i think it's good info greg. what's your background, mechanical engineer?
Nope I just am a beer drinking idiot from Milwaukee
I just read and experiment a lot. I have failed so many times trying things its unreal. Trust me, I was the guy putting leaf blowers on Honda engines with little success.
Your comment about running a engine at 100%, turning a generator, then running drive motors at the wheels is happening as we speak.
Construction equipment manufacturers are saying this gains 10 to 30 percent fuel efficiency
Your absolutely correct, and it has been going on for a very long time. Prime mover locomotives have been using this tech forever now. Big mining equipment much the same. Mainly where engine size doesn't matter do you see this.
My opinion would be that if somebody did go from that parasitic load of 1% to 3% to .5% that would be a gain in efficiency, that don't appear to be much but over 100,000 miles, it adds up.
It absolutely adds up, however the costs make it not worth while. You wont be able to cut much of the loss inside a engine at this point. We are at the limit of reducing friction and even a 0 friction engine wouldn't give much back. The best we can do is have a hybrid system that only runs the engine when 100% needed, and when the engine is run its run at as close to 100% efficient as we can. However this will never be as efficient as a pure electric vehicle. A efficient electric motor only wastes 5 to 10% of the energy to heat. The motor only needs the amount of power that’s required, there is no Air/fuel ratio to attempt to maintain, no quality of gas/energy density that could change, no change in atmosphere to compensate for, etc. 100% of the technology already exists to have unbelievable electric vehicles, except for the power production/storage dilemma. If we had megawatt power packs that would fit in a small area of a trunk of a average car, that would recharge in 10 minutes to a hour, the gas engine would be history.
Ripped from a website, and is a good example of why a prius gets good gas mpg:
Methods and Technology for Improving Internal Combustion Engine Efficiency
The practical methods and new technology that help in increasing the efficiency of the internal combustion engines are as follows:
•Regenerative braking: As braking a car or automobile wastes the kinetic energy in the form of heat, regenerative braking is ideal method when you want to brake your vehicle to control speed (like when going downhill). In this electromagnetic braking is done as small motors absorb the energy and convert it into battery energy.
•Variable Injection Timing: This is already used in Maritime engines. At low loads and speeds, the injection is advanced allowing same mean effective pressure to be maintained. This not only increases the efficiency of the engine as the scavenge pressure is maintained, it also allows for lower quality fuel to be burnt.
•Variable valve timing: In this method the exhaust and inlet valves opening and closing time can be varied, affecting the efficiency of the engine. This method can increase the efficiency by 4 to 5%.
•Cutting off cylinders: In large engines in cruising or going downhill, half of the cylinders can be cut off thus reducing fuel demand. It cannot be done on small engines as the engine would become rough.
•Turbochargers: A turbocharger is an exhaust gas recovery device that increases boost air pressure thereby optimizing combustion. It increases efficiency by 7 to 8%.
•Direct Fuel Injection: In previous engines, the fuel was mixed with air and injected, but nowadays fuel is directly injected into the combustion chamber and mixing takes place according to the profile of the combustion chamber. It increases efficiency by 11 to 13%.
•Twin spark plugs and multiple injectors: As the flame front starts from the spark plug and proceeds outward, some fuel remains unburnt as ejected before the flame front can reach it. In a twin spark plug cylinder two flame fronts are created, causing better combustion.
•Using the correct viscosity of lubricating oil, as viscous oil can result in losses due to friction.
•Integrated starter and generator systems: In this system the engine is immediately stopped when idling and started when the accelerator is pressed.