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drbubb

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  1. I did, thank you No time to contact Sir Clive before my move to Hk, unfortunately. I hope to rejoin mensa here, so maybe i will have more luck while in HK
  2. drbubb

    Gold: the Bull's thread

    Great chart, Fr. Seems to coincide with Crawford's end-August low Remember the Canadian promoters will start getting busy in about 8 dasy time
  3. drbubb

    Oil Shale

    The US may have to chase these unconventional sources, while China and India bid up the price of Crude Oil in the world markets This will be especially likely if the Dollar collapses
  4. drbubb

    Late August Watch-list

    USing some NEW MA's on a weekly chart : (18,70,185 wks): These charts look good: v.ABS : t.GGG : v.GTQ : t.NSU : v.SYR : v.VAN ...now it's time to look at fundamentals... (note: I have recently bought: v.MUM, v.UPC, v.VAN - since this thread was started )
  5. Ecopolis (city) // From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia An Ecopolis is a large city that follows ecological principles. The word ecopolis is a portmanteau created from ecology (interactions between living organisms and the environment) and polis (a city state). It was used in a 1991 article by architect Paul F. Downton, who later founded the company Ecopolis Architects. The term was used more recently in a 2006 article by New Scientist. An ecopolis can feed and power itself with minimal reliance on the surrounding countryside, and creates the smallest possible eco-footprint for its residents. This results in a city that is friendly to the surrounding environment, in terms of pollution, land use, and alleviation of global warming. It is estimated that by 2007, over half of the world’s population will live in urban areas and this provides both challenges and opportunities for environmentally-conscious developers. Ecological cities can be achieved though various means, such as: Small scale, private agriculture and agricultural plots in the city’s suburbs to reduce the distance food has to travel from field to fork. Renewable energy sources, such as wind turbines, solar cells, or bio-gas created from sewage. Cities provide economies of scale that make such energy sources viable. Various methods to reduce the need for air conditioning (a massive energy demand), such as low lying buildings that allow air to circulate, an increase in water features, and green spaces equaling at least 20% of the city's surface. This counters the environmental heating caused by factors such as an abundance of tarmac and asphalt, which can heat city areas by up to 6 degrees Celsius during the evening. Improved public transport and an increase in pedestrianisation to reduce car emissions. This requires a radically different approach to city planning, with integrated business, industrial, and residential zones. Roads may be designed to make driving difficult. Optimal building density to make public transport viable but avoid the creation of urban heat islands. Few real life examples of ecopoleis exist. On a small scale, green buildings such as the Melbourne city council building in Australia produce much of their own energy supplies. Many shanty towns in the underdeveloped world already practice the principles of an ecopolis: efficient power use, recycling, private agriculture, and pedestrianisation. The planned development of Sociópolis in Valencia, Spain will provide low-rise affordable housing integrated into traditional agricultural zones and irrigation systems. Perhaps the most ambitious project is a planned extension in the Chongming district of Shanghai, referred to as Dongtan. Dongtan is being designed with the specific aim of minimizing the eco-footprint of its residents, and includes plans to become self-sufficient in energy and water production. @: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecopolis_(city)
  6. drbubb

