Electric cars are a pipe dream

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by Syzygys, May 20, 2010.

1. Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

Messages:
23,198
Much like Germany did to clean up the Rhine river - now with fish again etc. They allow factories to pollute it but they must pay for all the damage done. That is determined by independent qualified groups, often university connected. Almost always dumping waste in the Rhine, although legal, is not the cheapest solution for the company so rarely done.

3. billvonValued Senior Member

Messages:
18,310
That gets into difficult questions - what is a human life worth? If a power plant shortens everyone's life by two years in a given area, what's that worth? If they kill a few people, how much per life? If they drive a species to extinction, what sort of payment does that require? How much must they compensate the other businesses for driving away their customer base? Do they have to repair the bridges they damage?

That's doable, but it seems a lot more intrusive (and a lot more dictatorial) than tax incentives and/or hard and fast rules. Imagine a Compensation Czar who has the power to appoint independent groups and then utterly destroy (or pardon) a company, or even an industry.

Ay, there's the rub. Here in the US, science is heavily politicized already, and we don't even rely on independent groups to fine companies. Imagine how many climate change deniers there would be if accepting the impact of climate change meant your company had to pay a three billion dollar mitigation fee. Imagine how many people would decide they don't believe that nitrous oxides are bad, because if they did believe that they'd lose their jobs.

5. Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

Messages:
23,198

The prototype Tilter developed in France and available for sale in 2012 is between a car and three-wheeled scooters. …The cockpit is is very car like (steering wheel, dashboard, heating, 3-point safety belts, and adjustable seat). The folding rear seat allows obtaining a working cargo volume of 220 liters or two rear seats with width of 900 mm (nearly a yard). The power train is reduced to its simplest form: two electric motors of 7.5 kW each, allowing a top speed of 110 km / h, are integrated to the rear wheels.

A weak point of electric vehicles, autonomy is being optimized by computer management. The stored energy and the corresponding distance in terms of use are permanently displayed on the dashboard. Consumption is manageable in real time. Tilter also has a system of regenerative braking, Tilter has a range of 120 km. Battery capacity is 7.68kWh connected for 256V. The 20 to 80% recharge time is 3 hours (On "220 volts standard house power,” I think, which has an AC voltage peak of >300V. Thus, I bet to get to 100% charge from 80% charge, the last 20%, may take a little more than 1 hour more as smaller part of AC cycle can be used, I assume with cheap bridge rectifier system making the DC - no iron transformer to add weight to vehicle yet charge anywhere.)

Most of above from: http://motorbikes-daily-post.blogspot.com/2011/03/tilter-new-prototype-three-wheeled.html. but friend who was at the 3-13 March 11 Geneva auto show gave me their multi-language multi-page booklet, shaped like the car, which in addition to above technical details told empty weight is 340Kg, it is 2.53m long, 1.65m tall, with wheel base of 1.925m and has 250Nm torque from each motor – quite quick away from the light, unless three fat people are inside.

Name and part of what I read, implies it does tilt up some, under computer control. Why, I’m not sure, but perhaps to put more weight on the drive wheels when they may get the full 500Nm of torque? Its body, fully enclosing the passengers, does look nice (to me at least). Price was not given but more at: www.tilter.eu

Last edited by a moderator: Mar 28, 2011

7. X-Man2We're under no illusions.Registered Senior Member

Messages:
403
Billy,

Not sure if this will help for price but here it is:

Tilter purchase price:

As regards the final price of the Tilter, it is currently being elaborated with all suppliers working on the project but it should be less than €15,000 including tax and battery, i.e. less than €12,000 including tax in many countries when government aid is taken into account.

Moreover, we are studying a solution for battery financing plus assistance and repair which lowers the purchase price to less than €10,000 when the monthly subscription fee of €100 is taken into account.

What is this in Dollars?

