if there is an idea, then quite often another point of view can see another opportunity within that idea., This 3 speed transmissionn seems to be something all the others missed so good luck to Antonov
3rd July, 2011 @ 8:08 a.m. (California Time)
The real question is what makes this transmission superior to other off the shelf transmissions for electric vehicles.
There is no evidence that battery based electric cars are cleaner that IC, steam, pneumatic, or sterling cycle powered cars. The electricity must be generated somewhere and today that mostly means coal. And lets not forget the battery is energy intensive to manufacture, and will have to be replaced in 4-6 years.
If you want to have practical electric cars, provide on the road electrical delivery for main roads. I prefer a non-physical contact induction system built into the road surface, but overhead electrical wires like most electrified railroads use, and for the life of me I don\'t understand why the NY city subway doesn\'t may be better, but it does not have the \'cool\' factor.
3rd July, 2011 @ 8:19 a.m. (California Time)
Let\'s just not get carried away with multiple speeds. Electric motors do after all have insanely broad power band characteristics. And I would say that motor and power supply designers have not exhausted their bag of tricks to eliminate some of the efficiency losses that occur at the varying speed/power combination of single speed drives.
Until then, two speeds is probably enough to increase efficiency. Three probably doesn\'t get you that much more in the efficiency game, but I can see how it might enable you to shift gears less often in typical mid-speed traffic situations. Shifting gears smoothly is after all one of the greatest challenges in making an unobtrusive transmission and it\'s taken the auto industry 100 years to finally get that right for the most part. The quest for smooth shifts is what makes transmissions so fiendishly complicated. More gears mean more gear switching. So maybe it might be well to stop at 3, shall we? Unless you\'re traveling 200km/h or something on a regular basis, which is not really the thing to do on limited battery power at this point!
3rd July, 2011 @ 9:52 a.m. (California Time)
Sounds like win-win engineering at its best....
3rd July, 2011 @ 12:02 p.m. (California Time)
Kudos to this article for great technical coverage of the benefits and features of the system. Other off the shelf EV conversions I\'ve seen even integrate a manual transmission... this is a big positive step.
It\'s great to read an EV article without use of the words \'Co2\', \'green\', \'eco-*\',\'climate\' or similar hogwash intended to dumb it down for teens.
Good tech standing on its own without greenwashing... the way it should be.
3rd July, 2011 @ 12:12 p.m. (California Time)
one of the major benefits of electric vehicles...is their simplicity and few moving parts, reducing maintanance cost.
transmissions sound like a no-brainer, but if you assume that battery power is going to increase and that motor designs will also increase, than the cost of mass producing an object that is only going to add further maintainance and lubrication costs to your car is not necessarlily an easy sell.
3rd July, 2011 @ 12:29 p.m. (California Time)
Great to see an article with some depth on something other than EV basics.
3rd July, 2011 @ 3:57 p.m. (California Time)
Prove the added efficiency and include it... I am still waiting for the VW 1L... who needs electric cars with this vehicle.
3rd July, 2011 @ 4:59 p.m. (California Time)
People doing their maths, and finding ways to capitalise on obvious short comings.
3rd July, 2011 @ 10:32 p.m. (California Time)
What is the additional cost for this 15% savings, I doubt the 15% savings comes in any driving condition so what are the conditions that get this savings? This transmission will have to handle high torque if this is for a performance vehicle i.e more expensive. Is this transmission a good idea, I am sure in some situations it will be worth the added cost, weight and complexity.
4th July, 2011 @ 12:10 a.m. (California Time)
I would have thought a constantly variable transmission would have been a better idea(?)
4th July, 2011 @ 1:56 a.m. (California Time)
One big advantage of electric motors is that you can drive the wheels directly. Most EV designs these days use two or four wheel motors. This saves weight and friction associated with differential gears, propshaft couplings and half shaft couplings. So coming back a step and using a single motor with a gearbox must mean back to using a diff etc. Any real-worlkd gearbox must have a lot of friction and thus loses power at the wheels. The proper comparison would be between a single motor with gearbox driving propshaft, diff and half shafts, and a 2 wheelmotor design, not forgetting the overall weight differences and thus acceleration and endurance.
