APAS e-Newsletter January 2014


Growing number of Electric Vehicles for maintenance & repair

Transport Department of Hong Kong had 303 registered private electric cars at the end of April 2013.

On 15th May, BYD announced the launch of Hong Kong’s first of all-electric taxi fleet, BYD e6 electric cross-over sedan at a launch ceremony held at the Hong Kong Science Park.


BYD closely collaborated with Hong Kong Taxi & Public Light Bus Association Limited, the Link Management Limited, CLP Power Hong Kong Limited, the Hong Kong Electric Company Limited and the Sime Darby Motors Group (Sime Darby) to place into service the first batch of 45, BYD e6 Taxis.   
In early July, the Hong Kong sales manager for Tesla indicated that Tesla has received several hundreds of orders for its new Model S sedan in Hong Kong.   

Government has allocated $180 million to fund the franchised bus companies, including KMB to procure 36 electric buses for trial in different bus routes.


In the next several years, it is reasonable to expect that up to 1000 or more electric vehicles (EV), including buses may be requiring maintenance services.

Working technicians and mechanics are required to fix or service EV when they maybe 100kM away from its dealer.

The general requirements to EV service personnel include the following:

  • HV hazards and safety
  • Identification
  • Operation
  • Part location
  • Service Procedures
  • Removal of components
  • Inverter / converter testing
  • Motor Generator testing
  • Diagnostics
  • Advanced servicing practices
  • Battery systems (charging and servicing)
  • High Voltage cables leak testing
  • Scan tool diagnostics on HV systems
  • AC system servicing
  • Braking systems

Each EV supplier such as Tesla, the dealers and collaborators to OEM from Japan, China, US and Germany has trained up its maintenance & repair service teams. Some examples are quoted below.

EV technician requirements by Tesla and training in US & Canada

Tesla Motors Australia

Junior Vehicle Technician / Automotive Mechanic Requirements:

  • High School Certificate (HSC) required.
  • Certificate III in Automotive Technology (Light Vehicle) or higher preferred.
  • Motor Mechanic Tradesperson’s Certificate from Motor Vehicle Repair Industry Authority (MVRIA) is required.
  • 3-5 yrs experience in a dealership environment, 5+ years in the automotive industry.
  • Factory Trained Master Status / OEM Training & hybrid experience, preferred.
  • Certification to repair A/C systems and handle refrigerant.
  • Maintain and perform top level professional integrity and appearance as an automotive technician.
  • Knowledge, Skills, and Abilities:
  • Methods, techniques, parts, tools and materials used in the maintenance and repair of vehicles including testing, diagnosis, HVAC service, hydraulic, brakes, testing and repair of electronic systems and modules.
  • Operation and maintenance of a wide variety of hand and power tools, shop tools, test equipment.
  • Automotive equipment and servicing methods.
  • Extensive experience using scan tools, following diagnostics and operating scopes/DVOM equipment.
  • Chemicals and lubricants used in automotive servicing.
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills as well as the ability to follow instructions, required.
  • Ability to establish and maintain cooperative working relationships with those contacted in the course of work, including the public.

Electronics Technicians Association (ETA), USA
Electric Vehicle Technician with a certification, by ETA are able to demonstrate that they are capable of safely troubleshooting and repairing Electric Vehicles coming on the market over the next several years. With high voltage (300 VDC and higher) and the safety issues that follow, technicians will be required to receive specialized training before they are allowed to open the hood of an EV. The government’s EV initiative has already granted millions of dollars to educational institutions for education and workforce training programs.

