Saturday, March 27, 2010

Bloom ups their efficiency claims

The Green Machine has been one busy boy. I contacted Bloom Energy and alerted them to possible errors in their web site regarding their claimed carbon dioxide emission of 773 pounds per megawatt hour. They must have investigated me and whether I was a green authority. They responded to my inquiry and in fact had their carbon emissions guru call me three days ago. I spoke with Mr. Peter Light and he informed me that the Bloom Box is 57% efficient and that the heat rate of 661,000 BTU per 100 kilowatt hours is based on the Higher Heating Value of natural gas. I asked him for written confirmation of the data he provided in the phone call and I received an email from him today that reconfirmed these values. He also wrote in his email that Bloom will guarantee under contract customers this level of efficiency and natural gas usage. I also have data from a third party that I believe to be reputable that Bloom has guaranteed the efficiency of their device at only 50%. Of course the Green Machine is not going to refute a claim given to him in writing by the emissions guru at Bloom. The actual efficiency and the actual carbon dioxide emissions will soon be established by the operating data collected on installed Bloom Boxes. My educated opinion is that it will be no more than 52%

As I have a range of the possible emissions based on the range of efficiency from 50% to 57%, I am able to model how expensive the reduction in carbon dioxide emissions will be for the tax payers who live in California. Why is it a cost to the tax payers in California? That is because the State of California and the Federal government are heavily subsidizing the Bloom Box with tax credits and rapid depreciation schedules. EBAY, Google and other Bloom Box customers pay less income tax by applying the tax credits and rapid depreciation against their profits. My model is a comparison of the Bloom Box against a Caterpillar Natural Gas Engine Generator of the same output. The owner of the Gas Engine Generator is not given investment tax credits and does not have as large a depreciation shield as the Gas Engine Generator only costs one tenth that of the Bloom Box. With assumption that the Bloom Box will cost $10,000 per kilowatt of installed power compared with $1,000 for the Gas Engine Generator, I have calculated that in total over five years the combined State of California and US Government subsidy of the Bloom Box equates to $2,194 per ton of reduced carbon dioxide if the Bloom Box is 50% efficient and $1,234 per ton of reduced carbon dioxide if the Bloom Box is 57% efficient.

In both cases these are massive subsidies and are a real waste of tax payers’ money. Actually in the case of California that unlike the US Government cannot print money, the give away is simply taking away funds that could well be used for the education of our children. Of course Alfalfa helped steer the subsidies on the Bloom Box and was ably assisted by the Jolly Green Giant Governator.

If the government really wanted to lower carbon emissions at a cost of $2,194 per ton of avoided carbon dioxide they can send me $6,582 a year as I saved 3 tons of carbon emissions by vanpooling. Of course I will never see this money as Alfalfa did not invest in my van and I don’t have Colin Powell as a member of the board. Remember the old TV ads that asked "Coffee, Tea or a flick of my BIC?" Well mad tax payers can have Coffee Parties, Tea Parties. or BIC Parties. BIC Parties are the most extravagant as BIC stands for Bloom Is Collecting. Problem is they are collecting your dough and all you will get served is shortbread.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

The little engine that could

Back in the 1950s a book appeared on my book shelf about “the little engine that could”. The book also called the Pony Engine is a story about the value of hard work and optimism. Perhaps the book was written as a metaphor of the American Dream. While I was reading the book back in 1958 the US auto makers had forgotten the story of little and were into Big being Beautiful. The US cars of the late fifties had sweeping fins and much chrome to show off the might of the V8. Some may think those car years were the pinnacle of American Power. I certainly like the styling of 58 Buick or 59 Chev but in truth those cars were an expression of pure excess.

In the next decade we are going to witness the total rebirth of the “little engines that can”. Diesel engines in cars that comfortably seat five are already on the market and yield 40 mpg. Gasoline engines that mimic the performance of diesels will also become available in the next decade. Engineers now have the ability to model through computational fluid dynamics the flame fronts of the fuel within the engines. Research efforts into engines that inject gasoline or diesel in a super-critical state are yielding results. Dual fuel engines that use a secondary fuel to complete the combustion of gasoline within the cylinder are being tested. Hybrids like the Toyota Prius or the Ford Fusion make do with a small engine yet are not underpowered. Ford has a six cylinder engine with more power and torque than the V8 it replaced. Chrysler is now Fiat and the firm known for a Hemi will soon be known for Lilliputian engines.

