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Commented On: Protean 'Inside-Out' Wheel Motor Design: A Company To Watch?


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Operationally, each wheel could always offer some effort, no matter what wheel has more traction; where it’s slippery no wheel just slips and spins, leaving the rest idle.
Today’s mechanical "all"-wheel-drive with mechanical differentials, as in Prius, approximates that, w/ alternate partial braking, from side to side, of a left then right wheel, seeking to encourage the others to keep applying some effort. Lacking such braking friction to overcome in those situations though, wheel motors’ mechanical efficiency would be greater than a body motor’s.
Giving them high-profile tires should usually keep them above water, but,.... Body mountings may more effectively allow sealing out water.

Commented On: Protean 'Inside-Out' Wheel Motor Design: A Company To Watch?


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I "get it": There's a separate demountable rim, saving wt in tire changes; it looks quite accessible to replace, saving labor cost if motor's damaged. Wouldn’t mfg. cost less than ICE cars, if scale economies are eventually achieved? Other mfg. cost advantages: no assembly position for rear universal joints, or a differential.

Commented On: Mitsubishi Aims To Plug In Entire Range Within 4 Years


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With the weight of a wheel-mounted drive motor, indeed how would one change a tire?

Maybe the way an electric car’s designer, using these things, should go is a 1920's-style—--demountable rim—on which literally—--the rim—--is dismounted from the rest of the wheel. It created special problems though on how to carry this on the car.

It is still hard to see how the motor is protected from road shocks though. As advertised, the suspension system absorbs road shock—--protecting the body.

I don't see it as taking long for road shock to make a mess out of these motors. Are we just writing off the motors as disposable?

Commented On: Gas Prices Are Down, But Demand? Turns Out That's Down Too


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Maybe people are driving but, electric cars are selling!

Commented On: Tesla CEO Elon Musk: Half Of New Cars Will Be Electric In 15-20 Years


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@Don: Capacitors don't have to have a quick discharge, if you have enough resistance in series with the load. That resistance can be automatically reduced, as available energy loss drops source voltage, to keep actual usable voltage constant. Downstream from that, the accelerator could simply be a user-variable resistor.

Commented On: Nanotech Solution To Hydrogen Fuel Puzzle From Brookhaven Lab?


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The risk to companies already heavily indebted from developmental costs for batteries' tenuous stability, can risk a social cost in lost jobs, but only temporarily, as they get offset by new fuel cells' advantages. They're made many times less expensive by replacing their costliest component, platinum’s $50,000/kg catalyst. Although tanks for H2 might need more space than gasoline, space will be left by displacing ICEs and bulky LI batteries.
Power trains? How much revision would today's EV platform(s) need?
Supplanting the, still young LI battery is competitive, free-market progress. Yes, resisting fuel cells' greater convenience is competitive; but progress? Long term, isn't forward vision wiser?
Can GM survive more “EV-1"-like myopia?

Commented On: Nanotech Solution To Hydrogen Fuel Puzzle From Brookhaven Lab?


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Despite short ranges and long recharges, BEVs bridge well toward H2 fuel cells’ convenience.
Yes, H2 from high-energy carbon-based gases like methane or propane in fossil gas needs less added energy than electrolysis from gray-water but, in general, are these fuels more efficient than unused-wind-energized local grid power if including social costs from fossil-fuel's carbon ion entering atmosphere, ravaging lives and infrastructure. Ignoring, as "externalities", isn’t elimination.
Do we lack an H2 distribution network? There’s one for fossil gas. Can’t H2 can join that, phasing out, over several years, the carbon compound component toward H2 of increasing purity: which fuel cells, furnaces, and ICEs can be periodically adjusted to.

Commented On: Which Carmakers Are Still Serious About Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Vehicles?


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(Continued): @John Briggs: Extracting enough H2, Germany’s entire gas heating load can be born by this gas. They’re using their amply deployed wind power for that. This can also fuel the electric cars D-B is planning H2 fuel cells for.

We can do that. We already heat homes with gas. My own sister does that in Massachusetts; passing through the countryside, we can see that many homes (and other buildings) have those big fuel tanks; the market is there. GM can get a second chance. Ford or Chrysler might like it. So might our promising newcomer: Tesla Motors. (Continued)

Commented On: Which Carmakers Are Still Serious About Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Vehicles?


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(Continued): @John Briggs: It has begun gently, as studies of climate history show that worldwide warmings go, with spring 2011's “record” flooding of the Mississippi Valley and the Lake Champlain basin, with that summer's deadly heat waves in Texas and Russia, extreme floods over Pakistan and China, Hurricane Irene’s slow 3-4 MPH passage northward over Atlantic waters that August, its power fed by record 79 degree ocean temperatures, it raked northeastern U.S. with disastrous winds and flash flooding (reopening a deep ravine, near me, that a road had crossed), and 2012's drought-driven wildfires in New Mexico and Colorado (so far by mid-June). Nature has her way. (Continued)

Commented On: Which Carmakers Are Still Serious About Hydrogen Fuel-Cell Vehicles?


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(Continued): @John Briggs: Daimler-Benz did not expect that chicken-or-egg question: Germany’s electric grid had been electrolyzing H2 from water ever since World War II, profitably adding the H2 to “natural” heating gas. Now D-B is expanding that to provide even more H2, while keeping their home heating gas outlets. The “natural” (fossil) gas’ H2 provides some of the home heating, while the “natural” fossil gas’ carbon does too; trouble is that that carbon’s burning also adds CO2 to the atmosphere, helping a catastrophic warming of our entire planet’s climate! (Continued)
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