calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel electric hybrid.

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todayican
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I am planning a diesel electric hybrid, I want to run it as 72 volts, use the small advanced dc (motor and curtis 72v controller.
I have a chineese 10hp diesel that I want to use as the range extender / speed increaser :-)

It will be a three wheel (2 in front 1 in back) 2 seat (36" wide side by side with an 8" stagger) highway capable car with a desired top speed of 80mph and an empty weight of (hopefully) 600 pounds not counting batteries

I want to keep the overall width to 56" (the outside measurements of the front tires) and an overall length of 120" or less.

The original idea was to mount the 2 motors in the rear on a large swingarm and install a centrifigual clutch on the diesel, run a chain from the output of the clutch to the rear wheel and put the electric motor on that same chain.
Problem with that, is the centrifigual clutch that will handle the load of about 13 "gas horsepower" is a dickens to get a hold of and adds unknown efficiency loss, hard to find drive sprockets etc.

Another option is to mate the 10hp diesel to the transaxle of a 1994 geo xfi I have, gear ratios look to be perfect for the engine.

Yet another option (this is where I am unclear) is to run a generator (multiple car alternators?) on the diesel and run it to the electric motor. with this I think *possibly* it would drive at highway speeds on "diesel" power alone, I am unclear about efficiency lost in alternators generators, manual transaxles etc.

I am the type of guy who will build something (have a mechanic I emply build actually) because I think it *may* work and that method is getting expensive ;-)

I am a sponge for advice, and would appreciate any input, help, even willing to pay or barter (I am a marketing guy) for some good advice.

Any Ideas?

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todayican
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

sorry about that. posted in the wrong area, please remove
Thanks

racermike39
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Calling all engineers

Quote:

I am a marketing guy

We won't hold that against you ;)
Sounds like a great project.
One idea I had to convert a small pick up truck to a hybrid, was to use a 4WD transfer case, installed in a 2WD truck, and "back feed" the trasfer case through the front drive shaft with the electric motor.
I suspect a small "in and out" type gear box would work best. I looked into some of the ones being used on the utility type ATV's, you know, the golf carts turned into a dump truck etc. Some had high and low ranges, and reverse. The HP capacity might be comparable, being used in high torque, off road applications.

Keep us posted on your progress.

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Racermike
5 years ago I met Jesus and he total ruined my life. I have never been happier.

deronmoped
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

If I was to do it, I would have the Diesel hooked up to a generator or alternator and use the juice to recharge the batteries and assist the drive motor. I would keep it real simple, drive off the batteries till they run below a certain level and then just manually switch on the Diesel.

Deron.

evDreamer
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Re: Calling all engineers

I can help with the approach of using the diesel to generate electricity.

An automotive alternator is very rugged, proven, readily available, and inexpensive.
Simple modifications can be made to allow common alternators to generate approximately 50 amps of current at 85 volts (4250 watts of power), or get a heavy duty 100 amp alternator for 8500watts. This is assuming it is directly coupled to a diesel running at 3600rpm. If your diesel can run at higher rpm, then you can get more voltage and resultant watts. Note the output is high frequency AC (10800Hz for 3600 rpm) which can be easily rectified and filtered to be very close to DC.

Take a look at the great article about alternators and you'll know what to do: http://islandcastaway.com/stuff/windpower/Alternator%20Secrets.htm

All you have to do is build a custom regulator that will give you the right voltage to charge your battery pack (and not overcharge).

Good luck!

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

I dont trust myself and limited knowledge / skill for that conversion. might you know a person who could "soup me up" a 200 amp rated alternator to put out 72v at 90 to 100 amps?

spinningmagnets
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Re: Calling all engineers

I haven't converted anything yet, but...

Your goals are ambitious, I believe if you scale back to reaching for a 45 MPH diesel series hybrid (non-freeway), it will be much more "achievable".

That being said, I am a fan of an EV conversion that uses a diesel series-hybrid trailer for occasional long trips. (are you looking at Yanmar engines?)

