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The Powerhouse Audiobook

The Powerhouse: Inside the Invention of a Battery to Save the World

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Publisher's Summary

A Soul of the New Machine for our time, a gripping account of invention, commerce, and duplicity in the age of technology

A worldwide race is on to perfect the next engine of economic growth, the advanced lithium-ion battery. It will power the electric car, relieve global warming, and catapult the winner into a new era of economic and political mastery. Can the United States win?

Steve LeVine was granted unprecedented access to a secret federal laboratory outside Chicago, where a group of geniuses is trying to solve this next monumental task of physics. But these scientists - almost all foreign born - are not alone. With so much at stake, researchers in Japan, South Korea, and China are in the same pursuit. The drama intensifies when a Silicon Valley start-up licenses the federal laboratory's signature invention with the aim of a blockbuster sale to the world's biggest carmakers.

The Powerhouse is a real-time, two-year thrilling account of big invention, big commercialization, and big deception. It exposes the layers of competition and ambition, aspiration and disappointment behind this great turning point in the history of technology.

©2015 Steve LeVine (P)2015 Penguin Audio

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

3.6 (8 )
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3.3 (7 )
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Performance


There are no listener reviews for this title yet.

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  • Michael
    Walnut Creek, CA, United States
    22/04/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Nitty Gritty Battery Story"

    This is a very detailed story of the scientists, car companies, government programs, and venture capitalists, involved in the development of the battery of the future. This tries to do quite a lot and may be too detailed for many readers. I understand those that feel it was boring. It covers the stories of battery development, the process of vying for a big government projects, the greed and maneuvering of venture capital funded startup companies, and how EV’s might affect the environment and the oil industry. Although this was not an easy listen, I learned a lot and enjoyed the various storylines. Overall I was very satisfied with this book. The one thing was unsatisfying is the story ends abruptly with the battery of the future still in flux. The narration was very good, dealing with the technical detail very well.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Curiosity
    28/06/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Great if this is a topic of interest"

    Great mix of science and narrative, so long as you are interested in battery technology. Not much discussion of Elon Musk or Tesla at all, in case that is a reason you're considering this book.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Scott Dowler
    12/11/16
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "The powerhouse failed"

    This book promises the description of a battery powerhouse, but fails to deliver. There were several good stories and narratives about the history of the battery, but it culminated in failed efforts to develop a production model battery for the Chevy Volt. More disappointing was it's almost complete omission of Tesla's efforts and successes in bringing a functional 200+ mile car to the market years before GM.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • YunusTheOptimist
    14/09/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "excellent"

    t this is an excellent book. if you want to know everything about Batteries. i have learn a lot.. this book truly classic

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Ian Perry
    25/07/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Needs a sequel"

    I was very intrigued by this book but I feel kind of let down by the rather abrupt inconclusive ending. Maybe in ten or fifteen years we can get the sequel.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • W. Griffiths
    Kansas City, MO United States
    10/04/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Just ok"

    I believe this was a long form article before it was a book. Probably should have stayed that way. Not very compelling, given what could probably be done with the topic.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Alex
    Hilo, HI United States
    29/03/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Inside look into the battery world & much more!"

    This is an amazing peak inside the battery world, the National Labs, DOE/Washington and international business. What becomes apparent immediately is that scientific investigation is really hard but dealing with the human foibles of ego, self-interest, bureaucracy, territoriality, and endless political games is even harder and more unpredictable. Plumbing reality for the laws of Nature is the easier task. How did we ever advance as far as we have????

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    New York, NY USA
    25/02/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Tough to get excited about the ending..."

    ...but that's not Steve's fault. This book is well written and has a lot of information.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • kevmoo
    United States
    23/02/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Eh...intersting"

    it was a bit tough to get through. the story is interesting, but perhaps not worth a book.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Amazon Customer
    Birmingham, Alabama United States
    13/02/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Outstanding"

    I really enjoyed the behind the scenes to this most important tech race. Highly recommended. I hope for a followup in a few years.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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