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 04-27-2010, 06:18 PM #1 (permalink) aerohead Master EcoModder     Join Date: Jan 2008 Location: Sanger,Texas,U.S.A. Posts: 12,784 Thanks: 20,500 Thanked 6,307 Times in 3,907 Posts lunar streamlining yields 108-mpg hwy Coming back from outer space I had been contemplating Amory Lovins' 200+ mpg 'Hypercar'. For many a moon I've tried to wrap my mind around the physics of such a car and how you could really pull it off. So to make big mental leaps I thought I could simplify the aerodynamic part of the equation simply by eliminating it. By inserting a 'Lunar' atmosphere into the Road-Load equation it would be quick and dirty way to look WAY forward. Here are the assumptions ( there are always assumptions!) : A 'typical' 1000-kg passenger car of 'typical' frontal area,and 'typical' Cd which returns 28-mpg HWY,has a Road-Load of 28-horsepower at 70-mph, constant BSFC of 0.459 pounds gasoline-per-horsepower-hour,and 'typical' all-season steel radial tires at 'typical' inflation pressures. When the 'atmosphere' is removed,all there remains is the Rolling-Resistance and powertrain loss,which we're going to ignore. When the aerodynamic drag is removed,the Road-Load is reduced to something on the order of 8.4-Bhp required to impel the car down the road at 70-mph. By taking the Road-Load for one hour,at 8.4-horsepower,and 0.459 Pounds per horsepower-hour BSFC you end up with less than seven-tenths of a gallon required for the one hour of driving,or,70-miles. This works out at 108-mpg HWY.A bit short of 200-mpg. If you could get the BSFC of a stationary 2-stroke,compound-turbo diesel,at around 0.36-pounds/hour you still come up short. Now if anyone has seen the Cd 0.16 "Hypercar" at Rocky Mountain Institute,Old Snowmass,Colorado,even with its light composite carbon-fiber body,200+ still seems like a 'reach.' GM's all-composite Ultralite,at 1,400-pounds, Cd 0.19,and turbo-diesel could only manage 100-mpg,and it never went over 60-mph. I'm a fan of RMI and I think they have done,and continue to do good work,but I have difficulty with "Hypercar's" numbers. I realize that electrics and hybrids get 'considerations' from the EPA for CAFE purposes but 200+ mpg seems like a stretch. I like to think that they are not,in the parlance of Louis Black,"just makin' the ---- up."