A Colorado Firm Claims It Can Triple the Power of Electric Engines

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Pilot-34

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Required input voltages of 460 VAC, 3PH is prohibitive for anything that moves. While this may change eventually, for now it's a no go for me. Imagine 140 Lithium battery cells packed into a car, boat, airplane.........
I don’t have to imagine it I’ve seen it and it’s not really a big deal.
Lots of times what you think of as “A”battery are in fact a whole bunch of little bitty standardized AA cells packed together in a container.
 

Pilot-34

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Languages, cultures, and world history fascinate me. But at the risk of too much thread drift, I'll get back to the original topic. Back in the late 1800s and part of the early 1900s, electric cars were a little more popular in some towns because they were easier to operate. Sure they had very short range, but engines had to be started with potentially dangerous hand cranking. Some people broke an arm when the engine kicked back at just the wrong time when the operator's hand was still on the crank. A suggestion was made to use an electric motor to start the engine, but most everyone thought the motor would have to be huge, nullifying much of the potential advantage. In 1916 along came Charles Kettering who realized we need to operate the electric starter for just 20 seconds or so, thus we can run more amperage through a small motor for a short burst just to get the engine started. We've all benefited from that. In aviation we can use motors to augment lift for takeoff and landing, but but turn them off for other phases of flight. Today, Chip Irwin is experimenting with that on his Merlin Lite. The batteries can be small, and be recharged by the alternator on the engine.
This is exactly what I meant to discuss in the topic “five minute rating”
 

Pilot-34

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thanks!
I am not "English native speaking" so this is a very interesting info for me 👍
I try to use word "engine" only with internal combustion engines and word "motor" when I speak about electric motors. However seems that according to Oxford English Dictionary are both words nearly the same....
"The Oxford English Dictionary defines “motor” as a machine that supplies motive power for a vehicle or other device with moving parts. Similarly, it tells us that an engine is a machine with moving parts that converts power into motion."

According to this thread theme...
I have some experience with electric propulsion systems is aviation. For me is most important "continuous power". Max. power of electric motor (info typically used during product advertising) says practically nothing about practical use. Sounds nice if you have for example 50 kW of "max. power" for TakeOff, but if you reach max. temp in few minutes and than you have to reduce power to 50-60% (25-30 kW) than is practical use or that motor limited. Super light motors need VERY good efficiency and VERY good cooling systems.
For example... 90% efficiency = 10% of power converted to heat. From 50 kW is 5 kW of heat you need to get out from +-15 kg "metal cylinder". 95% efficiency = still 2,5 kW of heat you need to cool down etc.....
It means... max. power or power to weight ratio are nice number, but just a numbers. What you really need to know is what is max. continuous power you can use till you batteries are empty ;)

And.... yes, weight of motor and controller are not that important in compare with weight of actually available battery cells. Therefore I recommend to focuse on safety = keep all temperatures as low as possible ;)

Don’t pay attention to the English Nazis. Here in the United States they spent 12 years teaching us the rules of speaking English well each of which is followed by an exception or 50.
In any science A rule with 50 exceptions it’s not a rule it is simply wish wish….
American English somewhat like the early United States Really doesn’t have any rules it has common agreement
 

blane.c

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Don’t pay attention to the English Nazis. Here in the United States they spent 12 years teaching us the rules of speaking English well each of which is followed by an exception or 50.
In any science A rule with 50 exceptions it’s not a rule it is simply wish wish….
American English somewhat like the early United States Really doesn’t have any rules it has common agreement

So "guidelines"? Arg!
 

Dan Thomas

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Or we could just build compression ignition engines that burn Jet and diesel fuel and run them at higher power levels for takeoff for limited required time and let them have longer service life from cruising at 80%. In a lifetime of being around airplanes it seems to me we have spent a century learning how to make things better, simpler, more reliable and LIGHTER - and now we have this bad drugs or computer game -inspired trend to add tons of garbage to an aircraft to signal virtue.
Both SMA and Thielert (now Austro) have done that, with mixed results. The Austro is a converted Mercedes diesel and has a redrive with a rather short replacement life. It's also full FADEC and some failures (and crashes) resulted from low-voltage situations and the computers died. The SMA is a direct-drive opposed four, like a "normal" aircraft engine, but has oil-cooled heads and is turboed. A huge intercooler and a huge oil cooler. I did some work on one of the first-generation SMAs in a 182, and there were plenty of problems. Oil leaking from head gaskets (the head is separate from the cylinder barrel, and oil is ducted into and out of the head via passages in the cylinder wall). Cracks in various brackets and other stuff from vibration. A cracked composite prop blade from vibration. The FADEC won't let you throttle up until the engine reaches a certain temperature, so it idles pretty slow, where there's lots of vibration. 230 HP in four big cylinders, with a compression ratio of 15:1, will do that. Minimum ambient temperature for starting is also impractically high. At least the SMA had an emergency mechanical override in case of FADEC failure.

