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I'd also wager that the fin showed here is cheaper to 3d print, and faster to 3d print than making it the conventional way. You could invest in the 3d printers once, and use it across almost all of your product lines current and future. That to me sounds like a great investment. If they can control surface finish accurately with this additive tech then it is very precise. if they can do this fin, basically they are saying to the world that 3d printing is now virtually limitless when it comes to metal.
I think there could be great economies in 3d printed turbines. Its like cars, the first one cost millions, the rest are for profit. Think of what goes into the process of making it. powdered metal, possibly shielding gasses, and possibly some coolant VS machining an incredibly complex part one facet at a time with hundreds of separate operations and man hours making the one thing. 3d printed plastic is almost total waste (unless its highly complex), and anything metal that can be stamped out would be a waste (so much of the auto world). The more complex the item is, the more likely they can make it profitable by 3d printing it. I see the turbine being something they could make good money on. That part is extremely complex, and would likely have been machined from some billet piece of metal. The one with the cooling design would have likely never been machined/ made without 3d.
The funny thing I notice about regulated industries such as automobiles is how technology waxes and wanes with incentives/patents on processes. (interesting one is the refrigerant Freon, then its successors, the push to anything other than CO2 seems like a money grab to me at this point, but then again, I'd be interested in propane) Ethanol is being defunded, thus new competitors trying for alternatives. I am kind of curious as to how ETBE will affect the combustion gasses. The extra oxygen in the ethanol did help lower emissions, but it is very corrosive. So, an additive that had most of the benefits and less drawbacks could be interesting. I find it unbelievable that cars used leaded fuels well into the 20th century though. What needs to happen is a successful transition to isobutanol or something of that sort. In 20 years, the US and other developed countries might only use 20-50% of what we currently use as far as gasoline is concerned. Plug in hybrids will get the most low hanging fruit. Imagine if every car was like a volt, 20 years that is very possible with all the gigafactories and other impressive things going on in the battery world. instead of almost 600gal. for every passenger vehicle on the road, we might only use 100gal. Not perfect but significantly better, and no compromises. so with this lower usage, we could successfully switch heavily to a low yield green tech. Algae and bacteria come to mind, in waste management scenarios. petroleum will still need to come out of the ground, as it is the basis for plastics and nearly everything else we lay our hands on. But seeing how a large portion is devoted to transportation, we can start to reduce there.
I think the pipeline will be much safer and much more efficient than trucking/trains. Renewables will get to cost parody of petroleum. The replacement of all petroleum by renewable sources is inevitable; but to rush to market a replacement is a bit foolish. Things come in time. If the true cost of renewables is below that of fossil fuels, the market will trend that way, don't ever underestimate the power of greed. Wind is going to have some interesting growth. Especially places where it can be off shore.(out of sight, near big cities) Houses use a fraction of electricity EVs will use, a transition of the US vehicle fleet to EVs won't happen overnight. Things like waste to fuels, are looking to be promising. coupled with 30+mile ev range from a plug in hybrid, the net emissions can be cut drastically and the cost can still be competitive. Most trips are short after all.
Hybrid setups are ideal for fleets, lower maintenance, less overhead than full on EVs and they work well with onsight generation needs. The van and truck segment desperately need hybrids. Hybrids make more sense in larger vehicles than they do in smaller ones. Much quicker returns. Especially in vehicles that do lots of stop and go. Unfortunatly the USPS made it hard for vehicles, but UPS and Fedex, Walmart, and every other company thats invested in transportation is currently working on a long term solution. My hopes is for a transit van/expedition/F-150(and other companies equvalents) with >~30mi range EV. Biggest setback will be Gross vehicle weight. Because of the way things are taxed and licenced in the USA, car makers can only make certain cars. I'd like engineers, and carmakers, and governements to sit down together, and make a singular list of global rules and standards (especially on plugs for EVs, competing technologies really muddy up the water for consumers, it would be akin to going to the gas station and having differnet filler sizes for every grade of gasoline, and having some stations not sell your grade) I am of the philosophy of getting the masses quickly as possible. Full on EVs arent there yet. But PHEV are there, and are in the price range of comperable gasoline cars. If everyone had a 30mi range PHEV, and had a way to charge it, our gasoline consumption would drop drastically. (enough so that waste to fuels would be viable). Full EVs/H2Vs as they become viable could slowly work their way into the fold and be a seamless replacement to petroleum fuels. You don't have to run the full gambit, you can get 90% of the way there relitively easy, and in the next 20years.
