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Author Topic: is a 6v92 capable of putting out 96 volts when driving?  (Read 4647 times)
Sean
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« Reply #45 on: September 30, 2010, 11:18:57 PM »

... I dont understand how this could possibly not pencil out for me ...


Well, having worked with fleets of electric vehicles, I have a feel for what they cost to run.

Now, if you have a free source of electricity someplace, such as your office is letting you plug in, or whatever, then things might be different, but here's some math:

Batteries:  If you use conventional Lead-Acid technology, whether that's flooded or AGM (as opposed to more exotic technologies such as lithium), then you will be faced with the tradeoff of weight versus capacity, and will probably design the batteries to get you to your destination and back on about 50% DoD.

At 50% DoD, you can expect about 500 cycles from these battery technologies.  (Significantly more than that for gel cells, which have some special requirements of their own.)  If you drive the car "daily" for work, that means you will replace batteries about every two years.  5kWH of flooded batteries will cost you around $2,000.  If that 5kWH gives the car a range of 30 miles, using the example earlier, then you'll get about 15,000 miles for your $2,000, or about 13.3 cents per mile.

Power:  To charge half that 5kWH, you will actually need more like 4kWH of electricity.  That's because some of the power is lost as heat in the process, and there are chemical losses in the batteries as well.  I don't know what electricity costs where you are, but $0.12 per kWH is a good guess in North America, so that's another half dollar for your 30 miles, or another 1.6 cents per mile.  So now we are up to 14.9 cents per mile, and that does not include any of the capital costs of the conversion.

The jury is out on longevity of electric power trains versus combustion engine power trains. So call that a wash.

All the other maintenance issues, such as tires, are also a wash, so you are talking about the costs of fuel and engine fluids for a gasser.

Cars that can get 25 mpg are a dime a dozen if you limit your speed to 40 mph, which is the top speed of the car in my example above.  At $3 per gallon, that's just 12 cents per mile.  The other fluids and filters would easily fit into the 2.9 cent delta between that and the cost per mile of electric.  If you look at cars like the Geo Metro, you can get that number down to less than 8 cents per mile.  And few cars can beat my 85mpg scooter, which costs just a few pennies per mile to operate, soup to nuts.

That's just one example.  The actual math will be different depending on many factors, including your cost for electricity, sources of batteries, required range and speed, etc..  That's also just the math for electric cars versus gas; factoring in the complexity implied by your original system will also add to the costs.

-Sean
http://OurOdyssey.BlogSpot.com
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happycamperbrat
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« Reply #46 on: September 30, 2010, 11:30:44 PM »

Interesting! Thank you again! Another point is that (at least right now) I am not even using a toad. Pulling a toad alone will add to the fuel usage of the bus. Your set up is pretty dang good! I only wish I could do like you and your wife, but my son and mom cant hardly walk yet alone ride a motorcycle and my daughter has PDD and will never learn to drive. I am the only physically (and mentally  Roll Eyes lol) capable person in my bunch. I have considered a motorcycle with a side car but I would not be able to carry a wheelchair, walker or crutches. Which this is another reason I want to avoid a generator is my daughter is extremely sensitive to sound because of her disability.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2010, 12:03:18 AM by happycamperbrat » Logged

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« Reply #47 on: October 01, 2010, 12:11:53 AM »

Sean, I wonder what the actual cost pencils out to with letting the batteries just sit during most of the year instead of actually using them? Additionally I wonder what the cost factors would be and how long it would take to recoup the invest in solar panels? I have seen where people have trippled up on solar panels and they were stacked like pancakes 3 deep. When they park the panels are unfolded which makes sort of a like a covered parking spot for a car or for an rv it would be sort of like an awning.
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Sean
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« Reply #48 on: October 01, 2010, 07:18:33 AM »

Sean, I wonder what the actual cost pencils out to with letting the batteries just sit during most of the year instead of actually using them?