Messages:
3,245
10,000 Euros is about $14,080 US (from Wolfram Alpha). Looks like fun though. Please Register or Log in to view the hidden image! 9. Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member Messages: 23,198 I agree and quite peppy with single 80Kg driver. 420 kg total weight with 500Nm torque even when just starting from zeros speed at a red light. More than 1Nm/ kg gives real acceleration. Compared to 3 wheel motorcycle it avoids the cost of helmets, rain clothing, tough and hot leather jackets for skidding body protection. I bet they have a three adult (or one adult + three kids) winner here at that price. 10. quadraphonicsBloodthirsty BarbarianValued Senior Member Messages: 9,391 I see little reason to think that such would continue for long. But, even if it does: ... it doesn't translate into "China's electric car," per se. They might just sell the motors made out of the metals. Or said car might well be produced in partnership with international auto makers anyway (like pretty much any car in China worth mentioning). Or, their car might just suck overall, to the point where other auto makers can pay the tarriff on the rare earth imports from China and still outcompete them in electric car sales. There's a lot to designing a car, and it's pretty loopy to think that the relative pricing of minerals is going to make the decisive difference at the top end. It only takes a little bit of inefficiency in the thousands of other designed components of a car - stuff China has little demonstrated mastery of - to cancel out an advantage in rare-earth mineral prices. Not really. Hard drives are already on their way to being replaced by SSDs anyway. 11. adoucetteCaca OccursValued Senior Member Messages: 7,829 Yeah, but for$14,000 you can also get this:

http://www.hyundaiusa.com/elantra/

And instead of a 5 year warranty (not including battery) on that trike you get a 10 year/100,000 mile warranty, 4 seats and a trunk and about 35 mpg and 5 times the range on a full tank vs full battery.

Arthur

12. ElectricFetusSanity going, going, goneValued Senior Member

Messages:
18,523
Yes but you also get a poluting machine that keeps you sucking on the Saudis dicks.

Messages:
7,829
Actually I just pay the guy at the corner for some gas.
If he has to suck some Saudi's dick to get the gas I've no idea, nor do I care, but as I understand it, most of our oil comes from our own wells, then Canada and then Mexico.

As to pollution, as you know, most of our Electricity comes from Fossil fuel and most of that comes from Coal, so I don't feel that bad about using gas in a high mileage car with a catalytic converter.

Arthur

Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
14. Stoniphiobscurely fossiliferousValued Senior Member

Messages:
3,245
Your point is well taken, Arthur, but like EF said:

I would really like to see us chill with the pollution, starting with the air I breathe every day. I really noticed when they took out the lead, the air was much cleaner around here. I would really like it to be so clean that I don't ever have to choke again on stinkydeisel exhaust or mostly - burnt "gasoline". Electric cars can give me that.

Yeah, we are addicted to burning coal and we need to change that. At least with coal - powered generators there is the possibility of cleaning up the exhaust, if we can be arsed to do so.

Get the stink out of my neighborhood, then clean up the stack at the power plant. Do it right, do it cost - effectively and the Chinese will steal the idea to use at home too. We all win.

Once, the very idea of using something other than horses for power and transportation was unthinkable, now it is the norm.

We do have to start somewhere and we need to start sometime soon.

Messages:
7,829
Actually what you noticed was the introduction of Catalytic Converters (which is what mandated the removal of the lead) as they were the first major thing to begin cleaning up the exhaust in our cars. The second was removing carburetors and going to fuel injection for more precise fuel burning.
Current model cars which get > 35+ mpg are very clean, but when we go to Extended Range Hybrids we can easily double that for most people's daily driving cylcles, ie 70 to 90 mpg or so.

As to "stinky" deisel's that was from the high sulfur content of the fuel which has already been removed. A modern turbo-diesel (> 2007) burning ultra low sulfur fuel and a catalytic converter (had to remove sulfur to allow this) is pretty much the same as a gasoline car.

http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/lowsulfurdiesel.shtml

Battery powered trucks will likely never be a player.

Pure battery powered cars will be a niche player for a long time, so they will not be a significant factor in cleaning up our air, though eventually they may do so in dense Urban environments where Taxis are heavily used (ideal use for them, with rechargers available at Taxi stands).

Hybrids, like the Plug in Prius and the Volt have (IMHO) the biggest chance of making 90+ mpg cars common and thus significantly cleaning up our air.

(Volt gets 89 MPG when it is driven on average 60 miles between charges)

http://gm-volt.com/2010/11/24/official-2011-chevrolet-volt-epa-fuel-economy-released/

Arthur

Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
16. ElectricFetusSanity going, going, goneValued Senior Member

Messages:
18,523
You should care, that money you pay eventually ends up in the hands of Saudis who hate us, who use our money to teach their entire population that we are the "great Satan" breeding the vary terrorist that did 9/11.

