China’s electric car market given a jump-start by government and looks set to boost lithium industry

The market for electric cars in China is huge already and it’s growing at almost an exponential rate annually. 

Commentators in the country include electric cars in the category called “new energy vehicles”, which also refers to hybrid energy vehicles, and are saying the market will be further accelerated as a result of government backing.

Edward Tse, CEO of Gao Feng management consultancy, says: “With the issuance in April 2017 of the Automotive Industry Mid to Long Term Development Plan, the Ministry for Industry and Information Technology provides guiding principles for the development of China’s auto industry for the next decade.  Continue reading China’s electric car market given a jump-start by government and looks set to boost lithium industry

ABB claims world record in energy efficiency for its synchronous motor

 

abb AMS 1400 Motor

ABB says it has set a new world record in energy efficiency with its synchronous motor – and says the technology could save companies half a million dollars over 20 years.

The company says it achieved “almost 100 per cent energy efficiency” with the motor.

Tests carried out on a 44 megawatt 6-pole synchronous ABB motor shortly before delivery showed an efficiency 0.25 percent greater than the 98.8 percent stipulated in the contract, resulting in the world record for electric motor efficiency.  Continue reading ABB claims world record in energy efficiency for its synchronous motor

HMS Industrial launches new smart grid connectivity gateway

hms_ixxat-sg-gateways

New IXXAT SG-gateways from HMS Industrial Networks enable data exchange between infrastructure and energy networks based on IEC61850 or IEC60870-5-104, and common fieldbus and industrial Ethernet systems, says the company.

While industrial communication between devices and systems is typically done with fieldbus and industrial Ethernet, modern infrastructure and energy networks are based upon other protocol standards such as IEC61850 and IEC60870-5-104.

The new IXXAT SG-gateways from HMS address the increasing need for data exchange between these two worlds, offering a wide protocol coverage and easy integration.  Continue reading HMS Industrial launches new smart grid connectivity gateway

Cheap batteries will accelerate sales of electric cars worldwide, says report

electric car illustration
Picture courtesy of Alternative Energy News

The growth in popularity of electric vehicles in China alone, even if it’s a trend not followed anywhere else in the world, is enough to drive the automotive market to make fundamental changes to the way it manufactures cars as well as the raw materials and fuels it uses. 

The China Association of Automobile Manufacturers says sales of new energy vehicles – which includes hydrogen – reached 507,000 units in 2016, representing an increase of 53 per cent compared with 2015.

In the previous year, the increase was similar. The steep upward trend seems to have taken off in 2014, according to analysis by BloombergContinue reading Cheap batteries will accelerate sales of electric cars worldwide, says report

US manufacturing sector is seeing ‘record investment’, says Pence

pence tendon manufacturing 1
US Vice President Mike Pence on a visit to Tendon Manufacturing

The manufacturing sector is experiencing a dramatic turnaround in business, according to figures released by the White House. 

President Donald Trump has consistently said he wants the manufacturing sector to grow and has personally intervened to persuade many large manufacturing companies to consider relocating or expanding their operations in the US.

However, the vast majority of manufacturing companies in the US are small businesses, of less than 100 people.  Continue reading US manufacturing sector is seeing ‘record investment’, says Pence

Solar power revolution ‘unavoidable’ in Asia, says industry expert

REC solar panel manufacturing plant in Singapore
A robot operates at a production line during a tour of an REC solar panel manufacturing plant in Singapore. Reuters / Edgar Su

By Henning Gloystein and Vera Eckert, Reuters

Investors are increasingly excited about the prospects for much faster growth in the solar power industry in Southeast Asia, which has until now been a backwater for renewable energy.

They say that the region is in a perfect position to benefit from rapidly declining prices in solar panels. It has strong economic growth, relatively high costs of electricity and a shortage from traditional sources, undeveloped infrastructure in more remote areas, plenty of sunshine, and backing for more renewable energy from many of Southeast Asia’s governments.

“Dramatically falling costs for solar energy technologies means businesses and governments are choosing renewable energy not for environmental reasons but for economic ones,” said Roberto De Vido, spokesman for Singapore-based Equis, one of Asia’s biggest green energy-focused investment firms with $2.7 billion in committed capital. “It simply makes good business sense. And that’s a trend that’s not going to change.”  Continue reading Solar power revolution ‘unavoidable’ in Asia, says industry expert

Recharging the energy industry: Managing demand and constraint

city at night overview

Partners in industrial automation, Martyn Williams, managing director of industrial software expert, Copa-Data UK and Mark Hardy, CEO of Capula, reveal how new technologies, such as smart grids, big data and business intelligence enable a more efficient use of resources in the industry

Humans have always searched for ways to harness energy, whether it be to complete laborious tasks or just improve their livelihood.

Propelled by the discoveries and inventions of the industrial revolution, this thirst for innovation has led to humanity’s quest for more powerful, smarter and more efficient energy sources.

Recent years have seen a new wave of technology and opportunities hit the energy sector, several of which have been presented by the onset of big data and Internet of Things (IoT) technology.

Ensuring that supply meets the customers’ demand is a key responsibility of the energy industry, however, these smart technologies are changing the way the grid generates, manages, distributes and stores energy.  Continue reading Recharging the energy industry: Managing demand and constraint

SPX Flow claims technical breakthrough which saves 30 per cent energy

spx flow

SPX Flow claims it has made a technological breakthrough with its new refrigerated air dryer which will enable electricity savings of 30 per cent for robotics and automation applications 

SPX Flow has launched a new refrigerated compressed air dryer which it claims can save up to 30 per cent on energy costs. 