Batteries deteriorate over time even without being cycled.  A lot will depend on your maintenance regimen.

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Additionally I wonder what the cost factors would be and how long it would take to recoup the invest in solar panels?


I wrote a column on this in the magazine a couple months back.  The answer is usually "never" in an RV.  In a fixed dwelling with lots of room for solar, panels take a minimum of ten years and usually more like 20 years to "break even."  In an RV, solar is principally useful for extending quiet boondocking time, camping in places where generators are prohibited, or keeping the batteries healthy while the rig is being stored.  Or, I suppose, a medical condition that precludes generator use.

The effectiveness of solar goes up if you spend a lot of time in places with high insolation, such as where you are now.  But this is offset by the fact that energy demand (for refrigeration) is also higher in those places.  You can often get more benefit by parking in the shade in such places then parking in the sun with a rooftop full of panels.

Remember, too, that solar energy is never "free" even after panels break even in 10-20 years.  That's because parts of the system are expendable items, including the panels themselves.  In an off-grid application you can expect to spend $4-$5,000 every four to five years on batteries -- figure $1,000 per year -- and the panels themselves have a lifespan of only about 20 years, at an average cost of $2 per nameplate watt.  When you do the math, the cost per kWH of self-generated solar power is very close to the cost of grid power, and may even be higher in places where grid power is cheap.

As the cost of photovoltaic panels comes down and efficiency goes up, the math will, of course, change.  But if you look at the trends over the last few decades, absent a "eureka" breakthrough, those graphs won't cross during the time most of us own our rigs.

-Sean
http://OurOdyssey.BlogSpot.com
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« Reply #49 on: October 01, 2010, 08:03:59 AM »

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As the cost of photovoltaic panels comes down and efficiency goes up, the math will, of course, change.

Im thinking that fuel cells will also come down in price in the near future. The batteries are the weekest link right now in a set up for an rv or an ev.
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« Reply #50 on: October 01, 2010, 06:23:25 PM »

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As the cost of photovoltaic panels comes down and efficiency goes up, the math will, of course, change.

Im thinking that fuel cells will also come down in price in the near future. The batteries are the weekest link right now in a set up for an rv or an ev.

As an ex- fuel cell engineer, let me give you a little insight on that. Yes, that actual basic cell membrane and plate technology (as in power obtained per area/size) is pretty darn good, but two things prevent wide spread commercial application: system infrastructure and heat dissipation.

You may be able to argue that infrastructure is a chicken and egg game, and that eventually Hydro-Mobil will be everywhere. Fine, but how are we going to make enough hydrogen? There're talks of nuclear technology in the future that can directly split a water molecule into H2 and oxygen, but till then, it's just a talk.

The other thing - heat output. A fuel cell will likely be never used in a bus/coach or truck. Fuel cells puts out tremendous amounts of heat; if you think cooling an 8v92 is difficult, wait till you see even a basic 250hp city bus cooling requirement for fuel cell. For a 450hp, 54,000 GVW coach, you're looking at making the entire roof out of a radiator. And this is not something that will get better with technology, no. A fuel cell's efficiency is a thermodynamic hard limit that can't be broken.

So, I'd place my bet on other fancy things like nanotube batteries before fuel cells. Right now, their only use in RVing is if Bill Gates happens to be a busnut, and is looking for a couple $25000 quiet fuelcell generators to replace his Honda.  Wink
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« Reply #51 on: October 01, 2010, 07:53:55 PM »

Im sure you guys can agree with the statement "gasoline and diesel fuel will up in price in the future" and the reason is that we are either running out and/or we refuse to look and drill for more (depending on which side of the argument you want to argue)
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« Reply #52 on: October 01, 2010, 10:17:22 PM »

Time to invest in a ranch and raise about 425 horses  Grin
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« Reply #53 on: October 01, 2010, 10:59:37 PM »

435 horses or people pedal powered buses  Grin

According to this article, this electric bus outperforms other buses by 400% http://alternative-car-fuels.co.uk/electric-bus-from-proterra-with-400-better-performance-than-commuter-buses-today/#more-82 IMHO this and the emphisis of living green and all the new technology available now in solar power and wind generators and the gas crunch is the kind of stuff that is going to make batteries more efficient and more affordable as well as electric vehicles more practicle and affordable.

