Where we live we have a generous amount of ‘pot’ holes in the road – the county of Buckinghamshire in the UK !
The automotive industry has developed car suspension prototypes that can reclaim energy lost by ‘falling’ into these irregularities in the road, and they are known as Regenerative Suspension Systems.
There are 3 types to date – ones using Linear Electromagnetic Transducers that convert kinetic energy into electricity – then secondly systems that convert linear motion into rotational motion that are used to power geared electromagnetic motors – then thirdly mechanical motion rectifiers (MMR) which converts linear oscillatory motion of shock absorbers into unidirectional rotation motion, in a similar way to electrical voltage rectifiers convert AC to DC power.
All the systems cost more to manufacture presently than traditional dampers, but over time they expect prices to tumble. Audi are a year or 2 away from perfecting their eROT system and replacing traditional hydraulic dampers with electromechanical rotary ones, harvesting kinetic energy and converting it into electrical energy, leading to a reduction in CO2 and fuel costs. Tests have shown that on average 100 to 150W is recovered by eROT on normal roads, and up to 613W on rough roads!
Another advantage of these new suspension systems is that their ‘performance’ can be fine tuned to a greater degree than traditional ones – so a win win situation, there is just the challenge of costs and commercial viability in introducing this new technology – but the future does look positive despite possible bumps in the road or is it ‘pot’ holes !
Hope you have a great month,
All the best,
A little light relief
some more alternative exam answers … !