The Wall Street Journal (1/13, Dorman) reports, "General Motors Corp., looking to supply its Chevrolet Volt plug-in electric car, said it plans to build the first lithium-ion battery-pack factory operated by a major automaker in the US." The Journal notes, "Preparation for the plant, to be located in Michigan, is to begin early this year, with production tooling to be installed midyear. Output is expected to start in 2010." But, "until GM's battery facility is operational, Volt's battery cells will be supplied by LG Chem Ltd.'s Compact Power Inc. unit, based in Troy, Mich. A joint engineering contract with Compact Power and LG Chem is expected to speed up development of the Volt's lithium-ion battery technology."
The AP (1/13) adds, "LG Chem will make the battery cells in [South] Korea and ship them to the US, where they will be assembled into packs at an unspecified GM factory in Michigan." According to LG Chem CEO Peter Kim, his "company may eventually build cells in Michigan, and it anticipates that its US subsidiary, Compact Power Inc., will add to its 100-person work force in Troy, Mich." Volt vehicle line director Tony Posawatz said that "GM also will open a new battery lab at its Warren technical center. The 31,000-square-foot battery lab will be the largest in the US."
Bloomberg News (1/13, Green, Ortolani) notes, "Investing in a battery factory increases GM's bet on electric vehicles as the biggest US automaker moves toward starting sales of the Volt in November 2010. Detroit-based GM has committed more than $1 billion to the car, Wagoner said." Wes Brown, an analyst at market-research firm Iceology, thinks that the "announcement says that they're preparing to be able to supply whatever the market demands. ... By doing something like this they have more control over their supply," he said. According to Technology Review (1/12, Bullis), "GM's decision is part of a strategic shift by the company toward the electrification of its automobiles, which will range from cars that rely on electric motors and batteries for brief bursts of power to those that run on electricity alone." Wagoner said, "The design, development and production of advanced batteries must be a core competency for GM, and we've been rapidly building our capability and resources to support this direction."
Lithium-Ion Batteries "Cost Competitive," Engineer Says. In the New York Times's (1/12) Wheels blog Lawrence Ulrich wrote, "As analysts peg the price of the upcoming battery-powered Chevrolet Volt at roughly $40,000, the high cost of its lithium-ion batteries is widely viewed as a key obstacle to mass adoption by consumers." But at a GM press conference offering details on its battery-powered future, Prabhakar Patil, a leader in electric propulsion, offered this surprising assessment: Lithium-ion batteries have become cost competitive with the more-primitive nickel-metal hydride batteries that power the Toyota Prius and other current hybrids." Patil said that "lithium-ion batteries are far less dependent on nickel, a precious metal, whose market prices are soaring."
Champions aren't made in gyms, champions are made from something they have deep inside them - a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have last-minute stamina, they have to be a little faster, they have to have the skill and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill. -Muhammad Ali I'll be more enthusiastic about encouraging thinking outside the box when there's evidence of any thinking going on inside it. - Terry Pratchett Not to be absolutely certain is, I think, one of the essential things in rationality. - Bertrand Russell What we think, or what we know, or what we believe is, in the end, of little consequence. The only consequence is what we do. Sometimes what's right isn't as important as what's profitable. - Trey Parker and Matt Stone There are only two kinds of people who are really fascinating: people who know absolutely everything, and people who know absolutely nothing. - Oscar Wilde Sometimes I lie awake at night, and I ask, "Where have I gone wrong?"/ Then a voice says to me, "This is going to take more than one night." - Charles M. Schulz There is nothing worse than aggressive stupidity. - Johann Wolfgang von Goethe The significance of man is that he is insignificant and is aware of it. - Carl Becker A lie can travel halfway around the world while the truth is putting on its shoes. - Mark Twain "If you know how to spend less than you get, you have the philosopher's stone." So said Benjamin Franklin more than 200 years ago. How much easier it is to be critical than to be correct. - Benjamin Disraeli Of course the game is rigged. Don't let that stop you--if you don't play, you can't win. - Robert Heinlein Ability will never catch up with the demand for it. - Malcolm Forbes No man remains quite what he was when he recognizes himself. - Thomas Mann No man needs a vacation so much as the man who has just had one. - Elbert Hubbard There is no pleasure in having nothing to do; the fun is in having lots to do and not doing it. - Mary Wilson Little Books to the ceiling,/ Books to the sky,/ My pile of books is a mile high./ How I love them! How I need them!/ I'll have a long beard by the time I read them. - Arnold Lobel Leif Ostling said in a statement that his comments about Germany had been "interpreted in a way that was not intended." If a man will begin with certainties, he shall end in doubts; but if he will be content to begin with doubts he shall end in certainties. - Sir Francis Bacon "It's not the voting that's democracy, it's the counting." - Tom Stoppard Elections are won by men and women chiefly because most people vote against somebody rather than for somebody. - Franklin P. Adams Invention is the mother of necessity. - Thorstein Veblen Don't try to solve serious matters in the middle of the night. - Philip K. Dick
Ich weiß nicht was soll es bedeuten Daß ich so traurig bin; Ein Märchen aus alten Zeiten, Das kommt mir nicht aus dem Sinn.
Die Luft ist kühl und es dunkelt, Und ruhig fließt der Rhein; Der Gipfel des Berges funkelt Im Abendsonnenschein.
Die schönste Jungfrau sitzet Dort oben wunderbar, Ihr goldenes Geschmeide blitzet, Sie kämmt ihr goldenes Haar.
Sie kämmt es mit goldenem Kamme Und singt ein Lied dabey; Das hat eine wundersame, Gewaltige Melodei.
Den Schiffer, im kleinen Schiffe, Ergreift es mit wildem Weh; Er schaut nicht die Felsenriffe, Er schaut nur hinauf in die Höh´.
Ich glaube, die Wellen verschlingen Am Ende Schiffer und Kahn; Und das hat mit ihrem Singen Die Lore-Ley getan.