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Range Extension

Especially in the first several years it will be difficult to drive long distances in Europe.
Because there won't be enough places to quickCharge or to swap batteries.

Have you ever thought of a range extender that could be placed under the hood?
A small combustion engine that could run on long distance, or even a fuel cell.
(a similar concept to Opel Ampera)

Please no range extender. I'll probably need more miles only a couple of times per year. I'm pretty sure I'll be able to find somebody who will lend me their car. If only because they are able to ride my car than.
If that doesn't work out I'll rent a car.
I'm expect/hope that when my battery needs to be replaced after 4-5 years (100´000 mi), a battery with sufficient range (450/500 mi) will be available.

They'd have to redesign the car to accomodate all the garbage that'd come with that kind of "range extender", and it would add so much extra weight that the car would be lucky to go 100 miles before it was on empty.

Tesla is not in the business of building hybrids, they're building electric cars, period, end of story. Besides, over in EU isn't the wall voltage 220 or something? You don't need a quick charger with that around, just find a socket you can use for an hour or two :P

In Europe it is 230V. Few 400 three-phase outlets are not uncommon in ordinary households. Much easier here to get L3 -chargers done.

I sincerely hope that Tesla uses Lithium Nanophosphate batteries to shorten charge times...No other current battery technology will make an electric car practical.

Don't believe I know what I am talking about? I designed, built and raced a solar electric car called the Pappillion in College at Texas A&M University in 1999. It used 2 meters of Amorphous Polysilicon cells encapsulated in Silicon elastomer and a 15 HP DC-square-wave induction motor with a variable air gap. Back then there were no Li-PO batteries, only Ni-MH.

If I can find 1 a 110V outlet in the US that supports 25 amps, and I have nanophospahte, I can get a 30-100 mile range boost in under 30 minutes. With any lesser battery, I will need hours to charge.

240VAC 60 amps would be ideal!

110V 10 amps will take like 12 hours to fully charge this thing.

In 30 minutes with a 110v/25 amp outlet your unlikely to see an addition of 30-100 miles of range to a vehicle like the Model S. Your adding pulling less than 2kwh with that setup regardless of the type of battery.

Lithium nanophosphate batteries have low energy density. Even if you could somehow get over 100 kW out of socket to charge it in less than hour that battery would weight something like 700kg for 300mile range. No thanks.

well current battery weights 450kg. it's just the matter of whether 300kg to reduce charge time by 8 hours is worth it? (to some it may not.. but for those who travel really long distances of more than 300 mile, i think they'll approve)

Point is you won't GET 300 miles with that nano battery. Lower energy density means there's less ability to hold the amount of power that the car needs. A 300 mile Li-Ion is probably the same weight as a 75 or 100 mile Li-Nano.

That 450kg is the entire battery pack, not just the batteries. If you count only batteries you have something like 300kg, maybe less (can't just now remember what kind of energy density Roadster batteries had).

Also it is not the battery that is limiting factor. You can rip out of those batteries about 200kW, so you pretty much can also charge with that much power. 200kW means 400V@500A. 500A. I don't think you can easily handle a cable that can deliver that much amps, much less find a connection that can handle that much power without blowing the fuse.

you're talking about batteries, instead of range extension.
Here in europe it really matters:
we do less distance in every day travelling.
we have more holidays, when we do longer trips, when we need a range extender.
I coud think of putting a midsize generator on the hitch and plug it when doing big distances, no wheigth compensation needed, because I take the small battery pack, which is enough for the everyday traveling.
the question is, if there can be charging while driving..

For Roadster answer is simple no. Technically it is possible (obviously) but Roadster does not have that possibility. Model S is highly probably similar case. These are pure BEV:s, so you need to find some charging point on your way in longer road trips. Luckily European three-phase is powerful enough that if you find one (and Model S mobile charger can handle it) you have enough juice to continue your trip in one or two hours.

Gas-stations probably have high-power three-phase connectors, though I'm not sure you could use them for charging.

You're incorrect in your assumption that there would be no weight penalty with a towed range extender: the car still has to drag the trailer, regardless. Add to that, not everyone is comfortable (or capable) of driving safely with a trailer attached, and you've got a reciepe for disaster.

It's by far easier to find a voltage source to charge from rather than trying to lug around a portable generator. I mean, here in North America, all we have to do is find a campground with RV power hookups that'll lets us charge for a few hours. While we're doing that, we can take in some of the scenary, get a bite to eat, strech our legs, etc. While BEV's are the most practical for long roadtrips (yet), they are good for a vacation getaway drive.

@Vawlkus, besides what you mentioned above, who in their right mind would want to constantly drive around in a luxury performance vehicle towing a trailer?...might as well drive a crossover or SUV...;)

If you absolutely must have a luxury car with a full time on board generator, Fisker, as I remember, is building one for you. And GM! Since Europeans are constantly driving long distances, all day, not able to stop to eat and charge, or overnight sleep and charge, I can understand how GM and Fisker might have a market there. In California, however, we only drive a few hundred miles before pulling over for food and rest, and can charge nearly everywhere, on 220v 40a. Usually don't have to bring it to full charge, but only enough to complete the trip.