I just get concerned when they say food based carbohydrates. Corn is almost nutritionally void, same with rice, soybeans have some protein. What they mean to say is our food's food. We throw out So much food each year, and dump even more in foreign countries as "aid". Which leaves the local populations unable to afford to provide for themselves. (Can't compete with free). If we could divert the plant waste, and the general waste to fuels, we could have a viable option for sustainable fuels. 30%+ of your supermarket food gets thrown away. Dents, dings, expirations, and customers cause tons of waste. Human waste is basically the next untapped potential. It has to be treated anyway. Might as well use it for something beneficial.
I agree with you in that EVs are cleaner than most ICEs, and I am looking forward to the end of ICEs. Mechanically ICEs are impressive that they even work as well and long as they do. I rather we frack, and build out CCNG plants and do away with coal. Double our efficiencies. we have several hundreds of years of NG in the US, and its only getting stretched longer as efficiencies increase. it will probably take 50 years before we significantly move away from diesel and gasoline. I'm excited for the model 3. I am even more excited for the solar roofs that tesla debuted. If America, in the name of national security, started funding solar roofs on new construction, or something as radical, it could change the course of the nation. National security is an easier way to sell the green movement. Sure, we are unlikely to use all of our Natural gas or petroleum reserves in the ground. But for the economy, and the cost of energy, you can stabilize it with renewables. Wind is at a point where it is cost competitive with coal. Solar, is but isn't. It needs large capital investments to make it really work. (People could lease panels from the government at competitive rate). The national grid needs a major overhaul. For any of this to work. the smart grid needs to happen. DC high tension lines, even 12v-480v DC delivered to point of use could save 20% of our nations electricity. (more so if our country runs on plug-in vehicles)
What about Utah? California is not an island yet. I was pretty sure California in the recent past was using some non-carbon-free electricity. Taking some external combustion process like using coal to generate steam, then transmitting it, then converting it to DC, then back to AC through the drive motor. Is no small task. Okay, so using coal, 50% efficiency, then transmission losses, then conversion losses at the charger, then losses at the battery, then losses at the inverter, then losses at the motor, then losses to friction. is telling me 305g/mile (210 at the vehicle level) for my car, and telling me 310g/mile for a new tesla. What's strange is that gap gets even wider the more percentage I stay on the highway.
I'm very confused by your statement. Its easiest to look at energy and its conservation. the Hydrogen bonds in the fuels which break apart allowing it to make water and CO2 (ideally) only have so much energy. That's a known quantity per gallon of fuel. You can look to how much power is output per given amount of fuel, and you can then deduce that x amount goes to heat/friction losses. Electric motors are in the ball park of 80-95% efficient. Gasoline and Diesel engines are about up to 40% with some eaking out some more. Gasoline cars only waste about 60-75% of the energy in. So within the realm of Gasoline engines they waste almost double the energy in, not 500% But if you look well to well, it muddies the water up a bit, especially if you have coal as a primary source of electricity. The government has a website where you can go select your car, and your mileage and compare amongst plugins and the conventional vehicle. It will also tell you how much CO2 and other things you'll generate.(In my local area, its better for the environment to drive my fiesta, than it is to own a plugin, according to them.) I personally don't agree with the import barrels of oil on there, US get close or is a net exporter sometimes. Its those darn Canadians selling us that cheap oil.
I see this being very good for range extenders like others have pointed out... biggest draw back is going to be emissions and long term durability. Not saying that emissions issues cant be addressed downstream. But if they can get those numbers out of such a small little device it will be pretty great. Range extenders for most EV style cars would have to be in the range of 20-40hp peek, which, if you are trying to power a defroster and heat the passenger compartment in the winter, that 7,500-15,000 watts of waste heat becomes a pretty valuable thing.(could be a life saver in an emergency) I do believe in Batteries, but I don't believe they will solve all our issues, there are physical constraints that disallow current and most future speculation about battery technology to exist in vehicles as we are accustom to. This is why range extenders tend to be the necessary evil. There are only a few front runners that I see, Turbines, combustion engines, and Fuel Cells, and a trailer full of more batteries, and overhead trolley lines. Near future we'll see more Volt like vehicles. Mid future trucking will move away from diesel to alternatives like hybrids comprised of smaller diesel and turbine style generators. I think in about 20 years we will have more market penetration of Fuel Cells than we do with the BEVs today. I believe still that BEV only vehicles will be rather short range 100-200 miles, and virtually absent in the workforce other than some short route box trucks. I believe that the battery technology has a long way to go before dethroning a hybrid setup.
