VW China or VW USA?

The Volkswagen Group has started construction of the first plant that will solely build cars based on the new modular EV platform known as the MEB….

Settled near Shanghai, China, where Tesla also plans a plant, the VW Group’s new EV plant will first build electric SUVs for the SAIC-Volkswagen joint venture starting in 2020.

The Shanghai plant will span nearly 151 acres and feature 1,400 “Industry 4.0” robots for increased automation. VW also said the plant will feature artificial intelligence, augmented reality, and virtual reality components to digitalize the production facility.

In addition to building the MEB-based electric cars, the plant will assemble batteries. And to ensure the electric cars minimize their carbon footprint, the plant will employ 27 types of environmentally friendly technologies. Most of the technologies will focus on water preservation, energy saving, and the reduction of carbon dioxide.

There were rumors of VW making the United States the core of their global electric car production. That was before the election of our fake president. Trump opposes any significant electrification of the US consurmer fleet. He also opposes the sort of green manufacturing regime planned by VW. Folks in Chattanooga, Tennessee, have their hopes up for expansion of existing VW facilities; but – personally – I think they’ll just get enough leftovers to let Republicans brag about their voodoo economics. That’s all.

China preparing launch of artificial moons – replacing streetlights, no electric connection required!

Andy Wong/AP Photo

China is planning to launch its own ‘artificial moon’ by 2020 to replace streetlamps and lower electricity costs in urban areas…

Chengdu, a city in southwestern Sichuan province, is developing “illumination satellites” which will shine in tandem with the real moon but are eight times brighter…

By reflecting light from the sun, the satellites could replace streetlamps in urban areas, saving an estimated 1.2bn yuan ($170 million) a year in electricity costs for Chengdu, if the man-made moons illuminate an area of 50 square kilometres.

I worked on reflectorized mylar used in early satellites for radio reflectivity…cripes, back in the early 1960s. Yup, and some of the stuff found its way into my apartment as hip, mirrored decorations. Cheap as all getout to produce.