TESLA - Battery Cartridge Swapping Technology

The founder of Tesla, Elon Musk, demonstrates that an EV can refuel twice as fast as a petrol car



Tesla Motors


The Telsa battery pack and chassis





Tesla Motors Inc. (TSLA), the electric-car maker run by Elon Musk, showed a battery swapping system for its Model S sedan that’s faster than charging and ensures the car earns maximum zero-emission vehicle credits in California.

Musk and Franz Von Holzhausen, Tesla’s chief designer, demonstrated the system late yesterday at the company’s Hawthorne, California, design studio. The device removes and replaces the car’s 1,000-pound (454 kilogram) lithium-ion battery with a fully charged one in just 90 seconds, said Musk, who used it to swap packs in two cars faster than an Audi sedan could be refilled with gasoline.

“What we really want to show here is that you can be more convenient with an electric car,” said Musk, 41, Tesla’s chief executive officer. “Hopefully, this is what convinces people finally that electric cars are the future.”

Musk, who’s also building a U.S. network of rapid-charge stations to let Tesla owners drive cross-country, is creating exclusive infrastructure and features to boost the brand’s practicality and cachet. The pack-swapping for the $69,900 sedans also bolsters Tesla’s revenue from regulatory credit sales.

California and nine states that follow its Zero-Emission Vehicle program require carmakers to generate compliance credits by selling models that emit little or no tailpipe exhaust, including plug-in hybrids, battery-only cars and hydrogen vehicles. Large manufacturers need the most credits to comply and Palo Alto, California-based Tesla, with annual volume too small to be covered by the rules, is a surplus credit generator.


Barack Obama tour with Elon Musk



Last month Tesla, which has nearly tripled in market value this year, said its first-ever quarterly profit was aided by $67.9 million in ZEV credit sales to companies it didn’t name. Credit sales will drop in the second quarter and may disappear in 2013’s second half, Musk said in an earnings call last month.

Tesla has said it plans to sell 21,000 Model S cars this year, with deliveries to Europe and Asia beginning in the second half. Demand currently exceeds Tesla’s production capacity, Musk said yesterday, without elaborating.

Each Model S generates between five and seven credits for Tesla, determined by battery size, under a requirement that they can be refueled in 10 minutes or less, according to California’s Air Resources Board.








Battery swapping capability currently satisfies that “fast refueling” requirement, David Clegern, a spokesman for the agency, said by e-mail. CARB is considering a rule change that would remove pack swapping as a fast-refueling option, he said.

Hydrogen vehicles such as Honda Motor Co. (7267)’s FCX Clarity fuel-cell sedan are the only other cars that currently earn as many as seven credits per vehicle, according to California rules.

“Are we simply doing this for the CARB credits? That is not the case,” Musk said. The company’s revenue from ZEV credit sales will decline over time relative to its vehicle sales as deliveries to global markets grow, he said. He estimated that U.S. sales will account for only about a third of Tesla’s volume, of which only half will generate credits.

Tesla will install the first battery swap stations at Supercharger stations in California from late this year, Musk said. They cost about $500,000, and will initially go into the company’s busiest Supercharger stations, he is quoted as saying, and we (BMS) like that strategy.




The Tesla system is pretty much a variation of Shai Agassi's Better Place battery exchange system. That being the case it will suffer the same fate, if there is no consensus as to standardization.



Each unit will store about 50 battery packs that customers will borrow for the price of an equivalent tank of gasoline, Musk said. Users’ credit cards will be automatically billed, and the loaner packs can be returned to the charging station and replaced with the customer’s own pack, fully charged, he said.

The company is open to eventually licensing its battery swap system to other companies interested in offering a similar service, Musk said.

Tesla’s strategy for battery-swapping capability will have to be better than that of Better Place Inc., a provider of electric car services that filed for bankruptcy this year (2014).

Better Place, also based in Palo Alto, offered charging services and battery swapping for an electric Renault SA model at stations in Israel and Denmark. Better Place filed a motion for liquidation with an Israeli court last month after failing to attract new investments, according to a company statement.

