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Old 12-31-2008, 09:39 PM   #21 (permalink)
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This is a legit technology. A friend of mine is working on what Charlie noted and MDI is trying to do, heat the air coming out of the tank in stages for a drag car.

It is a tricky thing and new technology is always going to get the stink eye, but since we know that physics rules we can isolate the shortcomings and work for solutions. ICE are going to be unmatched. The reason they were at the front end of our engine development (after the steam engine) is because it was so darn easy to turn a high energy fuel into motion.

What we are trying to do now, in my time in the auto industry, was get a fuel source that could hold that much energy or more efficiently use the energy that is stored. An ICE is extremely inefficient, but the fuel is packed with sooooo much energy it is hard to not turn it into motion.

The air car will come, I can't wait for it. There are cooling issues and also efficiency issue, the same as an ICE, but the aircar is more of a alternative fuel as opposed to an energy reduction. I don't think compressed air can ever match the energy storage capacity of gasoline, but it offers an alternative to gasoline that IMO probably won't ever be "as good." We are still working on the fuel source to change that, but for now we need to look into lots of options. This is just one alternative to help get us off of gasoline.

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Old 01-02-2009, 03:03 PM   #22 (permalink)
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That thing looks like an aerodynamic dog. In a light and streamlined shape, it would probably do more like 150 mpg, assuming the stated arithmetic is sound, which it probably isn't.
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Old 01-02-2009, 05:14 PM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Otto View Post
That thing looks like an aerodynamic dog. In a light and streamlined shape, it would probably do more like 150 mpg, assuming the stated arithmetic is sound, which it probably isn't.
I think that you always have this weight vs. aero vs. user needs trade off. That looks to be about as light weight as you can get by being as compact as possible. If you are to get it any smaller in certain areas yo are probably cutting into needed component room and cabin room. As ecomodders we throw away niceties and comfort for better fuel efficiency. Unfortunately for them, they have to make it marketable and give it enough versatility that consumers will buy it. The Volt, Prius, etc. all have and will give up aero for comfort, usability, and style. it's tough engineering a car that people want to buy.
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Old 01-03-2009, 03:25 AM   #24 (permalink)
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it doesn't look that bad aero wise... sure it could be better, but it's got no front grill whatsoever and a pretty smooth curve in the front, the back looks like what you have on the average sedan or hatchback...but of the separation is controlled nicely that shouldn't be to bad either. also it's just a sketch, and not a very realistic one, things might look very different on the final car. remember how the volt changed!

another things to consider is the size of a car, the smaller a car becomes the harder it is to combine a comfortable seating position and interior space with sleek lines... but frontal area is just as important as a Cd... for this reason there's quite a few cars that have a better Cda than the prius for example. this car doesn't look all that big to me.

and just like the prius all this car needs to do is prove this propultion system is a valid alternative to ICE... if the thing that moves it is a success you'll soon find it in prettyer cars too
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Old 01-03-2009, 05:34 PM   #25 (permalink)
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Aerodynamics aren't all that relevant if the whole project is vaporware, like all of the other MDI projects.

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