    Oil Shale

    If it works, great. But I prefer the Canadian Oil Sands Don Coxe thinks this will be THE STORY of the year... Canadian Oil sands have great long term potential, but there may be a sudden bidding war if the SEC allows Major Oil companies to value Oil Sands reserves in a preferred way. Shell Canada vs. Imperial Oil ... Ratio: about 3x SHC.t = IMO.t ... update : t.SHC : t.IMO Oil sands are one of the few cheap long-lifed reserves left How much oil is in Alberta's oil sands deposits? Alberta's three oil sand deposits ?Athabasca, Cold Lake, and Peace River ?contain resources that could supply Canada's energy needs for more than 475 years, or total world needs for up to 15 years. The production potential of all the oil sand deposits could be as high as 2.5 trillion barrels of bitumen (five times more than the conventional oil reserves in Saudi Arabia). The Athabasca deposit is twice the size of Lake Ontario. - - Tar sands are impregnated sands that yield mixtures of liquid hydrocarbon and require further processing other than mechanical blending before becoming finished petroleum products. Until recently Alberta's bitumen deposits were known as tar sands but are now called oil sands. ... By 2005, oil sands production is expected to represent 50% of Canada's total crude oil output and 10% of North American production. Although tar sands occur in more than 70 countries, the two largest are Canada and Venezuela, with the bulk being found in four different regions of Alberta, Canada: areas of Athabasca, Wabasha, Cold Lake and Peace River. The sum of these covers an area of nearly 77,000 km2. In fact, the reserve that is deemed to be technologically retrievable today is estimated at 280-300Gb (billion barrels). This is larger than the Saudi Arabia oil reserves, which are estimated at 240Gb. The total reserves for Alberta, including oil not recoverable using current technology, are estimated at 1,700- 2,500Gb. @: http://ffden-2.phys.uaf.edu/102spring2002_...jects/M.Sexton/ = = = COMPANIES: + Teck Cominco ventures into Alberta oil sands. Deal with Petro-Canada and UTS Energy worth $850 million + partly Petro-Canada-owned Syncrude bitumen mining, extraction and upgrading operation in the Canadian oil sands + Canadian Oil Sands Trust is an open-ended investment trust that generates income from its 35.49% working interest in the Syncrude Joint Venture. + The two largest oil sands mining operations are Syncrude Canada Limited and Suncor Energy. Albian_Sands is another smaller project owned by Shell Oil. t.COS.UN Canadian Oil Sands Trust : 739732 t.SU- Suncor Energy : 103545 t.TECKMVA Tech Cominco: 46912 t.UTS UTS Energy : 115747 t.BMD Birch Mountain Resources [TSXv:BMD; AMEX:BMD] : Weekly : D-12mos t.WTO Western Oil Sands (WTO) : 419564 The Syncrude Project ....is a Joint Venture undertaking among Canadian Oil Sands Limited Partnership, Canadian Oil Sands Limited, Conoco Phillips Oilsands Partnership II, Imperial Oil Resources, Mocal Energy Limited, Murphy Oil Company Ltd., Nexen Oil Sands Partnership, and Petro-Canada Oil and Gas, as the project owners, and Syncrude as the project operator. Syncrude's Mildred Lake facility is located 40 kilometres north of Fort McMurray. Imperial Oil Resources, t.IMO Imperial Energy : 103409 MUR Murphy Oil Company Ltd.: 3249 t.NXY Nexen / Nexen Oil Sands : 373438 Mocal Energy Limited, = = = t.SHC Shell Canada : 46856 t.CNQ Canadian Natural Resources [TSX:CNQ; NYSE:CNQ] : 205500 t.ECA EnCana Corp. [TSX:ECA; NYSE:ECA] : 1104214 BIG SPENDERS: Shell Canada [TSX:SHC] announced it expects to pay upwards of C$17 billion over the next five years in capital spending, primarily to support major expansions at its Athabasca oil sands project. Canadian Natural Resources [TSX:CNQ; NYSE:CNQ] said it plans to spend a further C$20 billion to double the size of its Horizon project already under construction. And EnCana Corp. [TSX:ECA; NYSE:ECA] announced it intends to spend C$5 billion within the next decade to increase its oil sands production
  7. drbubb