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Electric Bus from Proterra with 400% better Performance than Commuter Buses Today
A performance test of the Proterra electric bus was conducted recently by the Pennsylvania Transportation Institute. During the three runs done, the people mover had the best result of 29.23 MPGe and the worst at 17.55 MPGe.

The FCBE 35 from Proterra is powered by the UQM PowerPhase 150 engine. The engine produces a maximum power of 201 horsepower and continuous power rating of 134 hp. Other major features of the vehicle include regenerative braking, voltage and speed control, and optimal four quadrant performance.

The test simulated the duty cycle of the transport bus which traversed the make shift business district and the major transportation arteries. On the central business district phase, the diesel equivalency of the electric bus was marked at 21.35 mpg. The arterial phase returned a reading of 17.55 mpg while the commuter phase had a remarkable 29.23 mpg.

Each stage of the test simulated a central business district run with 7 stops on average per mile cruising on a top speed of 20 mph. The commuter phase had 1 stop with a top speed of 40 mph.

The parameters electric bus was tested on a 38 seating capacity load amounting to a gross weight of 36680. The fuel economy test was conducted with the air conditioners of the bus turned off. Aircon use may reduce fuel mileage by as much as 30 percent.

The results of the test reveal that the fuel efficiency of the Proterra’s FCBE 35 outshines the commuter buses today by as much as 400%.
« Last Edit: October 01, 2010, 11:02:52 PM by happycamperbrat » Logged

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« Reply #54 on: October 02, 2010, 02:15:03 AM »

Just did a quick google on that Proterra bus. It is battery-powered (no fuel cell) according to the video below, so to be measuring it's performance in MPG 'diesel equivalency' seems a recipe for making the numbers say whatever you want them to say. Also the video includes the phrase 'average 15mph', which is surely very significant.

Not knocking it....but not swallowing everything I read either.


Jeremy

Proterra video:
Too Much! The Electric Bus!
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« Reply #55 on: October 02, 2010, 05:11:34 AM »



  I dont want to poo poo anything, but ive seen these discussions before, and I have studied some of the aspects and arguments.

  One of the arguments is that wind electric is clean energy. yes,I suppose if they could actually shut down a coal power plant while wind generation is online, you could say that. But its not happening. Coal power is steam power. It can take days to bring a coal plant up to heat. Once its spinning up, it can take more days to bring the power online. They cant simply throw a switch and dump a couple gigawatts onto the grid. Some may recall the northeast blackout a few years ago. Some areas were without power for over two weeks, and this was the reason.

  Holland spent $billions developing a wind generation grid, lining their coast with wind mills, but the reality was that they could not shut down their conventional power plants, they had to remain on standby. Last I heard they were completely scraping the wind program. The only reason the US is pushing wind generation, is, IMHO, political. It has nothing to do at all with saving fossil fuels or protecting the environment. If people truly wanted to protect the environment, we would have much more nuclear power plants and we would be riding bicycles. We would not be leaving strings of multistory buildings lit up all night from coast to coast with computers left on and with no one there.


 The other argument is oil, and how we will run out. We will not run out. Not in my lifetime, yours, or anyones grandchilds, probably not in any forseeable future. Why? Because it is not fossil fuel. Beyond our planet, some of our sister planets and their moons, have vast oceans of liquid methane. There is now strong belief withing certain circles, that our planet was once equally covered with liquid methane, and that some process broke it down into more and more complex hydrocarbons, and it sank iinto the depths  of the earth. Oil companies are today, drilling down past 15 miles, twice as deep as the worlds oceans, and finding vast reserves of oil. If oil is lighter and floats, and if oil were created from fossil process, why is it under everything else all over the world?