The USA consume 25 million barrels a day and we produce 7.5 million is that most?

Mexico and Canada, produce combined 5.6 million barrels, I wonder were we get the other 11.7 million barrels, huuum. Ok so only some of our money makes it to fuckers like the Saudis, oh that alright then, if I pay money for services I'm fine with only some of it going to people that hate me!

And even running off of coal electric cars would produce less pollution then a standard car (about the same as a hybrid). Its a matter of efficiency, conventional cars waste so much energy, more so its easier to control the pollution out of a relatively few coal power plants then millions upon millions of cars.

17. Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

Messages:
23,198
Well MolyCorp may someday produce from newly mined ore, but the Japanese nuclear accident makes that less likely. It was excessive radiation release that forced them to close some years ago. China is not so concerned by fact ALL rare earth ores contain high levels of radioactive materials also.

Unlike Detroit, Chinese car companies (there are nearly 100 of them) have been producing for what their market needs and wants. That is changing, now that many in China are growing rich. One model, basically a Mercedes Look-A-Like has only a single throne like back seat, for the owner.

Because of the international nature of the car industry, I don't think the US has any special unique technical ideas to contribute - Detroit was good at making gas hogs and SUV, but not much else. The Flex-Fuel car was developed in Brazil. The nice looking and cheap car seen at: http://www.hyundaiusa.com/elantra/ (adoucette's link) comes from Korea. The best cars come from European designers, even the smaller ones too.
The Volt costs twice as much as China's electric BYD car and does not go quite as far on battery alone either.

Messages:
7,829
I believe it's the Iranian Mullahs who refer to us as the "Great Satan", not the Saudis. But regardless, do you think people who hate us are going to hate us less if we don't buy their oil?
Of course not, if so Iran would now love us, so that's just a Red Herring. Indeed, our oil money is a shift of wealth to an otherwise impoverished area and as their wealth increases their demand for freedom and democracy increases as well. Personally I believe that the infusion of oil money tends to make countries less radical, not more so.

In the context of how I stated it, yes;

Indicating that the largest source BY PERCENT comes from us, then Canada, then Mexico.....

Yes, but as my posts have pointed out, I'm not advocating standard cars but Extended Range Hybrids like the Volt and the Plug in Prius, which should get three times the mileage of standard cars in normal driving cycles and thus be quite a bit cleaner than coal.

By the way, you have explained in many posts the air pollution of coal and all the deaths associated with it, are you aware of the fly ash problems?

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=toxic-ash-pond-collapses

Arthur

Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
19. Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

Messages:
23,198
True. Too bad the US did not import the Flex-Fuel technology from Brazil and sugar cane alcohol from many new tropical fields back when it could. Now because sugar is being used to make 200,000 tons of polyethylene per year and soon a second 200,000 tons/year plant producing polypropylene will come on line, sugar cane alcohol is more expense than gasoline per mile driven. Recently alcohol cost R$2.09 and at same station gasoline was R$ 2.49 - i.e. ETOH was 84% of the per liter cost of gasoline. It must 70% or less to be cheaper.

I don't think many put ETOH in there flex-fuel cars now (except occasionally to clean out gasoline's gum in fuel injectors etc.)There are still a few of the old alcohol only cars on the road buying ETOH, but it seems demand (for making plastics) has surged much more rapidly than new fields (abandoned pasture usually) and fermentation / distillation plants can be built.

The US had its chance three or four years ago, but blew it, so will continue for the foreseeable future to fund the terrorist. It could have switched to Flex-Fuel cars and invested in new cane fields in many tropical lands.

20. Billy TUse Sugar Cane Alcohol car FuelValued Senior Member

Messages:
23,198
“… fly ash emitted by a power plant—a by-product from burning coal for electricity—carries into the surrounding environment 100 times more radiation than a nuclear power plant producing the same amount of energy. … coal's content of uranium and thorium occur in such trace amounts in natural, or "whole," coal that they aren't a problem. …” From: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article.cfm?id=coal-ash-is-more-radioactive-than-nuclear-waste.

