UQM Fuel Cell comperssor

Shareholders Cry Foul as UQM Agrees to Buyout

UQM Technologies (UQM:  NYSE) has agreed to be acquired by Danfoss Power Solutions for $1.71 per share in cash, providing a deal value near $100 million.  UQM leadership expects timely review by government authorities and has recommended approval of the deal by shareholders.  A date has not been set for the required shareholder vote.  Assuming all goes according to schedule, a deal closing is possible sometime in the second quarter 2019. Electric propulsion and generation technologies are at the core of UQM’s solutions for manufacturing, transportation and power industries.  The substitution of electric motors for combustion engines has been driving demand for the UQM’s products.  Market opportunities have abounded...
EVs

Surprisingly Affordable Electric Vehicles

When will electric vehicles cost the same or less than gas cars? If you are buying a used vehicle, the answer is “Today.” If you are considering buying a used car, cost is clearly important to you.  That’s why you should seriously consider a used electric vehicle (EVs). Lists of cars that lose their value fastest (a good thing if you are a used car buyer) are full of electric vehicles and luxury vehicles.  The first generation of electric vehicles including GM's (GM) Chevy Volt and the Nissan (NSANY) Leaf regularly appear on lists of cars that depreciate quickly. Less...

Less Well Known Autonomous Car Stocks

Car manufacturers have fully embraced self-driving or autonomous cars.  It is not because they have heard a loud clamor for such technology from consumers.  No, automakers are keen on the idea because manufacture of self-driving cars could help them overcome the short comings of highly cyclical sales pattern associated with its car dependent upon a single driver.  In other words, they are in it for themselves whether consumers benefit or not. If consumers are not so important, at least investors should benefit. Besides the car manufacturers there are a few smaller companies that can give investors a taste of the self-driving car phenomenon. LiDar and...

Manufacturers Going All Out for Self-driving Car Tech

There is a clutch of self-driving cars and cars with autonomous driving features on the market today.  Drivers just cannot seem to get enough of them.  Apparently, the idea of zooming down the highway with little to no responsibility holds considerable appeal.  Then again, maybe it is the novelty of the idea that will eventually give way to the next fad. In August 2018, Cox Automotive revealed the results of a survey that found fewer Americans are embracing self-driving technology than previously thought.  A surprising 49% of respondents said they would NEVER own a fully-autonomous car.  This is up from 30% naysayers two years ago. Views...
Westport HDPI

Westport Fuels Natural Gas Conversion

Earlier this week Westport Fuel (WPRT:  Nasdaq) reported financial results for the quarter ending September 2018.  Based on British Columbia, Westport is a developer and manufacturer of clean fuel systems for both fossil and renewable fuel sources.  It has taken some years, but Westport management has worked hard and overcome a number of obstacles to bring a mix of engines and systems capable of handling various fuels such as natural gas, hydrogen and liquid petroleum gas. Revenue jumped to $65.5 million in the September 2018, quarter delivering $4.3 million in cash earnings.  The company’s relationship with truck engine manufacturer Cummins (CMI: NYSE) is proving to be...
Envision Solar Tree

Envision’s Off Grid Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

In a recent discussion about the extent to which Demand Charges are an impediment to development of DC fast chargers EV Fast Charging Disincentives, the solutions explored included primarily a) regulatory reform of the rate design & b) technology solutions involving battery based peak shaving. A 3rd solution could be added, for strategies involving charging with behind-the-meter renewable generation.   Solar carports can offer such a solution, with various configurations involving batteries sized to support L2 chargers.   Most of the PV carports are grid-connected but can be islanded.  I recently discovered a system that is completely off-grid.  So far most of the carports...
BMW i3 uses batteries with silicon in the anode

The Race For Silicon Anodes

Graphite is the most widely used material for battery anodes.  The anode is the positively charged electron collector in a battery.  It collects and accelerates the electronics emitted by the battery’s cathode.  Graphite gets the anode job because it is has excellent electric conductivity and resists heat and corrosion.  Plus it is light weight, soft and malleable. As satisfied as manufacturers might be with graphite anodes, none would balk at an alternative material that boosts battery performance or reduces cost.  Scientists believe battery capacity can be increased as much as ten times by using silicon for anodes.  It requires six atoms of carbon to bind one...
Charging EVs and PHEV

List of Electric Vehicle and Plug-In Hybrid Electric Vehicle Stocks

Electric Vehicle (EV) and Plug-in Electric Vehicle (PHEV) stocks are publicly traded companies which produce EVs or PHEVs, their components, or charging infrastructure. AeroVironment, Inc. (AVAV) Blink Charging Co. (BLNK) BYD Company, Ltd. (BYDDY) Enova Systems, Inc. (ENVS) EEStor Corporation (ZNNMF) Envision Solar International (EVSI) GreenPower Motor Co. (GPV.V) Kandi Technologies Corp. (KNDI) Leo Motors (LEOM) Nio Inc. (NIO) Tesla Motors, Inc. (TSLA) UQM Technologies (UQM) Valeo SA (FR.PA, VLEEF, VLEEY) VMoto Limited (VMT.AX) Workhorse Group Inc. (WKHS) ZAP (ZAAP) If you know of any EV or PHEV stock that is not listed here, but which should be, please let us know in the comments. Also for stocks in the list that you think should be...
demand charge impacts on DC Fast Charger costs

