Electric car - Page 2

Electric car

This is a discussion on Electric car within the Off Topic & Humor Discussion forums, part of the The Back Porch category; Originally Posted by Sky Pilot After 21 years in the emergency services, serving simultaneously as a lawman and a paramedic, I've seen wrecks from barely-bump ...

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Thread: Electric car

  1. #16
    Senior Member Array stanislaskasava's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sky Pilot View Post
    After 21 years in the emergency services, serving simultaneously as a lawman and a paramedic, I've seen wrecks from barely-bump to rip-in-two.
    I'm reserving judgment on the electric cars until I see 'em on the road for a few years.
    Batteries are my first concern. All batteries have an electrolyte; most battery electrolytes are either acidic or caustic. On collision these will rupture. Guaranteed, amigos pistoleros, with some of the wrecks I've responded to, the batteries will rupture! -- my concern here is that the patients, in addition to blunt force trauma, will now be anointed with either an acidic electrolyte, or a caustic electrolyte, thus adding chemical burn injuries to traumatic injuries.
    This may also turn the scene into a haz-mat incident.
    I've heard the arguments that "Carbon fiber bodies are very strong."
    Um, sorry. After some of the wrecks I've seen ... no.
    My second big concern is the energy contained in the batteries. Again, in the mauling destruction of a collision, what happens when these marvelous repositories of propulsive power go to dead short? Please don't tell me that's why God invented fuses. Again, in the massive, twisting deformations that occur in a collision, I'm concerned with a dead short on these wonderful new high capacity batteries.
    I'll freely -- very freely! -- admit that it's possible these new electric cars may indeed have these problems solved. It's quite possible that people who are younger, smarter and better looking than I, have these problems solved already, and my fears will prove completely unfounded.
    If that's the case I will be a happy man indeed!
    Until then, my 24 MPG buggy starts and runs whether it's 40 below or 105 above, its quick steering and throttle response have kept me out of two wrecks so far, and I can afford to keep up payments on what I've got.
    There's a reason that 'normal' cars are still the best way to get around. Maybe in 50 years 3000 pound cars will be powered by small armored or buffered batteries. Or a 'Mr. Fusion'.


  2. #17
    Ex Member Array FN1910's Avatar
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    I turned the key on my pick-up one day and heard a loud bang. I opened the hood and the battery had exploded. I know it was a lead-acid battery but still causes me concern. I have a degree in Electrical Engineering and worked with a power company for 25 years so I have a little knowledge of electricity. The Volt from GM seemed interesting from thepress release but it isn't available yet. All the others are just glorified golf carts and the hydrogen fuel is a LONG way from being totally efficient. You still have to find some way to make hydrogen or the electricity to charge the golf cart.

  3. #18
    VIP Member Array obxned's Avatar
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    Unless they changed the laws of physics, the electrical energy to charge the darn high-priced toy has to come from somewhere - produced by petroleum, coal, nuclear, or hydroelectric. There is no such thing as a free lunch.
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  4. #19
    Member Array NKMG19's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by airbornerangerboogie View Post
    I'm for anything that would allow the US to tell the Arabs to stick their oil where the sun don't shine.
    Thats called drill here drill now. Oil was put on this planet for a reason. It's just that we allow our government to tell us that we can't drill for our own and we cant build another refinery here either. This makes no sense. The electric car might be good for those who live in a metropolitan area but not for the rest of us who choose to live where we have more breathing room. We want our own gasoline pumped and refined in America. My Harley begs for it. Sure I could ride a scooter but I don't want to get blown off the road on my way to work.
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  5. #20
    VIP Member Array Cupcake's Avatar
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    Power plants are way more efficient than an internal combustion engine. That said, it'd be ideal if we could charge with solar and wind. That being way too expensive (even if the cleanest choices), lets build some doggone nuke plants.
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  6. #21
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    I don't see the problem with sucking Kuwait and Iraq's oil fields dry either.

