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Old 06-30-2006, 09:03 AM   #1
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Electrocharger

http://www.sigmaautomotive.com/elect...trocharger.php

Anyone heard of this? I just came upon it accidentally (I was looking for a regenerative brake kit).

I wonder how well it would work...
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:37 AM   #2
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It looks like a "bolt-in" hybrid system. It couldn't power a vehicle for long, since ultracapacitors don't store much energy (joules), but they can deliver short, big bursts of power (watts).

In stop and go driving it should help save gas, but the added drive belt drag probably hurts highway mileage.
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Old 06-30-2006, 10:42 AM   #3
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Yeah, they advertise it as a kind of acceleration enhancer. Unfortunately all of their marketing seems to be in the same vein as performance and/or fuel enhancers. That kind of lowers credibility in my mind, but in theory it seems like it might work.
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Old 06-30-2006, 12:26 PM   #4
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Heh, my capstone project this semester is building a bicycle that uses regenerative braking. We were originally planning on using a bank of ultracapacitors to store the energy in but have since decided on a NiMH battery pack. The issue with ultracaps isn't energy storage (by any amount!), it's that the voltage drops almost linearly as the charge in the capacitor drops, unlike a battery who's voltage pretty much stays constant until the very end when the battery dies. Our motor (24V, 300W brushless DC) will not work well below about 18V, so keeping it in the happy voltage range is key...something we weren't able to do with ultracaps - rather we won't have enough time this semester to come up with a solution...not to mention we're all ME's and not any of us are EE's!
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Old 06-30-2006, 12:39 PM   #5
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I was hoping to explore the possibility of regen braking and a deep-cycle battery to replace the car's alternator. Beats me if it would work and it may not be good for long trips, but it could be a neat experiment at least.
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Old 06-30-2006, 01:29 PM   #6
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I started looking into this thing last year, determined to build something similar:

http://www.sohchonda.com/forums/inde...opic=8267&st=0


If you'll note on page two, it looks as though that's going to be the only way to get one, as the Sigma deal fell through (see my post, second from the top)=http://www.sohchonda.com/forums/inde...pic=8267&st=20

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Old 06-30-2006, 01:45 PM   #7
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It's too bad. There really could be a huge market for that if someone developed a viable solution.
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Old 06-30-2006, 01:49 PM   #8
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Smile

Quote:
Originally Posted by 95metro
I was hoping to explore the possibility of regen braking and a deep-cycle battery to replace the car's alternator. Beats me if it would work and it may not be good for long trips, but it could be a neat experiment at least.
That would be very easy to try. You could connect your brake light switch to a starter solenoid in series with the alternator wire. Whenever you step on the brakes the alternator charges the battery. Otherwise, the alternator is off.

I tried to insert a schematic, but I can't figure out how in this text box. Email me if you want me to send it.
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Old 06-30-2006, 01:53 PM   #9
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Hey, that sounds great. I was thinking of a switch on the alternator that I manually flipped, but automatically during braking may be even better.

The ultimate would be alternators/generators in place of the drum brakes. The charge/load would provide some braking assistance I think.
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Old 06-30-2006, 02:00 PM   #10
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Still another way would be to use a vacuum switch. When the vacuum is high at idle or cruise, the alternator generates. Under load, the vaccum drops, and the generator stops.
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