Actually we should be getting nuclear power from Thorium. We don’t because you cannot make a nuclear bomb with thorium. In the Cold War era that was all that got funded. Nuclear electric power was an "after thought" of the bomb program. - Gave the nuclear workers something to do instead of close doors and go home.

China is planning to switch to thorium power as thorium is three times more abundant than uranium and much cheaper. (Actually zero cost to them as it must be separated from the rare earths China produces.) In a nuclear accident, not only can it not have a meltdown / China syndrome.* but also the residual heat to cool after shut down is 100 to 1000 times less. For more details see my post at: http://www.sciforums.com/showpost.php?p=2718805&postcount=19
------
*Fuel is normally a hot liquid and if it were to overheat or leak, the geometry change stops the reaction. I.e. a passive shut down caused by metal plug at the bottom of reactor core that melts if it is overheating and lets the fuel drain out into a pan, making a solid slab that cannot sustain a reaction chain as most neutrons escape the fuel. (Electric power for cooling pumps, moving control rods etc may not be there when needed, but gravity never fails.)

Last edited by a moderator: Mar 29, 2011
21. ElectricFetusSanity going, going, goneValued Senior Member

Messages:
18,523
Yeah we get up to 94% of Saudis hating America because they are told we bring them "Jobs and prosperity", I don't think so.
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/articles/A7080-2004Jul22.html

Yes, because we don't just buy their oil, we hold their dictators in power for that oil!

Yeah Iran, Venezuela, less radical? The Saudis live under a theocratic monarchy, most of the 9/11 terrorist came from there, I would call that pretty radical! Personally I don't think Oil has anything to do with making a country more or less radical.

Oh joy so that makes up for the fact we are still paying for oil from others like the Saudis, that if they cut supply we would not be able to make up the difference and the price would sky rocket, thus holding us hostage, yes technicalities are so important

Hey you want to reduce national deficit, maybe we should reduce how much we are paying out on essentials like oil, bleeding our finances dry to other countries. Balance Trade, what a concept.

Oh I'm all for that but in the long run pure electric will win out as the majority propulsion system for small vehicles. Eventually batteries with range with be cheaper then less batteries and a gasoline engine - generating/ parallel drive train.

Wait wait, let me see if I get the math right, we have a power source that dirtier then coal electricity (gasoline engine) and we are using it only some of the time while the rest of the time we are using (assuming 100% coal) coal electricity... how is that less then?

Certainly, but burning Oil can be worse when you consider the reduced efficiency of Oil to gasoline to wheel energy transfer over Coal to electricity to wheel means a lot more oil has to be burnt, producing a lot more particulates, CO2, NOx, etc, then Coal. Also fly ash can be manageable even useful as a solid, smog not so much.

Messages:
7,829
It's not an issue of what will win out in "the long run", a car buying decision TODAY has to be made based on what's available, and currently the choices for Battery powered vehicles is very limited and the supporting infrastructure virtually non-existent which makes the vehicles themselves at best niche players which only match up with a small segment of the car buying population's needs.

But cars like the Plug in Prius and the Volt are here now, don't need new infrastructure to be useful and so don't have those limitations and more to the point, if over the next decade or so we switched our personal transportation needs primarily to Plug in hybrid cars that got 50 to 90+ mpg (2 to 4 times our current average) then we could in fact produce nearly all of our own oil (still get a little from Mexico and Canada) and our transportation based air pollution would be roughly cut in half over what it is today (if not more).

Arthur

23. ElectricFetusSanity going, going, goneValued Senior Member

Messages:
18,523
We been over and over this, even Brazil could not supply most of Americas demand. But lets assume that it could and that instead of installing or supporting dictators in power in Iraq, Iran, Saudi Arabia, ect, we installed a America's Bitch totalitarian regime in Brazil instead, would that make you happy? No the USA need to equalize its trade imbalance, energy is where it most needs to do that, making you their bitch instead of someone else is not the solution.

As it should! This is where bio"fuels" really come in, replacing the 30% of oil that goes into making plastic and materials. You can't make stuff out of electricity and by making materials out of biological carbon your making a carbon sink (by literally sucking carbon out of the air and into solids), equalizing global CO2 balance.