    Oil Shale

    " if it only costs $25 a barrel to produce..." Where does the $25 come from? Another way to look at it, After the capital costs of development have been spent, it may take 1/2 or 3/4 of a barrel of oil to heat up the shale oil to get 1 barrel of crude. The point is, the higher the oil price, the more it will cost to heat the raw mineral to extract shale oil
  8. A better balance will come eventually- bringing prices back down And new solar cell technologies using less or no silicon are being developed TOUR TO CHINA ==== PV Business Tour China 2006 Date: 26 November - 1 December 2006 Summary: The purpose of this second international trade mission to China is to give private-sector delegates the chance to assess and explore business opportunities and to promote their company and products in China. Participants will be able to establish relationships and facilitate closer commercial ties in the booming Chinese solar industry. More specific objectives of the Trade Mission include: To enhance knowledge of Chinese market conditions and business opportunities To enable business delegates to become familiar with production opportunities and to make individual contacts To develop and expand relationships between the participating companies and the business, government and multiplier organisations in China @: http://www.solarplaza.com/content/pagina/T...CFTpREAodNRkAHw
  9. drbubb

    Oil Shale

    LIKE the man says: What is oil shale? "At first glance, oil shale looks like an ordinary black rock. It feels grainy to the touch and... greasy. You see, what’s inside oil shale has huge governments, Big Oil, venture capitalists, and even everyday investors scrambling to stake a claim. Oil shale — when heated — oozes bubbling crude." - - BUT, it takes alot of energy, and the bubbling ooze leaves a pollution problem
  10. drbubb

    The Oil and Energy Price Thread

    Chart test: http://quotes.ino.com/chart/intraday.gif?s...amp;a=2&v=w Intraday-Brent
  11. drbubb

    Late August Watch-list

    I am not familiar with HER.L - will have a look. And will be reviewing the charts on these also: v.LRR Linear Gold: update : D-6mos : at $4.00 or less v.SYR Sidney Resources : update : D-6mos : at $0.30 or less .. v.UPC Uranium Power : update : D-6mos : at $0.62 or less .. v.VAN Vangold Expl. update : D-6mos : at $0.62 or less .. v.YZC- Yukon Zinc.. update : D-6mos : at $0.62 or less
  12. Welcome, Renewable I think you will fgind that the Gold & Miningh section here may grow rather quickly in the weeks to come
  13. CGT is finding more of an audience for its news... 0.94 Change:+0.03 / Volume: 70,000 If we get more good news, and a decent rally in Gold in September, I can certainly see Columbus up testing the high at $1.25 within a few weeks
  14. drbubb

    Late August Watch-list

    Hectorp, (from Advfn, right?) Why not register, and add a few stocks to the list?
  15. drbubb

