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Researchers at Tianjin University (China) report another approach to stabilizing the performance of a Li-sulfur battery. In a paper in the Journal of Power Sources, they describe the preparation of a sulfur cathode modified by a bi-functional nafion/γ-Al2O3 (aluminum oxide) membrane which can “remarkably” immobilize the polysulfides—a major cause of rapid capacity degradation—within the unique cathode structure due to its ion selectivity and absorbent capacity.
They report a high initial discharge capacity of 1448.0 mAh g−1 can be achieved at 1C and a capacity of 788.6 mAh g−1 after 200 cycles, indicating a slow degradation. The coulombic efficiency remains as high as 97% during cycling.
The researchers attributed the excellent electrochemical properties to the bifunctional and stable membrane which reduces the polysulfide shuttle effect and maintains its integrity even after charging–discharging for 200 cycles.
Xiaoyan Liu, Zhongqiang Shan, Kunlei Zhu, Jiangyong Du, Qiwei Tang, Jianhua Tian (2015) “Sulfur electrode modified by bifunctional nafion/γ-Al2O3 membrane for high performance lithium–sulfur batteries,” Journal of Power Sources, Volume 274, Pages 85-93, doi: 10.1016/j.jpowsour.2014.10.039
C.A.T. Inc. (formally Canadian American Transportation, Inc.) has signed a full-service lease agreement for 100 compressed natural gas (CNG) sleeper tractors. This is Ryder’s first natural gas lease customer in Canada and its largest single natural gas vehicle customer to date.
C.A.T., a truckload carrier based in Coteau-du-Lac, Québec, Canada, will use the trucks in its delivery fleet that travels from Montreal, Canada to Laredo, Texas. C.A.T. has served the shipping public between Canada and the United States since 1978 and provides transportation services to major corporations within the automotive, food, beverage, consumer packaged goods (CPG), and electronic industries. Ryder will also provide maintenance for the 100 CNG vehicles from Ryder’s Montreal, Canada service facility, which is being upgraded for compliance with natural gas standards.
C.A.T. has been leasing trucks from Ryder for the past eight years. Ryder will replace almost one-third of C.A.T.’s fleet of 325 vehicles with 100 CNG sleeper tractors. The natural gas fleet is expected to have a carbon emissions reduction of 2,564 metric tons.
Ryder is an industry leader in natural gas vehicle solutions for the commercial transportation market with more than 27 million miles of natural gas operating experience. Ryder has deployed Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) and Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) vehicles into the fleets for Ryder customers in California, New York, Michigan, Texas, Arizona, Utah, Georgia and Louisiana. It operates two Liquefied to Compressed Natural Gas (LCNG) fuel stations at its maintenance facilities in Orange and Fontana, Calif. Ryder also operates an LNG fuel station at its Fulton, Ga. maintenance facility.
Harman, the premium global audio and infotainment group, is expanding its HALOsonic suite of noise management solutions, which the company has co-developed with Lotus Engineering using patented Active Noise Control Technologies. (Earlier post.) Harman’s new Road Noise Cancellation (RNC) technology minimizes unwanted noise generated when the vehicle tires roll across the road surface. RNC, which is presently ready for market implementation, enables automakers to use lighter weight materials and improve fuel economy without compromising on vehicle noise levels.
In pursuing ways to lessen the environmental impact of vehicles and raise fuel efficiency, automakers are reducing vehicle weight, often by using less noise-dampening insulation in the car’s interior. The use of lighter materials, however, increases perceptible road noise inside the vehicle, which then penetrates the interior—and also compromises the audio experience of the on-board infotainment system.
Traditional NVH (Noise, Vibration, and Harshness) methods have difficulties mitigating these issues satisfactorily, and these technologies also tend to add weight, which cancels out the fuel economy effect of using lighter materials.
The Harman HALOsonic RNC solution is based on the principle of using “anti-noise” to counteract road noise. To implement RNC, the chassis of the vehicle is fitted with accelerometers which enable the system to measure correlation of vibration coming from the road and the resulting noise inside the cabin. Subsequently, the proprietary algorithm in the controller creates inverse sound waves (coming from each speaker) through the car’s audio system to cancel out the noise caused by the road-induced vibration.
It is also able to cope with the broadband nature of road noise, with its wide range of frequencies. The HALOsonic RNC solution can reduce the peaks of the noise across the target frequency range, creating a quieter experience within the vehicle cabin. With RNC, Harman’s uses its patented True Audio technology to ensure that only unwanted engine or road noise is cancelled, while preserving music signals in a similar audio range.
HALOsonic consists of a suite of noise management technologies to improve noise levels and to enhance and contour sound inside and outside the vehicle. In addition to RNC, HALOsonic comprises Engine Order Cancelation (EOC) and internal as well as external Electronic Sound Synthesis.
External ESS (eESS) generates sound primarily for hybrids and electric vehicles, creating the authentic sounds which drivers and pedestrians are familiar with from combustion engines, thereby increasing safety both for drivers and other road users. Internal ESS (iESS) serves to generate unique sound signatures for vehicles to contour and accentuate the engine sound.