4th July, 2011 @ 5:19 a.m. (California Time)
Too much drag, impossible. Try a variable ratio belt would give better results. But even better would be an efficiency matched electrical variable circumference drive.. no gears just magnets and electromagnets..
4th July, 2011 @ 7:01 a.m. (California Time)
The best transmission is oil because it can be variable. The oil can be pumped by electric or fuel. The wheels need less spring weight for a smoother ride and control. There is an engine design that has no crank shaft that powers the oil and also charges electricity while running. This design allows for long distance driving while using electric and fuel (even hydrogen).
4th July, 2011 @ 7:23 a.m. (California Time)
Gearboxes are old hat. Variable pulleys and a drive belt are what\'s happening.
4th July, 2011 @ 7:30 a.m. (California Time)
Yes, despite the nay-sayer\'s concerns about complexity and maintenance, its a good idea to have selectable drive ratios and, unless you\'re putting a motor at each corner, you will have to have at differential or something like it. The alternative would be to have two electric motors each, with its own set gear ratio. They could drive the car together or separately depending on the speed and power the driver is calling for. For that matter, one could be at the front and one at the rear, RWD might be preferable for the open road. Surprised it hasn\'t been done - best of both worlds.
4th July, 2011 @ 7:31 a.m. (California Time)
robinyatesuk2003 , your comment is the typical result of the job that the \"oil oriented\" mass media continued to substain. i think such approach to the problem is substantially wrong.
Yes is true , big part of the electric energy is produced with oil... but how? is more efficient ONE strom central production of some million of little engine distributed everywhere in planet? think that. one regenerative turbine in one strom centralized production can have one efficiency of 70% and work at constant rpm. one electric engine have one efficiency of 90%. so 90% of 70% is how much? and this result can be improved with a most massive use in future of renowable source. such changement have no benefit if the cars still burns oil directly. now compare with the actual cycle. cars directly burn oil. how much can be improved the efficience of the gasoline engine? between 25% to 0,1% when u wait behind other veicles and you dont move and just produce heating. if everybody runs diesel can be between 30-35% to 0. so the cycle oil electric is at least two times for efficent than the full gasoline or full diesel cicle. and dont forgot one thing... reduce oil consuption it mean reduce the pollution caused by the PRODUCTION of gasoline that is absolutely a NOT EFFICIENT process. at the end...a lithium iron phosphate battery have one life ot 2000 cycles with a 80% residual range. it mean one life at least of 8 years with intensive use. so i think switch to electric is quite convenient...
4th July, 2011 @ 8:35 a.m. (California Time)
I can see the performance gain from a mechanical gearbox and some efficiency gains at very low speeds... but I struggle to believe that a motor designed with more \"poles\" can\'t achieve the exact same performance without the mechanical losses.
What are the losses introduced by this gearbox?
Maintenance & life expectancy?
Electronics, specifically power components, can be added to a design for very low costs. The control topology of the added components would be complicated, but relatively low technology risk, while adding to the overall reliability/redundancy of the system.
I think we\'ve just scratched the surface of motor technology... there are major improvements yet to be developed that will likely obsolete the gearbox AND the single motor designs that are a legacy of the IC era. Lightweight hub or wheel motors will re-invigorate auto designers while providing tremendous safety and performance improvements. Putting 2 or 4 gearboxes on the next generation is highly unlikely.
4th July, 2011 @ 9:44 a.m. (California Time)
Great, great, great !
Let\'s get rid of those IC monsters, then we can all savour the different flavors of EVs.
As some other commentator remarked gears with electric motors is maybe superfluous when you consider the usage considered in vehicle\'s normal driving conditions. But then why not..
I also would like you to remark that just we are reaching that tipping point, we start to hear too often those who try to tie the destiny of the EVs to coal powered electricity or to Fukushima catastrophe, or even throwing out polemics about the dangers of batteries, etc.. This is what they want you to believe, they (7 out of ten most powerful companies on earth..) will not let themselves disappear like that, without giving a fight, after all.
Nobody is urging you to jump in nuclear power to feed your animal. Renewables are the killer app for EVs, and EVs are killer app for renewables. One thing is for sure: earth can no longer sustain combustion monsters\' expansion. FULL STOP.
