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February 01, 2007



Even 1/3 of the proposed HP should be more than enough. Why not consider a practical car rather than a 600+ HP monster?


That's not the Lotus APX. That's a Vauxhall Lotus Carlton.

Sorry I trusted Google too much, shouldnt do that. I hope the new one I posted is right. - Jim from The Energy Blog

Greg Woulf

Enoch, That's a good question.

There's something about electric motors that's fundamentally different than combustion motors that's an advantage for electric.

The larger the electric motor the more efficient it is. The cost and weight of having a big motor over a small motor is small enough that it's not really an issue.

In other words the HP is free, or even saves a little in efficiency.

That doesn't mean that the faster you run the motor the more efficient it is. They could have the big motor with an artificial RPM limit that would increase the mileage, but the larger HP motor is a good thing.


Can anyone tell me about electric cars and temperature? I live in Rhode Island, which still does get pretty damn cold in the winter (although winters are definitely shorter now than they were when I was growing up). Do freezing temperatures effect battery performance?

Brett Holmberg

I'm going to have to call BS on the HP claim...161bhp from one electric motor that fits in the wheel hub? This is unheard of. Is this thing going to be sporting 24" rims? It seems complete unrealistic to me. What about unsprung weight and handling? Now if they had quoted those numbers with torque units, that would be believable. AND they have a battery that can feed these monster electric motors? I just have to be sceptical.


RE:Question- "It makes me wonder why Detroit is still so concerned about battery technology". Detroit is concerned about battery technology because somewhere in there, the oil companies have there fingers in the pie. Imagine the impact on oil if we all started driving EV's. They are scrambling to figure out how they can save their butts and be part of the profit margin in EV's (oil companies that is). You can't tell me that the technology isn't here to build EV's. The mileage they have these days in EV's is good enough for city commutes and then some. They put minimal effort into promoting or advertising the vehicles when they build them(eg. EV1 by GM) and then they wonder why nobody has bought them. In the beginning ICE's never had the mileage or HP but they built them anyway and let the evolution of the engine take place. Do the same with EV's I say.


Hub motors are nice and reduce the total weight. Unfortunately, they increase the unsprung to sprung weight ratio which adversely affects vehicle handling. This could be tolerated (or not even noticed) by most customers but may not go down well with the HP crowd.


ZAP partners with ABAT for Batteries.
ABAT get the nanosafe tech from ALTI integrated in their PLI.
ONLY ALTI and PHOENIX MC have exclusivity to the SUPER BATTERY "NANOSAFE".


Sorry I forgot to mention that ALCOA and ALTI(ALTAIR NANOTECHNOLOGIES)have a partnership for the light duty trucks like UPS FEDX or USPS... due "early 2007".


Thanks again Jim for the additional info...

RE: "1) Regarding batteries, he said there are many battery technologies to choose from and they have not determined what battery technology is going to used in this car, irrespective of their agreement with ABAT. (The 10 minute charge time referred to in their press release indicates to me that its a lithium baseed battery technology)"

I have the same inclination Jim. It's funny how shortly after ABAT makes the announcement of a 300% increase in driving distance on the Zebra (the golf cart) when they retrofitted their PLI battery, Zap now has a concept sports car. Zap has no comment for now... but all we have to do is wait till Feb 3-6 when their concept is made public for all the world to see.


re: "Even 1/3 of the proposed HP should be more than enough. Why not consider a practical car rather than a 600+ HP monster?"

DocX and I had this discussion many a times. Perception of the EV "golf cart" has to change before it's massed marketed. Niche markets is a valid way to go. Especially the niches being exploited... SUV/SUT (fleet vehicles by Phoenix Motor Cars)... and sports cars (Tesla and now soon to be Zap). This gives a chance for the smaller car companies to turn a profit to further enhance possible EV rol outs in the future. But let's not forget oil is trying to delay EV roll outs so they can direct their own streams of money that way... read the paper today... Exxon had another historic year... some $300+ billion in profits. I like the other article the Virginian-Pilot ran also today... hundreds of scientists believe now that MAN has something to do with global warming. And with oil approaching $60 a barrel again... all this is just good news for alternative energy cars!!! Bye-bye internal combustion engine!!!


re: "Can anyone tell me about electric cars and temperature? I live in Rhode Island, which still does get pretty damn cold in the winter (although winters are definitely shorter now than they were when I was growing up). Do freezing temperatures effect battery performance?"

The new nano Li-ion batteries brought out by Altair and A123 will do the job fine. Operating temps of either the Nanosafe (Altair) and the M1(A123) are both about -30 degrees C to about 70 degrees C. Well within the temp diffence of the New England area.



