A European team has set a new World Record for the longest distance covered by an electric truck without a recharging stop. The project team covered 1,099 kilometers in 23 hours.
Parcel delivery service provider DPD Switzerland, the e-truck brand Futuricum and tyre manufacturer Continental recently secured the Guinness World Record title at the Contidrom high-speed oval track near Hanover in Germany.
The partners used an e-truck that DPD Switzerland has been using daily over the last six months, to prove that “sustainable, energy-efficient and cost-efficient electric mobility in the transportation industry is not a mobility concept of tomorrow, but is already a reality on European roads today.”
The team prepared the Futuricum truck, a converted Volvo FH, with a high-capacity battery and efficient tyres.
Futuricum said, “The 19-ton truck now has over 680 hp and, with a capacity of 680 kilowatt hours, the largest truck battery in Europe on board,” explains Adrian Melliger, CEO of Designwerk Products AG, the company behind the Futuricum brand.
The truck was also fitted with the Continental EfficientPro tyres designed for particularly low rolling resistance.
“The upturn in electric mobility has put an even greater focus on the importance of rolling resistance optimised tyres,” says Hinnerk Kaiser, Head of Product Development Truck Tires EMEA of Continental. “Our tyres enable high mileage and extremely low rolling resistance and thus offers the essential characteristics for the economical operation of electrically powered commercial vehicles.
The world-record setting run took place at Contidrom, Continental’s in-house test centre. It is a 2.8-kilometer-long, oval test track. In total, two drivers completed 392 laps in shifts of 4.5 hours each at an average speed of 50 km/h.
The record run of 1099km on a single charge was achieved in just under 23 hours, even though the weather conditions were not ideal. The outside temperature was just 14 degrees C with winds averaging 18 km/h and gusting at up to 40 km/h.
Marc Frank, Strategy & Innovation Director at DPD Switzerland said “We decided to invest in electric mobility at an early stage. The Futuricum truck has been travelling between the depot in Möhlin near Basel to the distribution centre near Zurich for about six months now. It’s been travelling about 300 Km every day without any problems, but we are proud that we have now been able to officially document our performance level.”
Irish micromobility tech platform Luna is to partner with European e-scooter operator Tier to explore the use of computer vision to capture accurate and up to date mapping and geospatial data.
Luna’s vision and AI technology will identify, for instance, if an e-scooter is operating in a heavily pedestrianised area and modify its drive settings to react appropriately to its environment. It also equips e-scooters to detect the kind of lane or surface they are riding on, again modifying the vehicle’s response.
But beyond this, Luna is developing a series of algorithms and analytics tools that will allow scooter operators and cities to gain new insights into how the urban realm is performing.
In an early application Tier and Luna are exploring the possibility of trialling the approach in Paris, where Tier operates a fleet of 5,000 scooters.
The two companies are also looking at opportunities in the Middle East with “smart city stakeholders” to examine the potential for bespoke computer vision solutions to tackle local issues around safety and infrastructure optimisation. Additional pilot projects are also being explored in Spain
The principle is scooters capture data on a daily basis, compared to traditional condition surveys that might typically take place on an annual basis.
Tier and Luna are also embarking on a technical integration project to examine how the Luna’s computer vision hardware can be built into Tier vehicles at the point of manufacture.
Luna chief executive Andrew Fleury said, “Luna is thrilled to be partnering so closely with Tier across multiple geographies in the EU and Middle East.
“Cities and stakeholders everywhere are looking towards smart technology to help find solutions to some of the operational challenges that are holding the shared scooter industry back from fulfilling its potential.
“Tier is embracing Luna technology, even at this early stage of its evolution, in order to pioneer the future of micromobility, and deliver safe and sustainable services.”
Fleury added the technology would not only “do the basics of looking after rider and pedestrian safety,” but also “look to the future where scooter fleets act as mobile sensor networks in the smart cities of tomorrow.”
The British government has outlined details of new legislation that will require the installation of electric vehicle (EV) charging points on all new-build properties in England.