EV Fast Charging Disincentives

by Daryl Roberts DC Fast Chargers (DCFCs) and Tesla superchargers are a key element in electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure that could facilitate wider adoption of EVs by enabling recharging that comes to resemble the time currently taken for gas station stops, and thereby reducing “range anxiety” for drivers. However, the pricing structure for electrical costs incurred at commercial DC fast chargers is currently prohibitive, because it includes a special fee called a “demand charge”. Rate design in a number of states includes this additional charge, based on the “peak rate” on electric power consumed in kW. In New York,...
CAFE LCFS CAA RFS braid

Low Carbon Fuel Rules: From CAFE to LCFS and Everything In Between

The Whole Darn Low Carbon Landscape. How they Work, How they Work Together, and How they Might Work Better by Joanne Ivancic, executive director, Advanced Biofuels USA The Trump Administration is taking a new look at Obama Administration era Co2 regulations.  On the transportation side, these include reviewing Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards; threatening to take away California’s authority to set their own mileage and pollution controls, including CO2 (carbon dioxide) emission reduction standards; and quarreling with the petroleum and biofuels industries over implementation and enforcement of the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). Thus, the Clean Air Act (CAA), California’s unique authority...
BWEN logo

Rapidly Growing Alternative Energy Companies

The last post highlighted several companies in the alternative energy, conservation and environment technology fields that have delivered exceptional price performance over the last year.  Prospects for growth in sales or earnings appeared to be key drivers of the price movement.  It makes sense to seek indicators of growth as cues for those companies that may become tomorrow’s price movers. Crystal Equity Research’s novel alternative energy indices were a good place to go on a ‘quest for growth.’ Beach Boys Index  -  Biodiesel The two analysts who publish estimates for Renewable Energy Group (REGI:  Nasdaq)apparently expect a surge in growth in the current year followed by a leveling...
CNG Fueling NGV

List of Natural Gas Vehicle Stocks

Natural gas vehicle (NGV) stocks are publicly traded companies whose business involves the use of natural gas (compressed natural gas (CNG) or liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a transportation fuel.  See also the lists of efficient vehicle stocks, alternative transportation stocks, electric vehicle stocks, hydrogen stocks, fuel cell stocks, biofuel stocks, biodiesel stocks, and ethanol stocks for other companies reducing the use of petroleum in transportation. Cheniere Energy, Inc (LNG) Clean Energy Fuels (CLNE) Landi Renzo S.p.A. (LR.MI, LDRZF) Power Solutions International (PSIX) Westport Innovations Inc. (WPRT). If you know of any natural gas vehicle stock that is not listed here and should be, please...
efficient vehicles, electric vehicles

List of Efficient Vehicle Stocks

Efficient vehicle stocks are publicly traded companies that produce technologies allow cars, trucks, aircraft and ships to travel the same distance and carry the same loads using less fuel.  Includes electric and hybrid electric vehicles, as well as other improvements that reduce fuel use.  Similar to Alternative Transportation stocks, which reduce overall fuel use by shifting passengers or freight to more efficient types of vehicles. AeroVironment, Inc. (AVAV) BorgWarner (BWA) Blink Charging Co. (BLNK) BYD Company, Ltd. (BYDDY) CDTI Advanced Materials, Inc. (CDTI) CPS Technologies Corp. (CPSH) Enova Systems, Inc. (ENVS) EEStor Corporation (ZNNMF) Elio Motors, Inc. (ELIO) Evolve Funds Automobile Innovation Index ETF (CARS.TO) Envision Solar International (EVSI) Gentherm, Inc....

Westport’s New High Pressure Direct Injection System

Earlier this week Westport Fuel Systems (WPRT:  Nasdaq) announced a technology breakthrough with its high pressure direct injection system for truck engines using natural gas as a fuel.  A new cryogenic pump has been development for high-horsepower applications and integrated into Westport’s fuel system, which has apparently been demonstrated at higher cylinder pressures.  The company apparently plans to load the innovation, which it called Westport HPDI 2.0, into next generation diesel engines. Investors interested in renewable energy or focused environmental improvements are probably wondering why this little company outside Vancouver, Canada could be important.  The uncomfortable truth is that the world’s addiction to fossil fuel will not...

New Biodiesel Vehicles and Emissions Reduction Estimates

The makers of the world’s favorite advanced biofuel — a/k/a the biodiesel industry — descended upon Texas to mingle, make and renew ties at the 2018 National Biodiesel Conference. And, to champion new ideas and find new supply chain and distribution partners. Bummer that there wasn’t a biodiesel tax credit extension on offer. (UPDATE: The new budget includes the biodiesel tax credit.) Bummer that diesel’s getting a bad rap in the press. Bummer that Tom Petty isn’t with us any more to sing: “I’ll Stand My Ground, I Won’t Back Down, I know what’s right, got just one life in a world’s that keeps on...

Shipping Panic Creates Preferred Arbitrage Opportunity

Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Seaspan Worldwide has several classes of publicly traded securities, with different claims on its income streams. The company owns container ships leased under long term contracts to shipping companies.  The shipping industry is in a massive downturn, raising concerns about its customers' ability to pay. The company's preferred shares have sold off more than half as far as its common stock- far more than justified by its relatively low risk. There exists a 5.5% yield opportunity to buy the preferred and hedge the risk by buying puts on the...