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Electric... Superbike?

Discussion in 'Bike Reviews, Questions and Suggestions' at netrider.net.au started by FALCON-LORD, Nov 26, 2007.

  1. http://www.gizmag.com/vectrix-electric-superbike/8395/



    November 23, 2007 Hot on the heels of its excellent electric maxi-scooter, Vectrix has finally delivered on its promise of an electric superbike, and it’s amazingly close to the concept drawings we saw a couple of years back. Unveiled at the Milan motorcycle show, the Vectrix Electric Superbike has a top speed of around 125mph, a range of around 70 miles and it’ll eat up the quarter mile in around 12 seconds, so it’s clearly got some punch behind the throttle. It'll go into production if interest is high enough - can this be the first true production electric performance motorcycle? And if so - how long 'til they start racing it?
     
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  2. Would need to be achieve a 200 mile range, and that being with aggressive throttle use, to truly "break through". i.e. If they can quadruple range for the same weight/size, then it'll be a strong challenger, at least in the Australian marketplace. Not sure how many people want a Superbike to go cruising around town stopping at cafe's on. No, wait, maybe they have a point. Still, first they need to win some races, and then they'll draw that market.

    As for the rest of the people who buy superbikes and use them as intended, a quadrupling of the range would be essential to draw the weekend warrior crowd.

    Top speed of 125mph (~200kph) is more than enough for all but the straight-line kings. No, wait. Damn it, the potential market is shrinking all the time! :roll: :grin: :wink:
     
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  3. Yeah that was one of mine. We'll have more details about it in the next few days, the designer is getting a bunch of video and more specs to us.

    Battery range is the only thing holding these bikes back now - and many experts in the field are expecting battery improvements to follow a moore's law type tradjectory over the next 10 years. Smaller, lighter, more powerful, longer lasting, quicker to charge, cheaper.

    Being electric, the damn things can be made to be absolutely as powerful as you want. The exciting thing about this particular bike is that it's the first leccy bike that's genuinely worth racing. And racing improves the breed no end.

    While we're waiting for batteries to pull their socks up, most of these electric bikes can easily be converted to run on fuel cells. Not that Hydrogen's real easy to come by either.

    It's not a bike to buy yet (I think it costs around 55,000 Euros anyway) but it's a glimpse into the future of superbikes for SURE. Look what's buggering up the latest model petrol bikes; Euro 3 emissions regulations, which will get tougher and harsher as Euro 4 and 5 come in. Electric bikes are emission-free and their power characteristics can be perfectly tuned with no regard to exhaust, intake, temperature, whatever. They're also able to deliver 100% of their torque from zero rpm... No chains to bollocks up, no oil, virtually no maintenance...

    The superbikes of the post-petrol age will be absolute animals!
     
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  4. That's one hell of a front disc! So, are these operated on a shaft drive, or something else?
     
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  5. Just as a heads up Loz. Fully filled up with liquids, the lightest of the latest Jap superbikes are only around 10kgs lighter. As a general rule of thumb, take any published Japanese bike's dry weight, add 30kgs and then you're in the rough ballpark of how much they weigh, ready to ride.

    i.e. On the weight front, at 204kgs, the bike's curb weight is slightly less than a fully wet Honda CBR1000RR of 2004-2006 vintage.

    That is, unless, you believe that Japanese superbikes are actually rideable without coolant, engine oil, petroleum, a battery, fork oil, and front/rear brake fluid.
     
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  6. Ya, in 10 years battery technology will allow for some seriously revolutionary electric bikes.
     
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  7. Nope, the electric motor is actually mounted in the rear wheel hub, so there's no drive train to speak of.

    Good point there Stew - there'll be no more of this "dry weight" crap when the revolution comes! Haha!
     
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  8. I'd actually prefer the motor to be in the chassis, and with a chain (or belt) drive myself. Don't really want the rear wheel's suspension action to be weighed down with a 100hp capable electric motor.

    Aside from that, if we solve the battery problem, let's start investing in mirror array solar power stations today. Heck, Australia's big enough and has enough unused land with 300+ days of cloud free sunshine to power the entire world a few thousand times over. At 400W of solar power per square meter, we can desalinate sea water and pump it up to the mountains during the day, and let it flow down at night driving hydro generators (solves the night-time power issue of solar power), and solve this country's drought, all in one hit.

    How'd that be eh? All in one cheap, sustainable, environmentally friendly (aside from the mountain dams), zero emission clean power and water for our cities, farms, and vehicles.

    Meh. It's my dream. Govt's won't do it, complaining about our reliance on oil and making dire forecasts, until we desperately need such a solution. By then it'll be 10 years too late to develop the infrastructure required.
     
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  9. Eh?
    Last time i checked, solar panels cost a _lot_. And that even though you will have hydro-electric at night, you won't have enough water there for the amount of time solar panels dont get enough sunlight.