Tesla fell 1.1 percent to $99.55 at the close in New York. The shares have risen 194 percent this year, compared with a 12 percent advance in the Russell 1000 Index.

Musk’s fortune has soared 145 percent this year to $5.8 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

Contact: Alan Ohnsman in Los Angeles at aohnsman@bloomberg.net





The ECOSTAR DC50 (Project BE4) is a two seat sports car project with front wheel drive and 50kW direct current (DC) electric motors. The roof will carry solar panels to supplement the lithium ion batteries or hydrogen fuel in cartridges as a range extender between instant energy transfer pit-stops. The cartridge may contain batteries, fuels cells, or a mix of batteries and fuel cells. The technology future proofs vehicles against battery and/or fuel cell advances - as an aid to the transition to a zero carbon lifestyle.  The challenge for the ECOSTAR is to reduce the long standing 1 minute recharging world record, to less that 30 seconds. If that is achieved before the end of 2015, the Bluebird™ cartridge system will be three times faster than the Tesla. Investor/partnerships are invited.




Some of the most popular lithium iron phosphate batteries on the market. 3.6 volt cells and 200Ah and 180Ah capacities. The prices vary from one manufacturer and one supplier to another.





Tesla teased electric motorheads earlier this week by announcing an event that would show off its curious battery-swapping system, and it wound up being even more impressive than most of us imagined. Long story short, Tesla can swap a Model S’s battery in just 90 seconds (that’s less time than it takes to fuel up a regular car), and you won’t even have to get out of your seat to do it.

“We designed Model S from the beginning to be capable of swapping out the battery pack faster than you can fill a gas tank,” Tesla CEO Elon Musk said at the company’s Hawthorne design studio earlier this evening.

It’s not exactly a secret that the Model S’s battery pack can be switched out as needed, but the company saw fit to keep the details under wraps until today. For the process to run that quickly, you’d expect some technical wizardry to come into play and Tesla certainly delivers. Once a Model S owner parks the car on a designated spot, a platform raises from the ground to disconnect and grab hold of the depleted battery. The platform then descends back into the ground, dumps the battery, retrieves a fresh one, and rises once more to connect it to the car. Really, it’s one of those things you need to see, so watch the videos on this page or Youtube.

Frenzied drivers will still have to do some work, though — they’ll have to drop off the battery on the return leg of their journey and pay an unspecified “transport fee,” though they can also choose to keep the battery and pony up the difference between the price of the old and new batteries. The first swap-capable locations will be at supercharger stations located along California’s I-5, though the company plans to bring them online at east coast superchargers in short order.

Judging from the videos pouring out of the event, the overall tone of the presentation was exuberant, and it’s hard not to see why: The company is looking at hot-swappable batteries for its electric vehicles as a way to put them on even footing with traditional gas-powered cars. Of course, that’s not to say that bringing those changeable batteries to the masses is going to be easy.

Tesla has spent more than a year constructing supercharger stations along the east and west coasts in a bid to give their electric cars the juice to complete your average languorous summer road trip. Outfitting each of those stations with the ability to quickly replace batteries and get motorists back on the road presents quite a logistics problem. There’s the cost to consider — Tesla expects each battery swap station to cost about $500,000 to build, to say nothing of the maintenance and infrastructure costs that will come now that someone presumably has to stop by each station and replace worn-down batteries. Still, Tesla already has plans to triple the size of its supercharger network. If every one of them is slated to get battery-swapping stations, the prospect of trying to cruise the country in an electric car just got a lot less sketchy.

Tesla has posted an official version of the video with a bigger focus on how darned fast the process is. Check that out too.







Elon R. Musk (born June 28, 1971) is a South African-born Canadian-American business magnate, inventor and investor. He is currently the CEO and CTO of SpaceX and CEO and Chief Product Architect of Tesla Motors. He was an early investor in SpaceX, PayPal, Inc. Tesla Motors, and Zip2, and is widely considered a co-founder of each. He has also envisioned a conceptual high-speed transportation system known as the Hyperloop.