    Interview with Chris Cook

    GOOD FIND... Cook's involvement in the Iranian Oil Bourse project stemmed from work he did in the late nineties on manipulation of the oil market by the intermediaries. As a result of the realisation of how the intermediaries were making the market more volatile than it needed to be, making money at both the producer and consumers expense, Cook wrote to the governor of the central bank of Iran proposing the creation of a Middle Eastern Exchange with its own benchmark price. The Iranians liked the idea, the Saudis however couldn't support it due to US connections. After 9/11 the Saudi's withdrew their objections and in May 2004 Cook was invited to Iran's central bank to give a presentation setting out how an oil exchange might operate
  16. SOME OPINIONS on Brokers, as reported on RUG One man's opinion: Worst brokers for issuing bought deal/overpromoted crap: BMO Nesbitt RBC Dominion Canaccord Williams de broe Paterson ord Minnett Bolder Capital Worst brokers for sheer promotion and bad analysis: Canaccord ABN Amro Research Capital Paterson Ord Minnett Best brokers for analysis and research Southern Cross Equities Euroz Hartley Poynton Seymour Pierce Hargrave hale (excluding Petra!) Haywood jennings Mirabaud Best brokers for market access and stock picking of early stage situations Canaccord (specific guys) Haywood Mirabaud Southern Cross Hartley Poynton Intersuisse Jennings Dundee PI Securities @: http://www.advfn.com/cmn/fbb/thread.php3?i...&from=18820
  17. "We continue to see clear evidence of base-building in the junior mining sector which bodes well for a new bull phase late in Q3/06. This said, volumes still remain light and an improvement is required to confirm this potential." We have been suggesting that the sharp Q2 sell-off in the junior mining sector had reached a level where base-building was commonplace. In other words, the selling pressure has abated and selective buying now has to begin to consider chasing the offers in order to build a position. Volumes on the TSX Venture have based in the 85-100 million share per day range. Our gold in situ weekly value is basing. Individual charts, more and more, are demonstrating this action and appear poised for a late Q3/06 attempt at a rally into a new bull phase for the sector. Last week we demonstrated this action with the charts of Atna Resources, Corriente Resources, Nevsun Resources, and Western Keltic Mines. This week we will add a few more charts for visual confirmation of this emerging pattern. We include the following below: Committee Bay Resources, Grayd Resources, Linear Gold, Orezone Inc., Sunridge Gold, and Wolfden Resources. Some worth a closer look, basis charts or comments: Committee Bay (v.CBR) : comment, chart at c$0.50 ... update Grayd Resources (v.GYD) : chart, at c$0.50-0.60? ... update Linear Gold (t.LRR) : chart, at c$4.60? ... update Orezone Resources (t.OZN) : chart at c$1.40 ... update Wolfden Resources (t.WLF) : chart, at c$2.50 ... update American Bonanza Gold Corp. BZA : TSX 85.8 Copperstone gold project, Arizona ... update New Phase 1 drill program commenced with 35 holes on 10 targets for 45,000 feet drilling. Gold Canyon Res. GCU : TSX-V 35.3 Cordero gallium project, Humboldt Cty, NV ... update 25,000 feet RC drilling commenced on to expand resources at Cordero, largest known primary gallium resource in North America. Sutter Gold Mining Inc. v.SGM : TSX-V 52.0 Sutter Gold Project, Sutter Creek, Cal. ... update /1907058 Phase 2 surface diamond drill program commencing for approx. 9,000 feet. SOME COMPARISONS== Sh o/s Price C$ Mkt. Cap Sum Oz Mkt Cap/oz Mkt Cap/oz Company Sym M 10-Aug-06 $M Project Name Country per co. M/oz C$ M/oz US$ American Bonanza BZA : T 85.80 0.42 36.04 Copperstone US 2.074 17.37 14.77 (+Fenelon Canada, +Gold Bar US, +Northway Canada, +Taurus Canada) Aquiline Resources Inc. AQI:T 42.25 4.55 192.24 Calcatreu Argentina 5.499 34.96 29.71 (+Navidad Argentina) Committee Bay Resources CBR:V 54.87 0.58 31.82 Three Bluffs Canada 1.302 24.45 20.78 (+RJV Australia) Kimber Resources KBR:T 47.10 2.49 117.28 Carmen Mexico 1.659 70.70 60.09 (+Carotare Mexico) Nevsun Resources NSU:T 102.60 3.50 359.10 Bisha Eritrea 5.287 67.92 57.73 (+Tabakoto Mali, +Segala Mali) Wolfden Resources WLF:T 74.60 2.73 203.66 High Lake Canada 2.086 97.63 82.99 (+East Bay Canada, +Ulu Canada, +Izok Lake Canada, +Lupin Canada) Committee Bay (v.CBR) Last week CBR announced the results from the first six drill holes at the West Plains area. Hole 6WP06 