- EVs have been around for more than a century and once commanded almost half the U.S. auto market; a rise to the top is in the works today
- Hillcrest Energy is pioneering work in next-generation power inverters that are instrumental in EV operations and performance
- Hillcrest’s inverters are a leap forward in EV tech, reducing the overall size, weight, and cost while improving power quality, material elimination of switching losses, and a reduction in electromagnetic compatibility issues
The history of electric vehicles (“EVs”) in the United States dates to 1891, when William Morrison built a six-passenger wagon widely recognized as the first practical example of an all-electric car. In these early days of motorized transportation, EVs were bona fide competition to gasoline-powered cars, with EVs comprising about 40 percent of the U.S. market. Ultimately their slow speeds, high cost and limited range led to their demise as consumers opted for internal combustion engines (“ICE”) to traverse the nation’s expanding roadways. Now the world is preparing for EVs to become the dominant mode of transport as countries worldwide look to banish pollutive ICE vehicles forever, and with innovative technology from companies like Hillcrest Energy Technologies (CSE: HEAT) (OTCQB: HLRTF), the next generation of EVs are going to be more efficient than ever before.
The fact is that work in the EV space has never gone away, with interest in electric cars waxing and waning throughout the 20th century, although efficiency and costs remained a persistent challenge. It wasn’t until Tesla (NASDAQ: TSLA) came out with its Roadster in 2008 that the market really started turning the corner. With hundreds of companies working in the space and billions of dollars invested against the backdrop of government mandates to develop infrastructure and switch to emissions-free cars and trucks, the evolution is well underway.
Innovation abounds across the complete transportation sector. Companies such as Mercedes-Benz (Xerta: MBG) and Rivian (NASDAQ: RIVN) are working together on electric commercial vans for European markets. Harbinger has developed a new chassis, called the eAxle, that combines the motor, inverter, and gearbox into a replaceable integrated unit that it claims to be 15 percent more efficient and 50-80% less expensive than full packs today.
Hillcrest is a clean tech company based in Vancouver that is developing transformative power conversion technologies and control system solutions for next-generation EVs and electrical systems. Hillcrest specializes in EV power inverters, a market forecast by Infinity Business Insights to grow from $8.67 billion in 2021 to $22.25 billion by 2028, fueled by widespread consumer demand for EVs and proactive government initiatives.
Power inverters are an integral component in EV powertrains, as they convert Direct Current (“DC”) from batteries into Alternating Current (“AC”) that is used by motors. It’s arguable that inverters are the true unsung hero of EVs due to its abilities to unlock efficiencies. The component represents the link between innovations that will unlock further EV efficiency and range gains. The conversion function that an inverter provides is called “switching” in power electronics parlance, and Hillcrest has mastered the science of switching without incurring losses – called Zero Voltage Switching or ZVS.
Hillcrest’s ZVS soft-switching inverter technology can result in a significant increase in overall system efficiency and power density, in turn reducing the overall size, weight, and cost of an inverter. Other benefits including improved motor efficiency, power quality, material elimination of switching losses, and a reduction in electromagnetic compatibility issues.
Hillcrest has recently released two white papers demonstrating the advantages of its inverter technology, particularly with regards to switching frequencies. The first white paper detailed test results showing the value of operating electrical systems at higher switching frequencies with the ability to eliminate losses. The newest explains how operating at higher switch frequencies can result in a significant reduction in the size of capacitors within the system, as well as improvements in power quality, system reliability and component life.
“The Hillcrest inverter will help us move from the current vicious circle of making larger, heavier batteries to increase EV range to a virtuous circle of decreasing EV mass thanks to greater efficiency and reduced complexity,” said Hillcrest CEO Don Currie during an interview with The EV Report. He added, “Our inverter is the start of that domino effect.”
As it finalizes its first commercial prototype – intended for EVs – Hillcrest is making plans to embark on a strategy where it will generate multiple revenue streams (including outside the EV space) without giving up ownership or limiting opportunities with exclusive deals.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.HillcrestEnergy.tech.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to HLRTF are available in the company’s newsroom at https://ibn.fm/HLRTF
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