About seven years ago the god of green named Amory Lovins wrote an essay on the 20 myths of hydrogen. Some of his essay was correct but most was pure hype. I countered with my five myths of hydrogen and entered into an email exchange with Amory. Without boasting I got it right and he got it wrong. My main argument was that the internal combustion engine would shrink and improve in performance and efficiency while fuel cells were a Betamax.

Amory runs the Rocky Mountain Institute that is the darling of Pinkos and also is the place where corporations run to in order to show they are into sustainability. I knew ahead of time that the internal combustion engine was going to be the little engine that can, and that fuel cells would only propel a train headed downhill. This may make me smarter than the next guy but it did not even help me get the ears of one one thousandth of the audience that gurus like Amory attract. I know why the average Joe and Jane love gurus. They want to be promised big things. They have to believe big change is coming. They have to believe that like the American cars of the late fifties they will fly into the future with fins and jet engines.

Little did anyone notice the Morris Mini Minor in 1959 that was the prelude to the little engine that could. This car was the first to have a transverse engine that was side to side instead of forward to back allowing for front wheel drive and major shrinking of the vehicle size. In 1964 the Chev Impala was the best selling car in the world and sold 1,074,925 cars in the USA that year. The highest volume of sales the Mini achieved was back in 1971 and sold 318,000 worldwide. The Mini essentially endures in the shame shape and form as it did in 1959 while the Chev Impala of today has zero resemblance to its ancient predecessor. My prognostication of fifty years hence is that the Green Machine that people follow will look like me. I have no clue what the Amory of the future will be doing.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Did Bloom Invent Low Carbon Natural Gas?

The entire reason d’ĂȘtre for Bloom and their energy server is the global warming effect of carbon dioxide. That is why the actual emission from their Bloom Box does matter to the Green Machine. This blog deals with errors Bloom’s engineers have made in setting the carbon dioxide emissions in the data sheet on their web site.

I had a little free time so I navigated the Bloom Energy web site. A pretty nice website that is easy to navigate. Bloom no doubt spent a good deal of time and money to develop the site. One of the links on the site is the data sheet for the 100 kilowatt bloom energy server. My assumptions in my earlier blog (the bloom is off the rose) estimating their technology was spot on. Their Bloom Box is a solid oxide fuel cell with about an efficiency of converting natural gas to electricity of approximately 50%. The one data point in their data sheet I firmly disagree with Bloom is on the amount of carbon dioxide emissions from the device. Here is the link to their data sheet In the data sheet Bloom claims a rate of carbon dioxide emissions of 773 pounds per megawatt hour of power generation. This equates to 0.773 pounds of CO2 per kilowatt hour of power generation as a megawatt hour equals 1,000 kilowatt hours. Bloom also lists a heat rate of 661,000 BTUs per 100 kilowatt hours of net power generation.

Heat rates are listed in terms of the lower heating value of the fuel. In simple terms when one burns fuel with air one gets carbon dioxide and water that are both in the vapor phase. Makes sense as the gases going up the chimney are hot and certainly above the boiling point of water. When the utility sells you natural gas they cleverly measure the fuel value at the higher heating value where all the energy in fuel can be extracted provided that the water produced and going up the chimney is liquid water. Of course by adding the energy gained by condensing the steam to liquid water the fuel has more value. Simply put the utilities invented this higher heating value so they could charge their customers about 10% more per cubic foot or pound of natural gas they sell. An engineer at Bloom must have used this higher heating value of natural gas to calculate the carbon dioxide emissions from their energy server. I investigated the actual chemical composition of natural gas that the utility in Northern California (PG&E) sells and using the stated heat rate of 661,000 BTUS per 100 kilowatt hours I calculated the Bloom Box emits 0.856 pounds per kilowatt hour. This is some 10.7% higher than Bloom’s stated amount of emissions. For comparison the average kilowatt hour of electricity generated in California for the entire year 2008 had only 0.724 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions. This fact alone proves it is greener to buy your electricity from PG&E rather than installing an onsite Bloom Box.

