Lead-Acid Batteries are being replaced with ultracapacitors

Lead–acid batteries, invented in the middle of the 19th century, are the oldest and still the most common type of rechargeable battery providing start/stop functionality in modern cars. Lead-acid batteries have a very low energy-to-weight ratio and a low energy-to-volume ratio, yet they are capable to supply high surge currents means that the cells maintain a relatively large power-to-weight ratio. Ultracapacitor technology, approaching performance of lead-acid batteries, has many advantages like longer lifecycle and fast charging/discharging. Ultracapacitors are unique in combining start/stop and regenerative braking functionalities in one device.

In a few more years ultracapacitors will become a mainstream technology, alongside with established electrochemical battery energy storage. This is one of conclusions of market study Ultracapacitor Market Forecast 2015-2020. Transport segment is forecast to benefit the most from rapidly advancing ultracapacitor technology. Replacing lead-acid batteries with ultrracapacitors may prove to become a burgeoning market opportunity in the very near future.

On 30.07.2015 Skeleton Technologies, the German-Estonian manufacturer of graphene-based ultracapacitors, announced the availability of a new 24V Engine Start Module (SkelStart ESM), which uses high-performance ultracapacitor technology to ensure engine start at any time, in any conditions. In June 2015 Skeleton Technologies raised €9.8 million.

In April 2015 Maxwell Technologies, Inc., (Nasdaq: MXWL) announced the availability of its 24-volt ultracapacitor-based Engine Start Module (ESM), for improving equipment uptime and power reliability in buses and industrial vehicles, such as cranes, backhoes, bulldozers, graders, pavers, off-road trucks, portable compressors and others with diesel engines.

Amazon Added 18,100 Employees in Q2 2015

Amazon’s second quarter 2015 report, released on July 23, 2015, shows 183,100 employees worldwide, an increase of 18,100 from 165,000 employees in Q1 2015. That’s a some pretty impressive hiring growth, far ahead of US economy and peer companies. “The vast majority of that is in operations, where we’re adding people for our new fulfillment centers and call centers,” Amazon CFO Brian Olsavsky said during Thursday’s earnings call. This the largest quarterly increase in the Amazon’s history.

Amazon Added 18,100 Employees in Q2 2015

China Claims Successful Test of Homemade Laser Defense System

Xinhua, the state press agency of the People’s Republic of China, has announced a successfully test of a homemade laser defense system. The news release claims the following parameters:

Potential targets: small UAVs
Range: 2 km
Target Altitude: 500 m
Target Speed: up to 50 m/sec
Engagement time: 5 sec
Successful hit rate (30 targets): 100%

Analysts of Market Research Media, a think tank behind the recent market report High Energy Military Laser Market Forecast 2017-2022, have been skeptical about Chinese claims. “We believe that Xinhua’s news release is the PR stint trying to counterbalance the very real US advancement in military use of high energy laser systems. Currently US holds technological lead. Neither Chinese, nor Russians have the right mix of mature technological solutions”, says senior analyst of Market Research Media.

VMware to Acquire Nicira for $1.05 Billion

VMware has announced coming acquisition Nicira, Inc., a network virtualization company and provider of software-defined networking (SDN), for $1.05 billion in cash plus approximately $210 million of assumed unvested equity awards. This acquisition considerably strengthens VMware position in emerging software-defined datacenter marketplace. The idea of software-defined datacenter is to abstract hardware resources and pool resources into aggregate capacity in virtual layer.