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Carter Edwards
Carter Edwards

*batteries Not Included


Batteries Not Included (stylized as *batteries not included) is a 1987 American science fiction comedy film directed by Matthew Robbins about small extraterrestrial living spaceships that save an apartment block under threat from property development. The story was originally intended to be featured in the television series Amazing Stories, but executive producer Steven Spielberg liked the idea so much that he decided to adapt it into a film. It was the feature film screenwriting debut of Brad Bird.




*batteries not included



VAITHEESWARAN: They probably also think a lot about the many other gadgets in their lives. And the main battery source to power all of our gadgets and gizmos in modern life, whether it's the smartphones, to the camcorders, to you name it, these days use lithium-ion batteries. Lithium is particularly attractive to engineers because we're able to get an enormous amount of energy storage. You can pack 200 watt hours of electrical potential into a single kilogram. That's a five times improvement on the old lead acid batteries. So in a sense, you get a lot a bang for the buck. The costs have fallen by about 98% for the energy stored in the last 30 years. So it's a very, very attractive way to store a lot of energy in a small space to power an electronic device.


Batteries that use lithium are easy to recharge and relatively cheap. As a result, your home is probably full of battery-operated objects that contain lithium. But while smartphones and laptops and other gizmos are great and all, the real reason that lithium-powered batteries matter has to do with something way bigger.


Lithium-powered batteries are fundamental to storing and distributing clean energy. There may be alternatives in the distant future, but right now, there is just no way to make clean energy work without it. And this impacts another sector of the energy transition - electric vehicles.


VAITHEESWARAN: Anybody who cares about climate change will tell you, "Hey, we've got to get off of oil." And the most promising technology for getting off of petroleum in transportation at least for the next 10 to 15 years is electrification and electric cars rely on lithium-ion batteries. There aren't really a lot of viable substitutes in the short term. So yeah, we're going to demand a lot more lithium if the electric revolution keeps taking off, like it is, certainly in China, certainly in Europe, to some degree in California and parts of the US with the Teslas and so on. And that's going to consume ever more lithium to make those batteries.


VAITHEESWARAN: They have some lithium themselves, but they're a huge importer from other countries like Australia and from the South American countries. And the reason is they've built the supply chain and the manufacturing processes. They have developed a process for making lithium-ion batteries at scale, a manufacturing process that consumes lithium as an input. And so they've got the electrochemical know-how. They also have relatively cheap labor, relatively lax environmental rules compared to Europe or the US. But to their credit, they also have lots of engineering sophistication, especially in electronics manufacturing at scale, which is why they were able to develop, for example, solar panels and transform the global solar industry by bringing that to scale. The electric vehicle business, which is related to lithium-ion batteries, but not the same of course, they have EVs at scale because they're able to manufacture them and consume them. And in the same way, they've been able to do the world a service to some degree by producing lithium-ion batteries at massive scale, reducing the costs so that everyone in the world can benefit from this technology. However, it does give them market power.


VAITHEESWARAN: There's no doubt that having an early leader advantage, first mover advantage, in an important industry of the future is helpful. And you can see that again with the spillover into their electric cars, which use lithium-ion batteries for energy storage. They're able to build up a supply chain tightly integrated between those industries, the auto and energy storage industries. And you can imagine other areas where they could gain benefit. That's different from saying that it's some kind of monopoly or cartel. There's nothing stopping the United States or Europe or other aspiring countries from gaining competence and being really good at manufacturing. There's nothing stopping them from entering into long term contracts, for example, to develop resources of lithium from South America or from Australia. And so if you could give long term certainty and advanced market commitments to purchase lots of lithium from these countries, there'd be much more likely to provide the investment needed to develop their industry. There's nothing the Chinese can do to stop that.