The Flex Series lowers air system power costs and improves productivity by matching power consumption to compressed air demand. In a typical manufacturing facility utilizing automation and robotics, up to 30 per cent of electricity can be consumed for generating and treating compressed air.

To reduce total cost of operation and qualify for utility company incentive programs, proper air treatment equipment selection and application is required, says the company.

SPX says this is a breakthrough in compressed air drying technology.  Continue reading SPX Flow claims technical breakthrough which saves 30 per cent energy

Woodside Energy to train Nasa’s Robonaut to work in oil and gas industry

nasa robonaut

Woodside Energy and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration have launched a new collaboration program under which the Australian independent oil and gas company will develop applications for Nasa’s Robonaut in its own operations. 

Under the partnership Nasa will loan Woodside an Anthropomorphic Robonaut System for a 60-month deployment in Perth. Together the two organisations will explore how the robotic technology could be used to improve safety, reliability and efficiency in the high-risk and remote environments where Woodside operates.

Woodside will contribute its advanced cognitive science technology, being developed in its Western Australian operations, and Nasa will share its expertise in Robonauts that are already being used for simple, repetitive, or especially dangerous tasks in places such as the International Space Station.  Continue reading Woodside Energy to train Nasa’s Robonaut to work in oil and gas industry

Industrial internet: The latest trends and challenges in systems integration

Systems integration

Nick Boughton, sales manager of Boulting Technology, discusses the challenges connectivity poses for industry, particularly with regard to systems integration and the water industry

Our world is getting smaller every day.

Never before have remote locations been more accessible thanks to communications technology, smartphones and the internet.

Connected devices have infiltrated every aspect of our lives, including the most traditional industry sectors.

One question industry has been unsuccessful in answering refers to the number of connected devices that exist in the world at the moment. Gartner says that by 2020, the Internet of Things will have grown to more than 26 billion units.  Continue reading Industrial internet: The latest trends and challenges in systems integration

Energy efficiency: The industrial sector can do much more, say experts

A coal power plant in Datteln, Germany
A coal power plant in Datteln, Germany. Picture courtesy of Arnold Paul

In this article by Hannover Messe, experts say the industrial sector has more potential to save on energy costs

Six out of ten companies are satisfied with the results of their most recent energy efficiency measures according to the energy efficiency index EEI’s winter evaluation.

The Institute for Energy Efficiency in Production at the University of Stuttgart surveys the German industry’s ongoing and planned activities regarding energy efficiency every six months.

“The latest information campaign from the German Ministry of Economics, is correct and will remain enormously important,” says the director of EEP Professor Alexander Sauer. “Ignorance continues to be a major obstacle.”   Continue reading Energy efficiency: The industrial sector can do much more, say experts

Infineon joins electric charging association to support global standards

charin ev

Chipmaker Infineon Technologies has joined an organisation which is developing a global network of charging stations for electric vehicles.

Infineon says an appropriate charging infrastructure is “critical” to support the rapidly growing electric vehicles market worldwide.

Infineon often boasts that it is the world’s leading semiconductor supplier for driver assistance systems and electric mobility.

The company currently claims its technology is the “key” to securing the future of all life on Earth.
Continue reading Infineon joins electric charging association to support global standards

Electric power: Clean energy infrastructure driving switch from AC to DC

nikola tesla
Nikoa Tesla, pictured in his Colorado Springs lab in 1899. Picture courtesy of Smithsonian.com

Nikola Tesla was a famous scientist who developed alternating current, the means of distribution for electricity for the vast majority of devices, appliances and machines in households and factories and just about every other electrified thing in the world today. 

But even as Tesla was inventing much of the technology used in the alternating current electricity supply system, another famous inventor, Thomas Edison argued that direct current was the best way to distribute electricity.

By the time Tesla tech came onstream, DC had already been in use for a decade, but within a relatively small area, and Edison lost that argument mostly because the components of an alternating current grid enabled electricity to be carried far and wide beyond the power generating facility.  Continue reading Electric power: Clean energy infrastructure driving switch from AC to DC

Igus launches ‘extremely compact rotation module’ for tight spaces

igus compact rotational module

System guides energy, data and media safely, without interruption for rotational movements up to 360 degrees, says company

Motion plastics specialist igus has developed an extremely compact rotation module, which revolves around its own axis, even in confined spaces.

As with all rotary energy chain systems from igus, the module can be used to guide different types of media – power, signals, data, fibre-optic, pneumatic or fluids – in parallel without interruption.

Inside the module, cables and hoses are routed together without interruption, thus eliminating the need for expensive and complex rotary unions.  Continue reading Igus launches ‘extremely compact rotation module’ for tight spaces

Energy expert Idec joins Copa-Data partner community

wind turbines

Idec Technical Services, a specialist in the design and installation of high voltage protection and control systems integration, has joined the Copa-Data Partner Community, a worldwide network of certified specialists in Copa-Data’s software, zenon.

As a new member of the Copa-Data Partner Community, Idec will have access to a range of knowledge exchange initiatives provided by Copa-Data with the aim of improving the ergonomics and productivity of partners’ automation projects.  Continue reading Energy expert Idec joins Copa-Data partner community