Looks like i need to educate you a lil bit like i did with DocX.

ABAT does not get the Nanosafe battery. All ABAT gets is the material, NLTO. The Nanosafe Battery (Altair) and the Polymer Li-ion Battery (ABAT) are 2 different things.

I'm not trying to down you... just trying to get your facts straight before all the speculation starts to come out.


Stephen Boulet

I was looking at the gear shifter in the inside shot of the vehicle. I read that Tesla's roadster has two forward gears. Would these in-wheel motors have gearing that could be shifted by wire?



Correction... Exxon made $39.5 billion... not $300+ billion. Just want to get my facts straight.

Karl  (copy of personal reply, not polished, shared as better then nothing on crucial point)

(the following is pasted here from a personal reply to the "Car [petrol above, all for me below] industry is Oil ['Oil'] argument" above)

I assume you are aware of the scholarly GM 'tomb' book which I think has been in print now for some time. PBS featured the author on "History Detectives" in the last year or so. He's spent decades writing it.

HOwever one does not have to have the facts that you need [and might not find] to answer the question.

Rather merely ending built in obsolence [errors like this I can't take the time to corrrec t. my meaning is clear, and i mean no disrespect to this blog, permission to edit spelling etc. is of course granted, but please, spelling only, not 'grammar',not without permission] which even the hydrogen 'frames' do in that everyone now is driving a VW bug and just every few years changing body styles which can be crafted by local artisans etc. and impact structural integrity much less so don't have to have extensive testing with airbags being modular if not integrated in what's left after you 'change out the contacts.'

The profit comes from selling used cars. The profit comes from selling the same car over and over again even if new. The profit comes from high operating costs preventing adequate investment to lower life cycle costs (and profits!) to owners.

BUT, Tesla and others are seeking to pad there profits in the same way. [I assume my short comments there have been "silently moderated" as they disclose they engage in obscenely- something I hope doesn't occur here or won't for mine at least which are civil, considered, and NEEDED] Carrying needless energy around instead of allowing us to build distribution into our paths efficiently, again, with much less 'profit' (waste).

I reluctantly write you. Your comments serve big oil in having most tune us out. The facts are more ornate perhaps, but have the wring of truth. It's not profit, but National Security that requires we burn oil instead of build pyramids. Little has changed. THe Shieks sell out there future by selling there oil, that CAN BE TURNED TO FOOD ETC. instead of just toxins and carnage.

We need a real futures market for petroleum that has the costs of securing stockpiles for decades built in. Then gas will be UNABLE to justify itself as a use for Oil. It's need for rocket fuel, for other applications that require less then tank weight at some point inthe journey, like the Shuttle shedding it's liquid fuel tank AFTER shedding it's solid fuel rockets.

PLease consider my comments. The book is easy to get even if not for sale in your town. Read don't just write. Read deep. Meditate. Consider Agony as did NBC's ER last night even though it was MD propiganda more then tangentially illustrative of whatit means to understand injury/pain.

Cars, particularly electric cars like those we are getting all frothed up about, are evil. We who are willing to spend more to save more should realize thereh is far more we could do with our spending then cut our commute costs... like build decent neighberhoods etc.

Energy. It is our current gold. Anything with regenerative braking might make the same mistake. Braking shouldnt' be necessary more then once. Not when the vehicle is for it's sole passenger per trip.

Appreciate this please.

Andrei Belyakov Moscow Russia

I wondes nobody is going to install Altairnano product in Smart. I think Smart is the best candidate to become EV


Hi Karl, when have you been released from the looney house?


Maybe if I had some weed...


What happens to the breaks with in-hub motor technology?

Surely the front breaks cannot be totally eliminated. In sudden stops, you need massive amount of breaking, which I suspect the motors cannot provide. Or can they?

Eliminating breaks should massively bring down the cost of servicing EVs (cost me $400 to replace my breaks at Midas), and probably save $1,000 in the cost of the vehicle.


Stephan, the only reason Tesla has 2 forward gears is for performance (sport acceleration). You don't need shifters and tranmissions in standard EVs. None. That is the beauty. The torque curve is large, flat and adequate for electric motors.

Besides, it is a lot more fun to drive a sports car with shifters. Tesla should put in a 3 gear shifter.

Does Tesla have a manual clutch? I think it would. Otherwise, it will turn off a lot of buyers.


Jimmi, do you know what the consensus is on nano-Li-ion energy capacity improvments for the next 5 years? Has ALTI or A123 said anything on this? What about cost per KWh?

Janis Mara

Here's a question that I've had for some time: How much does your electric bill go up from charging your electric car overnight? I realize this isn't all that important to the people who buy Teslas, with their base price of $92,000, but the ~$10,000 ZAP car drivers probably do care!