This was 12 years ago or so, and SMA had spent more than one billion dollars on the project and had only 50 engines flying worldwide at the time. It would take centuries to recover R&D costs at that rate.

This highlights the difficulty of coming up with new stuff. It starts to look like the engine evolutionary process of post-WWI, where engines like the OX-5 were famous for failing, and pilots always had a field in view for a forced landing.
 
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blane.c

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Despite the hyperbole, for electric power we should take lighter weight and efficiency wherever we can achieve it for realistic dollars. The fact that it is most needed in power "aka" batteries or hydrogen fuel doesn't mean we should snub our noses at improvement in other areas such as motors and/or for that matter any other aspect. All contributions should be welcomed.
 

BJC

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All contributions should be welcomed.
Agree. However, there is an endless series of announcements of the latest technological breakthroughs that are,in reality, nothing but publicity grabs with little to no factual basis. The result is that my skepticism is so high that I have little interest in trying to sort out the reality from the BS.


BJC
 

Island_flyer

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Once again, a lot of monkey motion to try to make the wrong airframe do the job of another. We call them "helicopters" in some circles when we want the general public to understand how "hyperstol" has been done for decades.
Right. Because everyone can afford a helicopter and rotary wing pilot training. Everyone should have to choose between an airplane that needs a thousand-foot or longer runway, or a helicopter. If anyone uses their own money to develop a STOL airplane he’s just wasting everyone else’s time. The Wright brothers wasted everyone’s time, too. They already had bicycles and should have been content with that.
 

PMD

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Right. Because everyone can afford a helicopter and rotary wing pilot training. Everyone should have to choose between an airplane that needs a thousand-foot or longer runway, or a helicopter. If anyone uses their own money to develop a STOL airplane he’s just wasting everyone else’s time. The Wright brothers wasted everyone’s time, too. They already had bicycles and should have been content with that.
Since R44 deliveries outpace that vast majority of fixed wing aircraft, there seems to be some validation of using them when VTOL or near VTOL is required by mission profile. IIRC the Wrights abandoned their ultra-STO launching ramp for a long ground run sort of design. Something to do with not being able to land on said rail.

Having spent a decade long ago flying and fixing airplanes REQUIRED as daily transport, anything that even looks like complexity or extremity I would turn and run from at first opportunity,
 

Appowner

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I don’t have to imagine it I’ve seen it and it’s not really a big deal.
Lots of times what you think of as “A”battery are in fact a whole bunch of little bitty standardized AA cells packed together in a container.

A whole bunch of little cells, yes! But at what current capacity? Voltage can be acquired with lots of 3.3v cells. But greater capacity requires greater physical size either with larger individual cells or smaller cells wired in parallel.

While I don't claim to be an expert I am very familiar with batteries of several types. RC Airplane hobby for over 50 years now. Have a few electric models though I still prefer IC engines. And run a lithium in the Harley.
 

Island_flyer

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thanks!
I am not "English native speaking" so this is a very interesting info for me 👍
I try to use word "engine" only with internal combustion engines and word "motor" when I speak about electric motors.
Yes, John, you had it right all along.
 

Pilot-34

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A whole bunch of little cells, yes! But at what current capacity? Voltage can be acquired with lots of 3.3v cells. But greater capacity requires greater physical size either with larger individual cells or smaller cells wired in parallel.

While I don't claim to be an expert I am very familiar with batteries of several types. RC Airplane hobby for over 50 years now. Have a few electric models though I still prefer IC engines. And run a lithium in the Harley.
You can add voltage or amperage just by adding cells.
Easy Peasy
 

Dan Thomas

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Since R44 deliveries outpace that vast majority of fixed wing aircraft, there seems to be some validation of using them when VTOL or near VTOL is required by mission profile. IIRC the Wrights abandoned their ultra-STO launching ramp for a long ground run sort of design. Something to do with not being able to land on said rail.

Having spent a decade long ago flying and fixing airplanes REQUIRED as daily transport, anything that even looks like complexity or extremity I would turn and run from at first opportunity,
At least the helicopter can autorotate when its engine or transmission pack up. To autorotate, you need either altitude or airspeed, so you don't normally see helicopters taking off and climbing vertically unless they have to clear the trees or are using a long line. They lift off and get forward speed before climbing. As an example:

1636132308750.png

Those multirotor things can't autorotate. You need articulated rotors for that. And that articulated rotor is one reason why helicopters are expensive. A "drone" would need a parachute, but that only works if you have enough altitude for it to deploy and open and slow the descent. In the Cirrus that's around 800 feet. It does you no good if the engine craters at 200 feet on takeoff.
 

Urquiola

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Urquiola, got it see-https://www.electrive.com/2021/02/02/fraunhofer-develops-hydrogen-storage-paste/
Looks interesting.
George
I've already read this new about Magnesium Hydrate, to learn not much later, Mg is in short supply.
Thanks. Blessings +
 

Urquiola

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Urquiola, plenty of Magnesium here in Australia, how do they utilize that paste mix.
George
Sorry; I'm not in the mining neither commodities industry, nor have much money left to end month, just debts.
Thanks. Blessings +
 

Victor Bravo

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Right. Because everyone can afford a helicopter and rotary wing pilot training. Everyone should have to choose between an airplane that needs a thousand-foot or longer runway, or a helicopter. If anyone uses their own money to develop a STOL airplane he’s just wasting everyone else’s time. The Wright brothers wasted everyone’s time, too. They already had bicycles and should have been content with that.