The company was co-founded by Martin Eberhard, Marc Tarpenning, JB Straubel, Ian Wright, and Musk, after initial incorporation by Eberhard and Tarpenning. Musk became involved with the company in 2004, as a Series A investor. Other Series A investments groups included SDL Ventures and Compass Technology Partners. Following the financial crisis in 2008, Musk assumed leadership of the company as CEO and product architect, positions he still holds today. Tesla Motors first built an electric sports car, the Tesla Roadster, with sales of about 2,500 vehicles to 31 countries. Tesla began delivery of its four-door Model S sedan on 22 June 2012 and unveiled its third product, the Model X, aimed at the SUV/minivan market, on 9 February 2012. Model X is scheduled to begin production in early 2015. In addition to its own cars, Tesla sells electric powertrain systems to Daimler for the Smart EV and Mercedes A Class and to Toyota for the RAV4 EV. Musk was able to bring in both companies as long-term investors in Tesla.

Musk has favored building a sub-$30,000 subcompact and building and selling electric vehicle powertrain components so that other automakers can produce electric vehicles at affordable prices without having to develop the products in house. Several mainstream publications have compared him with Henry Ford for his work on advanced vehicle powertrains.

To overcome the range limitations of electric cars, Musk said in an interview with All Things D in May 2013 that Tesla is "dramatically accelerating" their network of supercharger stations, tripling the number on the East and West Coasts that June, with plans for more expansion across North America, including Canada, throughout the year. He is reported to have a 32% stake in Tesla, which is valued at $18 billion, as of November 2013. His annual salary at Tesla is one dollar, and similar to Steve Jobs and others, the remainder of his compensation is in the form of stock and performance-based bonuses.




Tesla CEO Elon Musk announced in a press release and conference call and blog on June 12, 2014 that the company will allow its technology patents for use by anyone in good faith, in a bid to entice automobile manufacturers to speed up development of electric cars. He is quoted as saying:


"The unfortunate reality is electric car programs (or programs for any vehicle that doesn't burn hydrocarbons) at the major manufacturers are small to non-existent, constituting an average of far less than 1% of their total vehicle sales."


Musk provided the initial concept for SolarCity, which was then co-founded by his cousins Lyndon and Peter Rive. Musk remains the largest shareholder. SolarCity is now said to be one of the largest provider sof solar power systems in the United States.

The underlying motivation for funding both SolarCity and Tesla is to help combat global warming. In 2012, Musk announced that SolarCity and Tesla Motors are collaborating to use electric vehicle batteries to smooth the impact of rooftop solar on the power grid, with the program going live in 2013.

On June 17, 2014, Musk committed to building a Solar City advanced production facility in Buffalo, NY that would triple the size of the largest solar plant in the United States. Musk stated the plant will be "one of the single largest solar panel production plants in the world," and it will be followed by one or more even bigger facilities in subsequent years.



Musk was born in Pretoria, South Africa, in 1971, to a Canadian mother (Maye Musk) and a South African-born British father. He taught himself computer programming and at age 12 sold the computer code for a video game called Blastar for $500. After his parents divorced in 1980, Musk lived mostly with his father, Errol, in multiple locations in South Africa.

Musk attended Waterkloof House Preparatory School and graduated from Pretoria Boys High School and moved to Canada in 1988 at the age of 17, after obtaining Canadian citizenship through his mother. He did so in advance of his South African military service, reasoning that it would be easier to immigrate to the United States from Canada than from South Africa.

In 1992, after spending two years at Queen's School of Business in Kingston, Ontario, Musk transferred to the University of Pennsylvania where he received a bachelor's degree in economics from the Wharton School. He stayed on a year to finish his second bachelor's degree in physics. He moved to California to pursue a PhD in applied physics at Stanford but left the program after two days to pursue his entrepreneurial aspirations in the areas of the Internet, renewable energy and outer space. In 2002, he became an American citizen.













































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