The draft bill, revealed by the Transport Minister Rachel Maclean, covers both residential properties and offices, which will be expected to provide a charging point for every five parking bays.
Starting in 2022, the new law is expected to accelerate installations from the current rate of 500 charging points per month up to 700.
The plan, billed as the first of its kind in the world, will also require all charge points to be capable of smart charging.
Last year the Government said it would inject £1.3 billion into scaling-up the rollout of charge points for EVs in homes, streets and motorways across the UK.
The Transport Minister said, “We will publish our consultation response on requiring all new residential and non-residential buildings to have a charge point and we intend to lay legislation later this year.
“We also confirmed our intention to mandate that home and workplace electric vehicle chargers must be capable of smart charging.”
About a third of households in Britain have no off-street parking, meaning charging points installed at workplaces or on the street will be increasingly important.
The UK’s EV charging point network will have to expand by up to 20 times current levels to cope with increased demand to support the ban on sales of internal combustion engine cars from 2030.
Government grants have been issued to private households of up to £350 to install a further 200,000 charging devices across the country.
Randolph Brazier, Director of Innovation and Electricity Systems at Energy Networks Association which represents the UK and Ireland’s energy networks businesses, said, “To deliver the underlying infrastructure to support the move to net zero transportation, electricity networks must be able to make early investments in infrastructure as well as use new and innovative smart grid technologies.”
Dutch zero-emission powerboat company Edorado has announced the launch of the Edorado 8S.
Similar in concept to Swedish boatbuilder’s Candela C-8, the Edorado features retractable hydrofoils and an electric drive-train. As the 8S accelerates the hull lifts out of the water offering “power and speed to thrill-seekers, but with none of the oil, emissions, wake or noise.”
Godert Van Hardenbroek, co-founder and product architect, said, “Once you reach take-off speed, you can really feel the acceleration as the resistance disappears and you feel a strong sensation of release, of being propelled forward. And then, unlike traditional powerboats – constantly smashing into waves – the Edorado flies right over the surface, like a sports aircraft. It glides silently over the water, which is a new and totally unique feeling, like combining the speed of a powerboat with the tranquillity of sailing.”
The boat’s hydrofoil system is equipped with a proprietary Automatic Control System, whose smart computer makes constant adjustments to its two foils for safety and stability. Meanwhile the two propellers of the ‘twin drive’ system provide great handling.
Giel Groothuis, co-founder and CEO added, “What is considered innovation in the boating industry just does not cut it any more in the current reality of the climate crisis. What is needed is a rapid transition to zero emissions, also for the leisure industry. After owning petrol-fuelled boats I realised that a complete overhaul of this product category is long overdue. The traditional boating industry is just waiting to be disrupted by a clean tech approach. Our goal with the Edorado 8S is to chart a course for clean powerboating.”
Chinese search engine and tech giant Baidu has begun testing its Apollo Go robotaxi offer in Shanghai.
While Baidu says its robotaxis have Level 4 capabilities a human safety operator will be present during all rides to comply with local regulations. Level 4 means the cars are technically fully autonomous, but within geographically defined areas.
The Shanghai fleet will be made up of Baidu’s electric Hongqi EVs and the aim is to run a fleet of 200 vehicles in the city.
Riders in Shanghai can use the Apollo Go app to call a robotaxi from 9:30am to 11pm and be picked up or dropped off at one of 150 stations across the Jianding District, which is home to Shanghai University, the Shanghai International Circuit and many tourist attractions.
Shanghai is also the location of Baidu’s Apollo Park, an autonomous vehicle facility for operation, testing and R&D. The park will be the base for the 200 AVs Baidu hopes to bring to the city, which would make it the site of the largest self-driving fleet in East China.
Shanghai is the fifth city to offer Apollo Go robotaxi services and Baidu says it plans to expand to 25 more cities in the next three years, bringing the potential of autonomous driving to three million people in China.