intersected 13.14 g/t Au over 8.0 metres and was drilled parallel to and below Hole 5WP04 that was drilled in 2005 and had intersected 36.8 metres grading 6.04 g/t Au including 8.73 metres grading 14.76 g/t Au. Hole 6WP10 was collared at 50 metres northeast of Hole 6WP06 and intersected 8.44 g/t Au over 7.0 metres, including 2.0 metres grading 19.65 g/t Au. These intersections have extended the high-grade mineralized zone to over 200 metres in strike length and to 80 metres vertical depth, with the latest drilling having high grade intersections flanked by lower grade zones within a mixed assemblage of mafic and ultramafic volcanics, and sedimentary rocks, with interbedded silicate iron formation. The gold mineralization is associated with the strongly sheared and sulphidized iron formation rich sediments adjacent to the mafic volcanic layer. Drilling is continuing at West Plains on the sub-parallel structures defined by the Mag-EM surveys that have defined the structures for over five kilometres. The addition of a second drill is currently being considered for the remainder of the field season. CBR’s other main focus is in Western Australia on the Redemption Joint Venture (RJV) which is a 50/50 partnership with Focus Minerals Ltd. (FML : ASX), and has the mineral rights to more than 210 kilometres of greenstone tenements, located just west of the Kalgoorlie gold belt, one of the world’s most significant gold mining regions. The tenements contain Indicated resources of 315,720 ounces gold (5.32 million tonnes at 1.8g/t Au) and Inferred resources of 1,080,825 ounces gold (13.7 million tonnes at 2.5g/t Au). The RJV also has a 100% interest in the fully permitted, 1.2mtpa, Three Mile Hill Mill processing plant. A scoping study has been initiated to determine the viability of reactivating the Three Mile Hill Mill in the near term. Committee Bay Resources currently has 69.2 million shares issued and outstanding (86.7 million shares fully diluted) with a market capitalization of $40.1 million. On July 31, 2006 CBR completed a brokered private placement for C$8.0 million in which Canaccord Adams acted as an agent. Working capital is $7.8 million. Canaccord Adams has the shares of the company rated a SPECULATIVE BUY with a $1.20/share target price. To derive target we employ our in situ valuation method which is applied to both the assets in Australia and in Nunavut.
  18. Welcome aboard!! How did you find GEI? Just curious. Maybe we should do more of whatever it was that led you here
  19. SOLAR COMMENTS - thnx to Hornet Renewables Fund ===== Nearly all the leading solar companies in the US, China and Germany have by now all posted their quarterly numbers. The major points to takeaway from these numbers are: 1. Demand is robust worldwide but supply growth is only limited by polysilicon availability; 2. Those companies that do not have contracts in place for polysilicon are paying up to $2.80 a watt for wafers up from $0.60 a watt 16 months ago; 3. Those who have access to silicon have huge market power and those who don’t have, are and will remain under pressure; 4. Any technology that does not use silicon (e.g. thinfilm) or reduces the amount used (e..g String Ribbon from Evergreen Solar) will continue to gain momentum; 5. We expect announcements from several semiconductor companies in the coming months with regards their plans to enter the solar space; 6. We believe that a version of Moore’s Law will apply to the PV market as technology and production improvements drive solar energy towards cost parity with fossil fuels; 7. We anticipate that the industry will begin to consolidate over the next 18 months; 8. We see the solar market being broken into the haves and have nots and thus best of the best stock selection will become increasingly important for optimal portfolio performance. These points are already starting to influence the share price performance and results of listed companies. As an example, both Sunways and SAG produced very weak results for H1 whilst Solarworld and QCells published strong results. In terms of share performance both SAG and Sunways are down over 30% during the last three months whilst QCells is up 20% and Solarworld down a mere 3%. And why the difference? Both Solarworld and QCells have access to supplies whilst SAG and Sunways need to purchase their supplies on the spot market.
  20. I suppose this is the "correction into August", that we have been talking about for Gold, showing up in other commodities too (like Oil)
  21. drbubb