It only takes around 3 kwh to go the 20 miles or so on electric power that a plugin hybrid would need to average well over 100 mpg. That's around 30 cents per charge.

A pure electric economy car (no sense talking economy or cost of energy with sportscars)would cost about 1.3 cents per mile to drive in terms of electric cost. That's in a car of equivalent size and mileage to a gasoline hybrid car that gets around 40 mpg.


Janis Mara...

To answer your question on charging costs... DocX basically nailed it. In laymans terms, depending on what part of the country you live in (hopefully in the US cause electric prices in the UK are alot higher), a full charge will cost about $3 on average considering if you have the "off peak" option. Some residential customers, like my dad, opted for a flat rate. My dad would pay about $5 under his payment schedule.


Well that's the million dollar question. Altair stated that current costs is about $400 per khw. Not sure of what A123's costs are. Looks like I need to research my previous research. I can get the numbers.. might take a bit. Formatted my computer lately and lost a bunch of research =(

If you're looking for future numbers of capacity/density... it's all here-say at this point in time. There are 2 agreements still out for Altair regarding R&D for higher density batteries. We all know about the Altair/Alcoa agreement. But I'm afraid this might not come to pass. The agreement was to research possible battery designs for hybrid electric trucks. But shortly after the agreement was published, Alcoa made an agreement with Maxell for researching their ultracapacitors to be used in the EV/HEV market. The Altair/Alcoa agreement was set to be completed early 2007. Which is basically now, but I've seen nothing on this. The other agreement was with Electro Energy Inc (EEEI). That agreement is to combine the high density bi-polar technology with Altair's NLTO. EEEI's bi-polar technology is currently used for a bunch of military applications... intelligence community applications... and aerospace applications. I wrote a lil bit on this and I feel this is the one to keep an eye on. As I stated before... In-Q-Tel has a stake in EEEI. Google In-Q-Tel or go to EEEI's website to find out who they are. You'll be amazed... bah.... here's the info on In-Q-Tel from the EEEI website...

"In-Q-Tel is a private, independent, not-for-profit venture group established by the CIA. Launched in 1999, In-Q-Tel's mission is to identify, acquire, and deploy cutting-edge technologies that serve United States national security interests. Working from an evolving strategic blueprint that defines the Intelligence Community's critical technology needs, In-Q-Tel engages with entrepreneurs, established companies, researchers and venture capitalists to deliver technologies that pay out in superior intelligence capabilities for the larger Intelligence Community."

Not to forget, but this is not really part of the answer to your question... Altair has that agreement with ABAT. But that's just for the NLTO material. ABAT's PLI battery design is not part of the agreement and Altair has no current stake, besides supplying the NLTO materials. If the Zap-X/Lotus car is the real deal... and ABAT starts to make a name for themselves as a nano li-ion battery leader, I'm sure Altair might... and I do mean MIGHT (pure speculation) get a distrobution agreement with them to sell the PLI batteries in the US. Not so glamorous for Altair but remember... Altair isn't a battery company... they are a nano-particle company with other nano-materials part of their technology portfolio.

Trust me... if I find the numbers you request.. I'll post them ASAP. Hope this helped you out Beek!!!


I'm amazed ZAP is even being discussed seriously. ZAP has a long history of making false claims and issuing press releases to move their penny stock. It's up 30% since this vaporware announcement. I guarantee you they are issuing new shares to management and creditors. They have never manufactured anything. They describe themselves as a "portal." Their small development deal with Lotus allows them to flout to the world that they are building a car with impossible specs to continue to pump their stock. Check out their ticker at ZAAP.OB (they were delisted) and their website at www.zapworld.com. How can so many bloggers and journalists take them seriously for one second?


I am not an electrical engineer, so I won't comment on the efficiency of electrical motors.
But if 4 motors are good for over 600HP than 2 motors will give over 300HP with the same efficiency. 300HP is more than enough, even for a racing nut.
I wonder what batteries will provide enough juice for this kind of horse power for 350 miles. Are they talking about the misterious EEstor, or is ZAPP only blowing hot air.


Jimmi is wrong again.
My earlier post clearly stated Abat uses the nanosafe TECHnology (not makes nanosafe battery).
Alti / Alcoa agreement was on SEPTEMBER 6th and Maxwelll / Alcoa agreement was EARLER on AUGUST 14th not the opposite as jimmi implied.
Maxwell and Alcoa deal is about integrating "BOOSTCAP" supercapacitors for COLD-Start of LARGE commercial Trucks.
Alti deal is about BATTERY packs for HEV/PHEV light duty trucks ie UPS/FEDx/USpost office etc...
In my opinion NAOSAFE BATTERY PACKS from ALTAIR NANO (Alti) are the best there is today for the EV-PHEV-HEV and other applications
(power tools/Military.... The Nanosafe 2nd generation will blow your mind and may not be published yet for obvious national security reasons i can immagine.