In a press release, Wei Dong, vice president and chief safety operation officer of Baidu’s Intelligent Driving Group, says, “achieving this large-scale implementation requires three steps: regionalization, commercialization and verification via unmanned on-road operation. Baidu has already made headway in autonomous ride-hailing, achieving a 60% drop in cost per mile with the 5th generation robotaxi vehicle release in June. With the launch in Shanghai, Baidu Apollo is continuing to deliver on China’s vision of developing a world-leading autonomous driving market.”
Volvo-owned Polestar has developed a fully-functioning prototype of its Re:Move electric cargo scooter concept revealed back in March.
Made from recyclable aluminum, the Re:Move’s chassis is fitted with an electric tilting mechanism to lean into corners and allow for a tight turning circle. A damped rear swing arm should make the ride smoother for both the riders and items onboard.
The stretched e-scooter is powered by a 2.2kWh battery pack and a compact electric motor, which offers a top speed-limited velocity of 25km/h. Disc brakes ensure adequate stopping power. With a slim profile the Re:Move is designed for use on most bike lanes
The prototype is the result of a collaboration between Polestar, e-bike-maker Cake, aluminum manufacturer Hydro, Wallpaper magazine, and industrial designer Konstantin Grcic.
“The passion and expertise our partners have brought to this project shows the power of great design,” says Thomas Ingenlath, Polestar CEO. “Electrifying vehicles is the start point, not the end game. Our engineers have proven that this kind of open collaboration will accelerate innovation and the shift to truly sustainable mobility.”
Dutch low carbon technology company Zero Emission Services (ZES) has modified the shipping vessel Alphenaar to run on exchangeable battery packs loaded within standard shipping containers. The Alphenaar’s conversion supports a 10-year deal with Heineken to ship its beer with zero emissions around the Netherlands using the country’s inland waterways.
According to ZES, the idea is simple, fill a standard container with batteries and sail under electric power to the next terminal where full batteries are ready to be exchanged. The depleted batteries are then recharged at the terminal and ready for the next swop.
Jorrit Harmsen, sustainable shipping consultant at Dutch technology research organisation TNO, is enthusiastic about the initiative, “This is certainly the first container ship that sails completely electrically. Inland waterway vessels require a large capacity with many batteries. What has been devised now, is a great solution.” It is also particularly suited, he says, to ships that sail fixed routes, meaning exchanging and recharging the battery containers take place at the same fixed places.
“In addition to directly contributing to the realisation of emission-free inland shipping, ZES is setting a standard that accelerates the transition to emission-free inland shipping,” says Willem Dedden, CEO of ZES. “We are laying the foundation with our ZESpack and a standard connector.”
In the near term ZES plans to expand its operations to include eight vessels, with 14 ZESpacks and eight loading stations, which can charge two packs in 2.5 hours (which potentially provide back-up storage capacity to stabilise the electricity grid). ZES says the technology is future-proofed in that it could work with other sources of energy, such as hydrogen or ammonia.
Longer term, the company aims to service 30 shipping routes by 2030, and by 2050 plans to have a fleet of 400 vessels in action, swapping up to 650 ZESpacks at 20 docking stations dotted around the country.
Dutch students from the Solar Team at the TU Eindhoven are about to undertake a 3,000km road trip across Europe in their self-powered Stella Vita camper.
Described as a solar house on wheels, the Stella Vita has an 8.8 m2 solar array on its roof that harvests energy for the 60-kWh lithium ion battery bank while driving. Slide-out panels double the total solar canopy when parked at camp.
All of the Stella Vita’s power needs, including the electric drive system but also kitchen, bathroom and lighting requirements, are expected to be met by the solar system alone, so there shouldn’t be a need to rely on charging infrastructure along the travel route.
In bright sunlight, Solar Team Eindhoven says that the vehicle could travel up to 730 km in a day, and that the range on a fully charged battery could allow as much as 600 km of motoring by night.
