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CKA Uber
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 10:52 pm
 


Well, as you know I'm not buying into the hype around AGW BUT, I saw something super cool today.
An auto maker in France has developed a line of vehicles that run on...compressed air. The first one was developed sometime in the late 1800s but there was the always present concern of a catastrophic rupture in case of an accident. Today they use carbon fiber tanks that won't blow up if breached.
The cars sell from $7000 for the smallest model to the family size which costs about $25,000. They'll get about 125 miles from a full tank and can reach speeds of 70mph. IF you have your own air compressor, you can fill your car at home in about 3-4 hours for the whopping cost of about 2 bucks.
If you want something that you can take out of the city, there's a hybrid that'll give you about 600 miles between air and gasoline power.

I seriously hope these catch on, particularly for city driving.


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 11:15 pm
 


Just another electric vehicle, once removed. Is it more efficient than straight electric? Maybe a better way to store the power, I don't know. But there must be losses from using an electric motor to compress the air to using the air to move the car.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:43 am
 


andyt wrote:
Just another electric vehicle, once removed. Is it more efficient than straight electric? Maybe a better way to store the power, I don't know. But there must be losses from using an electric motor to compress the air to using the air to move the car.

There will likely be some loss depending on temperature when filling, but operating at city speeds will not require the use of an electric motor. At 35-40mph, the car runs purely on compressed air. At speeds above that, an electric motor will kick in to provide the extra compression needed.

Peugeot is also developing a gasoline-air hybrid car that will employ the technology of "regenerative braking". In regenerative braking, the car's compressed air storage tanks are refilled with air by harnessing the energy created every time the driver brakes — energy that's usually just dissipated as heat. This will make the car even greener than a Prius, with an estimated 117mpg.

However, your question regarding efficiency is hard to answer because of the large weight difference between a compressed air car and an electric car.
While efficiency may be a bit of an issue right now this is just the beginning, but on paper and in tests, the current crop of compressed air cars are already greener than the current generation of electrics.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 4:46 am
 


PublicAnimalNo9 wrote:
Well, as you know I'm not buying into the hype around AGW BUT, I saw something super cool today.
An auto maker in France has developed a line of vehicles that run on...compressed air. The first one was developed sometime in the late 1800s but there was the always present concern of a catastrophic rupture in case of an accident. Today they use carbon fiber tanks that won't blow up if breached.
The cars sell from $7000 for the smallest model to the family size which costs about $25,000. They'll get about 125 miles from a full tank and can reach speeds of 70mph. IF you have your own air compressor, you can fill your car at home in about 3-4 hours for the whopping cost of about 2 bucks.
If you want something that you can take out of the city, there's a hybrid that'll give you about 600 miles between air and gasoline power.

I seriously hope these catch on, particularly for city driving.


Very interesting, I can see this doing far better then electric cars on the open market.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 5:27 am
 


But, if you wreck one in an accident will it be called "breaking wind?"


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 5:42 am
 


fifeboy wrote:
But, if you wreck one in an accident will it be called "breaking wind?"


[BB]


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 7:32 am
 


PublicAnimalNo9 wrote:
andyt wrote:
Just another electric vehicle, once removed. Is it more efficient than straight electric? Maybe a better way to store the power, I don't know. But there must be losses from using an electric motor to compress the air to using the air to move the car.

There will likely be some loss depending on temperature when filling, but operating at city speeds will not require the use of an electric motor. At 35-40mph, the car runs purely on compressed air. At speeds above that, an electric motor will kick in to provide the extra compression needed.

Peugeot is also developing a gasoline-air hybrid car that will employ the technology of "regenerative braking". In regenerative braking, the car's compressed air storage tanks are refilled with air by harnessing the energy created every time the driver brakes — energy that's usually just dissipated as heat. This will make the car even greener than a Prius, with an estimated 117mpg.

However, your question regarding efficiency is hard to answer because of the large weight difference between a compressed air car and an electric car.
While efficiency may be a bit of an issue right now this is just the beginning, but on paper and in tests, the current crop of compressed air cars are already greener than the current generation of electrics.


The electric motor I was talking about is the one that compressed the air in the first place. You have the efficiency loss of that electric motor that compressed the air, then the efficiency loss of the drivetrain as the air propels the car.

But if you also have an electric motor on board to compress air as you drive, things get even worse - you have to have batteries to power that motor. Those batteries add a lot of weight, as we know from hybrids.

Every hybrid uses regenerative braking, including the Prius.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 9:00 am
 


The real progress in electric vehicles will come only when someone invents a power source that can provide at least the same convenience as gasoline or if the 'Holy Grail' of wireless transmission of power is ever attained. Anymore I think we'll se the latter occur before the former.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 9:14 am
 


Electric vehicles ignore how that electricity was generated. Plenty of hydrocarbon power plants around, including coal. If you use coal generated electricity to charge your electric car, you basically running your car on coal. Probably no better than just using gasoline, maybe worse. Want the ultimate in green efficiency? Horse powered bicycles. Or quadcycles would be better. Actually, camels are even more efficient, I believe.


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PostPosted: Fri Jan 24, 2014 12:36 pm
 


andyt wrote:
PublicAnimalNo9 wrote:
andyt wrote:
Just another electric vehicle, once removed. Is it more efficient than straight electric? Maybe a better way to store the power, I don't know. But there must be losses from using an electric motor to compress the air to using the air to move the car.

There will likely be some loss depending on temperature when filling, but operating at city speeds will not require the use of an electric motor. At 35-40mph, the car runs purely on compressed air. At speeds above that, an electric motor will kick in to provide the extra compression needed.

Peugeot is also developing a gasoline-air hybrid car that will employ the technology of "regenerative braking". In regenerative braking, the car's compressed air storage tanks are refilled with air by harnessing the energy created every time the driver brakes — energy that's usually just dissipated as heat. This will make the car even greener than a Prius, with an estimated 117mpg.

However, your question regarding efficiency is hard to answer because of the large weight difference between a compressed air car and an electric car.
While efficiency may be a bit of an issue right now this is just the beginning, but on paper and in tests, the current crop of compressed air cars are already greener than the current generation of electrics.


The electric motor I was talking about is the one that compressed the air in the first place. You have the efficiency loss of that electric motor that compressed the air, then the efficiency loss of the drivetrain as the air propels the car.
Just as you have efficiency losses every time you convert energy from one form to another. But let's face it, at $2-$3 to fill up and another couple of bucks for fuel for the compressor and zero pollutants/emissions coming out of the tail pipe, who really cares about losses in efficiency? At about $5-$6 total to fill up and an approximate range of 125 miles purely on compressed air, even at an (in)efficiency rate of 5-7%, it still beats the alternative. Maybe not for long highway drives(unless you go with the hybrid versions) but perfect for tooling around town.
andyt wrote:
But if you also have an electric motor on board to compress air as you drive, things get even worse - you have to have batteries to power that motor. Those batteries add a lot of weight, as we know from hybrids.

The major difference being you don't need banks of batteries to run the compressor in the car. NO matter how you slice it, the air car is lighter than any electric/gasoline hybrid car currently on the market.


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