David Clarke October 18, 2013 06:30 AM Why not fold up the new (battery)body panels into a battery shape, and make the body out of carbon fibre. Otherwise prangs will cost an absolute fortune. Imagine the cost of insurance! bergamot69 October 18, 2013 06:34 AM Not only would these body parts be dangerous after a collision, but carbon fibre is notorious for shattering into very sharp pieces, that can become projectiles in the event of a collision.I don't think carbon fibre is a suitable material for use on road vehicles, except possibly in parts of the vehicle that are generally contained in the event of a crash, perhaps certain interior parts. Dziks October 18, 2013 08:38 AM "weight (...) would be spread out evenly over a vehicle’s body. In theory, vehicle handling and performance characteristics would thus improve as a result of this revised displacement idea." - this is new!! AFAIK low lying centre of gravity improves handling etc.,not spread out evenly over a vehicle’s body. ZekeG October 18, 2013 09:18 AM The frame made with carbon fiber would be a better option. Who wants to get shocked and yes, carbon is expensive and shatters. Wrap the carbon frame with non- conductive basalt fibers( much much more affordable). notarichman October 18, 2013 11:13 AM i'd rather film PV solar panels were glued to the outside panels, part of the metal is removed (thinner panels that weigh less), and some carbon fiber put underneath...acting as batteries. thus making power, batteries, no flying carbon fiber in a crash, and about the same weight? Don't know what to do about electrical charges flying around in event of a crash.No solution i have seen is perfect. EV's have a ways to go before they rival ICE's, but they are getting closer all the time. IMO the larger car mfg. have not put much effort into making EV's viable. I still think they want the repair parts income and are closely involved with the petroleum industry. Now that almost anyone can donate large amounts of money to politicians, bribes are essentially legal. Proving a donation is not a bribe is almost impossible.Only consumer interest proven by purchase will overcome the auto mfg. bias.There have been studies indicating that the amount of carbon / co2 emissions emitted by one volcano, let alone by all of them, exceeds the total output caused by humans. So maybe co2 is not the issue concerning keeping autos green. I think the issue is petroleum products. There aren't many areas in the world left that could possibly produce NEW petroleum. Sure, there are more places to drill and recover those products, but eventually the cost of recovering them will be more than they are worth. Thus, IMO we need a different mode of transport that doesn't require much petroleum products and I'd prefer that mode to be somewhat green.In Eastern USA or anywhere that you can live, shop, and drive to work closely EV's are now possible. In other areas like where I live, it is over an hour drive to get to a grocery store, gas station, etc. For more esoteric purchases or services my drive is at least 1.5 hours or more (like a good hospital). We have no cell phone service and won't get it because my village has a population of 41 year around residents. If a power line goes down, we also lose our water until power resumes. As a result I am very interested in off the "grid" supplies (not just electricity!). When an EV is for sale with charging stations and repair stations available in my area that i can afford, you can bet that i will buy one...especially if it is a 4wd pickup. VirtualGathis October 18, 2013 11:48 AM I think I agree this concepts is interesting but not as a body panel. Maybe replacing internal braces and structural components.I have yet to hear of a completely safe battery construction in the event of a collision. They do not even mention the chemestry they are using. The diagram looks like they are using a capacitive effect which would have a crazy low energy density.Just to use a hypothetical situation here. Imagine they use Lithium Ion or Lithium polymer batteries inside these panels. Now look up video of penetration testing on Lithium batteries. I've heard them described as "blows up bigger than Texas" which is an exaggeration but brings the point home. Toxic smoke is the first result. Then very hot fire that water does not extinguish.If they use the carbon fiber as capacitive "plates" then the energy density would be very low and would provide very dangerous discharge issues. For an idea how bad it can get look up incedents involving the high voltage capacitors in "old fashioned" tube TVs and monitors. Then imagine a capacitor the size of a car blast-discharging. I've seen the TV sized caps blast nickel sized holes in sheet metal. Now to make it clear why using it as a body panel is plain foolish. Imagine you child playing, bicycling, or whatever. He or she smacks into ones of these and cracks/breaks the panel. Lithium or capacitive the child gets a possible fatal electrical blast and is exposed to slicing injury, possibly toxic chemical. That's whith the vehicle parked. Now imagine either of these coliding at highway speeds. Either possibility would create a very dangerous, toxic mess.Then there is the point David made. These would make a fender bender into a hugely expensive replacement as repair would not be an option. Slowburn October 18, 2013 12:51 PM Just wait until a little ding becomes a battery fire. Larry English October 18, 2013 01:34 PM "the electric elephant in the room continues to be bulky and weighty battery packs."no, it is low capacity cold weather performance drop high cost short lifeand special bonus, in winter you can either have heat or get back home from work, but not bothwle Jerry Peavy October 18, 2013 03:01 PM A little less of the, I heard this or I think I read this, type of statements would be helpful. If you can't reference facts it might be best to say nothing at all. Don Betton October 18, 2013 03:06 PM Interesting and promising battery solutions. However where are the solar panels? I never see electric or hybrid cars incorporate even the smallest solar panel!! While panels will not provide all the required energy it is surprising panels seem to be never incorporated in car design.