To prove the Stella Vita’s capabilities, team members are due to embark on a European Solar Tour. Setting off from Eindhoven in the Netherlands on 19 September, the team plans to head south through Zolder toward Brussels, and then onto Paris, Le Mans, Île de Ré, Bordeaux, Biarritz, Zaragoza, Madrid, Toledo, and Córdoba, with the 3,000-km journey coming to an end in the southern-most city in Spain, Tarifa, on 15 October.
UK EV mapping service Zap-Map has signed up five more charge point operators to join its Zap-Pay payment system.
GeniePoint, char.gy, Motor Fuel Group (MFG), Revive and Mer have all recently signed up to join existing Zap-Pay networks ESB Energy and also Osprey, which was the Zap-Pay launch partner in September 2020.
The enlarged network means Zap-Map’s 150,000 monthly active users will benefit from being able to search, plan and pay from within a single app at an increasing number of charge points across the UK, with more networks to be added soon.
Zap-Pay was launched last year with a mission to include all the key charge point networks across the UK. As a single-app payment system that uses a credit or debit card to pay for charging, Zap-Pay avoids the hassle of using different payment methods across all the various networks.
Once all seven networks are live – expected to be by October this year – over 2,000 charging devices across the UK and over 4,000 connectors will be Zap-Pay enabled. It also means that the Zap-Pay partner network is not only nationwide, but now includes all types of EV charging, from the very latest ultra-rapid chargers through to on-street and lamp-post charging closer to home.
In addition, reports Zap-Map, use of Zap-Pay has been increasing significantly in recent months, which will accelerate further as more networks come online with Zap-Pay and drivers increasingly see it as the simple way to charge across networks, within the familiar Zap-Map app.
Alex Earl, Commercial Director at Zap-Map, commented, “As electric vehicles become mainstream, we need to make paying for charging as simple as possible, and that’s exactly what Zap-Pay does.
“I’m thrilled to see that Zap-Pay now covers such a broad network of different chargers across the country. The increase in usage also gives a clear indication that Zap-Pay is the solution Zap-Map users needed.”
Zap-Map, which was launched in June 2014, displays over 95% of the UK’s public charge points, of which around 70% show live status data updated every five minutes. Over 75% of the UK EV drivers have downloaded Zap-Map, which has grown 60% since 2020, in line with the electric vehicle market.
German solar-powered electric car start-up Sono Motors has launched what it claims to be the first bidirectional AC charging wallbox. The wallbox enables Sono’s planned Sion model, which incorporates range extending solar panels, to be used as a mobile power plant and feed stored electricity directly into the driver’s house or into the grid.
Sono says homeowners with photovoltaic systems, especially, will save a large amount of money as they are able to use more of any self-generated electricity without having to buy an expensive home storage system.
The Sono wallbox will charge and discharge the Sion with up to 11 kW via the integrated Type 2 charging cable, saving, claims Sono, up to 70% of costs incurred by DC bidirectional wallboxes available to date. Delivery is expected to take place with the Sion start of production in 2023.
“We want to drive the future of energy generation and make bidirectional charging possible for everyone”, says Laurin Hahn, CEO and founder of Sono Motors. “In combination with the Sion’s integrated solar technology, the new wallbox represents a breakthrough for bidirectional charging technology, as many homeowners can save themselves the expense of purchasing a new, costly home storage system. This is an important milestone for us on the way to 100% renewable energy,” says Hahn.
In contrast to the DC wallboxes previously available, Sono Motors has opted for an AC wallbox which is up to 70% cheaper. This is possible, Sono says, because the conversion from direct to alternating current takes place within the Sion itself and not the wallbox – significantly reducing costs. The Sono wallbox was developed in collaboration with the German manufacturer Kostal.
The wallbox will fully charge the Sion’s 54 kWh LFP battery, providing a range of up to 305km from a 5-hour charge. And if caught short during a long journey, the Sion can be charged at DC charging stations at a speed of up to 75 kW via the integrated CCS interface, achieving an 80% charge in around 35 minutes.
