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The Promise of Maxwell

Discussion in 'TSLA Investor Discussions' started by ammulder, Jul 7, 2019.

  1. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Well-Known Member

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    Based on what?

    I strongly suspect that Tesla has already built a prototype battery cell fab based on the Maxwell process and are in now in position to build a production manufacturing line.
     
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  2. ammulder

    ammulder '98 GS400 -> P3D+

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    Yeah, this is the thing. I don’t think we can do anything but guess. Some guess soon. Some guess not soon. Some guess the improvement will be in manufacturing. Some guess the improvement will be in energy density. I’m not sure how to resolve it other than to wait for battery and powertrain investor day.

    I do agree with everyone saying it seems likely that Tesla will soon start manufacturing their own cells. I just don’t know to what extent that first/those first lines will benefit from Maxwell technology. We can hope. ;)
     
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  3. ralph142

    ralph142 Member

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    Even more interesting, since I’m already an owner, upgrade existing cars? Sell and buy anew?
     
  4. dfwatt

    dfwatt Active Member

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    I don't think upgrading an existing and relatively new car is cost-effective. However when the existing power packs drop under 90%, or perhaps even under 85% Tesla will at some point make available an upgraded power pack containing the new Battery Technology. The $64,000 Question is how they will price that? Will it be just above cost? Or heavily marked up?

    In any case it's nice to contemplate that your aging 310 Mi Model 3 Performance that really now can only get 280 miles of EPA-rated range all of a sudden becomes a 400-mile Model 3 with an extra 50 horsepower and 0 to 60 nicely under 3 seconds. Only Tesla can make cars that truly get better with age!
     
  5. ralph142

    ralph142 Member

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    Indeed. In my case it’s Lemr to ? Could be enticing
     
  6. ZoomsansVroom

    ZoomsansVroom Supporting Member

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    Producing gasoline is a low-profit area for oil companies. Getting out of it, and increasing demand for NG, is a good thing for them. NG is also produced at a very low profit level, but they have to produce it, to get condensate/as part of getting oil.

    There's far more profit in turning the gasoline component of crude into solvents, maybe some polymer feedstock (been a LONG time since organic chem. I know that energy companies had to turn fractions of crude to gasoline, to meet demand, even though it reduced the overall profitability of that particular unit of oil.)
     
  7. DurandalAI

    DurandalAI Member

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    The difference between the Nissan Leaf and comparable EVs or PHEVs like the Chevy Bolt and Volt are 10 years behind any Tesla in regards to the technology within the vehicle. I liked my Leaf (with exception to the terrible range) but my Tesla is in a whole different class.
     
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  8. Jack007

    Jack007 Member

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    OK, I just read this whole thread, my eyes glazed over a bit, forgive me if I missed this.
    Tesla acquires Maxwell, Tesla announces Battery investor day.
    Pretty darn sure that they relate and it won't be 3 to 7 years before they can use anything from Maxwell...
    The only question is how big a game changer is it, or will it be an incremental improvement.
     
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  9. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Well-Known Member

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    If you read Maxwell’s investor presentations before the acquisition, you’ll see that it is a pretty big deal.
     
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  10. Doggydogworld

    Doggydogworld Member

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    If you read Maxwell's investor presentations for the past decade and compare them to subsequent performance you'll gain context.
     
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  11. ammulder

    ammulder '98 GS400 -> P3D+

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    Yes, just like Autonomy Day unveiled features that are already rolling out...
     
  12. Cosmacelf

    Cosmacelf Well-Known Member

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    Ok, I’ll bite. What context have you gained from doing this?
     
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  13. Eriamjh1138

    Eriamjh1138 Member

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    I could quote Elon when he says Tesla doesn’t do refreshes, but I don’t really believe anything Elon says anymore because I don’t think he speaks the same English that the rest of us do. That last tweet about not selling cars to consumers made no sense.

    I base my complete guess on the likelihood that the huge investment in the model 3 battery factory lines and Tesla’s need to start making money instead of spending it is going to put significant changes on the slow road to production and not a fast track. Therefore, I suspect the opposite of your statement.

    My statement has a timeline, but yours is actually vague and unverifiable. I’ll stand by my 3-7 year prediction as reliably as any fake fortune teller or stock analyst, but it is posted and in 3-7 years, i’ll Either be right or wrong.

    I’d love to think Tesla is going to make some huge leap in battery tech, but i’d rather not be disappointed when it doesn’t happen and prefer to be surprised if it does.
     
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  14. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    To be fair, 90+ % of those solvents are recovered and re-used. The big advantage of the dry electrolyte is in not having to spend money and factory floor space on solvent recovery systems.
     
