Gogoro Batteries, Hydrogen Scooter Canisters – Energy Distribution in the Future?

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

One of the hits of the Consumer Electronics Show at Reno, Nevada this year was the Gogoro scooter, an electrical and electronics showcase for its designers and makers.  The stylish two-wheeler, a svelte and quiet people mover, reminds one of the Vespa craze of the late 1950s and early 1960s, but does not belch a blue cloud or emit putta-putta (or papapapa as shown in the vintage commercial here) noises in its wake. Its clean white lines reflect the kind of look we’ve come to expect from modern devices such as laptops, game consoles or other electronic toys.  That might be expected because of Horace Luke’s background as a product designer for HTC, Nike and Microsoft.  To some extent, the …

Speedy – and No Range Anxiety

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

Breaking a record that stood for 26 years, a team of University of New South Wales engineering students have gained FIA recognition for their 500 kilometer (310 mile) drive at an average speed of 106.966 kilometers per hour (66.32 mph) in their solar-powered Sunswift automobile. The Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA), world motorsport’s governing body, ratified the record for the run set by the team in July.  The old record was 73 km/hr. (45.26 mph), making the new record a decisive advancement in electric vehicle technology. The new record is particularly impressive because it’s set by students, more than 100 of whom contributed to the project over the last two years.  Students are now working on their fifth car, eVe, …

Batteries, Fuel Cells – or Something Else?

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, GFC, Sustainable Aviation 0 Comments

We’re coming to a parting of the ways in energy storage development for electric cars.  Or we may be coming to a joining of technologies in new and previously unimagined ways.  One side, led by Elon Musk and his Tesla Empire, promotes battery power and development.  Yet, in Tesla’s home state of California, government and private investments in hydrogen vehicles is growing.   Several Asian and European automakers are bringing out fuel cell powered vehicles in the face of low numbers of existing fueling stations.  For all the promotion from either side, future “green” cars may become too expensive for private ownership, and various approaches to providing personal mobility may replace the traditional owner-driver model.  Regardless of the outcomes or market …

Go Skynch Yourself – And Smile About It

Dean Sigler Electric Powerplants, Sustainable Aviation 1 Comment

Jack Lambie, an early hang-glider pilot, wrote in a mid-seventies’ Soaring Magazine of a dream cross-country using ultralight sailplanes with self-launching devices that allowed high launches from flat ground when foot launching was not practical.  Lambie would be proud of recent developments in Denmark. Three years ago, we first noted the Skynch, a paraglider (potentially hang glider) self-launching device under development.  Then it seemed to disappear from view, only to re-emerge as a fully-developed electric winch with a remote for the pilot.  The self-controlled nature of the setup allows a pilot to literally pull him or herself into the blue. The video, which the Skynch people do not allow to be embedded here, gives a convincing demonstration of the system’s ease of use …