Silicon-based lithium

Silicon-Based Lithium-Ion Batteries

Silicon-Based Lithium Batteries A Major Advance

Lithium-Ion batteries power a world in transition. Consequently, efforts are made to optimize their efficiency. As a result, University of Alberta chemists have discovered a major breakthrough. Their contribution to clean energy: silicon-based lithium batteries.

READ: Explosion-Free Battery Technology

Currently, Li-Ion batteries use graphite. Instead, U of A chemists identified silicon as a worthy substitute. Hence, silicon can absorb more lithium than graphite. Additionally, it is more abundant. Unfortunately, silicon is known to fracture after numerous charge-and-discharge cycles. However, researchers shaped the material into nano-scale wires or tubes to solve this problem.

Silicon-based lithium

More Efficient Vehicle Batteries

The discovery is monumental for a number of reasons. Firstly, most consumer electronics use Li-Ion batteries. Secondly, the electric vehicle industry continues to skyrocket. Lastly, a sustainable future looks increasingly toward grid storage tech. The U of A’s graduate student training director put it best. “The research has potential applications in anything that relies upon energy storage using a battery.”

Ultimately, the technology gives Li-Ion batteries 10 times more storage capacity.

Silicon-based lithium

Lithium Spearheads Clean Energy Tech

Advances in lithium tech aren’t rare – technological leaps are published weekly. Furthermore, various projects are in the works. Such research is key to satisfying the goals set by the Paris Climate Accord. Granted, just 3% of global vehicle sales are electric. However, both governments and corporations consider cleantech a priority.

The U of A is on the right side of history. Moreover, such breakthroughs will allow electric vehicles to dominate global transportation.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of lithium experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, Ultra Lithium is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

 

Manitoba lithium

Manitoba Lithium to Boost Mining Sector

Manitoba Lithium a Boon to Province

Manitoba’s mining industry is in rough shape. Consequently, employees are frustrated by a lack of governmental action to address this problem. However, it appears Manitoba lithium will give the industry new life.

READ: Nevada Clean Energy Plan Approved

Manitoba lithiumThere are many reasons the province’s mining industry struggles. First, many mines near the end of their lifecycle. Second, commodity prices continue to fall. Lastly, high tax rates and a lack of government support curb industry growth. Luckily, analysts say several hubs could supply hundreds with jobs.

Providing Jobs to Canadians

Among the candidates for lithium exploration is Snow Lake. “If we get three or four mines going up there again, we could probably get 500 directly employed people,” said geologist Dale Schultz. Furthermore, there is evidence the business model is sustainable. The BC government passed legislation ensuring all 2040 vehicle sales will be electric.

Moreover, lithium is an increasingly hot commodity. The world’s lightest metal powers most consumer electronics, grid storage technology and electric vehicles. In other words: demand isn’t expected to fall.

Manitoba lithium

Reshaping Global Energy

Manitoba lithium projects help spurn sustainability in Canadian industry. Similarly, other countries have taken eco-friendly steps. China leads the world’s push for clean transportation. Currently, it owns over half the world’s lithium supply. Meanwhile, the Trump administration quietly backs lithium projects.

Overall, lithium exploration in Manitoba is a boon for clean energy advocates. Eventually, electric vehicles will drop in price and command a majority of market share. Manitobans have reason to be excited.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of lithium experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, Ultra Lithium is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

Cheapest Power Storage Tech by 2050: Lithium-Ion

Lithium-Ion Batteries offer Cheapest Power Storage Solution

Energy storage is an increasingly relevant issue. Consequently, researchers constantly pursue effective storage solutions. Meanwhile, Imperial College London says Li-Ion batteries will offer the world’s cheapest power storage by 2050.

READ: Clean Energy Hotel Debuts in Scotland

cheapest power storageThere are a number of reasons for this. First, most storage applications can use Li-Ion batteries. This includes grid storage, where fluctuations are less likely to occur. Furthermore, consumers are better equipped to manage consumption levels. Second, the technology’s lifetime combined with cost outperforms all competitors. Currently, conventional Li-Ion batteries last 1,300 charges. Meanwhile, upcoming solid-state Li-Ion batteries drastically exceed this.

The Future of Energy Storage

However, Panasonic USA CEO Tom Gebhardt believes solid-state tech is a decade away. Lastly, lithium investment increases daily. Particularly, efficient South American mining and exploration projects work to satisfy a global lithium shortage. Although the world is rich in lithium, projects fail to satisfy demand.