Chris Heintz used his own money to develop a STOL airplane that can operate out of a 200 foot clear strip. It is designed around existing technology, proven principles, and commonly available hardware. It did not and does not require any exotic new technology, batteries that don't exist yet, or exotic structural materials. As a matter of fact, Heintz' STOL airplane is about as far opposite of exotic or cutting edge as you can get.

The world loved it, and it has been a huge success, ugly and all.

Many many others have done similar things using their own money, whether medium sized companies (Piper, Helio, Pilatus, Cessna) or smaller "mom and pop" shops (Avid, Just Aircraft, etc.)

None of these people were wasting anyone's time. Chip Erwin is not wasting anyone's time either, he is experimenting with stuff to see whether it is worthwhile.

HOWEVER - you cannot legitimately compare what Heintz did, or what Chip is doing, with the worldwide pandemic of BS, misinformation, and snake oil hucksterism that now surrounds eVTOL, "personal air mobility", and "electric airliner" announcements.

Heintz built a super-simple square flying box that worked perfectly for its intended mission. He built it, flew it, tested it, demonstrated it... and then asked you for money to buy a set of plans. Chip Erwin built a real existing prototype, and is now flying or testing it, and has put the real test vehicle on public display... and has still not asked you for money to buy one, or floated out IPO's or "rounds of funding", or had a hyper-hype big press event 'reveal' party for investors with the silly-ass dry ice smoke flowing around the mock-up.

Chip's prop-in-wing concept may or may not work... I have my doubts that the sharp edged square holes in the wing will create enough drag and spanwise lift wonkiness to negate the other benefits from the thrust. But Chip built it, it is clearly made out of materials and parts that are available, and he has not pushed any horse-s**t narrative about it being the future of mankind, the cure for cancer, or able to fly on melted ice crystals.

Chip's strange little prop-in-wing airplane will be able to glide back down and land under full control if everything in the power systems fails. Heintz' boxy airplanes can glide down and land under full control. Even the super fast Lancairs and Glasairs can be flown under some amount of control with all the power and electronics gone.

My point with this huge rant is that many of us here are 1000% in favor of realistic, cutting-edge scientific and engineering advances, even if the technology isn't fully developed yet. But it has to make sense in the physical world, and it has to not be all "faith-based". Many of us are also just dead-ass tired of claims and BS that are not supported by the laws of physics, or that do not demonstrate a believable pathway between what we can accomplish now and the technical breakthrough that changes the laws of physics.
 
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PagoBay

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My point with this huge rant is that many of us here are 1000% in favor of realistic, cutting-edge scientific and engineering advances, even if the technology isn't fully developed yet. But it has to make sense in the physical world, and it has to not be all "faith-based". Many of us are also just dead-ass tired of claims and BS that are not supported by the laws of physics, or that do not demonstrate a believable pathway between what we can accomplish now and the technical breakthrough that changes the laws of physics.

Science advances slowly and incrementally but appears to most of us as sudden leaps when the practical products appear. Research and commercialization are linked but problems can arise if the latter gets ahead of the former. Anyone following the Theranos fraud suit?

That said, I am not sure just who you want to determine that "believable pathway" has been "demonstrated"??

I like to follow New Atlas - New Technology & Science News . Never got dead-ass tired even once.

Post Theranos Reality -- "Final results from a study of a blood test that can detect more than 50 types of cancer have shown that it is accurate enough to be rolled out as a multi-cancer screening test among people at higher risk of the disease, including patients aged 50 years or older, without symptoms."
 

Saville

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My point with this huge rant is that many of us here are 1000% in favor of realistic, cutting-edge scientific and engineering advances, even if the technology isn't fully developed yet. But it has to make sense in the physical world, and it has to not be all "faith-based". Many of us are also just dead-ass tired of claims and BS that are not supported by the laws of physics, or that do not demonstrate a believable pathway between what we can accomplish now and the technical breakthrough that changes the laws of physics.


This ^.

I strongly emphasize the first sentence too. Though no matter how much we emphasize it, we're called neanderthal luddites anyways.

And I would also add we are heartily sick and tired of announcements of imminent breakthroughs that never occur, and pronouncements of "GAME OVER!" when it's based on photoshopped proposal images.

This is why my response these days is:

"I hope you can do it. I'll believe it when I see it"
 
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Saville

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What is drek? Looks like it's supposed to be an anagram, but I've never heard of it.


Drek (I think it might be spelled Dreck) is from the Yiddish drek & German Dreck, from Middle High German drec, and is a synonym for
solid waste, junk, trash, effluvia, offal.
 
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