    Back to the electric car thing, the technology might not be perfect, but its a step in the right direction. Remember how primitive grandpa's cars were compared to today? It wont take long to get them where they need to be, once the market is proven and the money is there.
    "Just blame Sixto"

  7. #22
    VIP Member Array TN_Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cupcake View Post
    I'm holding out for the Chevy Volt, and hoping it ends up affordable. I think they're making a mistake by going with a hi-tec engine. I think they should throw in the cheapest geo-metro engine they can produce to keep the costs down. The engine is only for occasional use for the target market, including myself
    . Chevrolet | New Electric Car - Concept Chevy Volt
    Actually Cupcake, the Volt's internal combustion engine transfer no power to the drive train. It is no more than a generator to produce the electricity needed to re-charge the batteries and produce electricity when needed. Much the same as how a diesel locomotive the pulls a freight train operates. That is why they used the engine they have in it. High tech produces more electrical power than a Geo Metro type motor.

    As a side note, I saw a fellow last week in a Geo Metro near where I work. I was behind him at a stop light and there on his car's rear end was an obviously new bumper sticker that read "WHO'S LAUGHING NOW?"
    Obviously a comment on the price of gas and how much his car is better equipped to handle it than most of the cars on the road now are. I had to laugh quietly to myself after reading that. Good for him.
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  8. #23
    Ex Member Array TacticalCompact's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cupcake View Post
    Compressing air is a hugely inefficient way of converting energy. There is so much heat of compression that just goes away. That represents energy just thrown away. Batteries have their losses too, but I don't think it comes near the compressing losses.
    That's not the point. The point is that it represents a method of transport, when coupled with wind and solar generators, that is completely emissions-free. No dangerous chemical batteries, nothing.

    Besides, the head from the compressions process could be contained and put to use for heating your home, your water, whatever. Think outside the box, it's not just about driving efficiently, it's about LIVING efficiently and with fewer emissions.

  9. #24
    VIP Member Array deadeye72's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by WarHorse1961 View Post
    I've had my eye on that one for a while. I can't remember where I saw it (Jalopnik?), but it'll be in the $40K range. Sorry, that's a little too pricey. If they kept it around $25-$30K, it'd sell lot hotcakes. Too bad.

    IIRC The first place I saw it was in Transformers the movie. It looks just like the 2009 Camaro.
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  10. #25
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    Let's look at a few of the 'alternative energy sources'............

    (First off I am not a novice to electrical power. I'm an electrical engineer who for the past 27 years has worked in the back up power business. I deal with UPS & generator systems. As such, I'm very familiar with battery technology & alternate means of power when utility power is not available.)

    Are there some interesting plans out there? YES, some are likely to have some success....most however will fail for economic & practical reasons.

    Ethanol- This is already having unintended consequences....It has raised food prices, since we are removing food from the supply chain to feed fuel needs. This means less food for the consumer. Corn prices have doubled in recent times (up $3 more dollar a bushel just last week!). As more land is being used to produce ethanol, less will be available for food crops to be raised. Another issue is the amount of land that would be required to produce enough for our fuel need. If we took ALL farm land today & just produced ethanol (no food crops allowed!), we would only be able to supply 15% of our fuel needs......& we would be starving! Then we have the storage & delivery of ethanol.....Ethanol has a limited shelf life & this makes delivering it rapidly more expensive.

    Hydrogen- Infrastructure does not exist yet & do we really want to be driving a vehicle with 'Hindenburg' potential. OK, that part is a little alarmist. Let's look at it from another related angle.....Do you want the average Joe Smo filling up his hydrogen car? It's not like gasoline.....oops I spilled a little bit, no big deal. Hydrogen is HIGHLY flammable! We have accidents at gas stations because of carelessness now!

    Fuel Cells- These have some potential, but probably not for another decade. The issues with these can be seen in the hydrogen paragraph above & the battery paragraph below. (most fuel cell technology is using hydrogen & oxygen.)

    Battery- Here we get a lot of unintended consequences. All batteries store energy & carry harmful chemicals.....In an accident you can't turn them off! You can try to protect them & make them less likely to rupture causing spills or injury....but that costs more money & ADDS weight (weight kills fuel economy & robs power to move the extra mass)! Then we have to deal with recycling issues when they need to be replaced. Just look at how difficult it is to recycle ONE car battery now.....now multiply that 30-80 times.