Currently, the cheapest power storage tech is through pumped-storage hydroelectricity. However, the technology’s price won’t soon decrease. Meanwhile, Li-Ion costs are expected to drop rapidly.

Increasing Value, Decreasing Price

cheapest power storageDr. Iain Staffell served as the paper’s senior author. He believes Li-Ion batteries follow in the footsteps of crystalline silicon solar panels. He points to advances in second and third generation solar cells. Meanwhile, he sees the same trend play out with lithium batteries. “Sheer economies of scale mean these first-generation panels now cannot be beaten on price.” He concludes that lithium is the resource of the future.

Electric vehicles and consumer electronics help the technology advance. However, grid storage applications will greatly increase lithium use.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of lithium experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, Ultra Lithium is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

Clean energy hotel

Clean Energy Hotel Debuts in Scotland

Edinburgh Home to Clean Energy Hotel

The first clean energy hotel is here. Scotland’s Edinburgh Park hotel has installed a lithium-ion battery to power its 200 rooms.

READ: Lithium Grid Storage Increasing

However, the 5-metric ton battery doesn’t provide power 24/7. It takes 2 hours to charge and lasts up to 3 hours. Granted, hotel chain Premier Inn installed the 100-kilowatt battery as a trial. It aims to better manage its energy consumption.

Scotland a Clean Energy Leader

clean energy hotelThe UK country is a global force in clean energy tech. Furthermore, it’s a leader in wind and solar power adoption. Moreover, EV adoption has skyrocketed in some parts of the country. Reports say certain regions experienced a 30% increase in 2018.

Meanwhile, global lithium-ion battery use rapidly increases. However, transportation is not the primary cause. While consumer electronics constitute the bulk of lithium use, grid storage applications also rise. The hotel chain recognizes this. Consequently, it plans to monetize its clean energy storage capabilities.

Lithium Use Increases

Clean energy hotelE.ON is the company behind the giant battery. Its customer accounts director, Richard Oakley, spoke on its potential future uses: “We can help Whitbread upgrade to the full-board option of drawing electricity from the grid when prices are low, storing that energy for use at peak times and having the ability to sell it back to the grid to help balance supply and demand on the network.”

Additionally, the battery will save the hotel $25,345 USD annually. Meanwhile, lithium applications rapidly replace carbon-emitting counterparts. The Edinburgh Park Hotel is a beacon of such positive change.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

South Korean lithium demand

South Korean Lithium Demand Increases

South Korean Lithium Demand to Increase in 2019

Surprisingly, electric vehicles aren’t the driving force behind lithium demand. Instead, consumer electronics take the top spot. This is expected to change. Especially in Asia, electric vehicle adoption skyrockets. Consequently, South Korean lithium demand will follow suit.

South Korean lithium demandREAD: Chinese Electric Car Industry Leads World

After all, the mineral powers EV batteries. According to a news release, Korea’s lithium market will reach $20 billion USD in 2019. A number of factors spurn this growth. First, EV adoption. Exports currently sit at 36,000 units. By 2022, that number will inflate to 250,000. This is great news for its national auto industry. Transitioning from gas to battery-powered vehicles, sales will hit 5,000 units annually.

National Green Energy Policy

Second, the country’s Green Energy Policy will support sustainable growth. It will provide ample subsidies for both infrastructure and energy storage systems. Furthermore, the country plans to phase out its nuclear energy program. Neighbouring Japan’s Fukushima nuclear disaster has squashed public support for the power source.

Lastly, Korea’s emergency services sector uses lithium cells to power most of its equipment.

Lithium on a Global Scale

South Korean lithium demandKorea is one of many countries to embrace clean energy technologies. However, global electric vehicle sales sit at a mere 3% of total sales. Nevertheless, the country’s pivot to sustainability will increase this number. Meanwhile, regional superpower China spearheads the global EV push. It currently owns over half of global lithium reserves.

Not to be outdone, the Korean government now provides financial support to clean energy programs. Moreover, lithium plays a major part in the growth of national economic revenue. Expect a 15.3% annual increase from 2018-2022.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

Chinese electric car

Chinese Electric Car Industry Leads World

Chinese Electric Car Industry Laps Competitors

The world’s second-largest economy is the clean energy frontrunner. However, the Chinese electric car industry has only revved its engine.

