Skgoa wrote: Broomstick wrote:
How many computer simulations have been done back then and is the data from that in single or double precission?
I know this comes as a shock to you whippersnappers, but people have built and designed things for most of human history without using computers. It's possible, you know.
Which completely misses the point. Engineering has changed.
Engineering has NOT changed in some fundamental manner, the computer is just a new tool that's been adopted for engineering, they do not re-write physics and chemistry. It's a better abacus, that's all.
Just a reminder: You do remember your orginial claim was that EVs had been tried 100 years ago and thus aren't viable, ever?
Nope, that was NOT my claim, that was what YOU read into it.
When automobiles were first invented there were several competing power sources, the big three being steam, electric, and gasoline. To start it was a level playing field with, actually, some small advantage to steam due to it being used heavily during the 19th Century. My point was that gasoline won for a reason.
The range and refueling convenience outweighed its drawbacks compared to both of the alternatives, which in terms of operation were superior in some respects. When gasoline won it wasn't the super-efficient cars of today but rattling gas-guzzlers with things like carburetors that needed frequent adjusting. Now you're trying to bring back electric which has the exact same drawbacks
as before, mainly very limited range and vastly longer refueling times compared to gasoline. Even with the best of today's technology that is still true and it has zero to do with whether the car is designed on a drafting board or a CAD/CAM system.
Gasoline stores more power per unit of storage media than electricity does, because even our lightest batteries are still relatively heavy. The fact that you can refuel a car in 5 minutes vs. hours is just a bonus on top of that. Recharging an electric is a hassle. Being able to plug your car in overnight mitigates the worst of it, but it doesn't really eliminate the problem.
Sure, most trips are within electric range but most people, particularly in the US, take longer trips often enough that it is a problem
with the whole notion of converting everyone to electric. In some urban areas people are already operating in a mode where they don't own a car, they just rent one the few times a year they actually need
a car vs. public transportation... but those are the very sorts of trips where an electric car is vastly inferior to a gas one.
Note, as well, there are NO proposals to go to long-distance electric freight-hauling trucks - if the tech was truly competitive there would be. Compare to railroads where diesel-electric engines are, in fact, the norm where they're combining the positive features of electric drive with the ease of refueling of a petroleum-based ICE. In rail, a hybrid diesel/electric won but scaling that down to private automobile size is problematic (although that's essentially what the hybrids are trying to do).
I'm thinking that if you could get an electric car that can be recharged in 10 minutes or less you'd finally see parity with gasoline from an operational
standpoint, assuming the charging infrastructure is widespread. You'd still have to stop more often, but the hassle will be minimal and overlooked in most cases if there is sufficient cost difference favoring electrical storage. That will require some amazing breakthroughs in battery technology. Unless you can point to something that's at least in prototype stage, well, I just don't buy it.
I think hybrids
might win out in the end, giving a car that can either be recharged from a wall socket or recharged from a liquid-fueled ICE, but that's not an "electric car". The downside, of course, is that you're having to carry around two complete power systems all the time, which adds weight to the vehicle, which is why no hybrid running purely off its gas motor can match the gas mileage of my all-petroleum-fueled small car of 50 mph on the open highway. The fantastic "gas mileage" figures for hybrids are actually calculated using both
systems to maximum advantage, but again, running one on JUST gas will not give such fantastic figures, and a purely electric car will likewise get more range than a hybrid with an electric motor/storage system of similar capacity because the hybrid is hauling around all that extra crap that isn't being used in that state. A comparable issue are "multi-fuel vehicles", such as those that can run on both gasoline and natural gas (they do exist - I know a tradesman who owns one, he bought it off the local power company which has a whole frickin' fleet of them), or military vehicles that can run off a variety of liquid fuels from high-grade gasoline to diesel to, essentially, cooking oil. While there are advantages to being able to run off more than one thing there are many more complications brought on by parallel systems, only one of which is in use at a time, requirements to adjust other parts of the engine and systems, and so forth. My car only has to carry one power system, so it's lighter and thus takes less energy to move. When gas gets prohibitively expensive, though, the hybrid wins, but not until then - and the price of gas has zero to do with whether vehicle engineering is done on computer vs. drafting board.
Holy fuck, guys, we built moon-landing spaceships and the SST before we had computers as a constant in the drafting room, no, they are not
essential. They are really, really useful and save a shitload of time and prototyping but they aren't essential. They won't cure a problem that isn't an engineering problem so much as a "we haven't invented it" problem or "the laws of physics and chemistry are getting in the way" problem.Want electric cars to be viable? Then invent new battery technology. It's that simple, and that difficult.
Oh, and I noted you had zero come back for the problems of in-pavement heating and/or power sources. Again, it's not a matter of "we have computers we can solve this!" it's a matter of not having the proper materials to get the job done. Point to a flexible conductor that will get the job done or admit you've got nothing. It will have to be flexible enough to endure the normal buckling/shrinking of the heat/cold cycles of a typical year, and be resistant to both the chemicals in the pavement and to things like road salt (unless you actually can heat it sufficiently to keep up with, say, a Midwestern blizzard) and leaking vehicle fluids. We haven't got pavement
that can reliably do that, hence the annual "road work" season we all loathe and joke about and we've been trying to pave roads one way or another a lot longer than we've been trying to electrify them.