4th July, 2011 @ 9:46 a.m. (California Time)
What is the TOTAL efficiency of Electric vehicles with these gears,
. . . 105% efficient? ? ? ?
. . . 96% efficient? ? ? ?
. . . 91.5% efficient? ? ? ?
if Gasoline vehicles are 25-27% efficient, and
. . . if Electric vehicles are 90% efficient, and
. . . if these gears make Electric vehicles 15% more efficient.
4th July, 2011 @ 10:13 a.m. (California Time)
Electric car conversions have been going on for decades using the original transmissions that came with the converted cars. Many manual transmissions were used with 3, 4 or 5 gears. I think the improvement stated in the article is possibly over optimistic. They are making headway with electric cars in Oregon, Washington states. They are installing charging stations by the dozens. It is possible to drive an all electric car for about 3 cents per mile.
The big killer at this time is still the cost of replacement batteries. This will improve in time with all the automakers getting into the game. Range will improve and charge stations will become more available. It is amazing how much resistance is developed by big oil because they would hate to see their market dry up before the oil runs out.
Think of this: If our tax dollars stopped paying big oil welfare, and stopped paying farm supports, the free enterprise system could afford Social Security forever as well as help electric car development. Close to $800 Billion goes to Big Farm and Big Oil each budget. What do you want $5 gas or $0.03 per mile and lower taxes. Think of it, taxis in New York charging batteries at night to run the first 100 miles or more for $0.03 per mile. It will happen! I will now get off the soap box. Thank you.
4th July, 2011 @ 11:34 a.m. (California Time)
I can appreciate any improvements to a drive system but believe that mpg for electric and ICE vehicles could be more effectively improved by aerodynamics and weight loss. Stamping out a a good aerodynamic shape to improve efficienies of over 100% should be done for better air separation and flow over the skin of most vehicles. This area of development has been seriously neglected.
As cars become lighter, compensation must be made for weight loss during a collision and this can be done by the use of foam steel to better absorb impact. The use of foam steel should enable producers of vehicles to use thinner frame materials since some of the shock to the frame would be absorbed by the foam steel.
4th July, 2011 @ 11:59 a.m. (California Time)
Take a look at www.torotrak.com This is a device that is quite amazing. No more gears!
4th July, 2011 @ 12:04 p.m. (California Time)
Wow!!! First time I\'ve ever seen Mr. Stiffy post a positive comment!! This must be (and I concur) good technology! lol.
4th July, 2011 @ 12:41 p.m. (California Time)
Yes the electric engine has a wide torque band and considerable down low torque. This is output though and as you don\'t get something for nothing (particularly with electricity where it is far easier to track power flow using pythagorean formulae). I think to concentrate wholly on output lacks comprehension and focus of what is happening in power transformation (mechanical/electrical, input-output-losses, torque multiplication, torque current ratio, components of power input, components of power output, moment multiplication/division etc). I think that an, in-line, omni-speed, \"gearbox\", is probably the best form of transmission and this \"gearbox\", should not contain gears as the losses due to axial forces, in my opinion, will prove to be unacceptable, as losses are losses and must be eliminated, minimised or be able to be tolerated. In my opinion the Antonov gearbox is a very good step in the contemplation of the widespread application of electrical engines but it is not avant- garde, more the first sensible step in getting up to speed on a mechanical/electrical/logical perspective on this conundrum. Glen Court.
4th July, 2011 @ 2:50 p.m. (California Time)
IS THIS PERPUTUAL MOTION OR AN UNCLEAR ARTICLE?
This is an interesting concept. But I remain hesitant. There is a sense that Antonov is expressing some success at improved efficiency and performance, however the article is a dismal failure at explaining what this is.
An improved efficiency of 14.7% is claimed, but what is the baseline. Is this 14.7% of 70% electric motor efficiency (80.29% overall.) Or is this 14.7% improvement of some drive train efficiency or is it something else entirely. What it can\'t be is a 14.7% improvement of overall vehicle or motor 90% efficiency as this would be over unity or 103.23%???
This then points to the problem of working to make an electric drive train more efficient. There is little room for improvement and we need to factor in the loss in efficiency that is produced by installing this transmission. I would expect the drop in efficiency from the transmission to be approximately 3 to 5% overall. http://www.fueleconomy.gov/feg/atv.shtml Is this also factored in to the mysterious 14.7% improvement? All writers may not be technically inclined but this article fails to cover the fundimentals.