The calculation of carbon dioxide emissions is pretty fundamental but I am not surprised that Bloom tried to pull another fast one on us. I wrote the following email on March 10 to Bloom at blog on their technology. Of course there was no reply. I bet you they change the data sheet one night when no one is looking. I was smart enough to save and print the pdf version that was originally on their site. Perhaps the man who invented the internet is also the man who is now giving us low carbon natural gas? The whole message behind Bloom is they are the low carbon emission method to generate electricity. Maybe 60 minutes should be called 54 minutes, the last 6 minutes with Andy Rooney is pointless anyway. Actually the show is so bad these days it should just be 30 minutes and they should get rid of Lesley who has Stalled like a Pontiac. Her report on Bloom was a GTO (getting tricked often). The Green Machine has given his opinion that this Bloom is one stinking rose. Perhaps Alfalfa should try sell the system in Gilroy, the garlic capital of the world. Alas Gilroy is in PG&Es service territory so old Al should go home to Tennessee where they burn coal and emit 1.5 pounds of carbon dioxide for each kilowatt hour. Al please take Arnie with you as head east.

Sent: Wed, Mar 10, 2010 5:00 pm
Subject: Bloom Box CO2 Emissions

I have looked at your data sheet. You claim an energy input of 661,000
BTU per hour for your 100 kw unit. I take it this is LHV (lower
heating value). You also claim a CO2 emission rate of 773 lbs per mega
watt hour. I am a chemical engineer and my grad work was in
thermodynamics. I have performed a heat and mass balance using the
published data for the natural gas sold by PG&E in California and have
calculated that using your heat rate LHV and PG&Es gas composition the
CO2 emissions are 856 pounds per mega watt hour. I do believe the
person who calculated your carbon dioxide emissions used the HHV of
natural gas. But I feel pretty certain that your stated heat rate of
661,000 BTU per 100 kwh is LHV.

Can you please check your calculations and get back to me?

Lindsay Leveen

Friday, March 12, 2010

A 123 Battery Reports Results

A 123 the darling on Silicon Valley VCs and our department of entropy reported their year end 2009 results yesterday. As I have blogged for months these guys are a short-circuit waiting to happen. Their business strategy is to now concentrate on vehicle and grid storage systems and sell less to the consumer market. This means they have to sell more products at greater discounts. For each loss they make on a single sale it is now their strategy to make up those losses on volume. In the fourth quarter of 2009 they shipped 21.7 million watt-hours of batteries. Sounds impressive except that a single Tesla Roadster requires 54,000 watt-hours of batteries. Wow, they could equip a measly total of 402 Teslas. Actually they are in better shape than Tesla who could not even muster a sales volume of 402 roadsters in the quarter. From their profit and loss statement I gleamed that their cost of goods sold for batteries was $22,022,000. This means each watt-hour of battery storage cost A 123 $1.02 to produce. This is direct cost of production and does not include operating and research expenses.

A sustainable business model where companies actually yield profits typically requires the selling price of the item to be twice the cost of goods sold. Intel is such a company that has yielded gross margins of at least 50% consistently. This implies a “real” required unit selling price of batteries at $2 per watt-hour. Hence if A 123 was to supply Tesla batteries for the roadster and if A 123 were to have a viable profitable business the Tesla battery pack would cost Tesla $104,000. Correspondingly, if Tesla was to have a real business model they would have to charge consumers $208,000 for each battery pack in a roadster. Of course neither A 123 nor Tesla has positive gross margin. But they promise investors they will bring down costs by increasing the volume they produce and bring down costs by the learning rate. I have explained at length in my letter to the US Senate that the learning rate will be painfully slow. What this means is A 123, Tesla, Fisker, and other want to be plugged in vehicle car companies will simply loose the money investors and our government (we the people) gives them.

What did A 123 sell the 21.7 million watt hours of batteries for? They sold them for $19,873,000 or some $2,149,000 below their production cost. How much money is the US Government and the State of Michigan Government going to give A 123 to build a factory in that sate? The answer is a cool $600 million. All this give away to a dead end technology based company that will soon short circuit. Maybe these ignited states should better spend their scarce funds on replacements for their electric chairs. The last electric chair built in the USA was for the State of Florida in 1998. It was made out of oak and replaced the chair used for executions since 1923. Perhaps A 123 could name their lithium battery powered electric chair the "Kill A What".

