Supply And Demand In The Electronic Era

It’s interesting how the wave of adoption of one technology affects another. The old Wintel monopoly acted as if it was an island and a single monopoly controlled the world. Things are more complicated today. The main sign of life in Wintel is the notebook computer which gives a desktop-like experience in a mobile package. It depends heavily on batteries for that mobility.

“Lithium pricing has also increased by 60% since 2016 and with electric vehicles expected to reach shipments of two million units by 2017 and 9-20 million by 2020, the lithium pricing is unlikely to see any decline for the next three years and may result in further hikes in notebook battery prices.”
 
See Notebook lithium battery prices rising
What else depends heavily on batteries these days? Electric vehicles. You can hide the price of an expensive battery in an expensive car but you can’t in a notebook. Guess who’s going to win this one? EV production/sales are ramping up and notebooks are languishing. Rising prices for batteries is another millstone around the neck of Wintel. Meanwhile small cheap computers running on ARM are less affected because we don’t need to haul around 2kg of battery to make them run.

I just hope I get my Solo EV before the price rises too far…

About Robert Pogson

I am a retired teacher in Canada. I taught in the subject areas where I have worked for almost forty years: maths, physics, chemistry and computers. I love hunting, fishing, picking berries and mushrooms, too.

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7 Responses to Supply And Demand In The Electronic Era

  1. Grece says:

    No one cares what you say HamDong.

  2. oiaohm says:

    1. The solo was designed to use the 18650 lithium cell, obviously you forgot this.
    Grece this is wrong the first solo uses SLA batteries. This is why the Solo batteries trays are only half full with lithium because its mass capacity range thing. So the basic design of solo has nothing todo with lithium and the tray is a standard width.

    I seem the recall the battery compartments were fairly maxed out, but again, you never provide any evidence.
    The construction video shows the trays at filled point and only half the battery tray is used. So the solo battery compartments are not max filled. So you need to check you memory here its defective. Battery size has been limited by fire risk not by tray space. There are other battery chemistries that don’t have fire risk.

    3. You are a dumb-ass Peter. Lithium-ion cells are composed mainly of Nickel and Graphite, the cathode is nickel and the anode side is graphite with silicon oxide The amount of lithium in a lithium ion battery is about 2% of its total volume.
    There are other chemistry options that use Nickel Graphite.
    http://gridedge.com.au/sonick-battery.html

    Issue here is patents. So at some point the cost of lithium will cross the cost of the patent to use the other options. Also those patents will also run out at some point. Basically we are using lithium because it been fairly cheep and most of the patents on it have expired. Shocking part is some of the alternatives like sonick based out perform lithium ion in every metric.

    2170 cell is in the direction of under 1 percent lithium of total volume. So halved lithium and higher capacity. So tesla need a 100 percent price increase before they have a major problem. So its still 40 percent lithium cost in the new batteries with the 60 percent lithium price increase. Of course this is not going to the other chemistries yet and this is still cheaper than paying for the patents to use the other chemistries.

    So 18650 to 2170 migration will have to happen at some point for something like a solo this is not a major problem because its a box battery compartment with space. For telsa cars were the battery was perfectly fitted its a nightmare.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0CQKkTIU3rI
    Note its a standard tray design. Yes 2170 is slightly wider and taller 21 mm by 70 mm. Basically Solo the battery compartment is a box you fill with batteries. No fancy shaping and is taller than the 18650 because it was design for a SLA battery so the extra height of the 2170 is not a problem for the solo. Major problem for those with Telsa cars.

  3. Grece says:

    The Solo was designed for a particular voltage of battery.

    Wrong. The power capacity is the major requirement, as the voltage can be adjusted with the voltage controller.

    It will work with a range of voltages around that value.

    The solo motor, only operates at a known voltage range.

    So, one can operated a Solo with a wide range of cells in series/parallel combinations.

    How many people do you know Robert, that is going to mess with the battery combinations in their expensive EV thereby voiding the warranty?

    Further, Solo has some unutilized space in the battery compartments to deal with some lack of modularity with current cells.

    I seem the recall the battery compartments were fairly maxed out, but again, you never provide any evidence.

    I think makers of cells are aware of such issues and will not create roadblocks to use new batteries in vehicles that could well last ~20 years.

    Battery manufacturing standards follow guidelines as laid out the following organizations: CEN/Cenelec, ISO, IEC and UN ECE.

    With some sacrifice of cargo-space it would not be a problem to create a Solo with a very long range but I doubt that is anyone’s goal.

    Sure Robert, hook-up some lead-acid for extra traction too, why don’t you?

    One could order a Tesla with such and such range versus passengers and luggage. There would be an issue of safety as most would prefer to separate passengers and battery.

    That’s right, one could just order a Tesla and not some three-wheel death-trap.

  4. Grece harped on Lithium ion cells.

    The Solo was designed for a particular voltage of battery. It will work with a range of voltages around that value. So, one can operated a Solo with a wide range of cells in series/parallel combinations. Further, Solo has some unutilized space in the battery compartments to deal with some lack of modularity with current cells. I think makers of cells are aware of such issues and will not create roadblocks to use new batteries in vehicles that could well last ~20 years. With some sacrifice of cargo-space it would not be a problem to create a Solo with a very long range but I doubt that is anyone’s goal. It’s a commuter. Tesla could play with that. One could order a Tesla with such and such range versus passengers and luggage. There would be an issue of safety as most would prefer to separate passengers and battery.

  5. Grece says:

    Oiaohm, where shall we begin.

    1. The solo was designed to use the 18650 lithium cell, obviously you forgot this.

    2. Tesla Motors vehicles are currently using the 18650 cell and moving towards the 2170 cell. Note: (the 18650 delivers 3,000 mA, and the 2170 has been tested at 5,750-6,000 mA)

    3. You are a dumb-ass Peter. Lithium-ion cells are composed mainly of Nickel and Graphite, the cathode is nickel and the anode side is graphite with silicon oxide The amount of lithium in a lithium ion battery is about 2% of its total volume.

  6. oiaohm says:

    http://www.pocket-lint.com/news/130380-future-batteries-coming-soon-charge-in-seconds-last-months-and-power-over-the-air

    Kurkosdr really Solo was not designed for a particular battery.

    http://benchmarkminerals.com/elon-musk-our-lithium-ion-batteries-should-be-called-nickel-graphite/
    Its also interesting the Tesla batteries are using less an less Lithium its not like Lithium price long term that going to be the driving factor.

    Tesla is altering their battery chemistry. So Tesla will still be made. Interesting point is pure graphite cells have shown higher power densities than lithium cells can provide. So a Tesla Model car without lithium could have longer range. Lot longer range a factor of 9-10 expand on range.

  7. Kurkosdr says:

    I just hope I get my Solo EV before the price rises too far…

    Bahaha! Even if they had an infinitesimal chance of delivering before the price increases then in 4 years or so, they won’t have now.

    Also, gotta love how idiots bought fully loaded modern Challengers, Camaros and Mustangs hoping they will appreciate like the muscle cars of old did, while it is more likely that the muscle cars of the 21st century will be electrics with big battery packs like the Tesla Model S (especially the 100 versions) and the Tesla Roadster. They will probably not be made again if the price of lithium keeps rising, they actually pack an unusual amount of performance for their era, and they were made in small numbers, so all the collectible boxes are ticked.

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