    Gold: the Bull's thread

    AUGUST LOW NEAR? This chart of GLD, the GOLD etf ... update ...suggests that the August low I have been looking for may be near. If Gold can hold near $600 or above until month-end, the Low may be in. I will be putting together my own "watch List" for Junior miners. Suggestions are welcome
  22. Thursday, August 03, 2006 Are Lithium-Ion Electric Cars Safe? The use of a type of battery with a history of overheating raises safety concerns. By Kevin Bullis Laptops equipped with lithium-ion batteries occasionally overheat and catch fire. This has some people concerned about the use of this type of battery in new electric sports cars and kits for converting conventional cars and hybrid vehicles into all-electric cars. It's an exciting time for electric vehicles -- with regular announcements of increasing storage capacities for battery materials (see "Battery Breakthrough") and exotic, high-priced vehicles slated to come onto the market, such as the recently announced sports car from Tesla Motors of San Carlos, CA. But electric vehicles have failed in the past. If they're going to succeed this time around, they'll need to win over the general consumer, and that will mean, among other things, demonstrating that the powerful battery packs are safe. Lithium-ion batteries have long been favored for powering laptops and cell phones because they're small and light. But packing so much energy into a small space is also dangerous. The batteries have been known to burst into flames, sometime violently; and because both the fuel and the oxidizer are bundled into the battery, they can't be smothered like common fires, says Dan Doughty, who manages lithium-ion battery testing at Sandia National Laboratories in Albuquerque, NM. The key safety challenges are preventing overcharging, overheating, and damage in an accident. In each case, chemical reactions can get out of control, causing "thermal runaway," which can generate temperatures hot enough to melt aluminum and cause batteries to explode, he says. According to the U.S. Consumer Products Safety Commission, from 2003 to 2005 more than 300 incidents occurred involving lithium-ion laptop and cell-phone batteries overheating or catching fire. Many of the incidents involved personal injury. This potential problem with lithium-ion batteries is multiplied by the thousands in vehicles. In the case of Tesla Motors' car, for example, almost 7,000 batteries are packed behind the passenger compartment to power the car (to an impressive 60 mph in about four seconds). But the company has done a lot to keep its battery-powered system safe -- much more than is done in laptops, says CEO Martin Eberhard. ...MORE: http://www.technologyreview.com/read_artic...&ch=biztech
  23. Science 17 February 2006: Vol. 311. no. 5763, pp. 977 - 980 DOI: 10.1126/science.1122152 Reports Electrodes with High Power and High Capacity for Rechargeable Lithium Batteries Kisuk Kang,1 Ying Shirley Meng,1 Julien Bréger,2 Clare P. Grey,2 Gerbrand Ceder1* New applications such as hybrid electric vehicles and power backup require rechargeable batteries that combine high energy density with high charge and discharge rate capability. Using ab initio computational modeling, we identified useful strategies to design higher rate battery electrodes and tested them on lithium nickel manganese oxide [Li(Ni0.5Mn0.5)O2], a safe, inexpensive material that has been thought to have poor intrinsic rate capability. By modifying its crystal structure, we obtained unexpectedly high rate-capability, considerably better than lithium cobalt oxide (LiCoO2), the current battery electrode material of choice. 1 Center for Materials Science and Engineering and Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 77 Massachusetts Avenue, Cambridge, MA 02139, USA. 2 Department of Chemistry, State University of New York, Stony Brook, NY 11794–3400, USA. @: http://www.sciencemag.org/cgi/content/abst...ourcetype=HWCIT * To whom correspondence should be addressed. E-mail: gceder@mit.edu = = = = = Li-Ion Batteries can Blow-up, catch Fire ==== + Li-Ion and Polymer batteries & packs may explode and cause fire if misused or defective. We require all Li-ion batteries & packs buyers to be professionals and to be capable of handling emergencies. + You must follow our instructions, which are listed on batterypace.com product page, exactly in orfrt to control charging and discharging current. + When charging a Li-Ion Battery Pack, please put battery in a fire-proof container. Please do not leave battery pack and charger on a wood material or carpet + Must keep Li-Ion & Polymer battery packs away from children. ...MORE: http://www.batteryspace.com/index.asp?Page...mp;Category=894 - - Dell recalls more than 4 million laptop batteries By Antone Gonsalves Dell Inc. on Monday recalled 4.1 million Sony-manufactured laptop batteries, saying they could overheat and pose a fire risk. The Dell-branded lithium-ion batteries were provided as service replacements by the Round Rock, Texas, computer maker, or included with laptops from April 1, 2004 through July 18, 2006. The notebooks sold for between $500 and $2,850, and individual batteries ranged from $60 to $180. . . In June, a Dell laptop burst into flames during a conference in Japan. Pictures of the charred computer were posted on the tech site The Inquirer. No one was hurt, and the computer maker said at the time that it was investigating. @: http://www.powermanagementdesignline.com/n...LOSKH0CJUNN2JVN