The Electric Vehicle Technician (EVT) is a listing of the major categories and items considered necessary to be included in a course of study directed towards the education of workers needed in the service industry.
The Electric Vehicle Technician will be required to properly perform the following:

  • Identify major components of Electric Vehicle Systems **
  • Identify types of EV systems
  • Identify EV types and characteristics
  • Install basic EV components
  • Understand Basic performance characteristics
  • Understand basic systems and operating standards.
  • Troubleshoot High Voltage system problems and installation concerns **

Understand safe working practices for:

  • Personal Protection Equipment working with hand and basic power tools **
  • Eye, clothing, ear, and high voltage glove protection **
  • High Voltage Electrical safety **

** These are general categories of required knowledge and skills.

For those interested in Electric Vehicle Technician certification by ETA, please visit it at:
Electric Vehicle Course Approval Application

The Cleantech Institute, California USA
The Clean Tech Institute is the first Approved and Eligible Training Provider for the Certified Electric Vehicle Technician training program in the State of California. Tuitions for this program are funded by the US Department of Labor Trade Adjustment Act, WIA and/or California Energy Commission.
The Certified Electric Vehicle Training (CEVT) certificate program has been designed to train a new generation of electric vehicle specialists to work in electric vehicle production, repair and maintenance. The 16 week training program covers comprehensive topics through lectures and hands-on workshops in advanced electric car theory and practice.
Interested applicants may visit the Cleantech Institute.
TOPICS include: (over 16 week training)

  • Introduction to Advanced Vehicle Technologies
  • Development of Electric Vehicles
  • High Voltage Electrical Safety
  • High Voltage Vehicle Safety Systems
  • Hybrid engines
  • AC Induction Electrical Machines
  • Permanent Magnet Electrical Machines
  • Power Inverter Systems
  • Electric Circuit systems
  • Electric Propulsion Sensing Systems
  • DC-DC Converter Systems
  • Transaxles, Gears and Cooling Systems
  • Energy Management Hardware Systems
  • Battery Construction and Technologies
  • Latest Development in Battery Technologies
  • Nickel-Metal Hydride Technologies
  • Lithium Ion Battery
  • Battery Management Systems
  • Hybrid Vehicle Regenerative Braking Systems
  • Electric Car and Hybrid Climate Control Systems
  • Computer Aided Design (SolidWorks software)
  • Design and Making an Adapter for an Electric Motor (workshop)
  • Design and Making a Fiber-Glass Battery Box (workshop)
  • Conversion of a Internal Combustion Car into a 100% Electric Car (workshop)
  • Basic Electric Car Maintenance

For more information on the Training Counselor at the Clean Tech Institute, please call 800-567-8184 or email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Electric Vehicle Training courses by NSCC, Canada

Each year, more than 25,000 students attend the 13 campus locations across Nova Scotia, and 6 community centers. The Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC) is one key resource preparing technicians and mechanics for EV in Canada.

Some Key Competencies

H – 20.01.01 – select and use tools and equipment such as Personal Protective Equipment (PPE), safety devices, specialized voltmeter, scan tool and hand tools

H – 20.01.02 – determine manufacturers’ specifications and repair procedures for specific storage and control system

H – 20.01.03 – deactivate electrical system according to manufacturers’ specifications and procedures

H – 20.01.04 – select repair parts and materials such as wiring, fuses and fastening devices according to repair requirements and manufacturers’ specifications


H – 20.01.05 – remove and inspect High Voltage system components such as modules and inverters

H – 20.01.06 – replace components according to manufacturers’ specifications

H – 20.01.07 – complete repair by verifying system’ function and performance

Recycling of electric vehicles to match its increasing sales

In 2008, the US President set an ambitious goal of putting 1 million advanced technology vehicles on the road by 2015.

China has started promoting new energy cars in 2009, with public transport used as a pilot zone. As of 2012, there were nearly 28,000 new energy cars in 25 Chinese cities, and 80 percent of them were buses.

By 2016 as greater numbers of Electric Vehicle (EV) reach end-of-life, analysts at Frost and Sullivan have predicted that the EV battery recycling will become significant. Their report claims that electric vehicles are to live up to the 'green' tag in the long term, the recycling and reuse of the battery packs will help ensure that the energy source is in a closed loop and complete a full lifecycle.

Design for Recycle
This article here introduces an example to recycle EV including battery by BMW Group in United Kingdom (UK). The company advocates applying the “Design for Recycling” concept, from manufacturing, to use and servicing, and finally recycling.