Sunday, March 7, 2010

LCDs LEDs and CRTs

How LCD Monitors have helped reduce carbon emissions

In the past decade LCD monitors have gone from an expensive option to becoming the most common technology used for personal computers. Cathode Ray Tube (CRT) monitors have virtually disappeared from stores and are almost nonexistent in offices and homes in the developed economies. LCD Monitors were adopted after their price became competitive because they take up less space, offer an improved image, and last just about forever. I have a 19 inch LCD monitor I bought nine years ago and it still operates perfectly and looks just as modern as the LCD monitors that are sold today. Last night my wife and I watched a pay per view movie called The Informant. The movie was made in 2009 but was set in the early 1990s. There are many office scenes in the movie and the desk top computers have CRT monitors that now look as old as a Remington Type Writer. In a future blog I will opine about Lysine and Archer Daniel Midland, (ADM) the company that was the focus of the movie. Yeah ADM is also the villain that visited Bio-Ethanol on us in a big way.

Back to the blog about LCD technology and its energy savings and therefore lowered carbon footprint. A 19 inch LCD monitor uses approximately 50 watts of electric power. The same size CRT monitor uses 100 watts of power. Hence the resulting power savings of approximately 50 watts. The typical usage of the monitor is eight hours a day. This means each and every day the LCD monitor saves the user 400 watt hours of purchased electricity. Since their introduction just over a decade ago more than one billion LCD monitors have been sold and perhaps as many as 90% of these monitors still are in operation. In 2009 176 million LCD monitors were sold worldwide up from 170 million in 2008. For the example of the amount of energy saved in a year I will use one billion monitors running 8 hours a day and saving 50 watts of power each. This equates to 400 million kilowatt hours of saved electricity worldwide a day. The average power generation station in the world emits approximately 1.5 pounds of carbon dioxide for each kilowatt hour that is generated. Therefore some 600 million pounds a day of carbon dioxide emissions are eliminated through the substitution of LCD monitors for CRT monitors. This equals over 109 million metric tons a year of lowered carbon dioxide emissions. This is approximately the yearly emissions from either Belgium or Vietnam. This link provides the listing of the emissions form all countries

Belgium is a developed economy with a population of 10.7 million people. Vietnam is a developing economy with a population of 80 million people. The LCD computer monitor has therefore been very effective in reducing carbon dioxide emissions. Another way of comparing this information is that the introduction of LCD computer monitors reduced carbon dioxide emissions equal to the removal of 18 million mid sized cars that have a fuel economy of 20 miles per US gallon and travel 12,000 miles a year. Older LCD monitors had a fluorescent backlight that are now being replaced with light emitting diode (LED) back lights. These LED lit LCD monitors are even more energy efficient. Some 50 LEDs are used to back light a 19 inch LCD monitor. LEDs will prevail as the technology for lighting monitors, TVs, homes, streets, offices, stores, and vehicles. In 2009 some 63 billion LEDs were sold worldwide. This increased from 57 billion units in 2008. LED back lit LCDs are a technology that the Green Machine applauds.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Letter to Senate on Lithium Batteries

Lindsay Leveen (as an individual)

Submitted To the Senate Subcommittee For Energy and Water Development

OWT on the Subject of plug-in vehicles that require rechargeable lithium batteries.

An Essay on the Thermodynamics and Economics of Lithium Batteries

My name is Lindsay Leveen. I am a chemical engineer and my interest is to apply my scientific knowledge to alternate energy sources. My graduate work involved the study of thermodynamics. Over the last 35 years my work has been in cryogenics, microelectronic device fabrication, nanotechnology development, fuel cell fabrication, and most recently biotechnology.

Purpose: The purpose of this essay is to provide the subcommittee with reasoning based on thermodynamics why lithium batteries will likely not lower in cost and therefore why plug in passenger vehicles (cars and trucks) will probably not make any significant dent in the consumption of gasoline and diesel. I wish to prevent the waste of precious resources on a technology that I believe is headed toward a dead end.

I have no commercial interest in any energy or battery technology and am writing this essay as a concerned citizen to inform the Senate Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development of the severe thermodynamic limitations of Lithium Secondary Batteries and of the probable long term unaffordable economics associated with plug-in passenger vehicles that will rely on them. Much of this report is taken from my presentations, reports, publications and blogs I have produced in recent years.

Thermodynamics – definition: “the science concerned with the relations between heat and mechanical energy or work, and the conversion of one into the other: modern thermodynamics deals with the properties of systems for the description of which temperature is a necessary coordinate.” (

Moore’s Law and Learning Rates for Technologies: Gordon Moore one of the founders of Intel Corporation, postulated that semiconductor integrated circuits would enjoy a doubling in performance in a period of every 18 months. This rate of learning allows performance to be improved exponentially with time for the same original cost.