READ: Emissions in China: 100% EVs by 2030

Chinese electric carNevertheless, China’s invested more in EVs than any country in the world. Meanwhile, it’s home to nearly all of the world’s electric two-wheelers. Furthermore, it has over 100 domestic electric car makers. Additionally. China accounts for over 35% of global EV sales. Both supply and demand metrics are stratospheric. Tesla took notice. Its Shanghai factory is currently under construction.

People’s Republic to Benefit

Consequently, Beijing will benefit from EV adoption for a number of reasons. First, EV adoption will force air pollution to plummet. After all, the transportation industry is the number one climate change contributor. Additionally, the communist state relies heavily on imported oil. As a result, Chinese investments in global lithium mines have increased.

It’s done this because batteries are expensive. Fortunately, advances in lithium-ion battery technology consistently surface.

Chinese electric car

Lithium at Forefront of Change

The federal government backs this sustainable approach. Under Xi Jinping, the centrally planned economy spearheads the global clean energy movement. Consequently, its Belt & Road Initiative is influenced by these ambitions. The directive funnels money into developing economies. Not surprisingly, this strategy has increased the country’s sphere of influence.

A byproduct of this plan: China now owns over half the global lithium supply. With most of the world’s lithium in South America, investments in the region have significantly increased. It’s no secret why more EVs were sold in China last year than the rest of the world combined.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

electric harley davidson

Electric Harley Davidson Bikes To Roll Out

Preorders Begin for Electric Harley Davidson Bikes

At long last, Harley Davidson electric bikes will soon be available. Consequently, a major industry shift has been confirmed. Yes, the fifth largest motorcycle manufacturer of all-time is going electric.

READ: EU Emissions Policy Benefits Electric Vehicles & Lithium Batteries

In 2014, Harley announced plans for the LiveWire. However, the historically masculine brand waited nearly five years to accept preorders. The move is another sign of the everchanging global transportation industry. Top auto manufacturers experience an eco-friendly rebranding en masse.

electric harley davidson

A Changing Industry Starts Charging

Moreover, the technology behind clean cars improves at a steady pace. Major advances in lithium batteries seem to surface on a weekly basis. Meanwhile, electric Harley Davidson bikes carry the hopes of an automaker vying to stay relevant. The LiveWire will go for less than $30,000 USD and is smaller and more compact than traditional Harleys.

Furthermore, it’s efficient. Enjoy 110 miles on a single charge. Enjoy going from 0 to 60 in 3.5 seconds. Finally, enjoy charging with every brake. That’s right, the engine features a regenerative braking system that puts electrons back in the battery.

Built for Modern Roads

electric harley davidsonSimply put, the LiveWire is built for city driving. Granted, drivers worry about the lack of noise made by electric vehicles. To address this worry, electric Harley Davidson bikes aren’t silent. Instead, they offer “a tone that increases in pitch and volume with speed—a new sound that represents the smooth, electric power of the LiveWire motorcycle.”

Moreover, it features advanced lithium-ion technology. Cast-aluminum fins cool the cells that sit between the rider’s knees. Furthermore, the engine is air-cooled. Harley shouldn’t take long getting the LiveWire to market. It’s not the only motorcycle manufacturer in the electric game.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of clean energy news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

tesla slashes prices

Tesla Slashes Prices as Tax Credit Halves

Tesla Slashes Prices of Several Models

All good things come to an end. Then again, one door closes so another may open. At least, that’s how optimists view the automakers’ latest decision. As the $7,500 federal tax credit was halved, headlines of “Tesla Slashes Prices” flooded news streams.

READ: Self-Driving Tesla Vehicles “To Accelerate”

Granted, Tesla shares dipped by 10 percent. However, the Model 3, Model X and Model S base prices will drop by $2,000 USD. Moreover, the company announced its 2018 production totals. It made over 86,000 vehicles in Q4, an 8 percent increase over Q3. However, over 61,000 were of the Model 3.

tesla slashes pricesAffordable EVs

Meanwhile, annual sales numbers were also promising. The manufacturer sold north of 90,000 models during Q4. This included over 63,000 Model 3’s. Furthermore, it confirmed plans to roll out the Model 3 in Europe and China starting February.

