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The end of petroleum dominance

Post in 'The Green Room' started by Dune, Aug 18, 2012.

  1. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Anybody hear anything good/bad about the Prius plug-in. Price is not low...

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  2. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Its not catching fire with its 11 Mile range and relatively high price tag. The GM volt seems to have nailed it on quality and usability. Although many may not like the price ,i saw a $268.00 month lease the other day.Id go for that.
    In 24 months theres likely to be many more choices.
  3. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    Are you serious about 11 miles? They're going for $ mid-thirties as well, no?
  4. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

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    We could charge up off-peak and sell it back at peak demand prices. I could put in a stop at say 50 miles ( or 100 depending on how far I want to go) or even a price I'm willing to sell.

    Figure you could take your whole office off the grid if people plugged in their cars, or if you charge at work you could take advantage of cheap solar during the day.
  5. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Thats what the toyota website claims
  6. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    11 miles is pretty lame.
  7. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Im NOT a toyota fan after owning a poorly desgned 1999 tacoma truck
    But I always liked their electric RAV4, came out in 2000. Got 120 MPC with NIMH Batt & was $30000 new. Now they just reintroduced it ,its $50000 and get 100 MPC with LI-ion Batt.
    Going backward?
  8. Dune

    Dune Minister of Fire

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    Not on purpose.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nickel–metal_hydride_battery
  9. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Dune i believe that patent(chevron) has expired recently.
  10. begreen

    begreen Mooderator Staff Member

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    The Ford C-Max is looking interesting. The Energi model will do 27 miles on pure electric and has great combined mileage of 47mpg city and hwy plus 550mile range.
  11. btuser

    btuser Minister of Fire

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    Don't you people get it? If we stop using oil we're not the bell of the ball any longer. Then people won't want our toilet dollars and we'll have to go back to work. How are we supposed to fund the Military Industrial Congressional Complex without it?

    Every gallon of gas we waste is a victory against the terrorists. Burn baby burn!
  12. Seasoned Oak

    Seasoned Oak Minister of Fire

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    Nice to see one of the home team hit a winner.
  13. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    I just found out a Prius can be rented near me, so I might give that a whirl for the weekend.
    It doesn't look as much fun as my MINI Cooper, which got 46 mpg on the last tank (although I was driving carefully).
    The thought of regularly exceeding 50 mpg is exciting to me, but I'm strange that way.
    Dune likes this.
  14. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    I think that 46 from the Mini is great. With all it's high tech, I think the Prius should twice get like 75.
  15. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    I usually get 42 or so on the MINI. That's by doing the math, not the mileage display on the car.
  16. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    Even 42 is pretty good. My little Ford Focus only gets about 32. That's my math too, no display, cheap car.
  17. velvetfoot

    velvetfoot Minister of Fire

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    I drove a diesel Focus in Ireland. I'm partial to diesel, and liked the way the car drove.
  18. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    Its a great innovation and I knew it would be along eventually... Not quite as revolutionary as they claim thought- The LiFePO4 chemistry batteries made by A123 systems have been around for years and can already safely charge at 4C (15min) to 5C (12min). We use the small capacity batteries extensively in radio control models and I have stacks of 6.6volt/1100mAh (~ 7Wh) packs that I use to power model plane electronics. We charge them at 4 Amps and a top off partial charge is sometimes under 5 minutes.

    Unlike the fragile lithium Ion and lithium polymer batters in consumer electronics the A123 cells will take years of this kind of abuse and can recover from an accidental deep discharge that would kill traditional LiIon.

    The key to the problem of thick charging cables is to run very high voltage series battery packs, as the guage of the wiring needed is proportional to the amperage. Which is why hybrids already run 200-400+ volts. These technologies might see kilovolt+ systems start showing up if we can make it safe.
  19. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    It's interesting to think that back in the early 80s VW and others made gasoline powered cars that regularly saw 40+ MPG and that was 30 years ago. I know I still own one, and it got 42+ curising at 70, BEFORE we has ethinol in the fuel. No power by todays standards, 3,800 pounds and 74HP doesn't = passing anyone uphill, or on the flat for that matter. Mechanical fuel injection technology from WWII aircraft.......... Now we have computers that see the movement of pistons like the elderly climbing stairs and all we can do is match what we got 30 years ago with square cars............ Don't say there isn't something wrong with this picture. Like, well I won't go into my mechanics certification, but there are some pretty obvious not so "green" things one can do to get 20% better fuel mileage out of todays cars, but it's illlegal to so it's not marketed or allowed.

