Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tom Weir on EEStor Development Process

A blogger has managed an interview with Tom Weir on the ongoing EEStor development program.

Product development is actually a fairly straight forward process once you know what bits and pieces are supposed to do. They had to create super small capacitors that could then be packed into a device and properly accessed. It appears that they are well on the way to putting it all together.

I love to walk folks through the development history of most commonly used items that we rely on today. The Automobile is perhaps one of the more dramatic and one with which everyone has hands on expertise. The bits and pieces all worked together first around a century ago and constant fiddling has created the modern car that is about to be replaced by the electric car over the next decade.

The first working battery will be a great device, but it will also be steadily improving. Their target goal post is a battery able to provide a comparable mileage range to the present day automobile. It will likely be quite large and still quite expensive. But those are the two variables that will be improved fastest.

The real breakthrough is still generation one. EEStor looks to make it happen.

Friday, May 29, 2009

With the announcement of EEStor's permittivity certification milestone in May 2009 behind us, observers are watching closely to learn what comes next from the Cedar Park, TX company. Zenn Motor Company's VP of Engineering, Mike Bergeron added a bit of background on this topic via a recent interview with me this week. But Bergeron and Zenn are bound by their tech agreement to avoid being too verbose.

To see if I could learn more, I contacted Tom Weir at EEStor Inc. this morning. First, EEStor now has visibility to the necessary funding commitments that should allow them to meet their anticipated near-term objectives. Second, Weir says they are moving further along their path. Tom Weir:

"Our objective is to complete component testing by September 2009. In parallel, we will be finalizing our second objective which consists of the assembly processes necessary to deliver production quality components and/or EESU's by the end of 2009. "

Just what does component testing consist of exactly? To answer this question, I turned to a subject matter expert with several years experience in capacitor manufacturing who preferred not to be named for this article. (However, I can reveal his username at TheEEStory.com forums as none other than
CapacitorMan.) The standard component tests for capacitor manufacturers consist of the following:

1) Capacitance
2) Dissipation Factor
3) Insulation Resistance
4) Voltage Coefficient (measuring capacitance vs voltage)
5) Temperature Coefficient (measuring capacitance vs temperature)
6) Voltage breakdown

Capman went on to say that a piezoelectric coefficient test, though not widely performed elsewhere, would be important in EEStor's case "if they have the size capacitor they are talking about. " He went on, "a piezoelectric coefficient test would be important for them because it measures how much the ceramic moves when you shock it with a high voltage. "

As speculated previously, the pace of information coming out of EEStor Inc. appears to be on the uptick as it zeros in on the completion of the commercialization of the EESU.

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