  24. Wednesday, February 22, 2006 Battery Breakthrough -- An Update As President Bush talks up the need for more research, scientists are making advances in hybrids and all-electric vehicles. By Kevin Bullis . . The newly structured material might be a candidate for replacing the batteries used in today's hybrids cars. But its real value could come in taking advantage of both its power and high energy storage capacity in a different kind of hybrid, known as a plug-in hybrid -- the potentially highly-efficient vehicle Bush spotlighted in his speech on Monday, saying these cars could eventually get 100 miles per gallon. The new technology could also help make all-electric vehicles practical. President Bush came to Johnson Controls, which last fall announced a new center of excellence for developing lithium-ion batteries for hybrids, to talk up his Advanced Energy Initiative, first announced in this year's State of the Union address. The Bush administration's 2007 budget provides $31 million for battery technology research, compared with $150 million for research into deriving ethanol from biomass, and nearly twice that amount, $288 million, for hydrogen fuel-cell research. Unlike today's hybrids, which ultimately depend on gasoline for power, but run efficiently by storing extra energy in batteries, a plug-in hybrid would use energy from the outlet in a garage, charging overnight, and would run completely on electricity for distances typical in a daily commute. The gasoline-powered engine would only kick in for long trips, after the batteries were depleted. This type of hybrid could save significant amounts of gasoline, since something like 75 percent of daily driving is for short trips, says Gerbrand Ceder, the materials science professor at MIT who led the effort to develop the new material. @: http://www.technologyreview.com/read_article.aspx?id=16578
  25. Tuesday, February 21, 2006 Battery Breakthrough A new material could mean batteries that finally make electric cars practical. By Kevin Bullis A new high-capacity battery material could lead to super-efficient hybrid cars and electric vehicles, helping to slash U.S. gas consumption. Researchers have long known that a material based on lithium, nickel, and manganese could be used to make lithium-ion batteries that store large amounts of energy. The problem is that batteries based on this material could be charged and discharged only slowly, otherwise the amount of energy they could store would drop dramatically. Now researchers at MIT and the State University of New York in Stony Brook have shown a way around the problem. The breakthrough came last summer, when Kisuk Kang, a materials science graduate student at MIT, created a computer model that showed that when under conditions of high power, disorder in the lithium-nickel-manganese material caused it to compress and trap the lithium ions that allow electricity to flow. The researchers then synthesized a version of this material without this disorder, freeing the ions to move quickly. The newly structured material might be a candidate for replacing the batteries used in today's hybrids cars. But its real value could come in taking advantage of both its power and high energy storage capacity in a different kind of hybrid, known as a plug-in hybrid, or else in all-electric vehicles. Unlike today's hybrids, which ultimately depend on gasoline for power, but run efficiently by storing extra energy in batteries, a plug-in hybrid would use energy from the outlet in a garage, charging overnight, and would run completely on electricity for distances typical in a daily commute. The gasoline-powered engine would only kick in for long trips, after the batteries were depleted. This type of hybrid could save significant amounts of gasoline, since something like 75 percent of daily driving is for short trips, says Gerbrand Ceder, the materials science professor at MIT who led the effort to develop the new material. Ceder says the new material could cut down on the weight of battery packs for plug-in hybrids by four or five times. The higher rate capability should also make for speedier charging, allowing top-offs between trips that extend the distance a vehicle could go between overnight recharges. Other attractive features of batteries based on the new material, according to Ceder, are improved safety over other lithium-ion batteries and lower cost. Lower cost, lighter weight, and faster charging might make the batteries attractive for electric vehicles as well. ...MORE: http://www.technologyreview.com/read_artic...&ch=biztech
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