SAfrica may produce squashed-air car
- This piece may be slightly off topic but relevant in the sense that new
non-polluting technologies are out there in the wings. If air pressure cars
come in and the oil industry begins to take a back seat, might the world be
ready to receive more exotic energies following UFO disclosure? Regards,
> >An extraordinary new vehicle with a unique power source is lined up forof
> production in South Africa, offering hope for those incensed by the cost
> > The car, called the Taxi ZerO Pollution (TOP), runs off motive energy
> stored as compressed air in tanks resembling those of scuba divers. The
> compressed air impels a piston engine. In effect, it's a serious version
> toys whose power source is emptying balloons.engineer,
> > The TOP is the brainchild of a former French Formula One racing
> Guy Negre. It looks similar to the micro-minibuses recently introduced bytheoretically
> the likes of Renault to the South African market.
> > The compressed air is stored in tanks holding 300 litres and attached to
> the underside of the car. The body of the vehicle weighs only 700kg; the
> engine itself is a mere 35kg. This means that the vehicle can
> be driven for up to 10 hours in an urban environment at an average speedof
> > Plugged into a electrical power source, it can take as much as four
> for the car to "re-fuel" as air is compressed and forced into the storagethe
> tanks by a small compressor. But large-scale "air stations" could manage
> task in just three minutes for companies running fleets of air-poweredend
> commercial vehicles.
> > The projected cost in South Africa is around R74 000, near the bottom
> of the market. The vehicle's range is 200km, at a phenomenal projectedcost
> of just R2. If this scenario proves workable, the savings may well seducehigher
> many who might otherwise be put off by the range limitation.
> > Details on the technology have yet to be revealed, but the concept is
> significantly simpler than others being pursued by developers of
> environmentally friendly transport, such as fuel cells and internal
> combustion-electric hybrids.
> > Road tests of the prototypes have been done since 1998 in Brignoles,
> France. A hybrid version of the engine runs on normal fuel at speeds
> than 60km/h, still with extremely low energy consumption.000
> > But the car itself is not the only innovative part of the concept. The
> production has been designed to be extremely simple, allowing factories to
> be constructed for a minimal $8-million. Such a factory would produce 2
> to 4 000 vehicles a year with a staff of 130. The factory concept isproduction
> designed to be franchised, and easily transported to developing countries.
> > The local branch of Zero Pollution Motors hopes to establish a
> line in Gauteng next year, being in production by 2002.http://www.mg.co.za/mg/za/archive/2000oct/features/30oct-aircar.html
> > a.. Zero Pollution Motors was not answering calls.
> > -- The Mail&Guardian, October 30, 2000.
> >Here's a link about it