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  15. neroden

    neroden Model S Owner and Frustrated Tesla Fan

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    Well, I just remember J B Straubel and Elon Musk saying that they ignored all PowerPoint presentations about batteries, and they would only buy a battery "breakthrough" if they could see an actual working cell (and presumably the lab that made it). So they clearly did that with Maxwell. Which means they are fairly advanced on the tech and fairly ready to apply it to production.
     
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  16. TE51A

    TE51A Member

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    This was a wonderful story, the company I work for has an incredible culture and thou I was offered better incentives and pay at better corporations. I couldn't find a culture to trump where I was... I made the decision because I'm heard and I'm incredibly fortunate of the rare position where my mentor became my boss. and we have a very trusted and transparent relationship money can't buy. so I'm sticking around where I'm valued. I maybe an engineer but some of ideas have manifested into the product and that's a feeling you can't miss :)
     
  17. brucet999

    brucet999 Active Member

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    As a one-time petrochemicals guy, I feel compelled to chime in here. Gasoline is not a low-profit area for oil companies. There was always a requirement for the petrochemicals group to get higher pricing for toluene, xylene, ethylbenzene, and even the aliphatic hydrocarbons, than the alternate value in gasoline, otherwise the refineries would increase fuel production and reduce petrochemical output.
     
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  18. traxila

    traxila Member

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    This will not happen for years. Tesla and the world will be severely battery constrained for years. Tesla will always direct batteries to new sales until they are overproducing batteries. When will that happen? As the world continues to awaken to the need and desire for batteries (the markets are multiple and HUGE), it will be a long time before Tesla decides to put resources into retrofitting older cars, IMO. Hope I am wrong, only because Tesla discovers how to ridiculously ramp battery production.
     
  19. jeewee3000

    jeewee3000 Member

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    I agree. Tesla would never have bought Maxwell if they did not see very promising tech. Elon has repeatedly spoken out about promised disruptive battery tech, mostly saying what works in a lab on a micro-scale does not mean it is applicable to the large scale batteries that Tesla requires for its products.

    Speaking of PowerPoint presentations though, I found this interesting one by Maxwell dating back to (only) January 16th, 2019:

    Mainly slides 9 and 10 are very interesting:

    Patented Breakthrough Dry Battery Electrode Technology to Capitalize on Coming Megatrend

    Dry Battery Electrode: Completing Major Performance Milestones
    Transformational Battery Technology Enabling Electric Vehicle Megatrend

    Energy Density:
    >300 Wh/kg Demonstrated with Path to >500Wh/kg identified

    Extended Battery Life:
    Improved Durability; Extending Battery Life up to 2x

    Cost Reduction:
    16x Production Capacity Density Increase;
    10-20%+ Cost Reduction versus State-of-the-Art Wet Electrodes

    Technology Enablement & Environmentally Responsible:
    No Solvents, Next Gen Materials, Cobalt-Free, Solid State

    High Likelihood of Strategic Partnership(s) Within Six Months

    The last line is classic :rolleyes:. They had basically already signed the contract with Tesla at that point.

    The energy density numbers are also telling given Musks recent tweet (June 30th):

    FWIW, based on calcs I did 10 years ago, cross-over point for Li-ion beating kerosene is ~400 Wh/kg. High cycle batteries are just over 300 Wh/kg today, but probably exceed 400 in ~5 years.
    According to Maxwell they had demonstrated 300 Wh/kg in January and Musk backs this up. (Unless he is talking about Tesla battery tech prior to Maxwell, I am not informed enough on batteries to know this)

    Fortunately he is cautious in predicting future improvements but that can change quickly. I sincerely hope he won't pull an Autonomy Day stunt on Battery Investor Day (coming to a theatre near you this August):

    (warning: fake quote) Elon: "We will achieve Energy Density of >500Wh/kg by the end of this year, definitely in 2020." :p

    All jokes aside, I am very optimistic about the Maxwell technology. Even if they live up to half of what they claim, we are going to see serious improvement in battery density/life/... If it is indeed dry battery electrodes, this would explain why Tesla is not asking Panasonic to produce them. A new cell technology could be built by Tesla itself, given some CapEx and elbow grease.

    Very curious to hear what Tesla will talk about on Battery Investor Day.
     
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  20. wdolson

    wdolson Supporting Member

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    The 16X production capacity density increase is a big deal for the GigaFactory. That would free up a lot of factory space for other production and increase cell output.

    BTW the original 85KWH cells had an energy density of 240WH/Kg and tear downs of Model 3s found the 2170s in use today are 247Wh/Kg, so the 300 number probably does include the Maxwell tech. The dry electrode batteries are probably a bit less dense, so on the pack level we won't see a 50 WH/Kg increase, we'd need to know the weight of a dry electrode 2170 to get an estimate of that.

    A battery cell that has 1000 WH/Kg, but the density of styrofoam would make a pretty low energy density EV pack.
     
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