    TS
  20. Jags

    Jags Moderate Moderator Staff Member

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    Taylor - I have made the same comparison in the past. It is a two sided sword. Think of where MPG could be without choking the crap out of the engine with smog control stuff. Think of where our smog levels could/would be without them.

    Now - if you really want to sprain your brain - think about the reduced levels of smog in unsmogged cars because of the reduction in fuel use and compare that to the reduced level of smog in smogged cars - but higher fuel consumption.!!!

    I just had a discussion over lunch where I was cussing the way that the states regulate pollution on our vehicles and how that is compared to the European model. I was making a case for small diesel engines that were not approved for the US market. I should have been a trial lawyer.
  21. Flatbedford

    Flatbedford Minister of Fire

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    It does seem that one very effective way to reduce emissions would be to reduce consumption. My '94 Nissan Sentra got better mileage than my '06 Focus does. The cars are about the same size, but the Nissan had a smaller and less powerful engine. The Focus will pull most hills in 5th gear, but Id rather shift a little more and get the extra 6 mpg.
  22. macmaine

    macmaine New Member

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    Dune likes this.
  23. BoilerMan

    BoilerMan Minister of Fire

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    This is only partially true, get your brain splints out........ If we run a gasoline engine at stoichrometric air/fuel ratio at sea level it's 14.7/1 Ok, well this is considered the best for all-round running, but we make much more power with a richer mixture, say 8/1, but our HC, or unburnt fuel, levels are higher. Now on the lean side of things we can safely run at around 21/1 and have less "power" but our mileage is obviously higher due to higher cumbustion temps, which also promote the production of NO2, another "regulated greenhouse gas". Also at this lean mixture our exhaust temps will melt the platnum out of a catalytic converter, so we "must" stay below this threshold. Now in moderm closed loop fuel injected cars the air/fuel ratio changes based on air temp, engine coolant temp, barometric pressure, and the driver's right foot, amoung other things. However there are ranges outside of this range which and engine can make more power......... and be more efficient, but the exhaust gasses produced at the two extremes are "dirty".

    All I'm saying is that with some software changes and proper exhaust modifications one can get much more out of a gallon, and make much more out of the tailpipe.... This seems counter-productive but the science supposts it, and I've proven it in the field.

    Bottom line: More fuel consumed = cleaner exhaust, trust me on this one

    If anyone is old enough to remember the demise of the VW type1 (origional beetle) in '76 VW introduced an electronic fuel injected version to pass emissions, it got WORSE fuel economy then the identical engined Solex-carbed version sold in the 48 states, but it met emissions standards, where the carbed one did not. The dirty......or clean truth.

    TS
  24. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    But I bet your 94 Sentra weighed a LOT less. The 1982 Accord I drove in college could get in the high 30s easily. But it only weighed maybe 2200 lb and had 72 hp with a 5speed. The small Acura hatchback I drive today struggles to see 30+ highway and weighs 2800 lb with 200hp, and is still lighter and more efficient than most cars on the road.

    For an even more interesting comparison look at a Model T - they were getting 25MPG in the 1920s!

    The problem is not that we are not making progress in the efficiency of the engines. We are making tremendous progress. The engine in my little hatchback is 2/3 the displacement of that T, a fraction the weight and makes 10x the power burning less fuel with far fewer emissions. The problem is that we more than offset those gains with bigger heavier more complex cars.
  25. jharkin

    jharkin Minister of Fire

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    I guess that depends on how you define clean. Sure NOx etc are reduced when we burn richer but every single article I've ever read states that at for CO2, the emissions are directly related to the volume of fuel consumed and for practical purposes can only be reduced via mpg increases. If you have material that says otherwise I'd like to see links to read it.

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