Archived posting to the Leica Users Group, 2007/11/16

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Subject: [Leica] Forget Prius, buy a bike
From: leica at (Didier Ludwig)
Date: Fri Nov 16 14:16:32 2007
References: <> <> <> <> <> <> <p06230908c363ab17053d@[]>

Hybrid car concepts: We need a new Einstein to solve this problem.

The hybrid electro/fuel cars are only a small technological step. Using 
electricity to move a vehicle with the weight of a ton or two, is, 
thermodynamically seen, as stupid as burning petrol for the same purpose.

If the electric power that charged the car battery is produced by a 
coal-burning power plant (which is often the case in Europe), the ecological 
balance is hardly better than with a fuel-only driven engine. Burning coal 
to produce electric power, storing the power in a battery, and then using it 
to drive a heavy vehicle means a loss of about 97-99% of the original energy 
the coal had into (0% would be the Perpetuum Mobile, but scientists are 
already delighted with 75% loss of energy only).

The car industry's aim to produce hybrid cars is only partially 
ecology-driven. It's more the petrol-dependence with raising oil prices and 
decreasing oil sources that keeps them dancing. Burning biologically 
produced marsh gas isn't much better. 

But, if there's no new Einstein, we can meanwhile use bicycles, and public 
transports (which, unfortunately, are not everywhere so well developped and 
punctual like in my country).

I've bought quite some cars, motorcycles and bycicles in my life, but I was 
never as excited as last monday when I ordered my new mountainbike, a full 
suspended Commen?al Meta 4.1, model 2007 (now going with 30% deduction). The 
most gorgeous bike I ever had. Fast, agile, light. French engineering with 
japanese parts, assembled in Andorra. Looks like this:


>The Prius Hybrid system works well in a certain range of speeds and usage. 
>Gentle acceleration, speeds of 120km/hr or less and gentle cornering. The 
>idiot tv screen showing where your power is going can thankfully be turned 
>off. It seems to be very reliable and problem free; a Toyota virtue. The 
>problem is (if you like driving the car) that it has no overall ecological 
>advantage, and monetarily you are not going to come out ahead unless you 
>drive a lot more than average.

Replies: Reply from photo.forrest at (Philip Forrest) ([Leica] Forget Prius, buy a bike)
Reply from sonc.hegr at (Sonny Carter) ([Leica] Forget Prius, buy a bike)
In reply to: Message from nathan at (Nathan Wajsman) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)
Message from leica at (Didier Ludwig) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)
Message from rsphotoimages at (Bob Shaw) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)
Message from reid at (Brian Reid) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)
Message from ken at (Ken Iisaka) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)
Message from eduardoalbesi at (Eduardo Albesi) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)
Message from henningw at (Henning Wulff) ([Leica] Totally OT: Prius experiences?)