    Its a nice idea, it really is, but its not a one thing fix all solution. The setup cost is too much with todays current costs.

    Back onto electric bikes, I can't imagine the 70 miles range to be at full throttle either, so taking off too hard all the time will drain it a bit. When batteries come together a bit more, I'm sure the solution will be more viable.
     
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  10. Who's talking about solar panels?

    We're talking about reflective mirror arrays. Can be done for as little as 9c/kWh, and that's for a small scale solution.
     
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  11. Interesting, any more info?
     
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  12. We should have an interview, specs and some video shortly. I'll repost.
     
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  13. Assuming you're talking about solar power here. Here's a prototype planned for Cloncurry in QLD.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloncurry_solar_power_station

    9c/kWh is also factoring in a 7% interest on investment cost (assuming a private investor). If paid for upfront by the govt., the costs would be even lower, as there's no ongoing interest rate overhead. That's also assuming a 25yr life-span. If designed properly, we should be able to get more than 25yrs out of a reflective array panel.

    The only real big cost with solar energy is the huge initial setup cost. We had Howard determined to commit billions to building nuclear reactors, when a few billion $$ would be enough to set up enough solar arrays to power all of NSW, and solve the water crisis, in one go. Can't tell me that the return on investment wouldn't be quite rapid after the initial setup cost at the current power going rate of 13c/kWh. What was the last budget surplus again? Some stupendous number of billions of dollars. Rather than invest it in infrastructure that would ensure clean cheap energy and water for all of Australia for as long as the sun's still shining, all that money was targetted for tax cuts to buy votes.

    Meh. Keep the $30b. Spend it on fixing the problems of reliance on coal and oil.
     
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  14. all it need is a playing card and a clothes peg fitted to the swing arm for some authentic engine noise :p
     
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  15. a little OT but i don't know enough to start a new thread... what about that electricity "solar panel" thing sort of, that they have out in the desert. it's basically a big glass structure, that instead of using the actual sun rays, uses the glass to absorb and heat the ground below it, and uses thermo whatchyamacallits... to harness the heat rising thing and make electricity....

    someone will know what im talking about. big glass dish. uses heat, not rays, to harness energy. was on a pay tv channel or something a few months ago.
     
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  16. The only problem with this or any other kind of energy is storing it. Electricity has to be consumed almost immediately after being produced (I know about batteries, but unfortunately that doesn't really work on large scales). Would be great to be able to produce all this energy during the day and then use it at night (when consumption is usually higher) but I haven't heard about any processes that'd allow that to a satisfying degree.
    I'm from Brazil myself and our energy is mainly (around 80%) generated by hydroelectric plants since we have more than enough water running trough the country (the amazon river is too wide and runs on a relatively flat surface so it doesn't allow for the construction of a dam). Brazil's also looking for alternative ways to generate power, and since a very good part the country has almost as many sunny days as the sunniest places in Australia, solar power (whether mirror or panels) has always been a hot topic. But for now, it seems that wind power (or eolic) would be a better bet. We have had Ethanol straight out of the pumps since the mid-70's and that has really helped on keeping the petrol prices down while also helping farmers. The only reason I've mentioned that is because Australia seems to be suffering from those same problems and IMO that would be a VERY good/cheap/easy to implement alternative. Just my 2c! :)
     
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  17. Uh, I already addressed "storage". Use excess daytime power to desalinate sea water, and pump the fresh water uphill, and then feed it into hydro-electric generators at night.

    Drought and night-time power, solved in one go.
     
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  18. i like the idea of harnessing lighting. Hard to predict yes, but sooooo much electricity. :grin: Mark my words, it will happen one day.

    But seriously, I think a lot of money could be much better spent radically increasing efficiency in the current system. For every Watt of power consumed by my computer, I'd estimate 100W of electricity had to be produced at phase 1 of the electrical cycle. The efficiency losses are staggering.
     
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  19. Well, I have no idea of how much electricity that would consume but if you believe you can pump a river (and not a small one by any means, as it'd have to feed a dam!) uphill (and not just any hill. In order to create enough kinetic energy and move the turbines fast enough to generate a considerable amount of electricity you'd need a really BIG one!) and still get away with enough energy profit to make the whole thing viable, than YES! That's brilliant.

    My point is:

    It's a lot of water to pump uphill just to use it as "storage" and then release it at night at the hydro electric plant. As I said, I don't know what the number are there, so you could very well be right! My first instinct would be that it's not worth it, but then again what do I know, right?! I was actually considering if it wouldn't be more energy/cost efficient to just pump the water straight through the turbines at night instead of building a dam and then pumping it up hill. (??)

    Ps: Ok, we totally hijacked the thread. Again. :p
     
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  20. Now THAT can make you a very rich man! :cool:
     
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