Furthermore the Sion functions as a vehicle-to-home electricity storage unit. Electricity from, for instance, a home’s photovoltaic system or even the solar panels integrated into the Sion itself, can be stored in the Sion’s battery during the day and delivered to the house at night.
The vehicle also offers a vehicle to grid capability meaning excess energy, such as surplus generation from wind turbines, could be temporarily stored in the vehicle’s battery, meaning Sions could collectively become a decentralised mega-storage system.
New research reveals huge opportunities for cargo bikes to make last mile deliveries, after GPS tracking of deliveries in London showed they were 1.6 times faster than vans.
The study by researchers at the University of Westminster used GPS data to compare routes taken by cargo bikes in London with routes that vans would have taken to deliver the same parcels.
It found that in central London, cargo bikes delivered nearly seven parcels an hour compared to four for vans. The bikes are also significantly cleaner than both electric and diesel vans, according to the researchers. And even when vans transition from fossil fuels to battery power, cargo bikes take less energy and resources to manufacture and operationally have an advantage in terms of occupying smaller road space and are intrinsically safer, say the researchers.
‘The promise of low carbon freight: benefits of cargo bikes in London’ was funded by the climate charity Possible. It used telematics data from 13,735 cargo bike deliveries by Pedal Me, a cargo bike logistics company with 55 e-assist cargo bikes in London that cover 25,000km per year.
The report also looks at carbon emissions associated with e-cargo bike deliveries, which it estimates to be 4.5g CO2/km for electricity and 22g CO2/km to produce the extra food used to fuel the cyclist.
And e-cargo bikes have substantially lower whole-life carbon emissions than either an electric or diesel van. Pedal Me estimates that one of its cargo bikes could be manufactured and ridden for over 300,000km before it produced the emissions of a brand new electric van rolling out the factory.
“Over its lifetime, a diesel van would emit at least eight times as much CO2 per kilometre as an e-cargo bike,” says the report.
It adds that delivery vans also cause congestion, spending at least nine minutes per trip looking for a parking space and frequently blocking pavements and cycle lanes when they can find nowhere to park.
Lead researcher Dr Ersilia Verlinghieri said, “Thanks to the availability of GPS cargo bikes data, we had the great opportunity to develop one of the first detailed simulations comparing actual cargo-bikes’ with vans’ routes.The results highlight the great potential that cargo bikes can have in helping cities responding to the myriad of challenges they are facing. From tackling transport carbon emissions to reducing the negative health impacts of urban motor traffic, cargo bikes can be of assistance whilst simultaneously improving delivery times in densely populated areas.”
Greenpeace Germany and environmental NGO Deutsche Umwelthilfe (DUH) have coordinated statements saying they will take legal action against Volkswagen, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, and gas and oil firm Wintershall Dea, if the companies fail to step up their policies to tackle climate change.
The cases would be modelled on one Greenpeace brought against Royal Dutch Shell in the Netherlands last year. In it, Greenpeace lawyers argued the Royal Dutch Shell’s lack of climate action constituted a failure in its duty of care to citizens, which led to a court ruling in May 2021 mandating the company to reduce its CO2 output by 45% from 2019 levels by 2030.
In the new initiative Greenpeace and DUH are demanding that the car makers stop producing combustion engine cars by 2030 – earlier than the 2035 ban proposed by the EU in July – and that Wintershall Dea refrains from exploring any new oil and gas fields from 2026.
These deadlines, say Greenpeace and DUH, are necessary to meet the goals of the Paris climate accords and German climate law.
They have set a near deadline for the companies to respond to their demands. Should they fail to do so, the NGOs will file lawsuits in German courts, they said.
According to the NGOs, the German automotive sector’s sales of diesel and petrol engines around the world amount to a greater CO2 footprint than the whole of Germany’s in 2019.
“Anyone who delays climate protection harms others and is thus acting illegally,” says Roda Rehyen, one of Greenpeace’s lawyers. “Civil law can and must prevent corporations from destroying our livelihoods and depriving our children and grandchildren of the right to a secure future.”
