Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

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Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Collin Kidder
I don't know if everyone has heard but Azure Dynamics seems to be no
more: http://www.azuredynamics.com/documents/PR_Mar26_2012.pdf

I have been told that essentially everyone who worked with selling
motors and controllers to hobbyists and small shops has been fired. It
appears that the controller redesign they had been planning will not
be a reality any longer.

I had been hoping to purchase more motors and controllers from them in
the future. AC drive has a tendency to be very expensive but their
offering could be had for a reasonable price. So, the question is:
where do I go in the future? Who sells AC hardware capable of
reasonable performance and doesn't want a gold mine, a pony, and my
first born? And, does anyone know of any better prospects for support?
I've already got a couple of their units and now if they break it
seems I'll be left owning the pieces...

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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

EVDL Administrator
On 29 Mar 2012 at 11:16, Collin Kidder wrote:

> I don't know if everyone has heard but Azure Dynamics seems to be no
> more: http://www.azuredynamics.com/documents/PR_Mar26_2012.pdf

That's a serious bummer.  They hung in there for quite a long time, much
longer than most EV businesses.  I hope they can reorganize and come out of
it as a survivor, but I have no idea how likely that is.

> Who sells AC hardware capable of reasonable performance and doesn't
> want a gold mine, a pony, and my first born?

As far as I can tell, Solectria's former partner Brusa (Switzerland) is
still viable and apparently quite active.  However, I'm afraid that Brusa
gear doesn't meet your cost criteria.  

MES-DEA has a 100kW drive.  Metric Mind sells it for a bit under $12k with a
30kW continuous rated motor.  You might be able to get that for just the
pony, and keep your gold mine and firstborn. ;-\

David Roden - Akron, Ohio, USA
EVDL Administrator

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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Peter Gabrielsson
In reply to this post by Collin Kidder
I'll take only your gold mine!

Seriously though, HPEVS sell some pretty affordable AC systems,
http://hpevs.com/




On Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 8:16 AM, Collin Kidder <[hidden email]> wrote:

> I don't know if everyone has heard but Azure Dynamics seems to be no
> more: http://www.azuredynamics.com/documents/PR_Mar26_2012.pdf
>
> I have been told that essentially everyone who worked with selling
> motors and controllers to hobbyists and small shops has been fired. It
> appears that the controller redesign they had been planning will not
> be a reality any longer.
>
> I had been hoping to purchase more motors and controllers from them in
> the future. AC drive has a tendency to be very expensive but their
> offering could be had for a reasonable price. So, the question is:
> where do I go in the future? Who sells AC hardware capable of
> reasonable performance and doesn't want a gold mine, a pony, and my
> first born? And, does anyone know of any better prospects for support?
> I've already got a couple of their units and now if they break it
> seems I'll be left owning the pieces...
>
> _______________________________________________
> | Moratorium on drag racing discussion is in effect.
> | Please take those discussions elsewhere.  Thanks.
> |
> | REPLYING: address your message to [hidden email] only.
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--
www.electric-lemon.com

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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Elithion
In reply to this post by Collin Kidder
Collin Kidder wrote
where do I go in the future? Who sells AC hardware?
Hello Collin,
Just check the list of all motor drivers.
http://liionbms.com/php/motor_drivers.php
This is the section on AC motor inverters:
http://liionbms.com/php/motor_drivers.php#Induction
It lists 16 manufacturers other than Azure.
Davide

Davide Andrea
Elithion
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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Thos True
In reply to this post by Peter Gabrielsson
Hi All,
You can find ordering info and support at evparts.com.
The motor comes matched to the pre-programmed controller.
I am looking for other high performance options as well and will keep the
list informed with any progress.
Sad to see the latest developments at Azure.
-Tom


On Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 12:11 PM, Peter Gabrielsson <
[hidden email]> wrote:

> I'll take only your gold mine!
>
> Seriously though, HPEVS sell some pretty affordable AC systems,
> http://hpevs.com/
>
>
>
>
> On Thu, Mar 29, 2012 at 8:16 AM, Collin Kidder <[hidden email]> wrote:
> > I don't know if everyone has heard but Azure Dynamics seems to be no
> > more: http://www.azuredynamics.com/documents/PR_Mar26_2012.pdf
> >
> > I have been told that essentially everyone who worked with selling
> > motors and controllers to hobbyists and small shops has been fired. It
> > appears that the controller redesign they had been planning will not
> > be a reality any longer.
> >
> > I had been hoping to purchase more motors and controllers from them in
> > the future. AC drive has a tendency to be very expensive but their
> > offering could be had for a reasonable price. So, the question is:
> > where do I go in the future? Who sells AC hardware capable of
> > reasonable performance and doesn't want a gold mine, a pony, and my
> > first born? And, does anyone know of any better prospects for support?
> > I've already got a couple of their units and now if they break it
> > seems I'll be left owning the pieces...
> >
> > _______________________________________________
> > | Moratorium on drag racing discussion is in effect.
> > | Please take those discussions elsewhere.  Thanks.
> > |
> > | REPLYING: address your message to [hidden email] only.
> > | Multiple-address or CCed messages may be rejected.
> > | UNSUBSCRIBE: http://www.evdl.org/help/index.html#usub
> > | OTHER HELP: http://evdl.org/help/
> > | CONFIGURE: http://lists.sjsu.edu/mailman/listinfo/ev
>
>
>
> --
> www.electric-lemon.com
>
> _______________________________________________
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> |
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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

EVDL Administrator
In reply to this post by Elithion
On 29 Mar 2012 at 12:16, Elithion wrote:

> Just check the list of all motor drivers.
> http://liionbms.com/php/motor_drivers.php
> This is the section on AC motor inverters:
> http://liionbms.com/php/motor_drivers.php#Induction
> It lists 16 manufacturers other than Azure.