If you truly believe in protecting the environment, I believe this is a good read on wind generation


http://www.americanthinker.com/2010/02/wind_energys_ghosts_1.html
« Last Edit: October 02, 2010, 05:30:17 AM by artvonne » Logged
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« Reply #56 on: October 02, 2010, 07:30:38 AM »

I guess we can suck the life blood out of the politicians and use that for energy to run our homes and vehicles.

If you google electric bus, there are several places trying them out all across the world right now. Hopefully they will create a demand for better and more efficient batteries, technology, etc. that's all I'm saying. 

One of my brothers is a big wig at the place that owns a solar plant in Mojave Desert http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Solar_power_plants_in_the_Mojave_Desert they actually produce steam to help the windmills turn and work with the Tehachapi Windmills which were in the article artvonne posted. As far as I know, that is the way the windmills there are supplemented when the wind doesn't blow (but I will ask him next time I see him). I understand not everyone lives on the surface of the sun like we do, but there are alternatives. The core of the Earth is very hot and digging down could release that heat to be used for steam; I think that might be a better alternative then messing with another planet.

I would say that we are going back to the horse and carriage days, but I'm vegan so using animals like that is against my grain. Peddle Power for me and wheelchairs for my family!
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« Reply #57 on: October 02, 2010, 12:43:51 PM »

By co-incidence my Dad has just sent me a link to the website below, which apparently shows a real-time measure of load on the UK electricity grid - I'm just posting it here as it relates to what Sean was saying earlier about how power stations have to continuously adjust their output, to match both demand from users and, increasingly, the inevitable fluctuations that come from the 'renewable' element in the National power supply.

See: http://www.dynamicdemand.co.uk/grid.htm

The gauge is mostly stable, but I noticed a few minutes ago that it dropped markedly and stayed around the 49.8 mark for three or four minutes, before coming back up. And that co-incided with the clock going past 8.30pm - no doubt some Saturday night reality-TV program had a break, and everyone went to make a cup of coffee.



Talking about renewable power - certainly wind power is expensive and unreliable, but I've not previously heard any suggestion that the Dutch are abandoning their wind-generation policies. Although it wouldn't surprise me if they're getting behind on their maintenance schedules at the moment, because Norfolk (on the East coast of Britain) seems to be full of Dutch and Scandinavian wind turbine engineers just now. There are huge fields of wind-turbines being built a few miles off the coast there at the moment, where the water is shallow and the winds are steady. I was in Norfolk a few weeks ago and was very impressed by both the ambition and engineering of the construction work that was going on.

Jeremy

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« Reply #58 on: October 02, 2010, 01:33:30 PM »

435 horses or people pedal powered buses  Grin

Thought about that one, but while it may work great for transits or a Greyhound, I'd feel really bad for the elderly couple that happens to own a 45' Prevost...

In all seriousness, I think we can all agree that at this point in time, there simply isn't a better solution to internal combustion. For the foreseeable future, we have to work on optimizing the IC drivetrain to make it moe efficient.

My personal faith is in electrical transmission systems, like diesel locomotives. AC-AC transmission systems have shown to achieve efficiency levels of 93%, which is higher than any regular transmission, whether clutched or torque converter based. On top of that, an IC engine becomes a LOT more efficient, and cleaner, when designed to operate around a single power level / rpm. So a series hybrid system, with a good sized battery, will dramatically increase mpg, especially in city / hilly terrain.

It was the same deal with fuel cells - if we could design them for a single operating point, we would've solved 75% of the problems. The transient process is what killed the design, from the actual cells to the supporting systems such as compressors. I tried really hard to convince management of using a bigger battery bank to buffer out the load variations. Of ocurse, being a lowly engineer, they told me to go back to my office since I know nothing about businees and cost...  Wink
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