By using diesel in a series-hybrid, you avoid legal entanglements concerning using red (untaxed) diesel fuel (bulldozers, tractors, etc), or untaxed WVO (free used old french fry oil). Highway-taxed clear diesel will still be an option, as always. Parallel hybrids (Prius, etc) must always use taxed diesel/gasoline.

Look into using 108 volts (9 X 12V) for the EV and 120V from a small but common generator. Just some options....

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

Interesting idea about the series and taxed fuels, Ive been searching high and low about what a "normal" car uses in hp at highway speeds, and it seems like the concensus is about 15 for a civic sized car and about 70% of that is aero. with a 2f1r trike and an aviation canopy / aero teardrop shape, i gotta think that 10hp will do the trick.

jdh2550_1
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Re: Calling all engineers

todayican wrote:

Interesting idea about the series and taxed fuels, Ive been searching high and low about what a "normal" car uses in hp at highway speeds, and it seems like the concensus is about 15 for a civic sized car and about 70% of that is aero. with a 2f1r trike and an aviation canopy / aero teardrop shape, i gotta think that 10hp will do the trick.

Wow, it surprises me it's that low. You'd have to build a really good aero body to drop 50% off the required energy. Also, if you don't have a canopy you'll likely be worse off than the civic and need more power (bikes and trikes are notoriously un-aerodynamic). It sounds like an interesting project.

evDreamer wrote:

Simple modifications can be made to allow common alternators to generate approximately 50 amps of current at 85 volts (4250 watts of power), or get a heavy duty 100 amp alternator for 8500watts.

BTW, the figures quoted for power generation from a 100A alternator don't work for a 10HP engine (to be fair he never mentions the HP of the engine). 8500W is about 11.4HP and if you can get more electrical power out of a system than your putting in then you have "over unity" and will have broken the laws of physics ;-) [I'm just teasing, not meaning to bash anyone]. Does anyone know how efficient alternators are?

Sorry I don't have any more positive advice. But good luck! Keep us posted with how well things go.

__________________

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas. No Worries." - JDH, CuMoCo || "Make Volts Not War" - anon.

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

going with a full canopy with this one. I was wondering if extending the body outward 5" on each side to fully fair the front wheels would have a huge impact on the drag quotient (I feel like keeping tight wheelwells and some nice stainless "full moon" hubcaps would look good and keep the overall width narrower though?

As much as I would like to build a perpetual motion machine ;-) its not on my list of todos (this month anyway) :-)
If I could find me someone to alter an alternator to output whatever the diesel can do (and even that is a good question, because I know they have more torque then gas, just dont know how that translates to spinning an alternator, now the "optimum efficiency speed" of this motor (A Chineese Yanmar clone)

I could run it on gen power at "a speed" say its 58 on alternator output only, and for higher speeds be sipping only the difference from the battery pack?

marcus
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Re: Calling all engineers

there are alternators used in emergency vehicles, ships, rv's etc....
12v and 24v, w/very high amp output at low rpm ...sorry cant find the link.

evDreamer
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Re: Calling all engineers

jdh2550_1 wrote:

BTW, the figures quoted for power generation from a 100A alternator don't work for a 10HP engine (to be fair he never mentions the HP of the engine). 8500W is about 11.4HP

If you read closely, my comment was only about what are the possibilities with currently available alternators. Of course you'll need a larger engine to drive a larger alternator.

todayican wrote:

...Ive been searching high and low about what a "normal" car uses in hp at highway speeds, and it seems like the concensus is about 15 for a civic sized car and about 70% of that is aero.

