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Engineering Materials

Long-Range EV Has Motors in its Wheels

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didymus7
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What about....the electronics?
didymus7   8/24/2012 9:23:51 AM
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Was this article about the car or about Dupont plastics?  I find it hard to believe that we got nothing about the battery or electronics on this car.  So many new technologies and all we get is plastics talk.

pkoning
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Re: Motor for more mileage
pkoning   8/24/2012 9:15:18 AM
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Motor in wheel is certainly an interesting idea (and an obvious one; it's been done before).

The statement "30 percent farther than other mass-produced EVs" is clearly not true.  A cynic might say there isn't any such thing as a mass-produced EV, but if you assume that this means "not a concept car" and "not a limited production hand-built car" (like the Tesla Roadster) but rather something built in to a factory with the hope that it would sell in the thousands (like the Leaf) then clearly the Tesla model S qualifies, and that has a range around 300 miles.

Mydesign
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Motor for more mileage
Mydesign   8/24/2012 3:00:13 AM
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Ann, one of the major drawbacks of any EV is its less mileage. So any innovation, which can increase the mileage, may get more appreciated from both market and customer side. But am not getting how its possible to deploy one- one motor for each wheel

greg
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Iron
Re: Plastic body
greg   8/23/2012 7:39:10 PM
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according to Lotus, the unsprung weight consequences of hub electric motors is not as great as one would think. From Vehicle Dynamics International's 2011 Annual Showcase:

http://viewer.zmags.com/publication/5d2f4966#/5d2f4966/40

Chuck_IAG
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Plastic body
Chuck_IAG   8/23/2012 6:04:02 PM
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Thinking about this, the idea of a plastic body for a car with hundreds of watt of energy flowing through it is very smart.  I've shocked myself touching the body of a normal auto when static electricity had built up, and it was not fun.  Amplify that by a factor of, oh, maybe 200 to 400, and wow! the advantage of using non-conductive parts begins to sound really intelligent.  So I'm all in favor of it.

The unsprung weight of the car due to motors in the wheels would certainly reduce its handling capability.  And I'd sure hate to hit a big pothole; you'd be out shopping for a new tire and wheel immediately, as soon as your teeth stopped rattling.

The range sounds almost too good- I wonder if it's anywhere near that far at freeway speeds.

But why do they insist on making these things look dorky?  Did someone pass a law against making them look like a Tesla?

Rob Spiegel
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Re: Novel design approach
Rob Spiegel   8/23/2012 5:32:40 PM
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Ann, I have a feeling we'll look back at this period as an explosion of innovation in the auto industry. I would guess a lot of the technology that's getting developed to support hybrids and EVs will also be handy when used to meet the higher mpg standards in conventional autos.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Novel design approach
Ann R. Thryft   8/23/2012 3:02:50 PM
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abq-engineer, thanks for that link. What fun! It sounds like a very similar design concept to the SIM-WIL. Of course, as the article points out, it weighed a lot because of the 1.8 tonnes (metric tons, or 1.984 US short tons) of batteries needed.

abq-engineer
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Iron
Re: Novel design approach
abq-engineer   8/23/2012 10:48:24 AM
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beth,

"nothing new under the sun"

check out: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lohner-Porsche

this car sold from 1900-1905!

Bunter
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Platinum
Re: Novel design approach
Bunter   8/23/2012 10:11:14 AM
Hi Lou,

While I would agree that there is indeed some ICE legacy to the single motor design direction there are other considerations.

Placing the motors in the wheels increases the unsprung mass of the vehicle and this has an adverse effect on the performance of the suspension.  Typically both ride and handling charateristics deteriorate when the ratio of unsprung to sprung mass increases.  For the locomotives in your example, traveling on a smooth rail this is farless of an issue.

One possiblity is placing the motor very near the wheel with a short drive shaft.  Yes the complexity of the sytem increases, but it may still be better than the centrally located motor without the drawbacks of placing the mass outboard of the suspension.

Just some thoughts.

Dennis

Scott Orlosky
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Re: Novel design approach
Scott Orlosky   8/23/2012 10:05:30 AM
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I have to say, that I have heard of this design approach before (motors in wheels) but not sure if it was ever on a vehicle intended for production.  Makes perfect sense, though.  No more drive shaft tunnel or heavy gearbox and differential.  I'll bet it's low maintenance as well.  Total cost of ownership/operation is probably pretty good when compared to gasoline and hybrid models.

 

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