Ener1 Nanotech Unit Prepares to Commercialize Revolutionary Battery Electrodes

ENER1 INC (ENEI) has established and equipped a pilot nanotechnology-based manufacturing facility to fabricate electrodes for high discharge rate, lithium-ion batteries. The company's battery subsidiary, EnerDel, Inc., in which Delphi Corporation holds a 19.5% interest, is in discussions with automotive OEMs regarding evaluation of samples for use in hybrid electric vehicles where the high discharge rate characteristic is viewed as key to performance and cost. EnerDel also plans to explore applications of this technology in other markets.

10 Clean Energy Stocks for 2021: Diversification

by Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Rounding out the discussion of the stocks in my 10 Clean Energy Stocks for 2021 list are the two that don’t fit either of the themes I highlighted for 2021: Picks and Shovels or a Possible Yieldco Boom.  Both help with diversification, both in terms of their industry and geography. MiX Telematics (MIXT) was retained from the Ten Clean Energy Stocks for 2020 list because I expect its prospects to improve rapidly as the world comes out of covid lockdowns.  The global vehicle telematics provider has a large number of its customers among mass transit, logistics,...

Battery-powered Locomotives – Compellingly Green Economics

John Petersen For the last two years I've been paying increasingly close attention to trailblazing work by Norfolk Southern (NSC) in the field of battery-powered locomotives. My interest was piqued in June of 2010 when Norfolk Southern hired Axion Power International (AXPW.OB) to develop a battery management system that would allow rail locomotives to run on battery power and recharge their batteries through regenerative braking. I believed the decision was positive news for Axion because nobody hires a battery manufacturer to design a BMS for somebody else's product. My enthusiasm was tempered, however, by knowing that an earlier...

Toyota’s Asset Backed Green Bond: This Is Big

Sean Kidney Toyota Motor Corp. (NYSE:TM) will close mid-next week on what will be the world’s first green bond backed by auto loans – electric vehicle and hybrid car loans to be specific. And what a kickstart for that market, at $1.75 billion. According to a report in International Financing Review (IFR), the bond will be in multiple tranches, each at a different ratings level: A2 tranche, A3 and A4 (Moody’s ratings). First thing to know: they told the media a week ago it would be a US$774.675 million bond. Rumour has it that initial investor interest...

Ovonic Hydrogen Hybrid Vehicle Begins Fleet Testing at South Coast AQMD

Energy Conversion Devices Inc (ENER) has now started fleet testing at the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD) in Diamond Bar, California. A project of Ovonic Hydrogen Systems LLC, a subsidiary of ECD Ovonics, the advanced vehicle is a high-profile test bed designed to prove that hydrogen hybrids can be practical in daily life. The high-tech vehicle also serves to showcase Ovonic® solid metal hydrogen storage technology. Based on a production gasoline-electric hybrid model, it is part of a five year, $7 million multi-vehicle hydrogen hybrid demonstration at AQMD.

Maxwell Beats Earnings, But Scares Investors with Guidance

Tom Konrad CFA The 2013 Lamborghini Aventador will incorporate Maxwell ultracapcitors. (Photo credit: Autoviva.com via Flickr  ) The headline was good: Maxwell Technologies, Inc. (NASD:MXWL) beat analysts’ third quarter (Q3 2012) earnings estimates by 10 cents on improved cost control and revenues in-line with analyst expectations (up 7%).  The good news stopped there, however, and investors are in a panic this morning (the stock is down $1.48 to $6.13 as I write) about some worrying comments made in the earnings call (transcript here.) Worries About the Chinese Hybrid Bus Market Revenue growth has...

SatCon’s Hybrid Electric Vehicle and Pulse Power Technology is Awarded ARL Contract

SatCon Technology Corporation (SATC) announced that it has been awarded a contract with the U. S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) to assist in the development of power conversion electronics and controls in two key technology areas. These are power control and conversion systems for hybrid electric vehicles and pulse energy applications such as active armor. The contract has a current value of $2.8 million through 2007.