VAITHEESWARAN: There's no insurmountable barrier in the US to America becoming a clean energy powerhouse that utilizes lithium, makes lithium-ion batteries and ultimately is able to take advantage of the properties that lithium makes possible. Now, what barriers we have, some of them have to do with the nature of our capitalist markets. A second area of course is nimbyism. Lots of people don't like to have mines developed in their areas, native lands, or even on federal lands. There's a lot of obstruction and there is some water pollution that results from mining. And so are we going to insist on higher environmental standards or help the latest technologies for environmental remediation be applied from day one to give reassurance to communities that this is not going to be just another toxic mess we're going to leave in your backyard and someone somewhere else will be driving a fancy electric car thinking that they're being very green. So getting that right, and we're not there yet. I think that would help. We're never going to be as cheap and cheerful as China because frankly they run roughshod over local communities, over capital markets, over environmental concerns, over labor concerns. I don't think we want to be that country when it comes to making clean energy work. But I think we can do it at a higher quality level. And we might see Europe as for example our competitor or frenemy in this. Europe is forging ahead pretty quickly in this area and we might be able to learn some lessons from the way that Europe is working on this.


This new world of ours needs batteries, and a lot more lithium. If we are going to succeed, someone is going to produce that lithium. Sure, China is currently ahead, and there are a lot of challenges, but the question of who will lead this transition is still up for grabs.


Parents need to know that batteries not included is an '80s movie with more iffy content than you may remember. There are some scenes of violence. One includes an arsonist burning down an apartment building. Another scene shows characters threatening others with axes and baseball bats. A character is shown binge-drinking by himself. Profanity includes "goddammit," "bastard," "hell," and son of a bitch." One scene shows a nude painting of a topless woman; bare breasts are on full display. Implied robot sex (bright, blinking lights coming from a shed).


Planning for power outages can include creating an emergency supply of batteries and other power sources. Here are some things to know about batteries that can help you create a supply that meets your needs.


Lithium batteries store more energy for longer than alkaline batteries. Lithium batteries last about twice as long as alkaline batteries. Their shelf life makes them a great choice for your emergency supply.


Every year in the United States, millions of single-use and rechargeable batteries are bought, used, and recycled or thrown away. Dispose of batteries based on their type and chemistry. Some batteries can cause a risk to safety and health if mismanaged at the end of their lives.(3)


Just when they are about to give up, their miracle happens... Amblin Entertainment's *batteries not included is a warm, touching movie about tiny spaceships, the people they encounter, and the magical relationship that develops between them.


*batteries not included started out as a concept for the Amazing Stories anthology series that Amblin Television produced from 1985-1987. The concept, an idea by Steven Spielberg originally called "Gramps and Grammie and Company," was developed into a story and a first draft by Amazing Stories writer Mick Garris. It became the basis for a new screenplay co-written by Brad Bird (Family Dog) and Matthew Robbins (The Sugarland Express). They also collaborated on The Main Attraction, an Amazing Stories episode conceived by Spielberg, scripted by Garris and then redrafted by Bird and Robbins, who would also direct.


Here\u2019s a specific case: Samsung SDI\u2019s EV battery division reported a profit margin of 1% for the first time, after reporting fat losses between 2012 and 2019. It\u2019s notable though, that consumer electronics batteries maintained higher profitability of approx 11%.


We indicate non \u201Cpureplay\u201D cell manufacturers with a (*) for companies that also make EVs like BYD/Tesla and a (^) for larger conglomerates, like Panasonic, where batteries are only a subset of the larger business.


Matthew Robbins' "*batteries not included" is a family-friendly science fiction charmer. The film, about tiny flying saucers that assist a group of New York residents in keeping their home, is nicely assembled, neatly cast, and full of well-earned emotion.


Starring Jessica Tandy and Hume Cronyn, "*batteries not included" revolves around five residents of a building that is set for demolition only to be rebuilt as high-end office property. Resisting the move and holding on the their homes for dear life, the residents form an unlikely allegiance with mechanical-based aliens. Together, the residents form an unexpected family as the helpful aliens support the efforts to protect home and hearth. 041b061a72


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