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Japanese Giant Already On Record With Plans To Invest Hundreds Of Millions Into Factory

Tesla Motors' Gigafactory will get hundreds of employees from lithium-ion battery maker Panasonic Corp.

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Lithium-ion battery maker A123 Systems is officially unplugging from the grid. The company, which was acquired by Wanxiang Group last year, is selling its grid-storage business to Japan-based NEC Corp. The company's Massachusetts and Missouri facilities are going along with it.

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One of the bigger knocks against hybrid and electric vehicles is that while they don't directly produce much in the way of harmful emissions (if they make any at all), the process of building their electric motors and batteries can be very, very bad for the environment. Take graphite, for example. It's an essential ingredient in lithium-ion battery packs, like the one shown above in the back of a Toyota Prius Plug-In. According to Bloomberg, the average hybrid car uses about 22 pounds of graphit

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As Nissan Leaf sales continue to heat up, the maker of the electric vehicle wants to cool concerns over hot-climate battery issues by making chemical adjustments to battery packs, Green Car Reports says. Nissan executives met with about 10 Leaf owners in Phoenix last week and said the company is approaching a solution that will better allow Leaf lithium-ion batteries to withstand extensive heat without losing capacity faster than Leafs that live in cold-weather climates.

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Our most burning question – aside from how many licks it takes to get to the center of at Tootsie Pop – is, how much does a battery-electric vehicle's battery really cost? One analyst says that the price tag will be at about $250 per kilowatt hour by 2015, which spells good news for the EV industry.

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Kia has unveiled the automaker's very first production electric vehicle. The Kia Ray EV will offer buyers a range of around 86 miles depending on driving conditions and will include a fast-charge option that should top off the cells in around 25 minutes. Otherwise, expect the 16.4-kWh lithium-ion battery pack to take around six hours to charge on a 220-volt circuit. A 50-kW electric motor provides power to the front wheels, which is good enough to get the EV to 62 miles per hour in 15.9 seconds.

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Kia has unveiled the automaker's very first production electric vehicle. The Kia Ray EV will offer buyers a range of around 86 miles depending on driving conditions and will include a fast-charge option that should top off the cells in around 25 minutes. Otherwise, expect the 16.4 kWh lithium-ion battery pack to take around six hours to charge on a 220-volt circuit. A 50 kW electric motor provides power to the front wheels, which is good enough to get the EV to 62 mph in 15.9 seconds. That may s

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WaveJet demonstration – Click above to watch video after the jump

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Battery maker Ener1 has reportedly fired its chief operating officer and EnerDel president, Richard Stanley. Stanley's April 8th termination was apparently disclosed in a Securities and Exchange Commission filing made by Ener1 last Wednesday.

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The United States Advanced Battery Consortium LLC (USABC), a research collaboration between Chrysler Group, Ford Motor and General Motors, has awarded A123 Systems an $8 million, 24-month contract, which the firm will use to continue its quest to develop its patented Nanophosphate lithium-ion battery systems. A123 Systems touts its Nanophosphate cell technology as a smaller, lighter, lower-cost alternative to more traditional li-ion battery cells. A123 Systems foresees a future where its Nanopho

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Ener1, Inc. has named Christopher Cowger, former corporate vice president and general manager for semiconductor firm Advanced Micro Devices (AMD), as chief executive officer of its lithium-ion battery subsidiary EnerDel. Cowger was also appointed as president of Ener1.

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For more than a year, Canada-based lithium-ion battery manufacturer Electrovaya has worked with Dodge on its prototype plug-in hybrid Ram truck project. The plug-in pickup, which uses Electrovaya's 12-kWh lithium-ion "SuperPolymer" battery, is expected to hit fleets by the end of summer 2011.

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