Transport operator Arriva Group has launched a travel platform designed to connect passengers to multiple modes and operators of public transport, shared transport and micro-mobility in the Netherlands.
Developed in partnership with journey planning technology provider Moovit, the “glimble” branded app is Arriva’s first MaaS (Mobility as a Service) solution in Europe.
The development of “glimble by arriva” came after Arriva Netherlands was awarded two pilot projects by the local authorities in the Netherlands to trial MaaS solutions. Seven pilot projects in total were awarded. Arriva was the only public transport company to be awarded pilots because of its strong reputation serving the Dutch market.
During the pandemic a number of European cities invested in new infrastructure to encourage cycling or walking, and some have introduced e-scooter trials. These initiatives have provided greater modal flexibility for people to move across cities. The glimble solution brings all these options together and allows Arriva to look beyond its own operations and provide integrated, multimodal journeys.
Anne Hettinga, Arriva Group Board Member and Managing Director of the Netherlands, said, “With this platform, we are set to become a leading mobility provider. In a world where everyone is constantly on the move and connection and accessibility is essential, we need to be adaptable and nimble. Our glimble brand has started its Arriva journey in the Netherlands, but we know it has pan-European appeal – and potential – and we are starting to explore this in countries where the necessary data sharing agreements exist.”
Working with Moovit means Arriva can launch with confidence in partnership with a technology provider with proven success. The functionality also incorporates accessibility features, such as screen reading features for low vision users, talkback and voiceover capabilities. The app also identifies wheelchair-accessible routes and stations, while also calculating step-free journeys. For those with hand-motor disabilities, glimble is designed with optimised menus and buttons.
Other functionality due to be added to the app includes parking locations and a search capability for electric car charging points.
Several mobility providers can be found in the app for a number of different modes including shared car hire, demand responsive transport, e-scooters, taxis, tram, rail, ferry, bus and e-bikes and bicycles. Arriva expects to add more and more carriers to glimble in the coming months and already has plans to expand to include Belgium and parts of Germany, an initiative in part designed to test glimble’s application for journeys involving cross-border travel.
Smart dash cam developer Nexar has launched a service for US transit agencies, cities and transport authorities that uses crowd sourcing to detect, monitor and map road works.
Based on the company’s AI-enabled CityStream platform, the company already collects data every month from 130 million miles and has a dataset of 3.2 trillion images. It is now extending its capabilities to the transportation industry because, says Nexar, work zones are generally unreported to mapping services.
The platform detects barriers in work zones using artificial intelligence and imagery from its dash cam network, remotely monitors the state of work zones in real-time helping to protect the safety of pedestrians, workers and drivers, the company adds.
Nexar co-founder Eran Shir says, “As a result of Covid-19, traffic patterns have become even more dynamic, which means valuable time is wasted optimising safety and moderating traffic congestion in work zones.”
“Nexar enables cities to go check work zone setups on-demand instead of being supported by old data or out-of-date plans, thus ensuring that cities and Departments of Transportation are addressing today’s transportation patterns. Using Nexar’s data to address this issue means benefiting workers on the road, governmental decision makers and the community itself.”
Nexar is offering a try before you buy package under which its new service is available for three months at no cost to government offices.
Barcelona-based Wallbox, a leading provider of electric vehicle (EV) charging solutions worldwide, has launched Hypernova, the company’s fastest public charging station to date.
Wallbox says as electric vehicles become increasingly popular, there is a need for reliable public chargers that are ultrafast, long-lasting and easy to repair.
The Hypernova can deliver up to 350 kW that allows it to fully charge an electric car in the time it takes to make a typical short rest stop and is substantially faster than most other ultrafast chargers on the market.
“We are thrilled to unveil our fastest public charger to date, which can fully charge an electric vehicle in under 15 minutes,” said Enric Asunción, CEO and co-founder of Wallbox. “Hypernova will be a game changer in building fast public charging infrastructure, especially on highways where drivers need to recharge and keep going,” Asunción added.