Moreover, the price adjustments are necessary. Ultimately, customers won’t save as much as they did with the full tax credit. However, the drop will ensure that sales remain consistent. Unfortunately, its annual deliveries didn’t meet market expectations. Granted, it experienced an 8% improvement over 2017.

tesla slashes pricesPowering Tesla’s Fleet

Although the tax credit’s gone, it served its purpose. Today, more Tesla’s hit the road than ever. Regrettably, they’re restricted to upper-class earners with sizable checkbooks. However, the tax break influenced many to go electric that would’ve otherwise never done so. Bloomberg estimates 55% of all new car sales will be electric by 2040. Obviously, government subsidies play a major role in that projection.

Furthermore, the tax break was responsible for advances in lithium-ion battery technology. Without it, demand for electric vehicles would be nowhere near where it is today.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of mining news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

explosion free batteries

Explosion Free Battery Technology

Explosion Free Battery Makes Lithium-Ion Safer than Ever

There have been 225 air or airport-related incidents involving lithium-ion batteries since 1991. Consequently, the development of an explosion free battery is a priority.

READ: Japanese Solid State Lithium Batteries Debut

California-based tech firm Amionx reports they’ve made a significant contribution to the achievement of this goal. Furthermore, it expects to license the patent for use in commercial products by the end of 2019. Granted, incidents of batteries exploding are rare. Moreover, SafeCore (Amionx’s patented battery technology) performed very well in ‘torture tests.’

explosion free battery

Safer Science

Conventional lithium-ion batteries burst into flames when stabbed, shot or smashed. Meanwhile, SafeCore batteries did no such thing. This is because SafeCore batteries don’t undergo thermal runaway. Overcharging at high voltage can cause this. Additionally, if two electrodes experience an internal short. Ultimately, the solvent along the separator vaporizes.

What is the separator? Only a thin polymer that ions flow through. As a result, ions flow free and cause damage.

Lithium and Clean Energy Tech

explosion free batterySo how does Amionx stop this from happening? It “inserts an ultrathin layer of material (just 1 to 5 micrometers thick, slimmer than a human hair) between each electrode and its respective current collector.

Furthermore, the layer rapidly decomposes when there’s a rise in temperature, current or temperature. Consequently, an air gap is created within the cell, stopping the flow of electrons.

Developments like this are crucial to the development of clean energy technologies. Moreover, advances in lithium battery technology happen weekly. If climate change is to be successfully combatted, trailblazers like Amionx need funding.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of lithium and clean energy news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).

Nevada clean energy

Nevada Clean Energy Plan Approved

Nevada Clean Energy Plan Phases Out Coal

Sometimes, good things go unnoticed. With little fanfare, Nevada passed legislation approving the largest renewable energy investment in the state’s history. Consequently, ‘Nevada clean energy’ and ‘Nevada energy’ will soon be one and the same.

READ: Inefficient Coal Plants Out, Lithium-Ion In

Regulators approved a plan to build six new solar plants. Moreover, the vote was unanimous. Apparently, the home of sin city will soon be the solar state. The approval is part of Nevada Energy’s Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). Ultimately, it allows the electric utility to enter into power purchase agreements with six planned solar photovoltaic plants. They boast a total capacity of 1,001 megawatts.

nevada clean energy

The Solar State

The plants will double Nevada’s renewable storage capacity by 2023. However, this mandates the conditional retirement of the Valmy Generating Station’s coal-firing units. Furthermore, the retirement is dependent on the success of the solar plants’ construction.

A spokeswoman said: “NV Energy’s shift from coal to low cost clean energy will save millions of dollars for families and businesses across Nevada while also clearing our air of more toxic coal pollution.” Moreover, a vote to raise renewable energy dependency to 50% by 2030 is set for 2020. Meanwhile, Nevada Energy can now spend up to $22.89 million on transmission upgrades.

Solar Energy and Lithium Batteries

Nevada clean energy

Nevada clean energy plans excite emission-free advocates the world over. Granted, solar technology has a long way to go. However, the storage solution is reliable. Lithium-ion batteries are the battery of choice in most solar applications. Meanwhile, degradation is the primary hindrance they present. Smartphone and laptops face this problem.

Furthermore, electric vehicles face the same issue. Nevertheless, advances in the field are churned out at an impressive rate. Nevada’s progressive move will no doubt help improve our understanding of clean energy technologies.

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Ultra Lithium Inc. A team of clean energy experts with a finger on the pulse of mining news, ULI is a lithium exploration company with holdings in Argentina, Canada and the US (TSX-V: ULI, OTCQB: ULTXF and Frankfurt: QFB).