The truth about hybrid/electric cars

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landrew
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The truth about hybrid/electric cars

Post by landrew » Wed Aug 01, 2018 6:17 pm

Regardless of where the power is produced, electric cars are far more efficient and clean than internal combustion engines (ICEs). Coal, natural gas, hydro, nuclear, you name it; using these sources are far more efficient ways to transport people than ICEs. An ICE uses nearly a kilowatt to move someone along a highway from A to B. Aside from the cost of fuel, an ICE-powered vehicle is sadly inefficient compared to electric technology. The engine runs all the time, even when decelerating or descending hills. Electric motors run only when they are needed, and braking regenerates most of the energy lost to brake friction in conventional vehicles.

Eventually, automation may improve highway economy by organizing vehicles into land-trains which can save energy by riding in their own slipstreams. Energy can be transferred to an electric vehicle on the road, unlike fueled vehicles. Passengers can relax, have a nap, do some work, and enjoy the trip without doing the driving. The technology for improving efficiency of electric vehicles is only in it's infancy.
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Matthew Ellard
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Re: The truth about hybrid/electric cars

Post by Matthew Ellard » Thu Aug 02, 2018 2:14 am

My only input would be that hybrid cars, as a concept, are nothing new. All diesel electric engines on trains have a steady running ICE engine that powers an electric motor that drives the train.

The oddest "road" examples was Ferdinand Porsche's MAUS tank and original version of the Tiger tank in WWII. They had one or two steady running petrol engines, that generated electricity to drive the tanks. The technology was not explored further as Germany was running out of copper for electric engines.
:D

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landrew
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Re: The truth about hybrid/electric cars

Post by landrew » Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:18 pm

Matthew Ellard wrote:My only input would be that hybrid cars, as a concept, are nothing new. All diesel electric engines on trains have a steady running ICE engine that powers an electric motor that drives the train.

The oddest "road" examples was Ferdinand Porsche's MAUS tank and original version of the Tiger tank in WWII. They had one or two steady running petrol engines, that generated electricity to drive the tanks. The technology was not explored further as Germany was running out of copper for electric engines.
:D
Porsche was on the right track, but he ran out of time and resources to develop it properly. Modern locomotives use diesel-electric generators to transfer power from the diesel engines to electric motors to drive the wheels. Under heavy loads, there's no better way to transfer torque, due to the fact that an internal combustion engine develops it's torque at full power, and can't provide it at slower speeds. A clutch or a hydraulic torque-converter would have burned up long before the machine was traveling up to speed.

Electric vehicles have nearly full torque from the start. They don't need to develop full RPMs before they reach full power.
The job of a skeptic is to investigate the unexplained; not to explain the uninvestigated.

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