of a Land Ferry system that would use existing railroad tracks with special high-speed rail platforms to transport freight and multiple vehicles across wide expanses of Nevada’s rural countryside, at a cheaper price and in a quicker time than if someone drove the route themselves.

A video presentation, including contributions from NEVA participants, has been circulated by NDOT over the last two years to promote the project:

Because the land ferry is powered by electric propulsion, some of the electricity provided could be routed to onboard electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) that could top off the battery pack of an electric delivery truck or personal electric car while the vehicle was being transported. After the land ferry arrived at a customer destination port, the fully-charged EV could be driven off the transportation platform and continue onto its destination.

The land ferry concept has received statewide support from the Nevada Governor’s Office of Economic Development, as well as from researchers at the Transportation Research Center at the University of Nevada Las Vegas, led by Director Alexander Paz, Ph.D., P.E.

https://faculty.unlv.edu/tnmc/LandFerry/files/js/research/Proposals.php

After two years of Phase I study, where researchers studied the practical technologies needed to make this system work, supporters are now petitioning managers at NDOT to fund a Phase II study that will review the potential business model of the project to ensure that the Land Ferry costs of operation would be sustainable over time.

Local Nevada efforts are also being joined by RAIL Solution, an Oregon non-profit organization, that is proposing a Steel Interstate Coalition project along the railroad tracks near interstate highway I-80 that would extend the Land Ferry project from California through northern Nevada to Salt Lake City in Utah. The organization hopes to leverage participation from all three states to share costs and possibly access more federal grant funding for regional transportation development. The RAIL Solution website can be found at:

http://railsolution.org/

Blog posted by Stan Hanel, NEVA Outreach Coordinator

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