Page 20

EETE FEB 2016

ENSW & CETHNOLOGY automotive Nissan pumps £26.5m into UK Li-ion battery plant NBy Paul Buckley issan has given a vote of confidence in European manufacturing by awarding production of future generation electric vehicle (EV) batteries to the company’s manufacturing facility in Sunderland, UK. The £26.5 million investment will help safeguard 300 highlyskilled jobs in manufacturing, maintenance and engineering at Nissan’s advanced lithium-ion battery plant in Sunderland, the largest of its type in Europe. The Sunderland facility is one of three Nissan battery production sites globally and will provide battery modules for the allelectric Nissan LEAF and e-NV200 electric van, which is manufactured at Nissan’s facility in Barcelona, Spain. Already the global leaders in electric vehicles with more than 200,000 Nissan LEAF models on the road worldwide covering a total of two billion electric miles. In 2015 Nissan sold 43,651 LEAFs worldwide with 15,630 of that number being sold in Europe. Paul Willcox, Chairman, Nissan Europe, said: “The announcement reflects Nissan’s intention to remain EV leaders for many years to come, with our European operations at the heart of our future innovations.” Since EV production began in Sunderland in 2013 bolstered by a £420m investment, the battery plant and Nissan LEAF production have supported more than 2 000 jobs both at Nissan and within the supply chain. The Nissan Leaf was the first electric car to be mass-produced in the UK - about 60,000 batteries are produced at the plant each year. “Nissan has achieved second-to-none quality levels since launching battery manufacturing in Sunderland, and securing this critical future production is a testament to our success. This news coincides with the launch of the 250km range Nissan LEAF. Now in its third generation, the LEAF continues to go from strength to strength as we realize our electric motoring vision,” said Willcox. The announcement comes at the beginning of a landmark year in which Nissan will celebrate the 30th anniversary of its Sunderland factory (now the largest plant in the history of the UK car industry) and the 10th anniversary of its St Petersburg Plant in Russia. The St Petersburg facility celebrated production of its 200,000th vehicle in 2015, making it the fastest growing plant in Russia. The Nissan investment is a further sign of the resurgence of the UK’s motor industry. The UK’s Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders released this week figures that show 1.59m vehicles in 2015 were built in UK factories, the highest number since 2005. BMW launches energy storage company By Christoph Hammerschmidt Electromobility is increasingly becoming a component in a multidisciplinary energy interaction – with the batteries being the pivotal point in the system. The latest move in this game: Carmaker BMW has launched a joint venture with heating systems vendor Viessmann Group. Under the name Digital Energy Solutions, the BMW-Viessmann joint venture will offer energy management solutions and related consulting services. According to BMW’s press release, the strategy of the new company will pursuit an overarching approach that spans disciplines like electromobility, electric power, air conditioning and heating. For the time being, the offer is directed to small and mediumsized companies in Germany and Austria. BMW contributes its expertise in electromobility as well as its charging infrastructure access service ChargeNow – according to the carmaker, ChargeNow is the largest service of its kind in the world. In addition – and this is actually the more interesting part of the equation – the new company plans to establish a business field that integrates high-voltage batteries into smart, stationary energy storage systems. The batteries for these systems will originate from used electric vehicles. To a certain extent, the company will also use new batteries. The system will be controlled by a purpose-built software called Smart Energy Backbone, developed by BMW. This software has been created on the basis of BMW’s existing in-house energy management deployed in the company’s global manufacturing network. The decision to launch the new business is based on the consideration that with a globally increasing trend towards renewable energies, the demand for energy buffer and storage systems will rise, and electromobility will play an increasing role in this scheme. Another motivation is the endeavour to reduce the overall CO2 emissions per vehicle produced. BMW is not the only vendor of electric vehicles to enter the energy storage business. Nissan and Daimler have established similar business branches independent of each other. According to a Daimler spokesperson, the business model for such storage systems is at least in part based on the fact that after the vehicles have reached their lifecycle, the batteries typically still have 80 percent or more of their capacity. Thus, the second use of these batteries seems an obvious application. 20 Electronic Engineering Times Europe February 2016 www.electronics-eetimes.com


EETE FEB 2016
To see the actual publication please follow the link above