Electric cars are a pipe dream

Discussion in 'General Science & Technology' started by Syzygys, May 20, 2010.

  1. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    We came pretty close with oil. Fortunately we are now creating alternatives.
     
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  3. KitemanSA Registered Senior Member

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    We were never even close with oil. We always had coal and wood and hydro in that mix. Please don't makeup fairy tales to support your position.
     
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  5. wegs Matter & Pixie Dust Valued Senior Member

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    Thought this was particularly interesting from the US Energy Info Administration:

    In 2012, the United States generated about 4,054 billion kilowatthours of electricity. About 68% of the electricity generated was from fossil fuel (coal, natural gas, and petroleum), with 37% attributed from coal.

    Energy sources and percent share in 2012 were:

    •Coal 37%
    •Natural Gas 30%
    •Nuclear 19%
    •Hydropower 7%
    •Other Renewable 5%
    •Biomass 1.42%
    •Geothermal 0.41%
    •Solar 0.11%
    •Wind 3.46%
    •Petroleum 1%
    •Other Gases < 1%
     
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  7. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Very unlikely IMHO. Most of the cost of electric power is capital. Fusion reactors have many very costly to produce technologies. Large volume of very strong magnetic fields produced by super conducting currents. They alone cost (capital) much more than a simple furnace burning fuel. Both systems end up making steam for the same cost electric generator.

    There is the conceptual possibility that some more difficult to achieve than the D-T fusion can release nearly all of the energy in the motion of charged of charged particles (in stead of the 17MeV of a fast moving neutron). Then in principle it may be possible, at considerable more expense for large "breaking magnetic fields" to avoid the Carnot limit. I.e. convert the high quality kinetic energy of these particles into electric power efficiently, but I think that is not economically attractive due to the huge capital cost of the "speed breaking" magnetic volume required.* (As the charged particle is slowed in the field, it is doing work on the field than can be extracted.)**

    * You could first pass the high speed charged particles thru a velocity filter, some what like a mass spectrograph, to spread the particle out into mono-energetic beams and then let them work against an electrostatic field to give up their energy, but that is more complex and probably more capital cost still. Not much work has yet been done on capturing energy from a spectrum of charged particle with a range of kinetic energies as when don't yet know how to make even the simple D-T reaction do significantly more than break even. Also as I recall to get all the energy released in charged particles the fuel must be He3, which doe not exist on earth but can be made, but doing that is costly too.

    ** I think, but never have seen it mentioned, the serious problem of a faster charged particle coming after a slower one that has been stopped by the field, hitting the stopped particle, scattering both, so in practice avoiding Carnot may not be possible.
     
  8. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    That is what a "nude Tesla" looks like.
    I'm not sure, but think you can see their "1 foot diameter" motor behind the wheel spokes. Is it an "in wheel motor" as I suspect it is?" I also bet that if a wheel is "over torqued" tending to slip, the computer can reduce the torque applied. Sort of ABS for acceleration as well as braking. If true, no wonder their 0 to 60 numbers look good.

    Hell, if self-driving cars are widely accepted and trusted, some day the whole steering system weight, steering wheel and all, may be replace by voice command soft ware. I.e. you say: "Turn left at the next light." If you want to select part of the route and the car will by applying differ torques to each wheel, like tractor tread vehicle or tanks turn.

    "Driving" will be nice. You say the pass word* and car door opens, then you tell car where you want to go and "Light level 3." (No need for the "please.") and start to read your book. Soon the car will say: "Arriving in two minutes." Then, ~ 2 minutes later: "Sorry, city data base says this is closest parking space. Your address is half a block back to your right when exiting."

    * That is if you bought the cheaper model without 360 looking, always on, face recognition capacity.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 4, 2013
  9. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    No, it's a pretty standard motor to differential arrangement.

    That's called traction control. Both of my cars have it (a Prius and a Leaf.)
     
  10. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    China #1 : United States #17

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    Here is where the LNG for Asia will come from in about 2 years:

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    FLNG* world's largest floating object:

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    Moored in NW Australian waters.