Many technologies that engineers and scientists develop need a “Moore’s Law” in order to improve their performance and correspondingly their economics to capture vast markets. Most efforts around the improvement of alternate energy technologies vis a vis competing with fossil fuels have not yielded these “Moore’s Law” rates of learning. In particular for the past decade as much as six billion dollars has been spent without any real success toward the “learning curve” of PEM fuel cells. Much of these six billion dollars was appropriated by the Federal Government. The learning curve for PEM fuel cells over the past decade yielded a yearly learning rate of less than 2%. By comparison the Moore’s Law yearly learning rate for integrated circuits has averaged over 40% for more than three decades.

My experience with Moore’s Law: For almost twenty years I directed teams of engineers that designed state of the art Integrated Circuit (IC) fabrication facilities that helped drive this rapid rate of learning and therefore cost improvement in computers and other electronic devices. A simple explanation for the high learning rates in IC fabrication is that the technology was neither constrained by thermodynamics nor reaction kinetics but simply by the line width of the circuits within the ICs. To drive Moore’s law in IC fabrication improvements in lithography, higher purity gases for deposition, implantation, and etch, as well as the occasional increase in the size of wafer being fabricated were needed.

Moore’s Law, Thermodynamics and Lithium Batteries: To drive the learning rate in PEM fuel cells and similarly lithium secondary batteries both thermodynamic and reaction kinetic constraints have to be overcome. The reason why thermodynamics places such constraints is that the functioning of these systems depends on chemical reactions. Thermodynamics determines how much useful energy can be derived from a chemical reaction. But we know that the thermodynamic constraints cannot be overcome as the laws of thermodynamics are inviolable. ICs do not undergo chemical reactions to function, but all batteries and fuel cells do involve chemical reactions to deliver energy. It is these chemical reactions that are limiting the possible learning rate.

The Resulting Economic Problem: Significant effort and much money is now being spent on advanced batteries for plug-in full electric or plug-in hybrid vehicles. Such vehicles will require between 10 kilowatt hours and 50 kilowatt hours of stored electricity if the range of the vehicle purely propelled on stored electricity is to be between 40 and 200 miles. Lithium chemistry based secondary (chargeable) batteries presently offer the best performance on a weight and volume basis and therefore represent the best “hope” for a “Moore’s law” to solve the world’s addiction to fossil oil. Sadly “hope” is not a winning strategy. Present costs of such battery packs at the retail level range from $800 per kilowatt hour of storage to over $2,000 per kilowatt hour of storage. One can purchase a 48 volt 20 amp hour Ping Battery for an electric bicycle directly from this Chinese “manufacturer” for less than $800 delivered by UPS to any address in the USA. A123 offers a battery system that will modify a standard Prius to a 5 kilowatt hour plug-in Prius for $11,000 or around $2,200 per kilowatt hour fully installed by a service station in San Francisco. The Ping battery delivers much less instantaneous power (watts) and that is the reason their batteries are less expensive on a stored energy basis (watt hours) than are the A 123 batteries. Both the Ping and the A123 batteries claim safety and claim to be manufactured with phosphate technology that will neither short circuit nor burn.

Economic Case Study The Example The Standard Prius vs Plug-in Prius: The following is an economic analysis of a standard Prius versus a plug-in Prius using A 123’s lithium battery pack;

The standard Prius will get 50 MPG and let’s assume that the driver drives 12,000 miles a year. The standard Prius driver will need to purchase 240 gallons a year of gasoline at an estimated cost of $720 per year with gasoline at selling for $3 per gallon. If the driver purchased the A 123 plug-in system and can recharge the system at home and at work such that half the mileage driven in a year is on batteries and half is on gasoline the driver will save $360 a year on gasoline. The driver will need to buy some 2,000 kilowatt hours a year of electricity from the grid in order to save this gasoline. At 10 cents per kilowatt hour the driver will spend $200 a year for electric power and will therefore only enjoy $160 a year in net operating savings. The $11,000 set of batteries have a maximum expected life of 8 years and the owner must set aside $1,375 a year for battery replacement without accounting for the time value of money. The battery replacement cost is simply too expensive to justify the savings in gasoline. How high do gasoline costs have to rise and how little do batteries have to cost to make the plug in viable? Let’s assume gas prices reach $6 per gallon and electricity remains at 10 cents a kilowatt hours we have a yearly operating savings of $520. These savings will still be far short of the money needed for battery replacement.

