In my previous posts about hybrid technology I speculated about the cross over effect of the car industry’s recent experiments and the possible impact on yacht propulsion.
In a week where Toyota announced that it is planning to release 11 new hybrid vehicles and a rechargeable Prius model as part of its efforts to stay at the forefront of low carbon vehicle technology – we have the fantastic achievement of our very own Imperial College team who drove a modified electric sport scar (donated by Radical Sport scars based in Peterborough, UK) from Alaska, down the Pan-American Highway, finishing at Ushuaia in Argentina, a journey of 26,000km – crossing 14 countries in 140 days.
This all-electric SRZero supercar is powered by the latest in lithium iron phosphate battery technology, linked to a state of the art battery management and systems control unit. Making a total of 400 HP from its twin motors, the lightweight BEV sports car can sprint from 0 to 60 MPH in just 3.5 seconds and reach a top speed of 120 MPH. Thanks to regenerative braking units built into the zero emissions race car, the SRZero has an extended range of over 300 miles and can be recharged by an ordinary household electric outlets.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uOGzM1tSFw8
“Driving the open-top car at night with tropical rainstorms pounding away at an already disintegrating road was certainly a challenge,” says Andy Hadland, team member and recent graduate from the MSc in Sustainable Futures at the College. “It was slightly nerve racking knowing that you were sitting on 550 Volts. But the waterproofing measures worked and the car survived.”
This project is part of the wider Imperial Racing Green initiative (IRG), which is training students to become the engineers who will develop the next generation of zero emission vehicles. The IRG project is an initiative of the Energy Futures Lab, which is the College’s hub for interdisciplinary energy research.