Electric Super Car Race !

Aston Martin EV Super Car_#1_ Lotus EV Super Car_#1_

>>>>>  Aston Martin                                          >>>>>>  Lotus

When we think of fast electric cars we primarily think of Elon Musk’s Tesla cars, newest one being the Roadster – a direct threat to gasoline super cars. He now has stiff competition from main stream manufacturers but also from a most unlikely corner of the world – Croatia. A small company called Rimac is building one of the world’s most exciting cars an electric beast that can reach over 250mph !

Tesla Roadster EV Super Car_#1_  Rimac EV Super Car_#1_

>>>>>  Tesla                                                          >>>>>  Rimac

What are the main players doing? In Italy Pininfarina a car manufacturer established before the second world war is building – a £1.5 million electric hyper car promoted as ‘a beautiful dream car’. In Britain, Lotus are developing a £1.7 million muscle car with an electric heart, Ariel is developing radical engineering on it’s HIPERCAR model, Aston Martin has just announced it’s first electric Rapide.

Pininfarina EV Super Car_#2_

>>>>>> Pininfarina

Development of electric engines is going a pace – a Tesla model S can hit 60mph in 2.4 secs the sacred realm of Ferraris and Lamborghinis ! Electric cars have an advantage in that continuous high torque can be delivered with improved traction through 4 wheels, without also accommodating gear changes and power bands. Software controls power delivery efficiently in real time for maximum performance.

The one question that begs to be asked, is how do you ever replace that amazing V12 engine sound that puts hairs on the back of your neck?

Hope you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“If you always do what you always did, you will always get what you always got.”

Albert Einstein

“Capital isn’t so important in business. Experience isn’t so important. You can get both these things. What is important is ideas. If you have ideas, you have the main asset you need, and there isn’t any limit to what you can do with your business and your life.”

Harvey Firestone

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

 

 

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Posted in business, Car, design, electric vehicle, electrical engineering, engine, Engineering, manufacturing, mechanical, MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, power generation, Propulsion, quotations, quotes, technology, Traction, travel, Uncategorized, Vehicle | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Regenerative braking takes another step

Regenerative Braking_#1_

We are all quite familiar now I think with this technology, but there has been a incremental step in technology in it’s use in electric vehicles (EVs). When the battery is fully charged the regenerative braking is effectively turned off and reverts back to mechanical friction braking, where energy is lost through heat to the atmosphere.

If a power resistor is incorporated, regenerative braking could still be employed and the excess energy transferred to heat energy in a liquid. This in turn could heat the inside of a car, saving battery power. Another bonus is mechanical wear of braking system would be reduced along with service costs. The power resistor itself is low to zero maintenance because it has no moving parts. Power harvested should be around 7-10kW.

A downside to the power resistor is a ‘trade off’ between efficient cooling and pressure drop through the cooling channels from inlet to outlet. For the average car an extra pump shouldn’t be necessary but only for larger vehicles. This technology will slightly increase efficiency of EVs and help increase vehicle range – which is always welcome !

Hope you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“A life spent making mistakes is not only more honourable, but more useful than a life spent doing nothing.”

George Bernard Shaw

“Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

Theodore Roosevelt

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

Posted in business, Car, design, electric vehicle, electrical engineering, Electronics, Energy, Energy Storage, engineering development, environment, Heat Energy, Heat Recovery, humor, humour, manufacturing, MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, power generation, Propulsion, quotations, quotes, technology, transport, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Renewable Energy Storage Options

Wind Turbine Battery Storage_#1_

Hydro Electric Energy_#1_   Gravitricity_#1_

Renewable energy is growing but storage is one of it’s biggest problems. We need to be able to store turbine energy for windless days and solar energy for rainy days otherwise we can never discount dependency on fossil fuels.

Present technologies for storage include: (a)  pumped hydroelectricity schemes where water is pumped back up into a vast reservoir and stored as potential energy then released through turbine generators, but here there is little potential or inclination for new reservoirs, and installation costs are high.

(b) Lithium-ion or Lead-acid batteries are quick to respond to demand but are not seen as long term solutions – cost $154/kW year ($187 for lead-acid)

(c) Compressed air energy storage is another possibility where compressed air is stored underground but has disadvantages of heat generation on compression lowering efficiency to 50% – adiabatic compression raises it to 62% but this is still quite low – advantage high storage capacity – cost unknown

(d) Gravitricity utilises old disused coal or metal mine shafts by suspending weights of 500 to 3000 tonnes which are raised by motors to the top gaining potential energy, then lowered to release energy through generators – cost $141/kW year

(e) Flywheel energy storage whereupon mass flywheels are run up to speed, usually in a vacuum, via motors then energy is released when switched to generator mode that slows them down – cost $312/kW year

The consensus of opinion is to use a combination of all technologies to supply quick energy response along with longer term storage capabilities, whereupon the technologies are also linked and managed.

Option (d) I find personally interesting because it is efficient, has a relatively quick response time and utilises an old and redundant fossil fuel industry, bringing some employment back to potentially deprived area. In a word ‘regeneration’ !

Hope you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“Failure is simply the opportunity to begin again, this time more intelligently.”

Henry Ford

“Stay away from negative people. They have a problem for every solution.”

Albert Einstein

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in business, Carbon Dioxide, civil engineering, electrical engineering, Energy, Energy Storage, engineering development, environment, humor, humour, Hydro Electric, MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, power generation, project engineering, quotations, quotes, renewable energy, technology, turbine, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Reverse Engineering by 3D Scanning

3D Scanner #1__  3D Scanner #2__

3D Scanning machines have been around for 10 years or so and were a niche market and cost around £30 to £40k. Today you can purchase a scanner for as little as £1500 which plugs into your laptop ! To scan – point the scanner at an object and travel 360 degrees around it. The data is created from interference in the light pattern caused by an object’s surface and is captured by one or more cameras on the scanner to a sub-micron accuracy. The data is triangulated in the software to calculate the object’s depth and surface patterns. The data file in the form of point cloud with X,Y,Z co-ordinates can be converted into a polygon file then again into an editable 3D CAD model (Osborn Design Ltd offers this service combined with reverse engineering).

