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Old 05-25-2009, 01:33 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Join Date: Jun 2008
Location: Cambridge, ON
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Jalilah - '07 Chevrolet Cobalt LT
90 day: 40.57 mpg (US)
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Originally Posted by JacobAziza View Post
I've been running sans alternator for about 2 months.
Its easier for me, since I have a diesel truck
(no ignition system to power, large dual batteries came stock; step 3 in the instructable Vehicle efficiency upgrades (Go 50-100% farther on a tank of fuel)),
but I suspect if you found a place to install a large deepcycle (RV style) battery you could get away with it too. Put in a battery switch so you can keep the old starting battery from discharging (so you don't accidentally get stranded) and then just run off the deepcycle.

At the end of the day recharge with outlet power.

I also added a 5w solar panel which helps, but not very much.

I don't think you can get much useable energy from waste heat with current technology without spending a whole lot of money, but I did just see a write up on a DIY project on that very topic: Charge Your Cellphone Using Wasted Heat (and Build a Steampunk Wall-E)

I looked into this and i've revised my energy availability projections. I also have a bit of a cost estimate. For every watt of power produced, expect to pay around $5 for JUST the peltier devices. After that you still have to mount the things to the exhuast, and find GOOD heat sinks. I'm doing this calcuation based on an average exhuast-side junction temperature of 150C, and cold side temp of 50C. I think solar power would be cheaper.

I doubt I could run on a deep cycle, as i'd have to go 2-3 hours of driving between charges. If it get a stormy day, or get stuck in traffic for an extra two hours, i'd need a LOT of juice.

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