|over the top
||[Jul. 3rd, 2009|06:08 am]
Excess is not 'green' ok??|
Look I love Dean Kamen as much as the next guy--- sure the Segway wasn't exactly the "it" we were promised (of course it never got the fuel cells needed to make it a serious machine), and his water tratment systems are GENUIS. But the latest story, about the Kamen making a "Hybrid Stirling Engine Scooter" is stupid. Yes, I said it, it's just wasteful and shows whats wrong with more than 1/2 of the EV "market."
Kamen is now working on a stirling engine hybrid scooter. That means a scooter that uses gas, but also has some hybrid electric motor, and now his fancy stirling engine (which works with TH!NK but not so much on a scooter). Why why why??? There is no need for this.
See, until the police pried me off my electric scooter, I ran around Montreal for years and never once ran out of electricity. That's just the nature of the beats-- a scooter that only goes 75 kmh can not go on highways, hence the average commute on a scooter is less than 30km. LEAD ACID BATTERIES ARE PERFECT FOR THIS! There is no need for li-ion (like many scooters are now selling as an 'upgrade') and certainly no need for a hybrid motor. This is what Yamahaha is said to be doing as well, put out a hybrid scooter. These are BS. There is no need to have both an electric motor and an ICE, you can get everything done on Lead Acid Batteries (and LABats are infinitely more recyclable than lithium, cadmium, little metal hydrides....).
This is the same as the EV industry where people just wont buy an electric car if it only has a 100km range, and I'm sorry for sounding like a jerk, but this is just pure stupidity. People pay no attention to how much they drive per day-- if they did, they would know that they drive less than 50km a day! This means that for 99.9% of your average 2-car owner's driving, simple (and cheap) Lead Acid batteries and a 9" electric motor is all they need! Face it, you're not in college anymore, the Grateful Dead no longer tour, and there will be no big road trip (except for maybe driving the kids to Florida over Xmas).
If one were to convert their car to electric, or buy a preconverted electric, with lead acid, the money they save from EV commuting would afford the commuter to rent a rolls royce for their once annual road trip. And still pundits daliy bemoan the fact that EVs batteries don't go 300 miles on a charge! WHO DOES A 300 MILE COMMUTE????
I love ya Dean, but go back to the water and th!nk cars....
I agree with most of what you said. I only take issue with the lead acid acceptability in EVs. Sadly, they are probably the worst battery to use. They just happen to be everywhere, and cheap.
There are some great non-lithium batteries out there that could be used in EVs. I especially like the nickle-iron (Edison "Ironclads") that powered just about every EV until the 30's. They last forever, and in slower EVs work very well. They can't pump out the amps as LA or fancier chemistries, but then they wouldn't have to. They would be perfect for shitty NEVs, and would last decades. In fact, IIRC, NiMH are a variation on NiFe.
I would love to see those Stirling engines out of Dean's wet dreams and in my house, though. I can see that as the perfect way to marry a solar thermal and a solar electric system that would cost a tenth as much as photovoltaic.
Good to see you posting again!
2009-07-07 01:27 pm (UTC)
Hey thanks! It's good to be bacl!
I agree that there are better non lithium out there, and lead acid do kinda suck. but they are out there, and if you watch what this guy
is doing, you can take all the lead acid batteries that are now on their way to be recycled (that's one thing that lead acid does well, there's more recycling than any other batteries) but he takes the dead ones that are supposedly only good for recycling, and revives them, and then driver around Vancouver with them!
personally i like Evyonix batteries http://www.evionyx.com
which are being used by some people converting cars to BEV now--- and these AXION
carbon lead batteries show great promise.
But my favorite is not in the battery, rather in the charging... this KAIST project in Korea
is brilliant! They use inductive charging, lay strips into the roads, and then as long as they are on 20% of the roads, you charge while driving! You can use about 1/5 of the regular amount of BEV batteries and never run out of juice! OK that might be a bit tooo much for people on this side of the pond, so we might have to put the strips into parking spots and then use those solar powered wireless parking meters. Pay for parking and a charge up at the same time....
will definitely check out these nickle iron batts!
2009-07-07 06:50 pm (UTC)
Re: Hey thanks! It's good to be bacl!
I'd be interested to learn more about that battery reviving process. Then again, I have a special hatred for liquid electrolyte batteries in vehicles. It's just too dangerous.
I say this as someone involved once in a hit-and-run motorcycle accident who had a bike pinning his leg to the pavement for way too long. Had that bike been both all-electric and using flooded batts, I would have lost my jeans, at least.
2009-07-07 07:50 pm (UTC)
Re: Hey thanks! It's good to be bacl!
Here's some more info
about it, and some more info
, and some more
... he sells complete plans for $99. I imagine that anyone who does this can then start a recycling company and end up with more batteries to revive than could drive an army of BEVs.... The guys name is Rob Matthies email me(littlecatalyst at gmail), and i can send you his phone numbers so you can ask questions before buying the $99 kit
just so you know, when i had 2 wheel EV copmpany (back in 1999, kinda like vespas but coudl do 70kmH) all our batteries were under where you'd put your feet, if tere was an accident it would be too low....
Have you bought these plans? If so (no need to give away any proprietary info), do they involve chelating agents to remove lead sulfides?
If so, yes, that would work, but only as long as the plates themselves remain intact. Once the plates start to wear holes, reviving them would involve only marginally improving their useful lives.
The Vectrix (best bike I've ever ridden
) also has the batteries (NiMH) under the feet. Great ride.
No, I've only been reading about these guys for about a month--- was workng for some people on the west coast who were looking at ways to cut down conversion time for retrofitting ICE cars into EVs. Suggested it to that client but they decided that they didn't want to have all the extra space needed for collecting and reviving all the batteries (sure it would take space, but it would also chop a few grand off the conversion cost). I am curious about it, and will probably explore it soon (i did find at least two other ways to cut conversion costs by a few grand, and a few of them can be done in harmony! Will write about them soon, i promise!
But right now Ive been obsessed recently and become a dealer of this
, which while it isn't batteries (uses them), will probably give you a little thrill (am converting Lincoln Town Cars)!
do you rally think that this is possible with the hybrid bolt-on? it's only really working in the lower gears-- once you hit around 40mph your using 100% of the ICE again. let me know what you think about this?
I would need to see how they connect to the transmission, but I suspect it won't really matter. Any connection is going to be problematic.
When the DC gate controller goes, it GOES. Full on, go fast, no chance of disconnect without prior arrangement. That ratio of which drive thrust pushes the car only applies to things when they work as designed. How they fail might be another matter.
If the controller goes, you need to ask yourself: How do I disconnect the power to the motor? It very probably won't matter how that motor is connected; if it's connected to the transmission, it's a problem -- a very real and present danger.
Such a beauty! So sad their management is killing the company. At least we can get Brammo's at Best Buy now....
How are they killing it?
(Not that I'm surprised, having seen so very, very many companies die that way.)
they're diluting the quality with the VX-2 which is really a cheap Chinese scooter that's been around for years with no advancements-- but worse yet; Carlo Di Baigio has moved on to Ducati, replaced by someone who knows nothing about EVs or motorcycles (former dir. of Avis rent-a-car), and now even founder Andrew MacGowan is gone, replaced by a guy named Boil, CEO from some generic cellular phone company, whose been in charge of bringing on the cheap crappy bikes. Lots of other ardents have now jumped ship, replaced by generic suits. There's no soul left. Kinda sad....
i think this one is the winner! Why charge people for charging???