[FoRK] Redox battery for EVs is recharged in minutes through electrolyte exchange

Stephen Williams sdw at lig.net
Thu Oct 22 19:37:51 PDT 2009

Damien Morton wrote:
> On Thu, Oct 22, 2009 at 8:07 PM, Stephen Williams <sdw at lig.net> wrote:
>> [This spot for a wild and crazy idea.]:
>> Create tracking intense light projecting zones on streets, highways, and
>> especially hills.  Use grates, mirrors, whatever.  As photo-rechargeable
>> cars drive over the charging zones, focused, high intensity light
>> illuminates just the receptors on the bottom of cars.  The intense pulse is
>> captured by multi-layer / fractal / nano receivers and the impulse is stored
>> in capacitor banks that slowly drain into the batteries / wheels.  Presto:
>> an optical (or microwave, or even inductive) "third rail".  Probable power
>> scale mismatch, probably safety issues...
> Dude, you just gave me a brilliant idea.
> Instead of an optical energy transfer system, you could have a simple
> mechanical energy transfer system.

I considered mechanical, like something to rev a flywheel or an arm for 
forward motion.  All too crazy.  Electric power or burning / expanding 
fuel is needed.
> Lets say that in the center of each lane is a slot, and under the slot is a
> cable moving in the direction the vehicle is travelling. To transfer kinetic
> energy to the vehicle, the vehicle merely couples itself to the cable. Short
> term energy storage for travelling off the grid is achieved by a kinetic
> rolling mass energy system.

Lol...  The cable car auto revolution we never had.
> Advantage of this approach is that it uses no new technology at all, and no
> fuel or motor is required on the vehicle, enabling mass and cost reductions
> barely imaginable to the current automotive industry.

Installing, maintaining, and powering that cable with its massive 
friction burden doesn't seem cool.

I have pointed out before that we ought to have very efficient train 
cars with loading as easy as pulling into a parking spot.  Drive to a 
station just off the highway, pull into a slot, have that loaded, 
potentially in continuous motion on a moving train, then zip along at 
fairly high speed (100mph+) to the next major node, then drive to your 
destination.  Trains are efficient, but using a train isn't unless you 
happen to be within very close walking distance on each side.

If we could convert individual travel to train-level efficiency, whether 
using a train or not, that would be a huge win and likely good enough 
for quite a while.  400 short ton-miles per gallon could translate to 
400 miles per gallon per 2000 lb. vehicle, or as little as .25 gallon 
per 400 miles per person.

> I estimate that switching to this remarkable new mode of transportation
> could save anywhere from 10 - 90% of the United State's oil consumption in
> the transport sector.

Lol.  You could start with a car that can clip onto existing cable car 
cables in SF! ;-)


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