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Old 02-07-2012, 08:40 AM   #6 (permalink)
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That thought also crossed my mind when I was trying to configure a vehicle with a large spinning flywheel with a mass of hundreds of pounds. In my mind the solution was to place the flywheel with it's axes vertical to the direction of travel of the vehicle.

The issue then becomes, how do you extract the energy from the flywheel without creating a yaw effect in the vehicle itself. I remembered my 37 Ford had to rods that ran lengthwise from the engine to points on the frame several feet back. This would tend to counteract the tendency for the vehicle to encounter yaw on acceleration.
I think that might be the best solution, but I never went far enough with the vehicle to actually test that theory in a real world application.

One thing I did think of when contemplating the effect on vehicle dynamics, was that having a large vertical axes mass in a moving vehicle would contribute greatly to stabilizing any pitching motion in the vehicle. Say you went over some railroad tracks or any other similar large undulation in the road. The gyroscopic effect of the large spinning mass would go far to eliminate any pitching, or up and down movements of the mass of the vehicle itself. Basically this means the vehicle would tend to stay level instead of the front and rear pitching up and down in relation to each other.

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