It starts with the Life Cycle Assessment case studies. They are used to systematically analyze the environmental impact of components. Virtual and actual dismantling analyses are carried out to assure that each BMW vehicle achieves the goals set. For example, these measures involve that the complete neutralization of all pyrotechnic devices are carried out quickly and safely, all operating fluids are removed quickly, plastic components are marked with the correct material label and recycled materials are used properly.

During the neutralization stage, pyrotechnic devices such as airbags, battery safety terminal clamps and safety belt pretensioners are triggered using a standardized activation device. The neutralization process is carried out fastest in situ. During the development phase, the vehicle electronics are designed so that all pyrotechnic devices can be controlled and activated using one common interface.

During the development phase, consideration is given to making sure that all operating fluids such as oils, air-conditioning system refrigerant, brake fluid and radiator coolant can be removed quickly and simply from the vehicle once it reaches its end of life.
Design for Recycling is to ensure all components that contain fluids are positioned so that they can be accessed quickly. Opening or drilling components containing fluids at their deepest point allows gravity to play a role in the initial process. Specific components, e.g. the fuel tank and the shock absorbers, are drained using specially designed tools.

All components are labeled in accordance with the international ISO standards. This is to enable materials to be sorted according to type.

Recycled materials are those that have been taken from used parts. They can be used for components as long as they do not lead to any functional limitations. This usually refers to components that are not prominent safety features or are in direct view. Wheel arch trims are predestined to be made of recycled plastic material.
Recycled materials are for instance used in the boot ventilation and the mounting of the central console of the BMW 7 Series. Insulation made of flock compound - an insulating material made out of 80 to 90 percent recycled Polyurethane (PUR) foam - is used for the rear parcel shelf.

To benefit the environment and to save costs, recycled materials can account for 15 - 20 per cent in weight of the total mass of plastic materials used. This is to save resources and introduce closed-loop recycling processes.

Once a vehicle reaches to the end of its life, it must be returned by its last owner to an Authorized Treatment Facility (ATF), where a Certificate of Destruction (CoD) will be issued. It is to enable the vehicle to be deregistered and the owner to be released from further vehicle taxation.
Only a fully licensed ATF, which is registered with the Environmental Agency, may issue a CoD. This requirement is a result of the End-of-Life Vehicle Regulations, 2003 and 2005, which implements the "EU directive 2000/53/EG on end-of-life vehicles" into UK law.

Vehicle owners planning to dispose of BMW's can contact the end of life recycling network by calling the Rewarding Recycling on 0800 542 2002 or visit www.rewardingrecycling.co.uk. They are also able to collect your vehicle if required.

Terms and conditions of returning end-of-life vehicles include the following.

The Autogreen's network of ATF's and take-back points take back all registered BMW vehicles (including New MINI and New Rolls Royce). 

These sites will not charge for the disposal of these vehicles if the vehicle is complete, i.e. the vehicle must include its essential component parts, in particular its engine, coachworks, chassis, transmission drive, catalytic converter, wheel and must not contain waste.

As part of Autogreens Rewarding Recycling Programme they may even be able to give you a value for your vehicles recycled parts and metals. To dispose of a vehicle the owner should complete their vehicle registration documents and obtain a Certificate of Destruction (CoD) from the dismantler.

When the primary automotive battery reaches the end of its life, it can be returned to either the Authorized BMW dealer when a new battery is purchased or installed; or it can be delivered to one of the following facilities for recycling:

  • Civic Amenity and Recycling Centers
  • Local Authority Battery Collection Schemes
  • Licensed End of Life Vehicle Authorized Treatment Facilities
  • Licensed Metal Recycling Sites

To find the nearest recycling facilities click here and enter your address and select the type of material that you want to recycle.

For further information or assistance,  please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Government Policies in UK
On 1st July 2007, the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2006 (the WEEE Regulations) came into effect in UK. The Regulations have been designed to prevent & reduce the amount of waste electrical and electronic equipment disposed of to landfill by promoting its reuse, recycling and recovery. (The separate collection of WEEE is to save energy and resources and to avoid hazardous materials from going to landfill.)

Electrical and electronic equipment is any product that relies on electricity or batteries to perform its primary function, including a watch or a remote control toy car.