I don't think Toyota will have any problem being relevant. I don't know why many on here have a hard time imagining automakers that existed before 1990 would have a hard time bringing a bev or some other innovation to market to save themselves. The big three and the others have decades and decades of battery research, they have countless r&d divisions, they will build the things when they feel they can sell them to the general public, not likely much before. It's one thing having a few loss leaders, but another entirely flooding dealerships with cars they can't sell. In the near term I believe we will see hybrids reach their potential. It will probably be 2025 before we see any sweeping changes with BEVs. I figure tesla will have some growing pains and ramping issues. It'll be probably after 2025 before BEVs break 10% market share. I honestly thing thier biggest contributions are not to cars but to solar and battery backup. Their powerwall is looking very enticing. And they make a strong case for their solar roof. If all new houses came with solar installed, wed have a chance to divert 15%+ of our nations energy consumption. I can't wait till oems and the aftermarket offer used batteries for home backup, 40-80kwh packs would be amazing.
The one thing that would make hydrogen a disadvantage would be the number of large radiators needed to keep the water from boiling (though newer technologies can operate dryer and hotter) a few PEMs were listed on here a while back trying to change the standard. I guess chevy uses the scoops to provide silent running. I bet it can get noisy when standing still, but its probably quieter equivalent ICEs. its like anything though, it could use a bigger battery to cycle stack on less frequent to need less cooling.
Well, seeing how the military may pay $70 per gal of fuel currently. Fuel cells can come pretty cheap in comparison. Unlike petroleum from secure sources(thousands of miles away from the front), the navy could provide the H2 needed. I can see nuclear powered vessels in the vicinity creating hydrogen. Or even floating solar or wind farms near conflict zones erected a less than 1000miles away far from conflict making a supply of hydrogen to use in the battle field. The thing I wish all electric and hydrogen cars of the future had exportable power like this. For consumers 25Kw might be overkill, but 10kw would be nice. Think of how nice natural disaster and other phenomenon would be if people could use their investment to provide power and some clean water.
I think GM is silly to bring this to the states, the average consumer isn't ready for diesel, 29,000 psi is a very high rail pressure, no doubt this will be more susceptible to fuel issues. Yes, this will be cleaner than an alternate gas version(both CO2 and other emissions, assuming they don't cheat). A loud few are pushing diesels in small cars, with modern emissions equipment and high rail pressures, diesel is best left for those that need it. Not for a family vehicle here in the states. I'd hate to know the price of those injectors. People are going to learn quick what the cost of diesel ownership actually is. (with the necessary properly working emissions equipment)
Ai I read that on wiki, but its just mind boggeling that almost the whole production fleet is off the road or is on a second or third battery for a car so new. if it was a model with 60K a year or some volume to it, I'd be a little less perplexed. It is possible that these are mostly engineering samples, granted with government monies. (usually you have to scrap anything that could go on another car when the study is over for most as its not a production run)
I always though Bush gave more money to alt fuels AND BEVs than any president before him. (I thought the tax credit program was announced under him, so wealthy people could drive more costly and more net CO2 generating EVs and Hybrids?) and DaveD, are you for a lithium based economy? We have about 250 years worth of known fossil fuel reserves. We only have a few decades of practical lithium. I think the known reserves would net like 2 billion decent ev cars(like model 3), if that's all we used it for. Likely we'd continue to use cell phones and other things like laptops, then there would be demands from the commercial /industrial sector. Lithium production, and the reserves will be stretched thin. I'm not saying EVs are bad, just not feasible on a global scale. Lack of supply, cost, and packaging restraints will limit it severely. A hydrogen economy would make it economically feasible to open a nuclear reactor (or several). The infrastructure is there for hydrogen transport in most major cities (natural gas lines), it give a great sink for excess renewables, and could keep base load powerplants busy (not to have them shutter or otherwise go broke being on standby. It can greatly enable renewables, a dispatchable load when needed. Even if 1kg of hydrogen was $6 in this imaginary hydrogen economy, it would still be comparable to gasoline/diesel prices of today. So if $0.13/kwh or $.09/kwh for energy (if you included a 30% margin for profit/cost) isn't too bad... its definitely marketable to power companies. Every FC vehicle would likely be a plug in.... if every FC had 50 miles of range and use the FC as an extender only, you'd have your goal of possible green society quicker. Odds of getting the BEV only mantra into every size truck and car is a near impossible feat, even with future technologies its a very pale outlook.