When I was in Europe last, we seemed never to put on more than 100 miles a day touring around Britain. But not being European, I guess that would be unusual.

Seems in US you don't know a base you can fix on your towbar.
It's better than on the roof, because it's in the windshade of your car.
On this base you could easy transport an external range extender when you travel long distances. You just would have to plug in the generator. With a midsize Generator of maybe 4kW you would extend your range significant.
And for every day use you just leave it at home.

http://www.thule.com/en/DE/Products/BikeCarriers/Towbar/Thule%20EasyBase...

That small generator wouldn't increase range much, considering increased wind and rolling resistances it causes. Maybe from 200miles to 250 miles before battery is empty if you stay under 60mph. If you go over then range extension is less. You need to have at least 20kW generator before that starts to be really useful.

This discussion is useless, as almost all electric cars now have a safety feature that disables them when plugged in. The Roadster will not move when charging. I'm sure a firmware update could fix this, but I bet EV manufacturers will be reluctant because of safety issues.

NO comments !!!!!!!! range extender !!!!!!!!!!!!!

SOUNDS LIKE PHEV............:-)

The southern California dealer that I talked to on the phone said the Tesla concierge service will find a hotel that has 440V outlets.
The roadster dealer hooks up for free now, but how much will that cost the rest of us someday ? ?

@Roger probably nothing, even if Tesla don't do anything, there seem to be enough enthusiasts around to do a website for it at least, and probalby apps for all available smart phones.

Thanks for your idea about tying Tesla owners to a future website. I also wonder what the Hotel will charge me to get electric power from their outlet, in 2 years when I get the Model S? Hopefully KWHr rates will not be too much higher, and a refill at night at actual cost, should be less than $10. Although it may be like gasoline and water in the middle of the desert, that goes way up for price gouging?

The cost to plug in might be initally be a bit higher, but once the plugs & wiring upgrades are paid off, I'll wager the price will drop to something like $20 to plug in per night, or something similar.

I'd expect hoteliers with half a brain would tout free charging for clients as a promotional perk. Charging every EV their guests come in would be trivial compared to the "opportunity cost" of a single unrented room.

That's what I'd expect Brian, but I'm not counting on it initially ;)

It would be a great advertising gimmick!

Also, if they charge more than $10 to hook-up for overnight charging, I would look elsewhere, the Hotel needs to make it attractive !

Competition in the market should keep it low, and get free days
to fill the empty rooms at off peak, or longer stays!

Sounds like a nice idea to me. Here in Texas it would be useful. Unfortunately what you have here is a gaggle of purists who don't want their nice green electric vehicle contaminated with a nasty ICE, even if it is not a permanent fixture. Then there are those who would never consider pulling any sort of trailer on their nice fancy luxury car.

Then there are those like myself who don't care and just want to get from point A to point B. I can see where a nice, small, stylish two-wheel trailer containing a small engine and an electric generator could make sense in the interrum while we are waiting for electrical hookups to be installed on every street corner and in every rest area across west Texas.

The problem isn't how to drive and charge simultaneously, it's how to extend the range. We have a vehicle with an electric drivetrain. All we need to be able to do is supply it with electric power. Diesel electric trains have been doing this for years. They have a diesel engine that generates electricity that powers the electric drivetrain. Why not something similar for electric cars, at least until the recharging thing is no longer a factor?

A small trailer, with a small diesel engine and a small fuel tank, driving an electric generator. You would need a plug in the back of the car as well as the front. When using the generator, the battery no longer feeds the drivetrain. You can use the generator to recharge the battery if you like when you stop (assuming you stop somewhere that you can't plug it in.) You can also use the generator as a generator for camping, etc, wherever you are, so it also can double as an emergency generator as well. Multiple uses.

If this doesn't float your boat, fine. Take a plane, train, or bus when you drive and only use your Tesla around town. But for those of us with other needs and or desires, it fills a niche until such time as it is no longer needed.

A range extender might be just the thing to get some folks to go ahead and invest in a Tesla (or other EV). It's all about market share. If you want people to use it you have to make it fit their needs. Otherwise it is just a niche market (unless you have some vision of forcing people to use it.)

Contaminate their nice green vehicles?

Range extending ICEs contaminate the atmosphere which defeats the purpose of the EV...constantly pulling a trailer doesn't bother you?...I'd say with this comment, you're in the minority by say 90% of all drivers...overall, I'd say your post is rather silly.

Most people must not realize that electicity is everyplace you look. No need for trailers.

He doesn't want to have to stop and recharge. He doesn't want an EV. Tesla will just have to do without his business, until 1,000 mi packs are available. Not a problem!

OK,People. I am just a simple minded person but have a question. I use a 12 volt input to 120/240 output convertor at work to power different things.Why could we hookup something like this to our cars to help charge the batteries as we drive long distances ? I know it wouldnt keep our batteries fully charged but wouldnt it slow down or extend the battery power ?


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