Please folks there is a lie being distributed permeating this discussion and others.

It has to do with relative bargain of using electricity as fuel for road transportation.

It ignores history, facts, and what should occur in the future.

Gasoline has tax, too little, but a significant amount. When you burn lots of petrol- like to destroy fertile fields for homicide inducing criminally designed subdivisions- the diesel you burn is RED. It's relatively cheap, as you alone pay the costs of plowing under the cherry trees. No one seeks reimbursement for paving the way from tree to tree. You don't use rubber wheels. The fuel is red. It's cheaper. It's bootlegged b ecause it's so much cheaper in fact.

So that's why we build water wheels for kids to spin to increase the gravitation energy stored in the tank, instead of spending less on photovoltaics and efficient electric pumps. Because the silicon would be stolen.

Calculating costs per mile for road consumption based upon any residential utility rate is serving propiganda. As is expecting roads to be free even for gass guzzlers.

We should all know that the small improvements for a negligible portion of miles driven in consumption already has legislators wanting to more justly seek recovery of road costs.

Highways being free, destroyed our RAIL SYSTEM. Roads not having tolls, in the future with kids baseball gloves coming with GPS preinstalleld is not a world I'll stay on.

This is why London charges a large fee for little old lady's driving three wheeled pedal powered TRICYCLES (yes, like our great great great grand parents owned). But more importantly it's why the cost of energised electrons appears to be less then that of a serving of energy jel bought in bulk at ones apparently friendly bike shop. The old lady gets apparently gouged, the Nazi with the sidecar equiped Harly waved pass gratis. One congests, the other can't be caught by even Bobby driving Highlanders. The Harley pays nothing, as they impose no further need for road construction. They spend less time on the road. They use it more efficiently.

So then we have some Zap/Tesla owner all deckded out cruising up and down up and down the major strip. And you all think it's just between him and the regulated Electric Grid? Get real. Seriously.

Even methane has the user,if not for the home furnace etc. but rather to drive with, having to remit, if honorable, the transit taxes! That's why people buy home compressor's-to dodge those taxes!

Further the bit about how larger engines are free... only if they are already on a nonhuman scale! Does anyone remember what a Horse is? Fouru legs? Eats Hay? Weighs much more then even the fattest cats among us? Runs far faster? Think we need hundreds or even dozens of them?

PHoenix has an engine supplier. Tentative on there website is a half dozen horsepower, UTTERLY EFFICIENT, magnificent motor. NOt perfect, maybe not usable, but SMALL BABY SMALL.

Under twenty pounds with controlling circuitry, and TRANSMISSION.

Plenty of torque to accelerate a linebacker faster then any SUV can any runway model.

And safety. Collision avoidance versus "niagara falls" stratagies. Ever seen a pole vaulter? Think roads should be built to allow tons of vehicle to so vault a red light runner? Think doing so is basically trivial for a vehicle that barely doubles if htat the passengers weight? Think putting airbags in a backpack is impossible? Think having a gliding landing is only scifi? That's not thinking. That's just you letting us know you want to move used chevy's for a 'living' or already are.

karl (forgot to mention penny stock issue)

OOPS, perhaps most important is the noise about stock manipulation without any net numbers being offered. SO absent factual contest, we should all assume that a third of a penny change on the penny, given the investments in the company recently, is diminimus when the stocks are already as disclosed "penny" in nature. Most likely stockholders now own almost none of the equtiy in the companies mentioned as well. That happens with eletcric utilities as well. And one, after shedding shareholder equity, ended up shedding it's ownership in prommissing now in store PV technology as well... the kind that makes a great sail or shade for your ultra low energy consuming but astounding performance (zero to 25mph faster then any beast or machine to set foot or wheel legally upon the earth practically speaking ever) alternatives trivially in your 'garage' within just weeks or months of your being willing to dare to stand up and sit upon for your own good and the good of all mankind and the earth.

No reason to trust car salesmen, but please don't tune them out when they say something interesting just because too few people are already listening perhaps....

karl (forgot to chime about brakes)

Utterly absurdly we use the same wheels to accelerate and brake, or to brake at all we use wheels, as we use to cruise.

Jets don't do that. Maybe some choppers leave them out, but they don't roll on them and they are earodynamic.