This academic study gives a rare and accurate glimpse into what a Series Hybrid EV actually entails and how it will perform. http://ntl.bts.gov/lib/11000/11500/11546/KLK331.pdf
Figure 1.2 shows 15kw (20hp) for a stock 2001 Taurus at 60mph.
Fig1_2_Road_Load_Power_Req.jpg

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

What a great report! :-)

with a vehicle weight of about 1500 with batteries and a drag coefficient about 30 to 50% better, I am fairly confident that 10hp diesel would do the trick based on these numbers right?

evDreamer
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Re: Calling all engineers

The Taurus is heavy, and rolling resistance is probably high with stock tires at relatively low pressures, so you probably can do better.

But I also think your goal of highway speeds is quite high unless you have a big budget.

BTW, I googled and easily found 100 amp alternators. This one is chromed and still only $80!
http://stores.channeladvisor.com/db-starter-alternator/items/item.aspx?itemid=134823

deronmoped
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Points: 342
Re: Calling all engineers

Summit Racing has really good prices on alternators of different amperages. I picked up a real nice 100 amp blue powder coated one for about what evDreamer quoted.

I wonder if you could use a combination of alternators and get what you want. Like dual automobile alternators you could double the voltage, might be a cheaper alternative.

Deron.

Mik
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Re: Calling all engineers

evDreamer wrote:

This academic study gives a rare and accurate glimpse into what a Series Hybrid EV actually entails and how it will perform. http://ntl.bts.gov/lib/11000/11500/11546/KLK331.pdf

A quote out of the executive summary of that study:

Quote:

A Yamaha 250cc, four-stroke, SI engine is the best commercially available engine for this application.

That makes me wonder if the Yamaha Virago 250 which I champion as an electrification option could also be used as a series hybrid! http://visforvoltage.org/forum/3056-yamaha-virago-electric-conversion#comment-19882
Of course one could only charge whilst driving because it is air cooled, but the engine should be easily able to charge faster than the average power consumption during commuting is.
That would keep the battery requirements small. And of course it would ideally be a plug-in series hybrid, covering the majority of trips with battery capacity alone and recharging without the ICE running.

One might call it "Series-hybridization", as an expansion to the "Electrification" model Andrew proposed at: http://visforvoltage.org/forum/3254-don039t-convert-it-electrify-it

Mr. Mik

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jdh2550_1
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Re: Calling all engineers

evDreamer wrote:
jdh2550_1 wrote:

BTW, the figures quoted for power generation from a 100A alternator don't work for a 10HP engine (to be fair he never mentions the HP of the engine). 8500W is about 11.4HP

If you read closely, my comment was only about what are the possibilities with currently available alternators. Of course you'll need a larger engine to drive a larger alternator.

Dude! I was only teasing... No harm intended!

__________________

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas. No Worries." - JDH, CuMoCo || "Make Volts Not War" - anon.

spinningmagnets
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Re: Calling all engineers

here's a few links that might have some useful info:

http://visforvoltage.org/blog/reikiman/2927

http://endless-sphere.com/forums/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=3766

http://visforvoltage.org/forum-topic/hybrid-systems/731-series-hybrid-suitable-generator

Also, look at "Brushless Alternators" I believe thay can be had in a 24-volt configuration (Bulldozers, etc). A small Permanent Magnet Alternator (PMA) feeds an internal voltage regulator, that meters the power going into the armature to control the induced flow in the main windings.

Two generators in one package, eliminating the brushes. The possible benefit is that by hacking the Voltage Regulator, you can easily get "X" voltage at "Y" RPM's. The same can be done with common car alternators. There are websites showing how 4X4's can use an alt to weld with 120V coming from a 12V alt.

The brushless alternators are very robust and higher amperage than the 100-amp GM alts (but also more expensive). by using a 24-volt instead of a 12-volt alt, you may be able to get more voltage/amperage from lower RPM's.

Or, by adjusting the VR, when the battery sags under load, the VR will sense lower voltage, and will induce more amperage output to bring the voltage up to normal (did I say that right? I'm still learning)

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

with the 100 amp alternators, I agree there are a lot to be had, problem is its at 12v, from the earlier post about modifying it to output 72v 100 amp or 72c 80 amp (or whatever the diesel can pull) is beyond my expertees (visions of flames shooting out of the alternator) :-) also wiring the controller to accept "diesel dc" or battery dc, or a combination of the 2, also charging the main batteries somehow.