I'd love a future used model 3 battery as a battery backup for my whole home... the powerwall wont work for me unless I get like 4 or five. Not enough for possible peak loads. The battey could run a home for several days, and peak usage wouldn't be an issue as it can run a 100kw motor. Total cost would probably junk value for the battery + 3k for transfer switch and inverter. (I'd hope under $10,000 all together installed) I randomly loose power from odd things, sometimes 7 days in a row, a generator would be nice, and I was looking at Co-generation but $40K for a 5Kw unit is absurd to me (and that's just for the unit). (I'd build my own, but I am sure even if it is immaculate and properly engineered it wont pass an inspection, all it is is a generator with liquid cooling that has a heat sink inside a hot water tank.
How old are the second gen smart for twos? Seems odd that they'd have 1000 2nd hand batteries already
I am all for it, 100%, some machine intervention at some level will no doubt save lives. Biggest life saver will be auto breaking.(anything to slow the vehicle before an impact will greatly reduce the potential crash energy, even if it is only slowing the car from 60 to 40... that little bit of difference could save a life) Second will be lane keeping. (not ending up in a ditch / tree/ telephone pole is a good way to stay alive) Third the improbable step of taking human error out of the equation (well most of it). Taking ill equipped drivers from out behind the wheel. People say they'll go to the grave before giving up the wheel, but in all likely hood most of the population would love a solution such as a self driving car. (people make accidents happen) Cars are used 5% of the time for most households... If laws change where sharing is welcomed/allowed... we could have a much better society, sure miles traveled might go up slightly, but likely another solution would be more premium technologies to reduce pollution(electric drivetrains), that and very advanced carpooling logistics.
I imagine a 10-25kw range extender bev car with a 50kwh battery, have a long range mode selector for cross country trips and have basically an EV only car the rest of the time. BEV LD trucks would probably need 50-150kw generation, and a >100kwh battery. Best of both worlds and completely comparable to gasoline cars. You could have 90% of driving under BEV only, and longer drives could be met with fast charge EV networks and hydrogen stations.
This would be awesome for winter driving, assuming the fuel cell had enough waste heat to be manageable. Defroster air potentially hot enough to harm you. (yes it would be blended, but it's intriguing) Finally there is hope to shave a few hundred pounds of gaudy radiators off of fuel cells. Problem is the car probably can't sit for a long while without having fuel /battery charge. The modules' would have to be small, so a whole bunch of heat wouldn't have to be used to maintain the life of the PEM. We really could have a tiny radiator on this thing.
I suspect actual icing /mud would be a bigger issue than snow or rain fall. The sensors can be programmed to look for solid objects, and look for patterns... Rain and other weather phenomena will obscure some, but not all of the data points, the car can use programing to know to look beyond the near field rain. (LIDAR guns do the same thing for police) Odds are the vehicle could still have more vision than a human in inclement weather, and possibly even drive normally/optimum speed for the conditions. Remember that the car can see all the inputs, not just vision and react accordingly within tenths of a second. Sadly, it may have more sense than most drivers and try and pull off when certain conditions are met. Flooded/icy/snow packed roads are where I see the most trouble, not precipitation. The car being able to know what the road up ahead brings. Is it 2" of snow? Or 10"? Or water or what have you.
Last time I checked, Maize/Corn was a useless food... where is the nutrition in feeding the poorest among us corn or rice for that matter? Beans and other crops are better for consumption. Also, most of the harvest either gets dumped or given to third world countries as "aid" flooding their markets with free food stuffs preventing their farmers from making a living. (less farms = less local capability) the problem with starvation in the world is not a food shortage, it is the availability. Most of our produced food is thrown away. I'd say Ethanol is as good as anything, especially when there are 3rd generation sources coming on line soon. Its practically safe to handle, easy enough to make, and can use existing infrastructure. if you have a 15kw stack, you could drive cross country basically with midsize cars. This could be inherently healthier too, I'd be concerned with CO but I don't know much at all of the exhaust gases.
Henrik, I fully agree that if Tesla would make a truck, it would have to be a 3500/ F350 size. (or possibly a ranger size, but that would be just for novelty) However I would wager that the onboard battery would likely be 200kwh+,(I dare say much more) Towing, especially at ~15000lbs is no friend to fuel economy. I'd assume the price would be much higher. To be in the range of work trucks, range/hours of continuous operation is very important. and Harvey better be right, battery volume and density must really decrease for EVs to grow into larger vehicles, trucks are weighed in almost every state for tax revenue... BEV trucks could be a boon.