    Currently China's LNG comes from Qatar more cheaply than US's LNG ever can. See video here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DlwzxV2IiDM

    But soon even Quatar will not be able to economically compete with LNG made on FLNG moored over the NW Austrian NG field and off loaded to the Q-Max LNG carriers for a much shorter trip to China.

    *FLNG is a NG liquid faction plant about 0.5Km long with the long term economic advantage it can move to other off-shore fields when needed. Shell has a winner. US a tiny losser.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 4, 2013
  11. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Perhaps a pipe dream for most but not the rich. It gets 261 mpg.

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  12. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Up dating post 3207:
    Also supporting my prediction that the several new LNG plants recently authorized by US gov. will never recover the capital required to build them - I.e. will eventually go bankrupt due to much higher transportation cost. (Unless a new Panama canal at least five times wider than current one is built - That ain't gona happen.)
    European maket is a non starter too as Either N. Africa Or new shallow NG fields in Med or mid-east inland seas, especially those near Cyprus can supply that market for many decades at lower cost than the US can. Especially as compressed gas flows thru pipeline with zero cost to liquefy! (And none of the gas used up to make the energy for refrigeration to -260 F required, which is of course still more capital invested!) Go to link below in quote below to see "ship" (actually a huge floating LNG factory) launched (that required 13 tug boats! See 7 in "fuzzy photo" at end).

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    China #1, US #17 in NG Cars

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    I think it is named "Prelude" as 6 more are planned! When one NG field's production falls or local taxes etc. hurt too much, the ship just moves elsewhere - land based plants can't do that. Shell will be a main energy source for your Grandchildren 's natural gas cars as Shell plans far ahead, like China does.

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    It is not only the US government that has too short a planning time scale, even US business does - Fails to see, what is obvious - US can not economically export LNG, except possibly for next three or less years from it ONE already operational LNG facility. China plans 50 years into the future with 10 "5-year plans", each becoming more detailed as new ones are added. US cannot plan much beyond the next 4 year election cycle (or even "plan" a budget for the past 4 years!).

    For example, China's massive water transport system, I call the "Half Nile" as it moves slightly more than half the Nile's annual flow slightly less than half the Nile's long length. Planning for it started in 1950, and now six decades later the water is flowing, a net of 45 meters up hill! - The Nile can't do that! Water is in excess in SE China, but was critically short in the NE part (Beijing & surrounding region). In contrast there is high probability the US's SW will lack essential water in less than a decade as both Lake Mead & Lake Powell are going dry.
    Shakespeare told a good re-organization plan: "First we kill all the lawyers..."
    Not sure it is still true, after the recent Chinese elections, but if you focus on the very top of Chinese leadership, the Central Committee, 100% were educated as engineers, if the one who trained as a geologist is considered an "Earth resources engineer."
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 6, 2013
  13. elte Valued Senior Member

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    Our presently accessible fossil fuels will be running out once again and another region of the world will probably become a new Mid East.
     
    Last edited: Dec 7, 2013
  14. scorpius a realist Valued Senior Member

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  15. Tiassa Let us not launch the boat ... Staff Member

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    The Obvious Question

    Scorpius, is there a reason why the first of those links is an advert for brain-teasers?
     
  16. billvon Valued Senior Member

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    Teslas aren't limited. You can get as much range as you pay for. The problem has been price, not capability.
     
  17. KilljoyKlown Whatever Valued Senior Member

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  18. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    Guess which nation was first ever to sell 20 million cars in one year (in 2013). Hint the prize is a pair of Chop Sticks.
     
  19. KilljoyKlown Whatever Valued Senior Member

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    If I had to guess I'd pick China.

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  20. elte Valued Senior Member

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  21. Billy T Use Sugar Cane Alcohol car Fuel Valued Senior Member

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    You'd be right. They sold 4 for every 3 sold in the US, even though 2013 was one of the best years for US auto makers in a long time.
     
  22. Walter L. Wagner Cosmic Truth Seeker Valued Senior Member

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    nice stats. i believe we will be seeing a rapid gain in solar, due to the recent developments of companies such as vivint solar, etc. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vivint_Solar ; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/SolarCity
     
  23. scorpius a realist Valued Senior Member

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    Stupid advert sneaked in there,sorry
    Try this
    http://youtu.be/jYG5Z6ypp8Q
     

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