Is there anyone who can hack a strong 200amp alternator 12v up to 80 to 100 amp 72v dc and or help with the electronics?

For what its worth, I have a full shop here in FL and would be happy to trade some fabrication work?

spinningmagnets
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Re: Calling all engineers

In a common vehicle alternator, the armature is a set of spinning copper wire coils that becomes an electro-magnet, depending on how much flow is fed to the coils by the voltage regulator. When an energized armature is spun next to a set of field coils, electricity comes out of the field coils.

There is an invisible magnetic field around any magnet (regardless if it is a permanent magnet, or an electro-magnet) and the size and strength of this invisible field (flux) is what induces flow to come out of the field coils.

Since this field is a certain size of cross-section, you can put a cross-section of a copper wire coil in it that matches the magnets field size. If you put in a fatter coil than the field size, you've added length resistance without any extra output. If you make the field coil cross-section too small, the output is less than what is possible, and so some magnet flux is wasted.

Once your field coil cross-section size is set (by the size and strength of the magnets you are using) you can fill that space with "X" number of winds of "Y" diameter wire (fer instance, 42 wraps of #18 wire, using the "Z" wonder-magnet. Or, in our case, a variable strength electro-magnetic armature)

OR, you can use more turns of a smaller diameter wire, or fewer turns of thicker wire. A 24V alt/gen will have more turns of thinner wire than a 12V alt/gen.

Without a voltage regulator, an alt will have a rising voltage output as the RPM's rise, which can be graphed on a curve.

The wire type they are made with will produce 12/24 volts at a fairly low RPM, but as the RPM's rise, the VR chokes off the armature flow, gradually making the armature electromagnets weaker, so the voltage stays at 12/24 during rising RPM's for a fairly constant voltage output. (12V batteries actually need about 14 volts to charge up with)

By bypassing the VR (easy hack, found several places on the web) a 12V alt can put out as high as 120V, and can even be used for temporary roadside welding.

A hacked 24V alt will produce 72 volts at a lower RPM than a hacked 12V alt.

A 3-phase generator can produce 3 phases with 3 coils, or 6 coils, or 9, 12, etc. Any number divisible in groups of three. The reason you want more coils is that if you are drawing off high amps, you need to dissipate the heat. So its physical size (number of coils) depends on the design amp load.

If you want to design a 72 volt system you'll want an output of around 80 volts. So, after the hack, you will have to set the engine at a specific RPM to get that voltage.

I may have gotten some of this wrong, feel free to add any corrections.

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

Does anyone have any experience with Ecycle generator motors might 2 of them be a solution? one for the alternator on the 10hp diesel and one at 36v as the drive motor?

todayican
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Re: Calling all engineers

Also, does anyone know the relative difference between the mechanical loss of driving the diesel with a chain inline with the electric motor (via a centrifugal clutch) against the electrical loss of generating power with it via an alternator?

spinningmagnets
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

http://www.fieldlines.com/comments/2007/12/10/171914/85/22#22

username: panamman

If you are still looking for a diesel hybrid bicycle solution I have used RC micro diesel up to 1 hp that weigh less than 2 lb. When attached to a good RC motor brushless motor and controller with regenerative braking and battery system you can auto start the diesel. Everyone thinks these engines are loud but in reality they can be made quite tame since you have a lot more room for a real muffler. The engines cost <$200 and a cheap motor and motor controller cost less than $40 these days.

So for less that $300 you can have a 1/2 gal microdiesel generator that weighs less than 5 lb and produces between 1.5 and 2.5 KWh.

A really good person can only sustain 250Wh when racing, so that is a lot of power for the weight. Especially when you are touring. Think of it as a 5lb second rider that only eats $1/day and doesn't snore!

P.s. I have an electric Tera Trike and this super small generator lets me run at 25 mph for two days (>200 Miles) with touring bags. On flat terrain I start the generator every hour and then turn it off when the batteries are charged. In the hills I just leave it running on the up hill "I make more noise than it does" and turn it off before I get to the top so I leave room in the battery for regenerative braking which is much easier on the equipment than laying on the brakes to stay under 40mph.

If I did it again I would go for a smaller / lighter 300w design and a very small engine (0.5 Hp) and let it run most of the time. At 25mph your wind drag starts dominating the energy consumption so a fairing and a 300w system would probably run all day at 30+ mph (YMMV). An interesting trade off is the weight of the faring compared to the energy to overcome it.

One thing to look for when selecting an RC diesel is the need to add methyl to the fuel to get it to start. Once they are running they do not need it so I would like to figure out a way to inject the methyl only at start up. This is especially true if you run bio diesel. (exhaust can be used to pre-heat incoming fuel)

Any Ideas Guy's? Have fun!

P.S. Dr Diesel has some good info on small diesels.
http://www.cafes.net/doctordiesel/DDengines.htm

Mik
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

spinningmagnets wrote:

So for less that $300 you can have a 1/2 gal microdiesel generator that weighs less than 5 lb and produces between 1.5 and 2.5 KWh.
...
One thing to look for when selecting an RC diesel is the need to add methyl to the fuel to get it to start. Once they are running they do not need it so I would like to figure out a way to inject the methyl only at start up. This is especially true if you run bio diesel. (exhaust can be used to pre-heat incoming fuel)

Any Ideas Guy's? Have fun!

Lots of ideas! Thanks for posting this.

This RC stuff is great...

A few questions:

Do these diesel engines need to be cooled by wind, or can they be left running on a stationary vehicle?

Can any of these motors run on straight vegetable oil, like canola oil?

Can ethanol be used for startup instead of methyl alcohol?

Thanks,

Mr. Mik

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pchilds
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

spinningmagnets, your numbers don't add up. It would take 3 to 4 horse power to get the 1.5 to 2.5 KW output, 1 horse power would give you a net of 650 watts output at 87% efficiency, there are losses at all stages, motor to generator to battery to electric motor.

Philip

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2011 Nissan Leaf SL

spinningmagnets
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

I apologize, I wasn't clear enough.

There is another website called "otherpower.com", mostly wind-gens and solar-electric panels. This was just copied from there (click on the link), I thought it might be relevant to the discussion.

Posters have the option of putting up their personal e-mail address if they want. The poster of this page was called "panamman". I copied it and posted it here, as "panamman" did not give his e-mail address.

I am hopeful that he will see this, log on, and give more details (pics would be nice, too).

todayican
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel elect

I posted this one originally, I have decided to do the scientific thing and test it both ways, beginning with parallel (1 chain 2 motors) the diesel will sit behind a centrifugal clutch.
I have the chassis framed and am working on the suspension now.

I have a bunch of pics so far over at tshtrikes.com (look under the "new project")

anyone here in Florida want to come hang out and talk shop (at the shop) :-)?

Reliantman
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Re: calling all engineers! :-) need advice on small diesel ...

img116972a.jpg

Hi All.
I am new to the forum, and a complete novice regarding electrics in general.
I am thinking of buying a friends Kubota ZB600, 12.5 HP diesel engine. I was going to try and build a diesel-only motorcycle, but have lately been wondering about a hybrid instead.
My questions are-

What sort of size motor would I need to power a medium sized, cruiser-type bike, to be used as economy transport in a city?

Could I get away with one big automotive alternator, or two even?

And what sort of size battery would I need to use, if the diesel is running all the time?

Above is a similar unit mounted on some sort of impliment. See all the belts coming off it. Should be able to turn an alternator or two?

As I mentioned above, I do not know much more than the basics of electrics, but I am mechanicaly trained.

Thanks.Doug

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