From 1st July 2007, BMW is required to offer a free method of disposal of all old electrical and electronic equipment. BMW has joined a UK wide distributor take back scheme (DTS) to assist in delivering UK wide WEEE collection system to encourage its customers to recycle these goods. BMW has contributed towards the development of WEEE collection facilities, known as Designated Collection Facilities (DCF), for consumers to use throughout the UK.

From 1 January 2010, the disposal of waste industrial and automotive batteries by landfill or by incineration is banned in the UK.

BMW is both a registered WEEE Producer and Battery Producer in UK with the Environment Agency

UK Research for EV batteries at the end of its life
In early December 2013, EVEREST (electric vehicle embedded renewable energy storage and transmission) Consortium won a research grant from UK government at £3.4 million to apply recycled batteries from electric vehicles to store surplus wind energy generated at times of low demand and release it during demand peak. It is part of the £17 million energy storage technology demonstration initiative launched in October 2012.

The head of technology innovation and deployment at San Diego Gas and Electric (SDGE) in US addressed reusing electric vehicle batteries. His studies have shown that even when a car battery has only 70 percent of capacity left—too little to serve in a car—that it may have about 10 years of useful life left as storage devices on the grid. Therefore, car batteries may have a role in vast energy storage, as power plants seek to balance electricity generation by day from solar and wind, with consumer demand that spikes in the afternoon and evening.

Australian Battery Recycling Initiative (ABRI)
The Australian Battery Recycling Initiative is a not-for-profit association established in 2008 to promote responsible environmental management of batteries at end of life.
Owners interested in battery recycling can visit their website.

EV batteries recycling approaches

A Study for the Department of Energy (DOE) US Energy Storage Systems Program by Sandia National Labs discussed the separation of different kinds of battery materials. It is often a challenge for the recovery of high-value materials. Therefore, battery design that takes disassembly and recycling in mind is important to the success of battery recycling. Standardization of batteries, materials, and cell design would therefore make recycling easier and more cost-effective.

There are two major types of EV batteries, namely Nickel-Metal Hybrid & Lithium-ion. In general, 70% to 100% of EV batteries contents are recyclable depending on the types.

The recycle agencies shred batteries to reclaim the metals including nickel, copper, cobalt and lithium carbonate. Lithium-ion batteries have to be frozen at very low temperatures before recycling.
Widespread battery recycling would keep hazardous materials from entering the waste stream, both at the end of a battery's useful life, as well as during its production. More research is now under way to develop battery-recycling processes that minimize the life-cycle impacts of using lithium-ion and other kinds of batteries, including the Nickel-Metal Hybrid in vehicles. Three recycling processes are stated below:

  • Smelting: Smelting processes recover basic elements or salts. These processes are operational now on a large scale and can accept multiple kinds of batteries, including lithium-ion and nickel-metal hydride batteries. Smelting takes place at high temperatures, and organic materials, including the electrolyte and carbon anodes, are burned as fuel or reductant. The valuable metals are recovered and sent to refining so that the product is suitable for any use. The other materials, including lithium, are contained in the slag, which is now used as an additive in concrete.
  • Direct recovery: At the other extreme, some recycling processes directly recover battery-grade materials. Components are separated by a variety of physical and chemical processes, and all active materials and metals can be recovered. Direct recovery is a low-temperature process with minimal energy requirement.
  • Intermediate processes: The third type of process is between the two extremes. Such processes may accept multiple kinds of batteries, unlike direct recovery, but recover materials further along the production chain than smelting does.

EV battery recycling initiatives by key manufacturers
Toyota offers $200-per-pack to those owners who return the spent EV batteries. It collects and ships batteries for recycling in Japan.

GM & Nissan Motors collect and resell batteries to wind and solar energy companies for reuse. In general their spent batteries still hold 70% capacity.  

Tesla Motors collects and recycles 60% of each battery pack in North America and 99% of each pack in Europe.

EV battery recycling support by Government
US government has made grant at $9.5 million to Toxco recycling plant. Germany made $8.2 million to Chemetall while UK government made $0.8 million to Aexon respectively.