SO, the only decent electrici bike uses a tremendous amount of energy- know why? ROlling resistance. When the road is smooth enough and rough enough for a tiny hard, wide, elastic, belt of some sort, could connect to the earth, kick off from it, with almost no energy lost. Especially when at the legal maximum of howver many amazing yards per second. However many times as fast as the fastest sprinter. However faster then typical rush hour gass guzzling gets us in fact!

THe wheel is an old, tired, obscenely wasteful as used on mountain bikes Power Assited or not. It doesn't have to be ten feet tall to be fixed. I broke some dental work eating bread a year or two ago. Standard for the activity was the metal gear used to move the belt and loaves. To avoid people unlike me who do sue, most bakeries now used plastic equipment. Yet we use hard rims and AIR to support our treads. Absurd. Obscene. Insane. Wasteful? Well, duh, like wearing an air bed on each hand and trying to crawl away from the boogey man.

The chain should in other words run under the vehicle and support it and NOT be used for putting the inertia iback into the earth/and/or turning blood into brake pad dust (well vice versa)...

Anyone know how much an airbag costs? A tiny fraction of a car, even a cheap one. But far too much for a bike right? When bikes routinely sell for more then cars. So we all pretend we haveh a clue when we don't. When we buy cars that cost a year or more of our salary, just to buy, and select the seller based upon not having the first months payment ready.

It's our money we spend. Our lives we shed not just innocent others. Yet we act like factory fed brain dead stock gobbling up whatever is offered, happy to offer up our necks, oblivious to our likely demise in a utterly routine 'wreck.'

Making Cars safe is impossible. Making bikes work far better then any car, on roads we know have too much of, is so trivial, it might allow our kids to start learning important stuff this year instead of just being prepared to volunteer to steer or even kill to continue to fill it up once or even just that as if just a tool not really in any school ever.



Sorry I misread you post. I musta blew right past your word "tech" in your initial statement. I guess I was guilty of misreading what you said. In fact all I did, in my regards to your statement, was reiterate what you stated with the exception for adding that what you said was wrong... for that I appologize.

And I must also appologize to all for the misinformation concerning Maxell. Enyr has the correct dates and agreement information concerning Alcoa/Maxell. As I said before I lost a bunch of my company research material not too long ago and I'm sorry for trying to commit to statements from memory.

I would hope to think that all of you here know I try to make comments based on facts from acceptible resources and if I speculate I try to state such an intension. I try to answer questions whole heartedly with honorable intent.

I appologize once gain to you Enyr for incoorectly reading your statement (in which my statement in regards to your responce was actually true and correct)... and to the readers of this blog regarding the Alcoa/Maxell information. Please consider the validity of all the other information I have posted and by all means double check my comments such as Enyr has. I hope, in your research, you will find that my information is valid.

Enyr, I too believe in Altair because technically I am part owner as I stated many a times. I'm not a major stockholder but I have thousands of dollars , a respectable chunk in terms of percentage of my entire portfolio, hoping for the best for Altair. And thank you Enyr for keeping me inline and for your kind words concerning my company, Altair Nanotechnolgies Inc.


Looks like I made another mistake.


re: "Can anyone tell me about electric cars and temperature? I live in Rhode Island, which still does get pretty damn cold in the winter (although winters are definitely shorter now than they were when I was growing up). Do freezing temperatures effect battery performance?"

I stated before that the operating temperatures for the Nanosafe battery was -30 to 70 degrees C... when infact the operating temp range is -50 to 75 degrees C.

If you need to double check my research this is the link...




For those worried about batteries not working in code weather, a demonstration: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u5kkU23bfEc


It's okey i trust your reseach....


Gasoline has tax, too little, but a significant amount. When you burn lots of petrol- like to destroy fertile fields for homicide inducing criminally designed subdivisions- the diesel you burn is RED. It's relatively cheap, as you alone pay the costs of plowing under the cherry trees. No one seeks reimbursement for paving the way from tree to tree. You don't use rubber wheels. The fuel is red. It's cheaper. It's bootlegged because it's so much cheaper in fact

Dump Trucks

I think it's a great electric concept car, its has functionality, its small, stylish with a host of great designs, and will surely bring an eye to the brand from the youth.I think I will go with Electric car, because they are giving me more mileage that other cars!!

Golf Cart Parts

Golf car is one of the example in electric operated car... however, you can't expect with regards on speed but atleast it's a environment friendly vehicle.

Custom Golf Cart Parts

Even me, I prefer for Electric mobile, it's a safe and environment friend... Any electric operated car isn't much speed. it's good for a small community...

Driving lessons altrincham

I like this post great work indeed well don keep posting.
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