4th July, 2011 @ 3:49 p.m. (California Time)
I think people and companies seek to keep getting a piece of the pie. Transmissions are probably usually a negative for electric vehicles.
The best answer is in reducing the number of cars allowed on the roads and encouraging the use of bicycles or at least small motorcycles or scooters.
Really there is no technology or group of technologies available to give us as great of a solution as we need. And with health declining in the US we need to be walking a lot more anyway.
4th July, 2011 @ 7:32 p.m. (California Time)
Greetings! Talk about \"forward thinking\"! Best wishes of continued success! I understand that this principle is being considered by electric motorcycle companies as well! We do need to move Forward! GOD Bless!
5th July, 2011 @ 8:36 a.m. (California Time)
This great news for the auto industry and the environment. But, realistically, it will be 10-20 years before a fully functioning car becomes the norm.
In the meantime, here is the reality. Gas prices are at the all-time normal price and many are hurting for this effect, especially those companies that use massive amounts of fuel.
Here is the solution - the Xtreme Fuel Treatment being distributed worldwide for the past 25 years to industrial users worldwide. This multi-purpose comprehensive, leading in additive product market is a \"green\" product and very safe for all types of engines that use gas, diesel, ethanol and bio-fuels. The increased fuel mileage, prolongs engine life, improves performance and reduces harmful emissions and pollutants by 30%.
The ingredients and benefits consist of combustion catalyst, detergents, lubricants, fuel stabilizers, polmerization retardant and dispersants, rust and corrosion inhibitors and demulsifiers. Simply, XFT really works and works very well. It\'s patented, and registered with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Just 1/4-oz treats 20 GALLONS - remarkable. ww w.gosyntek.com/virtualworld has a ton of details.
5th July, 2011 @ 7:28 p.m. (California Time)
I noticed several questions about the improvement in efficiency and it made me wonder also, so I went and re-read the article. The article points out that the efficiency is around 60-70 percent at low speeds and this is the reason for adding the gears. It seems quite plausible that you could get a 15% improvement at 60 or 70 percent efficiency. What is not nearly as clear is what kind of improvement you would get in standard usage. This is much like a gas vehicle in that it gives you one mileage if you go long distances at reasonable speeds and another if you spend all your time in stop and go.
5th July, 2011 @ 8:33 p.m. (California Time)
As much as 40 years ago while studying the use and operation of electric cars I thought that they should use some kind of gearbox to increase their efficiency and not overload the batteries so much, as that is what degrades and reduces the life of the batteries.
5th July, 2011 @ 10:51 p.m. (California Time)
The idea of coupling a system for converting torque / speed / torque no doubt provides operating optimization of the electric motor at its optimum range, reducing energy consumption and avoiding excessive heating and premature wear of the electric motor.
I believe that the best efficiency curve is achieved using the CVT system (Continuous Variable Transmission).
Also, this system provides a good distribution of mass in the hybrid vehicles. This changes, substantial and positively the internal design of the car.
6th July, 2011 @ 7:04 a.m. (California Time)
Anyone interested might also find this interesting:
Transmission need to be designed upon the mass they will be moving, the RPMs of the motors, and the motor characteristics. The link above works well for vehicles under 6,000 lbs using inexpensive series wound DC motors and controllers...
6th July, 2011 @ 11:44 a.m. (California Time)
So A Tesla P90D equipped with this tranny could accelerate even faster than it's current ludicrous mode? What would we call that? Warp Drive? Mind Busting? Shotgun mode?
28th October, 2015 @ 12:31 a.m. (California Time)
I never bought the "electric does not benefit from a transmission thing". The main thing is, can it handle the torque of powerful electric vehicles? Horsepower and torque are just going to climb as more high-end builders get into the market. 2,000 horsepower and the torque that comes along with that is very conceivable, and is going to be brutal on a transmission, if added.
I would think that a 3 speed transmission might increase the top speed of an electric supercar as well. I think that an electric supercar could set a 300 mph or higher record, if it had a transmission. An interesting match would be with a pair of Siemens' EMRAX 348T motors.
3rd November, 2015 @ 9:51 a.m. (California Time)