The A 123 batteries will need to drop to 15% of their present cost to make the proposition of converting a Prius to a plug -n “worthwhile”. To reach this cost target in a decade one needs a yearly learning rate of approximately 26%. With 35 years of work experience, I have concluded that in the best case of battery costs (no inflation in raw materials) a 4 or 5% yearly learning rate could be achieved over the next decade. But if we believe that gasoline will double then we also have to assume that plastics, copper, cobalt, nickel, graphite, etc. will also double in unit cost. As raw materials account for three quarters of the manufacturing cost of lithium batteries the inflation adjusted cost will increase at a higher yearly rate than the learning rate will lower costs. My prediction is therefore that lithium secondary batteries will likely cost more per unit of energy stored in 2020 than they do today.

Toyota is a company well known for its cars with improved fuel economy and therefore is a master of thermodynamics and must have “optimized” the cost and performance of its batteries in the standard Prius deploying a relatively small battery pack and with the choice of Nickel Metal Hydride chemistry rather than lithium chemistry. While Toyota may be experiencing safety problems no one can fault this company on fuel efficiency. Other car companies such as Ford have also chosen Nickel Metal Hydride as their hybrid car battery platform. Fisker and GM are touting plug in hybrids with lithium batteries and are much more aggressive in their claims of cost improvement and their ability to drive “Moore’s Law” in their battery systems. My educated guess on all of this is that Toyota, Ford and the car manufacturers that stick with smaller nickel metal hydride battery systems and the traditional non plug-in hybrid will sell tens of millions of such vehicles over the next decade. Renault, GM, Fisker, Tesla, and others who go for plug-in hybrids or full electric vehicles will only sell a few tens of thousands of vehicles in the next decade. I simply believe we will not have “Moore’s Law” at play here but have a very fractional Moore’s Law that holds.

Argonne National Labs published an exhaustive review of the materials and associated costs of lithium batteries back in May of 2000. The total material cost for the cell was estimated at $1.28 and the total manufacturing cost of the cell including overhead and labor was estimated at $1.70. This Argonne report is perhaps the best report written on the economics associated with lithium battery fabrication. Actually had folks read this report back in 2000 they would have realized that the learning curve for lithium batteries would be painfully slow. Materials just make up far too much of the battery cost and the quantity of materials is fixed by the chemistry. Therefore economies of scale could not drive a Moore’s Law type rate of learning and a very fractional Moore’s Law resulted. In the early years of lithium cell development from approximately 1990 to 2000, the improvements in chemistry and in economies of scale did allow the technology to enjoy a Moore’s Law type learning rate and it has been reported that costs of an 18650 cell reduced from $18 to $2 per cell in that decade. Unfortunately the technology has now hit an asymptote in their cost reduction curve.

By doing a Google search on an 18650 lithium ion battery I came across this link . This site lists a selling price of $5.29 each for 200 or more cells. The cells are 3.7 volts with 2.2 amp hours so they are capable of holding 8.1 watt hours of energy from full charge to discharge. Expressed in cost per kilowatt hour of nominal capacity these loose cells cost around $650. My guess is that if applied today’s costs of cobalt, nickel, lithium, lithium salts, plastics, copper, graphite, and other constituent materials that make up a cell, the material cost in November 2009 compared with May 2000 have increased by more than 150% and a current estimate of the materials used in the Argonne labs report will show cost of about $3 per cell versus $1.28 back in May 2000. Hence this company sells the cells for $5.29 each. From my previous analysis of the probable learning rate I would not surprised if in 2020 the selling price per 18650 lithium cell is as high as $6 rather than as low as $3.

Conclusion: Lithium batteries are and will remain best suited for items as small as a cell phone and as large as a bicycle. The cost relative to performance or these batteries will likely not improve by much in the coming decade. Although some standard hybrid vehicles may use lithium batteries with low capacity, their cost will remain high. Also plug-in vehicles that have a range longer than 10 miles using battery power will likely not penetrate the market significantly. Given the likely scenario that plug-in passenger cars and trucks based on lithium battery technology will not reduce US consumption of gasoline and diesel fuel in large measure, I am asking the subcommittee to limit the funds that the US government will appropriate for research and development of this technology.

Thank you

Lindsay Leveen