Report: Electric Cars Cost Less (But watch the assumptions)

Tom Konrad CFA Pike Research just released a report on the Total Cost of Ownership of Alternative  Fuel Vehicles for Fleet Operators.  The report compares the purchase price plus lifetime fuel cost of mid-sized cars available in the US. Although the authors hesitate to declare any alternative fuel the cheapest option, the chart below clearly shows that the “BEV-100″ (Battery-Electric with 100-mile range, a.k.a. the Nissan Leaf) to be the least expensive option even at high electricity prices ($0.14/kwh) and low gas prices ($3/gallon.)  However, the Leaf only has a clear lead when the $7500 tax...

Zoltek: High in Fiber, Low in Valuation

by Debra Fiakas CFA   The Stohr DSR has an all carbon fiber body (Photo credit: Rhots/Wikimedia Commons)   Zoltek Companies (ZOLT:  Nasdaq) is in the business of fibers, mostly carbon fibers.  Plain, simple fibers may not seem very impressive.  However, Zoltek’s carbon fibers are in wide demand for renewable energy applications such as wind turbines blades and deep sea oil and gas wells.  After two years swimming in red ink, Zoltek has managed to bring sales back up to 2008 levels.  The company earned $22.9 million in...

Two High-Speed Rail Stocks For The Stimulus Packages

A couple of weeks ago, we received an inquiry from a reader asking us to look into potential beneficiaries of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA)'s high-speed rail (HSR) provisions. This sounded like something our readers would want to read about so I decided to do it. In a nutshell, here are the two main component's of ARRA's HSR approach: $8 billion for for HSR corridors and other intercity passenger rail service (unclear at this point how much will go into each, although the companies discussed below can benefit from both) The rules around state issuance...

Hyundai gearing up to launch hybrid cars

While Korea is on red-alert to rising oil prices, Hyundai Motor Co., the nation's largest carmaker, is stepping up efforts to develop fuel-efficient cars that run on a combination of gasoline and electricity. Company officials said the introduction of hybrid cars should come around 2007 or possibly earlier.

Hydrogen Fuel Is Not Dead

John Lounsbury With the furor over the potential for hybrid, plug-in hybrid and all-electric cars recently, one might think the hydrogen car was dead. Nothing could be further from the truth. Feasibility at an affordable price appears to be established and market availability of hydrogen powered cars may come sooner than you think. Many issues remain to be addressed and this article will try to cover them. The problems to be overcome are not insurmountable, but are also not trivial. These problems include the economics of hydrogen production, transportation, distribution and...

Ten Alternative Energy Speculations for 2008: LEDs and Ultracaps

Investing in Renewable Energy Stocks seldom fails to be exciting, although it can lead to crushing losses as well as mouthwatering gains (Think Ethanol stocks and Thin Film Solar in 2007.)  With this in mind, I usually emphasize that the majority of most investors portfolios should be targeted towards larger, profitable companies, especially those focused on Energy Efficiency rather than the more sexy Renewable Energy technologies.  This is the philosophy behind Alternative Energy Stocks' Blue Chip Portfolio: companies which aren't sexy, but which still are well positioned to take advantage of rising oil prices and increasing efforts to reduce...

Clean Energy Stocks Shopping List: Transport

Stocks may be expensive now, but they won't be forever.  Five Peak Oil plays to buy when they're cheap again: Two busses, two rails, and an ETF. Tom Konrad, Ph.D., CFA Two weeks ago, I told you why I feel that the market is more likely to head down than up from here (it's been flat since then.)  I've been selling covered calls on my holdings, several of which have been called away.  I plan to sit on the cash until the market has fallen at least 10%, after which I may start selling cash covered puts, but I...

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...

Supercycle Or Not, Expensive Oil Is Unavoidable

Charles Morand In an upcoming article in the journal Resources Policy, David Humphreys, former Chief Economist at Rio Tinto and Norilsk Nickel, argues that skeptics are right to question the notion that mineral prices in the 2003 to 2008 period were rapidly uptrending as part of an emerging multi-decade supercycle. He argues that the rise in demand underpinning steep mineral price increases had two distinct causes: (1) an "extended economic upswing" driven by an ample supply of cheap credit (we know now where that got us); and (2) a "deeper-rooted structural shift in the economy" resulting from...
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