Hypernova employs advanced software that allows it to optimise available power and adapt to the number of EVs connected, making it ideal for public charging along highways and transcontinental road networks.
Hypernova’s integrated cable management system ensures easy handling and stores the cables inside the dispenser unit, maximising durability and helping to protect and keep the installation clean. It also offers several authentication and payment options, including RFID, screen QR Code and credit card reader with worldwide acceptance. Production and deliveries of Hypernova will start in late 2022.
New Zealand-based fleet management solutions company EROAD is to integrate Seeing Machines’ Guardian technology into software to help combat driver fatigue and make roads safer.
Seeing Machines’ Guardian technology uses face and eye-tracking algorithms to detect fatigue and distraction, enabling proactive intervention before a risky driving incident occurs.
According to Seeing Machines’ research, in-cab alerts reduce fatigue by upwards of 60%, and continuous driver monitoring decreases the occurrence of fatigue by an additional 30% to achieve a reduction in fatigue-related driving events of more than 90%.
The integration of this technology, says EROAD, will provide operators with a single tool for managing video telematics where previously there were two separate managing systems. This makes it easier for fleet managers to prioritise actionable insights from data, as well as developing a greater understanding of the risks associated with their fleet and coach drivers.
“Our mission at EROAD is to help every community enjoy safer, more productive roads,” says Steven Newman, CEO of EROAD. “We’re all about improving fleet safety through better driver behaviour and the integration of Guardian technology will help us achieve that. The technology is set to become a vital element in the MyEROAD portal to ensure safer and more sustainable outcomes for fleet operators and drivers.”
“We are very happy to be partnering with EROAD,” says Paul McGlone, CEO of Seeing Machines. “Our Guardian technology has seen expanding global penetration into long haul and heavy transport fleets and will be a huge benefit to EROAD users not only in New Zealand, but Australia and America as well. The Seeing Machines purpose is to get everyone home safely so we are closely aligned with EROAD as both companies take pride in helping make roads safer, knowing this integration will help achieve that.”
Nissan and Waseda University in Tokyo have announced the start of testing in Japan of a jointly developed recycling process that efficiently recovers high-purity rare-earth elements (REEs) from EV motor magnets. The testing is aimed at enabling practical application of the new process by the mid-2020s.
Most motors in EVs use neodymium magnets, which contain scarce rare-earth metals such as neodymium and dysprosium.
The new method of testing has shown that the new recycling process can recover 98% of the motors’ REEs.
The method also approximately twice as fast as current recovery processes because there is no need to demagnetise the magnets, or remove and disassemble them
In a press release, Nissan states, “Reducing the use of scarce rare earths is important not only because of the environmental impact of mining and refining, but also because the shifting balance of supply and demand leads to price fluctuations for both manufacturers and consumers.”
Nissan has been collaborating with Waseda University since 2017, which has a strong track record of researching non-ferrous metal recycling and smelting.
California-based smart infrastructure software management company Iteris has launched Vantage Apex, which it claims to be the industry’s first high-definition video and four-dimensional radar sensor with integrated artificial intelligence.
Built on its machine learning platform, Vantage Apex identifies objects using AI video analytics, extensive image library, high-performance graphics processing, machine learning and neural network algorithms. This enables the high-precision and detailed classification of many different vehicle types and vulnerable road users, such as pedestrians and cyclists.
Full HD video streaming using 1080p cameras results in ultra-crisp vision with unmatched depth and clarity of traffic at intersections, which can be viewed at traffic management centres or remotely via an app.
Using forward-fire radar technology to virtually eliminate occlusion, the Vantage Apex hybrid sensor uses industry-leading 4D/HD radar technology with a field of view of 200m. The Vantage Apex system enables decision-zone safety functions, collision avoidance and advanced lane-by-lane detection that delivers precise traffic detection and data.
Vantage Apex is connected vehicle ready, with the ability to provide critical infrastructure data through vehicle-to-everything (V2X) communications to connected and automated vehicles (CAVs).
