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Chevrolet Volt
GM is predicted to sell a total of 50,000 cars with electrification technologies this year

General Motors is looking to take huge strides in the way of electric vehicles (EV) and electric batteries: it wants to produce 500,000 EVs per year, and it wants to use Chevrolet Volt batteries to power homes during blackouts.

According to GM, it wants to sell 500,000 vehicles equipped with its electric technologies (plug-ins, EVs, hybrids) annually by 2017. If GM is able to do this, EVs would make up 5.5 percent of its total annual sales.

This is a pretty big jump considering GM is predicted to sell a total of 50,000 cars with electrification technologies this year.

GM is taking EVs very seriously, and is proving that by focusing on its next generation propulsion technology that is currently powering the Volt. GM is looking into new ways of using extended-range electric vehicle (EREV) technology.

Speaking of the Volt, GM is looking to use the EV's battery pack in an innovative way: powering homes in the event of an outage.

GM partnered with automation and power technologies company ABB Group as well as Duke Energy to find useful applications for EV batteries after they've been exhausted in vehicles.

The end result was a unit that contains five Volt lithium-ion battery packs that can provide two hours of electricity to three to five U.S. homes during a blackout. According to GM, the unit can provide 25 kilowatt hours of power and 50 kilowatt hours of energy.

"This is an industry first to be able to do secondary automotive batteries in a grid-based application," said Pablo Valencia, GM's senior manager of battery lifecycle management.

GM said the battery could last 10 years on the road and another 10 years as part of the power unit for blackouts.

Duke Energy is looking to install the unit in a North Carolina neighborhood for testing in 2013.

Source: The Detroit News

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RE: well
By PaFromFL on 11/16/2012 8:57:33 AM , Rating: -1
It's not much fun lugging around gas cans to fill your noisy, messy, smelly portable generator (assuming it still runs after long periods of disuse). Living on the coast of Florida, I would pay good money for an easy-to-use whole house generator that could also be used for transportation. A hybrid EV would be quite useful during an outage as it has longer run time than a pure EV, and can easily be filled with gas when the gas stations come back on line.

You won't need a shotgun or guard dogs if you spend the extra money to live in a good neighborhood. The biggest threat if you evacuate is that the authorities will not let you go back to your house for emergency repairs. If you can't place a tarp over your broken skylight, minor damage can turn into a total loss when mold invades.

A car and a laptop computer or DVD player do make a nice air-conditioned (or heated) home theater. The average car uses very little gas when idling.

RE: well
By DanNeely on 11/16/2012 9:06:10 AM , Rating: 2
How reliable is natural gas after a hurricane? If it generally survives intact it seems like it would be a winner since the fuel is delivered directly to your house and doesn't need to be stored in advance.

RE: well
By PaFromFL on 11/16/2012 11:34:28 AM , Rating: 2
Natural gas is not available where I live, but some people have propane tanks. The problem with natural gas during major windstorms is that dwelling damage can cause leaks and fires (they need to develop natural gas "circuit breakers"). If a few homes are damaged, I'd suspect authorities would turn off the natural gas to the entire neighborhood.

BTW, the most reliable utility in my area is the telephone landline. City water is also pretty reliable but runs out after a few days with no electricity for the water pumps.

"I modded down, down, down, and the flames went higher." -- Sven Olsen

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