July 2015 is the warmest month on record

Every time we get a cool day or a lot of snow, it seems like some genius has to chirp about global warming.

Well, not you have an interesting, but potentially very problematic, fact to throw back at them . . .

Using Wasted Energy

exhaust-517799_640

When you are an automotive engineer and you are designing a vehicle for maximum fuel efficiency, you use all the energy sources you can find. That’s why design engineers of hybrid vehicles tap the energy that gets wasted when a hybrids brakes are applied. Instead of converting the motion of the vehicle into wasted heat via the brake pads as ordinary cars do, hybrid vehicles have a small generator on each axle that converts the car’s kinetic energy into electricity. This electric power is then fed to the vehicle batteries.

In any internal combustion-powered vehicle, another source of wasted energy is the movement of the exhaust gases that exit the tailpipe. Using these strong gases to power automotive sub-systems isn’t a new concept as superchargers have been doing it for years. The way it works is the exhaust gases are used to spin a turbine that, in turn, drives fresh air into the vehicle’s engine. This allows more air-fuel mixture to be exploded in the cylinders which produces more engine power.

Read the rest of this entry »

Denmark’s Bold Plan to Eliminate Fossil Fuels

air-19417_640

While many countries, including the United States, have been talking about reducing their dependency on fossil fuels for a long time, Denmark has set the goal -and a date- for actually doing it. According to Denmark.dk, the official website of Denmark, the Scandinavian nation has announced the most comprehensive renewable energy goal on Earth. Denmark plans to stop using all fossil fuels (oil, gas or coal-based) for transportation and general energy production by the year 2050.

Read the rest of this entry »

Electric Cars – A Guide to Terminology

electric-car-629880_640

Are you confused about the types of electric cars that are on the market today? We will briefly examine the three major types and give you a clear cut understanding of the differences between the models. When you finish you will know the difference between a “Hybrid”, an “EV” and a “Plug-in.”

Hybrid Cars

The “Hybrid” part of Hybrid cars comes from the fact that they use both gas engines and electric motors for power. Most of the major car makers offer a Hybrid model and Hybrids have been on the market over a decade now. The Toyota Prius was the first popular Hybrid and is often referred to as typical of the breed.

Read the rest of this entry »

Chrysler’s Airflow – One of the First Green Cars

In the 1930s, Chrysler Corporation developed and sold the first streamlined automobile. It was technically advanced and was the “slipperiest” automotive design made at the time. Unfortunately, it almost put Chrysler out of business. Here’s the story behind the ill-fated Chrysler Airflow.

According to legend, one of Chrysler’s big three executives, Carl Breer, saw some military aircraft on local maneuvers and wondered why Chrysler’s cars weren’t so streamlined. A streamlined car would slip through the air easier than the standard boxy designs of the day, he assumed, and thus would be more efficient to operate. He soon communicated these thoughts with Walter Chrysler and with Chrysler’s blessing, a design team was formed to research the concept.

Read the rest of this entry »