    We still haven't addressed recharge........A lot of people see an empty outlet & think I can plug my device into that receptacle & it doesn't cost me anything (That mentality exists, I see it daily! It's the same as thinking 'I have checks in my checkbook, therefore I must have money in the account!') The power has to come from somewhere..............it might be coal, oil, nuclear or even wind, but somebody will have to produce it & you will have to pay for it. In the US we have a pretty good electrical system, BUT it is heavily overused. Look at the stories from out west, they are using record amounts of electrical energy due to a heat wave......Now just imagine what would occur if we all plugged in our electric cars to charge........That grid can't handle that extra load. We would need to expand our electrical production by 12-18%. Anybody recall the 'rolling blackouts' in California?.....But wait.....Our congress & some state governments won't allow any new fossil fuel powered OR nuclear power plants to be built to provide for this added need. Sort of like the US not having built ANY new oil refineries in 37 years!

    WIND- This is another technology that everybody thinks is 'FREE'....Wrong! Wind turbines are not cheap (they take a lot of energy & resources to manufacture) & the time it would take to recoup the investment is LLLLLOOOONNNGGG! They also have small power outputs & reliable areas for wind are hard to find & hard to get the neighbors to agree to.....(think Ted Kennedy & the wind farm he helped stop near his home!)

    Solar- Photo voltaic's are not very efficient & require large areas to gather sunlight that is only available for at best 1/2 of the day & at worst less if cloudy. Solar cells are also expensive & easily damaged by weather & the elements. On a positive note, there are some in the works that may delivery better energy, but only time will tell..............

    As of today & the immediate future we are an oil driven world....Sorry, that's the way it is. High fuel prices may be the only way to force alternatives, but what price will we have to pay in the mean time?...........
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

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  11. #26
    Ex Member Array FN1910's Avatar
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    Good writeup there Goawayfarm. I saw a neat show on Wind Driven Generators over in the Netherlands I think it was. Each one was rated at 1.5MW which is outstanding but just the turbine housing on those things were something like 60x30x20 feet. They are humongus and I have no idea the cost. They may pay off eventually but it will be awhile. Several years ago the installed a windmill in Boone, NC and had to take it down. It was causing a low frequency rumble throughout the town keeping people awake and vibrating the houses.

    We need more nukes. :)

  12. #27
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    Quote Originally Posted by FN1910 View Post
    ....

    We need more nukes. :)
    +1.......that's the way I would go if I were King!
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

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  13. #28
    Member Array BENZIN's Avatar
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    Volkswagen Lupo - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    this car was sold over seas it was deisel got extremly good mpg and was not confined by electric power the real way to go would be a deisel electric hybrid like
    NAIAS 2008 Concepts: Jeep Renegade

    its useing a treid and true system .
    Loca motives are nothing more than deisel generators for electric moters ,and look how much weight they can move

    If we refine deisel tech we can generate extremly good mpg cars
    with no limits driveing
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  14. #29
    Ex Member Array TacticalCompact's Avatar
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    It's up to the individual. These small wind generators will power a household, and where I live wind is plentiful. Probably not gonna work everywhere, but where it can it should. I've done the math and it would pay for itself inside of five years based on home energy use alone. If used to power a vehicle, it would pay for itself sooner.

    Still, the point is not the money saved, the point is the overall reduction in consumption. I've already downsized my vehicles and plan on getting rid of one and running a motorcycle. Whatever I can do, I will. Also, becoming vegetarian is pretty huge. It takes an incredible amount of energy to put a steak or some chicken on the table, and just a small fraction to put grains and vegetables in it's place. The emissions are far less as well.

    Consumption CAN be reduced on an individual basis, those expecting the gubment to take care of us are living in a dream world. Of course, that's not to say that those of us who expect a large number of people to think and act on their own aren't living in a dream world as well. Still, I do what I can, and if everyone else would, this discussion would be moot.

  15. #30
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    Quote Originally Posted by BENZIN View Post
    .....Locomotives are nothing more than diesel generators for electric motors ,and look how much weight they can move

    If we refine diesel tech we can generate extremely good mpg cars
    with no limits driving
    Yes diesel is a better way to go.....but trains work so well because of low rolling resistance. Steel wheels on steel tracks make the work a lot easier.....cars on the other hand have far worse rolling resistance due to soft tires & rougher driving surfaces.......it makes a huge difference! Just try putting tires on a loco & see how far it goes down the road.........
    Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca

    "If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith

    "An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper

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