This is a surprisingly extensive list. Which of these drives are available
to EV hobbyists (rather than just to OEMs)?

David Roden
EVDL Administrator
http://www.evdl.org/


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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Rick Beebe
In reply to this post by Collin Kidder
On 03/29/2012 11:16 AM, Collin Kidder wrote:
> I don't know if everyone has heard but Azure Dynamics seems to be no
> more: http://www.azuredynamics.com/documents/PR_Mar26_2012.pdf
>
> I have been told that essentially everyone who worked with selling
> motors and controllers to hobbyists and small shops has been fired. It
> appears that the controller redesign they had been planning will not
> be a reality any longer.

A close read of that document implies that the problem is not
necessarily lack of sales, but lack of liquidity and an inability to get
some short term financing. Azure is doing the Electric Transit
conversions for Ford. I haven't heard what's going to happen with those.
But I think this may be a temporary "bankruptcy" while they work out a
deal for financing. I wouldn't be too surprised to see Ford bail them out.

--Rick

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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Elithion
In reply to this post by EVDL Administrator
EVDL Administrator wrote
On 29 Mar 2012 at 12:16, Elithion wrote:
> Just check the list of all motor drivers.
> http://liionbms.com/php/motor_drivers.php
This is a surprisingly extensive list.
Thanks. We like to be of service.

EVDL Administrator wrote
Which of these drives are available to EV hobbyists (rather than just to OEMs)?
Having dealt with EV enthusiasts to are top notch, and company engineers who are not, I can tell you that many of us equipment manufacturers do not assume that a sale to a company is preferable to a sale to an individual; we place a great value on the user's abilities and know-how, regardless of the long term potential.

In the particular case of AC motor inverter, the issue is more one that most of them require a CAN based VCU (Vehicle Control Unit). Developing the code for a VCU for a single system is not cost effective. From what I know of Collin Kidder, he would have been able to buy a Azure DMOC and develop a VCU for it; I am not so sure that others could have as well.
Of the 17 AC motor inverter manufacturers listed (http://liionbms.com/php/motor_drivers.php#Induction), only 3 include a VCU that is already set-up for you: CalMotors, Centric Automotive, and Curtis (if bought from High Performance EVs). (All 3 will work with a Lithiumate Pro BMS out of the box.)

Davide


Davide Andrea
Elithion
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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Collin Kidder
In reply to this post by Rick Beebe
On Fri, Mar 30, 2012 at 11:47 AM, Rick Beebe <[hidden email]> wrote:

> On 03/29/2012 11:16 AM, Collin Kidder wrote:
>> I don't know if everyone has heard but Azure Dynamics seems to be no
>> more: http://www.azuredynamics.com/documents/PR_Mar26_2012.pdf
>>
>> I have been told that essentially everyone who worked with selling
>> motors and controllers to hobbyists and small shops has been fired. It
>> appears that the controller redesign they had been planning will not
>> be a reality any longer.
>
> A close read of that document implies that the problem is not
> necessarily lack of sales, but lack of liquidity and an inability to get
> some short term financing. Azure is doing the Electric Transit
> conversions for Ford. I haven't heard what's going to happen with those.
> But I think this may be a temporary "bankruptcy" while they work out a
> deal for financing. I wouldn't be too surprised to see Ford bail them out.
>
> --Rick

I hope that that is the case. However, on another forum Beth Silverman
(who was, I believe, the sales manager at AD) posted that she and the
rest of the Boston office had been fired and that the entire Boston
office would be closing basically immediately. Since they were the
ones who were doing the DMOC445/645 controller sales/support this
severely limits the future potential for people like me to purchase
controllers or motors. As Davide has mentioned one needs a vehicle
control unit to talk to the DMOC controller but I could have done
that. Actually, I know of a place who has contracted with Neweagle to
get a VCU programmed for such a use. Now they might be the only ones
to need it.

It is worth mentioning that I've contacted many of the companies
listed on Davide's list of AC manufacturers. They all want me to raid
Fort Knox. Hence why I was asking if any affordable options are out
there. It appears that Curtis controllers are the closest match to
"affordable" but I think their low voltage / high amperage layout is
idiotic.Still, they do seem to be the best AC option for a reasonable
drive strategy.

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Re: Azure Dynamics - Where to go now?

Danpatgal
<quote author="Collin Kidder">
It appears that Curtis controllers are the closest match to
"affordable" but I think their low voltage / high amperage layout is
idiotic.  <quote>

I've also wondered about the low voltage offerings of HPEV's AC motors ... seems counter to the setups most EV enthusiasts would have currently; often with 120v or more in their battery packs.  It is also odd that all the new OEM EV drive systems (Leaf, i, ...) have very high voltage packs with AC motors.  Why aren't we seeing these kinds of products available to the hobbyist?  I'm considering an upgrade on my EV (or building a new one) and think the regen and efficiency would be worth a little more to have - but as you mention, not at Ft. Knox prices.  I may as well just buy a new OEM vehicle (maybe that's what they're hoping for).