Vantage Apex is fully compatible with iteris’ portfolio of infrastructure management software including VantageCare, ClearGuide SPM and VantageLive! as well as and other third-party web and mobile-based traffic measurement applications.
The Vantage Apex AI-powered smart sensor is a key component of Iteris’ ClearMobility Platform, which the company describes as the most complete solution for continuously monitoring, visualising and optimising mobility infrastructure around the world to help ensure that roads are safe, travel is efficient, and communities thrive.
“We are thrilled to announce the launch of Vantage Apex, the industry’s first 1080p HD video and 4D radar sensor with integrated AI algorithms,” said Todd Kreter, senior vice president and general manager, Advanced Sensor Technologies at Iteris. “With the addition of Vantage Apex to Iteris’ market-leading portfolio of smart sensors, transportation agencies now have access to unmatched detection and tracking accuracy of vehicles, pedestrians and cyclists, as well as HD video display for traffic management centres to achieve their goals of improving safety, mobility and sustainability throughout complex transportation networks.”
Energy company Shell has set an ambition to have 50,000 on-street electric vehicle (EV) charge posts installed across the UK by the end of 2025, through ubitricity, which was acquired by Shell earlier this year.
The move is part of a wider effort to bring more EV charging availability UK drivers without private parking. More than 60% of households in English cities and urban areas do not have off-street parking – this rises to 68% for people living in social housing.
The UK government’s Office for Zero Emission Vehicles (OZEV) currently meets 75% of the cost of installing on-street chargers through the On-Street Residential Charging Scheme (ORCS).
And for local authorities looking to install ubitricity charge posts, Shell, under its new initiative, will cover the remaining costs, subject to commercial terms.
Around 3,600 ubitricity chargers are already in place in the UK, using existing street infrastructure such as lamp posts and bollards.
Globally, Shell wants to grow its electric vehicle network from more than 60,000 charge points today to around 500,000 by 2025.
David Bunch, Shell’s UK Country Chair, says: “It’s vital to speed up the pace of EV charger installation across the UK and this aim and financing offer is designed to help achieve that. Whether at home, at work or on-the-go, we want to give drivers across the UK accessible EV charging options, so that more drivers can switch to electric.”
UK Transport Minister Rachel Maclean, adds, “Together with industry and local authorities, we can create cleaner, greener local communities – providing EV chargepoints for people without off-street parking across the country.”
Israel’s Ministry of Communications and the Israel Innovation Authority have selected telecoms infrastructure specialist RAD for a smart traffic pilot project designed to promote the use of 5G.
Traffic cameras deployed across Israel are generally connected over fibre optics networks and the pilot is to establish alternative telecoms access solutions at sites not served by fibre.
The pilot will be carried out together with Israel’s National Transport Infrastructure Company and forms part of a programme to develop smart applications to improve communications infrastructure around the country.
According to RAD, the new pilot will deliver live video feeds from traffic cameras over a 5G network using RAD’s SecFlow, which would enable addition of many new cameras regardless of fibre availability.
SecFlow is an IIoT gateway designed for large scale automated networks in smart cities, smart energy and smart industry environments. Featuring edge computing capabilities, it aggregates and securely delivers traffic from smart meters, sensors, control units, CCTV cameras and other smart devices over any network, with unified management and fast response.
“Our company has been very active in the areas of IoT and 5G. Our solutions in these fields attract attention around the world thanks to the innovation that they bring. RAD’s selection is a vote of confidence in our technology,” said Udy Kashkash, CEO and president.
“5G will revolutionise industry, transportation, infrastructure, and business. We at RAD are proud to be at the forefront of such initiatives that drive forward the Israeli tech industry.”
Designed for large scale automated networks in smart cities, smart energy, and smart industry environments, and featuring edge computing capabilities, SecFlow aggregates and securely delivers traffic from smart meters, sensors, control units, CCTV cameras, and other smart devices over any network, with unified management and fast response, RAD claims.