The CAD model can be used for reverse engineering enabling a part/object to be manufactured or 3D printed. Once the file is in a 3D CAD format it can be modified and improved. The 3D Scan file can also be used for quality assurance purposes, and also for legacy parts that are no longer manufactured or in stock.

This technology is quite exciting and opens up all sorts of possibilities not just in engineering, but within healthcare, museums and many more.

Hope you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose.”

Steve Jobs

“Go to Heaven for the climate, Hell for the company.”

Mark Twain

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

 

Posted in 3d, 3D CAD, 3D Scanning, additive manufacturing, business, cad, design, Engineering, engineering development, humor, humour, manufacturing, MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, project engineering, quotations, quotes, Reverse Engineering, technology, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pressure to lose weight !

Electric Sports Car Charging_#4_  Car Seat Magnesium alloy_

The physics that states ‘energy efficiency of cars is inversely proportional to kerb weight’ has led automotive manufacturers to look at lighter materials. Recent pressure to do this has come indirectly from a push to reduce emissions leading to the adoption of electric vehicle technology. The downside to electric vehicles though is their extra weight compared to similarly powered combustion vehicles, due to heavy electric motors and battery packs. In fact electric vehicles are usually 125 % heavier than their combustion powered equivalents. Resistance to adopting light weight materials has always been cost because consumers do not wish to pay the extra. Things will undoubtedly change as regulations and initiatives are introduced, such as the UK’s Industrial Smart Strategy that states OEMs have to reduce carbon emissions of their models to 95g/km in 2020 and 75g in 2025. Current level is 140g/km.

Although lighter weight materials are desirable their mechanical properties are often inferior to cheaper but heavier materials such as steel. For example magnesium is 75% lighter than steel and 33% lighter than aluminium but has low creep resistance at high temperature and therefore needs to be alloyed with a rare-earth metal to improve mechanical properties, which also adds to cost ! Developing new processing methods though could potentially overcome some of these strength issues. One process is superplastic forming which can add mechanical strength but is presently quite costly. Composites with high strength and stiffness ratios, and lightweight are credible solutions and the technology is always moving forward. They can be manufactured as one piece with a reinforced matrix material with different regions of reinforcement, for efficient design.

To conclude, pressure is on for manufacturers to reduce emissions and move to electric vehicles that perform comparably to traditional combustion engine vehicles, but weight is one of the issues and a work in progress to reduce this to increase energy efficiency and performance within commercial limits.

Hope you enjoyed the blog and that you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“A lie gets halfway around the world before the truth has a chance to get its pants on.”

Winston S. Churchill

“Going to church doesn’t make you a Christian any more than going to a garage makes you an automobile.”

Billy Sunday

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

Posted in business, design, electric vehicle, Energy, Engineering, engineering development, environment, humor, humour, manufacturing, material science, MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, Propulsion, quotations, quotes, research science, technology, transport, Uncategorized, Vehicle | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

3D CAD FEA – Finite Element Analysis

feaimage_ic_

Finite Element Analysis (FEA) as a ‘bolt on’ software for 3D CAD software has been around a while to aid mechanical engineering design. The software over this time has improved in leaps & bounds and it’s price has also come down over the years. (In fact IronCAD, one of the 3D CAD packages we use, has just released it’s latest FEA with even more features!)

A definition might be:

Finite element analysis (FEA) is a computerized method for predicting how a product reacts to real-world forces, vibration, heat, fluid flow, and other physical effects. Finite element analysis shows whether a product will fail, wear out, or work the way it was designed”

FEA enables design engineers to simulate environmental conditions of engineering parts or products in service, which can be static and/or dynamic, it is never a true replacement for ‘real life’ service conditions, but greatly increases the probability of design success. Once a product or part has been designed on CAD it’s true test before reaching end users or customers, would usually be under ‘real life’ test conditions as a prototype (often extreme conditions) in a laboratory, where other factors might be included as well such as corrosion.

Hope you enjoyed the blog and that you have a good month

All the best

Mike

Quotation corner:

“Everything is changing. People are taking the comedians seriously and the politicians as a joke.”

Will Rogers

“A lot of people are afraid of heights. Not me, I’m afraid of widths.”

Steven Wright

ps  If you have enjoyed the blog please forward to those who might be interested, many thanks in advance, Mike

Posted in 3d, business, cad, COMPUTER SIMULATION, design, Engineering, engineering development, environment, failure, FEA, Heat Energy, humor, humour, Industry, manufacturing, material science, MECHANICAL ENGINEERING, Physics, precision engineering, quotations, quotes, research science, Simulation, Stress Analysis, technology | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Trust me I’m an Engineer #2 !

engineering-blooper-2_

A sample of images of how we sometimes get things wrong – enjoy !

Engineering Blooper #14_

Who moved the building ?

Engineering Blooper #15_

Not very convenient !

 

engineering-blooper-3_

CCTV video footage draws a blank on recent criminal activity !

engineering-blooper-4_

I hope & pray this works !

 

Plus a link below of a video clip of  The Two Ronnies – Four Candles sketch, as a light way to end the year – enjoy !

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CNTM9iM1eVw

Happy & Prosperous 2019

All the best

Mike

Posted in civil engineering, Comedy Sketch, design, Engineering, Engineering Mistakes, humor, humour, mechanical, mistakes, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment