A CARB Christmas

Ah, heck. I made the mistake of turning on my PC and looking at Russ Steele’s blog this morning. At least I slept in.

Poor Rudolph. Now the other reindeer will really laugh and call him names, especially with that new nose.

Lest you think this spoof is off the mark, let me remind you that CARB wanted to outlaw dark colored cars in California:

Now CARB and other groups are pushing for a 60 mpg efficiency standard, perhaps as early as 2017, which is very close (if not over) the the maximum efficiency limit of gasoline in an internal combustion engine.

The 60 mpg standard by 2025 presumes a 6% annual improvement in fuel economy over the 2016 Corporate Average Fuel Economy standard of 34.1 mpg established in April, Hwang said.

“We were very surprised when environmental groups called for 60 mpg because just last year we worked with the Obama administration and the State of California and environmental groups to agree on a new national standard that would reach over 35 mpg by 2016, and before we’ve even achieved those new heights, in fact, before the program has even taken effect, there are already calls for almost double the mileage,” said Gloria Bergquist, vice president of the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, a trade group that represents General Motors, Ford Motor Co. and 10 additional auto manufacturers.

Who doesn’t want better fuel efficiency? However, reality can be a real bitch.

From Wikipedia, The MPGe

Description

The miles per gallon gasoline equivalent is based on the energy content of gasoline. The energy obtainable from burning one US gallon is 115,000 BTU. Thus one mile per gallon gasoline equivalent is equal to 115,000 BTU per mile.[1] For alternative fuels, energy required to manufacture the fuel may also be considered. To convert the mile per gallon rating into other units of distance per unit energy used, the mile per gallon value can be multiplied by one of the following factors to obtain other units:

1 MPGE = 1/115,000 miles/BTU
≈ 1/33.7032 miles/kW·h
≈ 1/20.9422 km/kW·h
≈ 1/75.3919 km/MJ

Conversion to MPGE

MPGE is determined by converting the vehicle consumption per unit distance, as determined through computer modeling or completion of an actual driving cycle, from its native units into a gasoline energy equivalent. Examples of native units include W·h for electric vehicles, kg-H2 for hydrogen vehicles, gallons for biodiesel vehicles, cubic feet for compressed natural gas, pounds for propane or Liquefied petroleum gas vehicles, and gallons for liquefied natural gas vehicles. Special cases for specific alternative fuels are discussed below, but a general formula for MPGe is:

 MPGe = \frac{total~miles~driven}{\left [ \frac{total~energy~of~all~fuels~consumed}{energy~of~one~gallon~of~gasoline} \right ]}

Depending on the purpose, overall energy consumption for the vehicle may also need to include the energy used in the production of whatever energy carrier is used for the vehicle and the energy used in filling the “tank”. For example, with electrically powered vehicles, a full accounting of all energy consumption would include the efficiency factor for conversion of primary fuels into electricity and the efficiency factor of charging the battery from the electrical plug.

Basic values for the energy content of various fuels are given by the defaults used in the Department of Energy GREET model, as follows:

Fuel Unit Btu/Unit
gasoline gallon 116,090
electricity kWh 3,412
diesel gallon 129,488
biodiesel gallon 119,550
ethanol gallon 76,330
E85 gallon 82,000
CNG SCF 983
H2-Gas SCF 289
H2-Liq gallon 30,500
LPG gallon 84,950
methanol gallon 57,250

Note, however, that – except for electricity – the energy content of a particular fuel can vary somewhat given its specific chemistry and production method. For example, in the new efficiency ratings that have been developed by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for battery electric vehicles (BEVs) and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) – see below – the energy content of a gallon of gasoline is assumed to be 114,984 BTUs

The maximum efficiency of an internal combustion engine running on gasoline is said to be about 30%. This is before drivetrain , road friction, and air friction losses. Tank to wheel efficiency of a standard gasoline car is said to be only around 15%. Most of the energy in gasoline is converted to heat by combustion and friction.

From Wikipedia: The largest internal combustion engines in the world are two-stroke diesels, used in some locomotives and large ships. They use forced induction (similar to super-charging, or turbocharging) to scavenge the cylinders; an example of this type of motor is the Wartsila-Sulzer turbocharged two-stroke diesel as used in large container ships. It is the most efficient and powerful internal combustion engine in the world with over 50% thermal efficiency. For comparison, the most efficient small four-stroke motors are around 43% thermal efficiency (SAE 900648); size is an advantage for efficiency due to the increase in the ratio of volume to surface area.

To reach that 50% efficiency standard required to get to 60MPG, maybe CARB is planning to have US automakers outfit the vehicles with advanced technology like this:

CARB might benefit from reading this essay on the folly of magic carburetors to help them design achievable standards.

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Alvin

The goal is not more efficency, that would come with the free market. All things being equal, you would buy a car that gets 40 MPG over one that gets 30 MPG. Power, looks, comfort. That is why environmentalists push this through government. The goal is not a more efficient gasoline engine. It is to put the gasoline engine out of business and eventually, cars in general.

TimM

Go back to you holidays and don’t turn on your computer or TV for the rest of the week!
Cheers and happy holidays

R. Shearer

CARB is pursuing legislation to repeal the 1st and 2nd laws of thermodynamics.

Now CARB and other groups are pushing for a 60 mpg efficiency standard, perhaps as early as 2017, which is very close (if not over) the the maximum efficiency limit of gasoline in an internal combustion engine.

I’m sure 60 mph can be achieved, but only in small, light weight vehicles and with speed limits lowered to 35 mph.
Note there’s nothing that includes seating capacity. If you have a family of four, just take two cars on the summer trip.
Also, CARB could get the state to repeal tailgating laws, at least on tailgating tractor-trailer trucks. I tried drafting one during the 1970s oil embargo. I didn’t have instrumentation, but I was able to significantly let up on the gas pedal.
CARB doesn’t seem terribly concerned about safety and common sense, I wonder how they’d respond to the tailgating suggestion.
Anthony: Be gone!

My Diesel powered Skoda Estate was doing 50mpg when I sold it. Pretty good really. Of course the other hidden agenda here is to get everyone to drive slower. 56mph is reckoned to be the efficient speed. Small cars can already do 60mpg at that speed.

Crispin in Waterloo

As a Canadian remote from the electric car in California (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Who_Killed_the_Electric_Car%3F and its premature death-by-design) it is fascinating to watch the CARB dog and pony show from a safe distance.
It is impressive to see people pushing the envelope on thermal laws. Perhaps the next important envelopes to be pushed will have ballots in them.

Rattus Norvegicus

You guys really look stupid. CARB dropped this early this year! No cool cars, no bans on black paint.
And who are the alarmists?
[You missed the key word “wanted” in the link. “CARB wanted to outlaw dark colored cars in California:”
Note that the link did not say “did outlaw”, “outlawed” or “implemented”. If it did, you might have a point. As it stands you are the one “looking stupid”- moderator]

Wucash

Fuel efficiency is a noble goal, however the biggest reason why someone should become fuel efficient is cost saving. However the more efficient things like gas boilers become, the higher prices the energy companies put up. In the end, it’s all about profit, and the less fuel we use the more they lose in revenue. Simple really.

JDN

@Anthony: Of course everyone knows you can’t do it with traditional piston engines. They are limited by a small stroke volume. The power recovered from combustion is the Delta-PV work. Higher power cars use higher pressure, short stroke, high RPMs and a hell of a lot of fuel. You get the most work out of the first portion of the expanding gases because pressure drops so rapidly as the power stroke progresses. More efficient cars try to increase the stroke volume. But you can get a larger stroke volume if you drive the pistons with a linear drive. Here are some of the contenders:
http://peswiki.com/index.php/Directory:Linear_Combustion_Electromagnetic_Engines
Engineers typically try to recover about 1/3 of the total energy produced by any power system because it’s the most cost efficient. The question is whether any of these improvements in engine technology will pay off for recovering that extra power. There is absolutely no guarantee that any of these ideas will pay off.
Another practical note is that reduced weight of vehicles coming from increased use of continuously variable transmissions and carbon fiber will also increase fuel economy to a lesser degree. I’m not an expert on these new engine concepts, but, I wouldn’t go accusing the CARB people of violating the laws of thermodynamics just yet.

Baa Humbug

just last year we worked with the Obama administration and the State of California and environmental groups to agree on a new national standard that would reach over 35 mpg by 2016,

I’m sick of these environmental groups having their filthy hands in every decision made these days.
If ever I’m installed as a benevolent dictator………..

Steve Oregon

Where in history did any irrational advocacy lead to innovation and advancement of science?

Baa Humbug

Rattus Norvegicus says:
December 26, 2010 at 11:06 am
You guys really look stupid.

Rattus it’s offical, you look stupid.
[ OK, that’s one each. Now drop the name calling. -MODe ]

Baa Humbug

Ric Werme says:
December 26, 2010 at 10:55 am

Also, CARB could get the state to repeal tailgating laws, at least on tailgating tractor-trailer trucks. I tried drafting one during the 1970s oil embargo. I didn’t have instrumentation, but I was able to significantly let up on the gas pedal.

Ric I used to drive Adelaide-Melbourne-Adelaide at night about once per week in my trusty old 1984 Holden Kingswood (GM) 6cyl
Most trucks would double team and tailgate each other most of the way, and cross over the median lines at bends to cut distance. I’d join in behind the second whenever I could. (too young, too dumb, so maybe the greens will go for it)
Quite scary and dangerous, I’d rather pay the extra fuel cost. (older and wiser lol)

john ratcliffe

Do remember that the US gallon is smaller than the imperial gallon, so the US is operating on a different scale other parts of the world, To gain a little more parity, maybe decimalise the foot (10 inches??), for a shorter mile.:-)
regards john r (in a very cold and white Wales)

harrywr2

I used to have a Chevy Sprint. I averaged at least 50 MPG ‘real world’ with just me driving it. Of course at 1,500 lbs it weighed half of what a Toyota Prius weighs.

Bruce Cobb

Apparently, CARB doesn’t see the electricity used for all the hybrid and electric vehicles they are pushing as a fuel. So, the 100% electric plug-ins, I suppose would have an “efficiency rating” of an infinity mpg. Impressive.

F. Ross

It is my understanding that, many years ago, the US Navy set a long distance un-refueled flight record using the P2V Neptune [an anti-sub search plane] by injecting a small amount of water into the cylinders and making use of the expansion caused by the conversion of water to steam to increase (?) fuel efficiency as well as helping to cool the engine.
Questions:
Does anyone know if this is true or not?
If true has any thought been given to using that same process by the auto industry?

Ian L. McQueen

F. Ross posted:
December 26, 2010 at 1:33 pm
It is my understanding that, many years ago, the US Navy set a long distance un-refueled flight record using the P2V Neptune [an anti-sub search plane] by injecting a small amount of water into the cylinders and making use of the expansion caused by the conversion of water to steam to increase (?) fuel efficiency as well as helping to cool the engine.
Questions:
Does anyone know if this is true or not?
If true has any thought been given to using that same process by the auto industry?
[Attempted partial answer follows]
Injection of water and water-methanol into cylinders has been used when the engines were subjected to heavy loads to reduce or prevent pre-ignition (knocking), and I recall reading that the Crosley Super Sports (excuse any errors- this is from memory from 50+ years ago) had injection of one of those liquids to enable its then-high 10:1 compression ratio. (Tom McCahill of Mechanix Illustrated wrote that he noticed no difference whether it was used or not.)
I believe that the expansion of water sprayed into a cylinder would come at the expense of the reduced expansion of the air-fuel mixture being burned. I suspect that it would balance out to no gain.
IanM

Don Shaw

Anthony,
Thanks for this post exposing the irrational use of science and lack of engineering thermodynamics knowledge displayed by the White House, Congress, and the CARB folks.
BTW it is not normally made clear, but the Federal requirements are that the auto get 39 mpg to allow for the fact that trucks are permitted to get less mpg. Better buy your new car before these mandates kick in especially if you have a large family or have a need for a larger vehicle, or want to drive a safe vehicle.
See Below:
“UPDATE: The NYT story is not entirely accurate, and, separately, sources tell me there appears to be a little confusion as to exactly what mpg standard is set for what class of vehicles (see below). ”
UPDATE2: The numbers appear to be 39 mpg for cars, 30 mpg for light trucks (see here).”
Also one needs to note that the additional issue ignored is that the mandated ethanol content lowers the mpg, because as you noted the ethanol only has about 2/3 the energy content. Does the unrealistic mpg standard apply with the irrational ethanol mandate especially as the EPA shoves more % ethanol upon us?
One of the most irksome aspect is that this comes from an administration that needlessly fires up Air force One for “joy” rides such as those to stop and speak for a brief short period or to sign a bill in friendly territory or use multiple planes to go on vacation or fly to Asia or Europe. I’m waiting for the MSM to report the administrations carbon footprint
The message is that we need to suffer and the “small” people will need to cram their bodies and family in undersize cars and limit their speed to circa 50 mph while the elite ruiling class ride in limos and large SUV’s.
My proposal is that this high mpg requirement be first imposed on the Administration officials and the Congress for a 5 year trial period to see how it practical it is. All government cars will be mini size, No Limo’s, Especially for those Congressmen who allow their family to abuse the use of the Government registered Escalade like the guy from Michigan.

Dan in Nevada

It is a pretty well-known fact that in the ’70s, several 100+ mpg carburetors were developed (even better mileage for smaller cars), but the patents were all bought up by the big oil companies to increase their profits. As many of those patents must have expired by now, I have been thinking about actually producing some of these as retrofits for the inefficient fuel-injection systems found on most of today’s cars. I’ve tried all of the on-line patent search sites to try to find these old patents so I can copy the designs, but have been totally unsuccessful. Could Anthony, or someone else here with ties to Big Oil, tell me where to go?
[ You might not like the answer 😉 No one here has ‘ties to big oil’ AFAIK. Never seen a 100 mpg carb. -MODe ]

Aviator

F.Ross – Water/methanol injection is used to reduce detonation under high loads; the Wright R-3350 turbo-compound engine in later models produced 3400HP “dry” (ie., no injection) and 3700HP “wet” with injection. This was generally only used for take-off. The P2V you refer to, “Truculent Turtle”, would not have used water-methanol injection for the entire flight since the goal was range, not climb or speed performance. Certainly getting off the ground would have been helped, but the engines would have been leaned out and then run on normal fuel with no additives. That is based on my experience (5000 hours) with big radials. I may be wrong, but I don’t think so!

JRR Canada

Californians , allow me to recommend the human hamsterwheel as the solution to your future energy shortages. As community service( sentenced under the return to sanity act) all those, who undermined sensible energy solutions with magic thinking, imposition of insane regulation and using public money to subsidise unworkable alternate energy, will be sentenced to work off their debt to society in kilowatt/hours generated by running them on human hamster wheels connected to the grid and the rate of payback should be set at 1/3 or less of the current price/kWh as this would have been your cost without their wise help. Of course they might be running forever but that would cause me no pain. Hows that for social justice?

snork

You almost connected the dots. The reason why they’re pushing these thermodynamically impossible “equivalent” numbers is so that they can ratchet up the mpg requirements a la CAFE, and pretend that mpge is a real mpg number for legal purposes, and eventually start forcing electrics and hybrids to displace ICE cars in order to continue to meet mpg standards.
The fact that electric mpge is a complete fiction from a physical standpoint won’t matter; the important point is that it’s completely real from a legal standpoint. The real fun starts when people start expecting to charge these things without building any new power plants. Yes, California, I’m talking to you.

Steve Ski

[Does anyone know if this is true or not?]
Hot Rodders have been playing with all sorts of high efficient engines such as Bruce Crower’s Six Stroke which was/is a modified Diesel engine
http://www.autoweek.com/article/20060227/free/302270007
The problem with all these imposed standards is they come from people who don’t have backgrounds in automobiles, engines, mechanical or thermal engineering or sometimes reality.
Smokey Yunick developed some (seemingly) astounding in his day but had to admit on his death bed they were more slight of hand and not all that practical to use everyday.
http://www.eng-tips.com/viewthread.cfm?qid=78116

Don Shaw

F. Ross,
This is well known technology,
When I studied IC Engines over 4 decades ago we injected water during the testing of actual engines under load.
Don’t under estimate the capability of the engine manufacturers who are constantly being bombarded with irrational demands from Washington. Even the oil Companies used to test auto engines to optomize the fuel.
Remember the initial EPA requirements initially killed the performance and mpg of all the engines.

Albert Kallal

As a note here the question was NOT about injecting water to manage ignition (or pre ignition). The question was would using water (or some water) that would expand more then air yield any benefits? I mean we did have steam engines at one time, so expanding water in place of air is not a new concept to drive a piston.
With direct injection systems, then keeping the air + some water could be reasonable kept separate from the gas mixture that burns. So the question remains would introducing water into the air mixture (not the gas mixture) to utilize a material that expands MORE then air give any benefits? An interesting concept and I suspect there not much benefits.
However, the water could perhaps absorb more of the heat energy and thus you get more work done since less heat energy would be going out the tailpipe and more heat would get converted into expanding. That water mix would expand more then just air and thus absorb more heat and thus result in more motion.

TimM

“JDN says: December 26, 2010 at 11:29 am
@Anthony: Of course everyone knows you can’t do it with traditional piston engines. They are limited by a small stroke volume.
Here are some of the contenders:
http://peswiki.com/index.php/Directory:Linear_Combustion_Electromagnetic_Engines
There is absolutely no guarantee that any of these ideas will pay off. ”
Cool stuff. Reminds me of the “Gun Engine” a chap up in BC, Canada was working on. I’ve always wondered why people limit themselves to ICE designs? The alternate one I like the most is the toroidal design. At 20 to 1 better weight to displacement than an ICE engine it is amazing stuff ( http://www.angellabsllc.com/ ).
I love your last line. The rude rocks of reality will be the downfall of many a good ship but those that can make it by will be truly amazing.

Phil

Of all the choices, diesel is the only practical alternative that could possible meet this goal, but a number of market barriers exist and continue to be added that make converting a large amount of the US transportation system now fueled by gasoline unnecessarily difficult. Regulatory barriers include emissions regulations that are unduly restrictive and high certification costs. Fuel taxes also favor gasoline. The result is low supply and high cost of diesel passenger vehicles, which naturally dampens demand. What is oxymoronic is that a proven technology exists that can significantly improve fuel mileage, but this technology is discouraged instead of being encouraged.

Porsche plans to build a plug-in hybrid. The e-engine has enough power to run the EU standard test for hybrid vehicles with a 3l per 100km (78 MPG) equivalent. If the battery is empty or the e-engine is to slow you still have the normal 700 HP engine. But the car is labeled with a consumtion of 3l 😉

Bruce Cobb

Coming soon
Car of the future (deluxe model) if the Greenie Weenies get their way.

JEM

The key here is that if CARB pushes through a 60mpg standard, the true beneficiaries will be those out-of-state dealers selling to California buyers on eBay and Autotrader.

harrywr2

Dan in Nevada says:
December 26, 2010 at 2:28 pm
“It is a pretty well-known fact that in the ’70s, several 100+ mpg carburetors were developed”.
It’s not at all difficult to get extra MPG of an engine. Honda has managed to get engines to run with an A/F ratio of 60-1 compared to the standard 14-1.
What gets hard is to manage the heat dissipation with the materials we have to work with or manage the NOx emissions.
Various manufacturers have played around with ceramic engines for decades. The result tends to be the same, a small crack in the ceramics develops and the engine self destructs.
There isn’t lot of point from a manufacturers standpoint in rushing an engine made of ‘new materials’ to market. The Chevy Vega was one of the first aluminum block engines and enjoys infamy as one of the all time POS cars to have ever been built.
Hence,’miracle ideas’ tend to get shelved as soon as ‘reliability’ concerns come up.
Various ‘backyard inventions’ tend not to be so miraculous when the engine is disassembled after a few thousand miles.

George

It is going to get worse in California before it gets better. If you have ever entertained thoughts of moving here, you are too late, you missed it.
Moonbeam is going to utterly destroy this state but I believe that is the goal of the “progressive” movement. The idea is that you create such a complete and utter disaster that the people have no choice but to turn everything over to Govt. to sort out.

Dan in Nevada

[… Never seen a 100 mpg carb. -MODe ] That’s because of the patents – duh! OK, for the record, my last post was sarcastic/ironic. More seriously, I’m pretty convinced that regulatory mandates (e.g. CAFE) are uniformly destructive and divert wealth away from activities that would actually benefit humankind. Free markets have been unfailing in producing technologies and bringing them to market at precisely the time they are needed and with very little disruption (to the masses, anyway). “Planned” technologies, such as ethanol, rarely pan out. It’s likely that the technology that displaces fossil-fuel fired internal combustion engines will slide in smoothly with very little fanfare and , in retrospect, will be seen as obvious and inevitable.

LazyTeenager

Now CARB and other groups are pushing for a 60 mpg efficiency standard, perhaps as early as 2017, which is very close (if not over) the the maximum efficiency limit of gasoline in an internal combustion engine.
————-
I don’t believe that there is a tight relationship between engine thermodynamic efficiency and distance travelled. Higher MPG figures have been demonstrated.
However i agree that 60MPG is a really big ask for consumer transport.

Doug in Seattle

PNL in Richland WA did a scoping study of electric and gas electric hybrids a few years back (~2005 I think). They found that the threshold for gas hybrids using the existing grid was around 5% of the market.
Remember too that this was before significant wind power was deployed here in WA and the resultant drain to the power grid.
PNL’s study (paid for with DOE tax dollars) was not well received – and was quickly forgotten.

jorgekafkazar

Dan in Nevada says: “It is a pretty well-known fact that in the ’70s, several 100+ mpg carburetors were developed (even better mileage for smaller cars), but the patents were all bought up by the big oil companies to increase their profits.”
It isn’t a fact. It’s thermodynamically impossible for a normal weight passenger vehicle to approach 100 mpg with a gasoline engine, unless you drive it over a cliff.
“As many of those patents must have expired by now, I have been thinking about actually producing some of these as retrofits for the inefficient fuel-injection systems found on most of today’s cars. I’ve tried all of the on-line patent search sites to try to find these old patents so I can copy the designs, but have been totally unsuccessful. Could Anthony, or someone else here with ties to Big Oil, tell me where to go?”
Don’t waste your time, Dan. There’s a reason you haven’t found the patents: They don’t exist.

renminbi

Injecting water for anything other than anti-knock is not productive. The heat of vaporization that is absorbed from the combustion goes out the exhaust and is wasted.

Dan in Nevada says:
December 26, 2010 at 2:28 pm

… but the patents were all bought up by the big oil companies to increase their profits. … I’ve tried all of the on-line patent search sites to try to find these old patents…. Could Anthony, or someone else here with ties to Big Oil, tell me where to go?

Well, I don’t have ties to big oil, and I think it a little odd that you only want answers from those who do.
Then again, you probably don’t want my answer….
Intellectual property is protected in two different ways.
The patent system is part of the US Constitution. Someone with a non-obvious idea can get protection to use his invention, but has to make the details public. Conversely, he can keep the invention as a trade secret and unpatented. He does have legal recourse to people who steal it and harm the owner’s value from the trade secret (the formula for Coca-Cola and KFC’s spices are oft-mentioned trade secrets.
If the patents exist, then they’ve been public all these years, and very likely made into some collection on the web. If you can’t find it, then you may want to consider the stories are urban legends and look into taking a few thermodynamics courses.
Don’t forget that one reason for changing to fuel injected engines was to better control fuel mix and combustion. So you might also broaden your search and look for those 100 mpg fuel injectors that must be out there.
I refurbed a snow blower carburetor once and was left with the distinct impression that there is magic in carburetor design. I don’t know how many people understand it, but I suspect most of them are retired now. The last car I had with a carburetor was a 1976 VW Rabbit. The next year a service bulletin was released that described changes that allowed the car to run clean enough without a catalytic converter to meet the EPA rules of the day.

F. Ross

Ian L. McQueen
Aviator
Don Shaw
Albert Kallal
Thanks to all for your interesting responses. I guess the “final” answer may be that the process was, overall, not much benefit.

Retired Engineer

harrywr2 says:
“The Chevy Vega was one of the first aluminum block engines and enjoys infamy as one of the all time POS cars to have ever been built.”
The Vega failed because of bad management. When aluminum blocks overheat, they do bad things. Like warp, and leak oil all over. The Vega came with a postage stamp radiator (cheaper) and suffered the consequences. It worked for a year (amazing that the warranty ran out just then) I replaced the dinky cooler with a great big one early on and had no problems. The space in front of the radiator even had prestamped cutouts. So someone thought about this at one point. If other people hadn’t run into me (4 times) the car would have lasted longer.
Do not mistake corporate stupidity and greed for bad technology. Bean counters can destroy anything. Government do-gooders will destroy anything left behind.

Mike McMillan

Wucash says: December 26, 2010 at 11:13 am
Fuel efficiency is a noble goal, however the biggest reason why someone should become fuel efficient is cost saving. However the more efficient things like gas boilers become, the higher prices the energy companies put up. In the end, it’s all about profit, and the less fuel we use the more they lose in revenue. Simple really.

The problem there is the fact that the utilities are forced by the regulators to use natural gas instead of coal for new capacity, We are now in competition with the power company for our gas, which raises prices. Think of it as your contribution to a cleaner environment. Feel better?
Yeah, me too.

Mike McMillan

F. Ross says: December 26, 2010 at 5:13 pm
Ian L. McQueen
Aviator
Don Shaw
Albert Kallal
Thanks to all for your interesting responses. I guess the “final” answer may be that the process was, overall, not much benefit.
We used water injection in the C-123K for takeoff, P&W R-2800 engines, 60 inch manifold pressure as I recall. The useful product in combustion there is the pressure rise, not the temperature, so turning some of that heat into steam gave more power and lower cylinder head temperatures.
The early B-52 models and all the KC-135 tankers used water injection for takeoff. In addition to the pressure rise, the idea with jet engines is also exhaust mass. Water injection both cooled the exhaust and added mass. It was a maintenance nightmare, though, especially in northern bases where you had to download the water when there was a chance of freezing. In cold temperatures, the jets produced enough thrust you didn’t need the extra boost.

Mike McMillan

Yes, I always proofread for missing </i>’s after pressing the “Post Comment” button.

Chris F

I think its time all the car companies refuse to sell in California.
Call their bluff.

“Cars” in mileage competitions routinely achieve 1000 miles per gallon equivalent, or more. Shell Oil Company sponsors an annual competition for this. (see link).
It appears that CARB, or their favored consultants, honestly believe that cars not only can, but should achieve such mileage.
A few facts. The ultra-high mileages typically are achieved by a combination of things. Such things as very low weight; low wind resistance (low drag); low speed; lots of coasting with the engine off; direct drive without transmission; oil-lubricated bearings; reclining driver position to promote low wind resistance, and others.
Such vehicles are not suitable, nor legal, on the highways because they do not meet minimum safety standards. Shell addressed this issue some time back and created a category for “urban concept.” These cars achieved 433 mpg with a “street buggy” in the 2009 competition. Even so, 433 is a big improvement over 25 mpg of today’s average cars.
There is also a competition known as the X-prize for cars that achieve 100 mpg or better. see this link: http://www.xprize.org/news/automotive-x-prize-seeks-100-mpg-car

dp

I think the real goal of the green movement is to promote laws that require manufacturing only cars that people will not drive a lot. I’ve been known to hop on my Harley and ride to the other side of the US just to have some beers with friends. Imagine how many people drive cars all over the place for less trivial purposes. The most efficient cars will be useless for more than a few hundred miles per trip. People who wish their kids to see the US by car will be disappointed like those kids in the UK that will never know snow. We saw a hint of this in the cash for clunkers program what was such a great success for off-shore auto manufacturers.
Perfectly good cars were destroyed along with the value they had in the economy. Guess, anyone, how much pollution was created in the making of their replacements.
When one political party has a monopoly you get a crazy world.

Water/methanol injection is used in aircraft IC engines to cool the induction air to provide a denser (more oxygen) charge similar to intercoolers used now. It’s a simpler fix than intercoolers. Engines can run a higher boost pressure before preignition or destructive detonation and produce more power.
Race engines (unsupercharged) produce 10 to 15 more horsepower than gasoline because of the cooling power of methanol. But methanol has significantly less energy density than gasoline and gives horrible mileage.

MJW

Those still knocking “Dan in Nevada” might want to read his 4:31 PM comment (or re-read his original comment, which is quite clearly humorous).

Don Shaw

From the x prize:
“That much is certain, if the X Prize group’s own survey is accurate. The contest organizers conducted a poll and found that 52 percent of Americans believe there is a conspiracy between car manufacturers and oil companies to deprive consumers of technologies that produce high fuel economy.”
This speaks to a serious mis information problem created mostly by the MSM and a few crazy Senators and Congress persons with media support.
If they were honest they would point out that only a small portion of oil production is controlled by the US Companies and most is controlled by Government owned companies.
Also does any intelligent person seriously believe that all the energy starved countries in the world would allow the USA auto/oil companies to withhold technology from their economy that would provide greater efficiency transportation vehicles. Doesn’t Japan design most of the US vehicles? How much longer can they lie about the laws of Thermodynamics?
It’s the same progressive anti capitalist mantra that convinces the public that it is the US oil giants that can control the prices that China, India, etc pay for crude every time the price goes up.
How many times have we heard this lie from Senators from the left without the MSM even questioning the power of US oil companies over China etc .
Keep in mind that they have more engineeers than we do!!
Finally have you noticed that the price of gasoline has gone up over a dollar/gal. under Obama, which is about 50%. Does anyone believe that the policy of choking off US oil exploration/production is a factor in oil prices?