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Whats the probability of Combustion engines in the future?

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     So in some of my down time I was watching a report on the world's crude oil supply, and the estimates of how much more we have. It was talking about how most of the petrolium deposits were unaccesible and several forecasts of how much more we have.

 

I was thinking about it during class today and I was curious to hear some of you're predictions? do you think that motocross ( and other powersports for the matter) will be burning pertrolium while the rest of the world changes to an alternative source, or do you guys think that the petrolium will just run out and we all will have to switch to something else? How much longer do you think were going to see a internal combustion engine in our dirt bikes and in our race cars?

 

What I think will happen is the price of gas and petrolium products will keep going up and eventually an alternative fuel will replace most of the worlds energy needs while the performance engines will continue to burn petrolium?  But what do you guys think or know?

 

BTW this is not an arguement between electric and internal combustion, I just want to know what you guys think the future has for us.

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Petro products, have not kept up with inflation. That means fuel is cheaper today than it was 50 years ago. Reserves are currently at 200+ years, at the current rate of consumption.

In the early 60's, a great salary was $10K and gas was $0.15 a gallon. Today, a great salary is $300K and gas is $3.50 a gallon. Do the math.

 

Eventually, I suspect all 'engines' will become 'motors' as electrical storage methods improve. Could be tomorrw, could be 100 years from now. Just need an 'Eureka'.

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Provided that the governments of the world can stay out of it, and allow the free market to address the problem, the free market will respond the same way it did when whale oil got to be too expensive to light homes and businesses with.  In that case, the market produced and developed lower cost, more efficient alternatives like natural gas and electricity.

 

Left to their own device, the industries will once again produce a viable alternative, either to the fuel source, or to the technology of propulsive power itself.  And it will then be a realistic alternative, not the completely impossible dream of biofuels and other liberal nonsense. 

 

At this point in time, there is nothing that comes near the power to weight ratio of a gasoline internal combustion engine.  The "squeaky clean" image that the public holds of electric cars is somewhat sullied by the reality that the electricity needs to be generated by something, and the many problems surrounding the production and disposal of batteries. 

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Methanol is a lovely thing to go racing with, but it is, of course, a biofuel, and the basic problem with biofuels in general as a replacement for petroleum is that there isn't enough biomass on the planet to produce enough biofuel to accomplish that. 

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When a battery has the energy density of gas and can be filled and drained just as fast, and lasts the life of the bike or is cheap to replace....

 

If the battery dream ever comes true, I see electric motors taking over for most power sports.  They are simple and can be made robust and could be tunable with electronic controllers.  I can see two wheel drive electric bikes with the motors built into the hubs, seems a easy to engineer system.  Battery designers need to step up their game.  

 

gas works pretty dam good, and we keep finding more and more oil.

 

I would try a e bike if it compared to a real dirt bike, but they just don't yet. 

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When a battery has the energy density of gas and can be filled and drained just as fast, and lasts the life of the bike or is cheap to replace....

If the battery dream ever comes true, I see electric motors taking over for most power sports. They are simple and can be made robust and could be tunable with electronic controllers. I can see two wheel drive electric bikes with the motors built into the hubs, seems a easy to engineer system. Battery designers need to step up their game.

gas works pretty dam good, and we keep finding more and more oil.

I would try a e bike if it compared to a real dirt bike, but they just don't yet.

Brushless lithum polymer rc cars.

Specifically 1/8th scale buggys and truggys. Are completely redicilous.

They can have a longer run time and with the brushless motors are 100% torque at all motor speeds. They absolutely demolish nitro/methanol burners displacing .21" or 3.5cc that claim 3hp and turn 40,000+ rpm. The electrics were banned from the nitro class lol but now they are taking over.

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RC is one thing, full size is another. Can they scale up a RC system to run a real car with say 100 hp, and 200 mile range, recharge in about five minutes and recharge it for $30. Then this battery has to last for 200000 miles of all types of driving conditions....

Nitro and gas RC engines are pretty neat to, but things do not always scale well.

What weight percent of a RC car is battery for a high performance one? I really don't know and guess around 25-50%.

I would like to try a electric car or bike, but its battery has to compare a to a tank of gas as far as performance, and batteries are not there yet. Even if the battery cost $ 1000, that's OK they just have to make the rest of the bike cheaper.

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What you often find in the "business" of "green energy" is that things are not thought all the way through to the point where the proposed solution totally supplants that which it seeks to replace.  An example is the idea that we can use biofuel to replace gasoline.  The problem is that there's not enough biomass on the planet to accomplish that on a 100%, global scale. 

 

Similarly, the idea that electric cars with lithium based batteries will replace gasoline powered vehicles is flawed by the scarcity of lithium, and the environmental impact of mining it on a large enough scale to support such a thing.  The manufacturing process isn't pretty, either, and it's been stated that the grounds of the Canadian plant where Prius batteries are turned out looks more like a place on the Moon, than Earth.  Then, after that, what will we do with 100 million spent batteries, each weighing hundreds of pounds?  

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What you often find in the "business" of "green energy" is that things are not thought all the way through to the point where the proposed solution totally supplants that which it seeks to replace. An example is the idea that we can use biofuel to replace gasoline. The problem is that there's not enough biomass on the planet to accomplish that on a 100%, global scale.

Similarly, the idea that electric cars with lithium based batteries will replace gasoline powered vehicles is flawed by the scarcity of lithium, and the environmental impact of mining it on a large enough scale to support such a thing. The manufacturing process isn't pretty, either, and it's been stated that the grounds of the Canadian plant where Prius batteries are turned out looks more like a place on the Moon, than Earth. Then, after that, what will we do with 100 million spent batteries, each weighing hundreds of pounds?

Everyone will just have to walk.

The future of mx?

Bmx... Or downhill mtb....

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What should happen is for people to wake up, throw off the yoke of socialism represented by the radical environmentalist movement and big government, and allow the market to solve the problem the same way it did when petroleum and the internal combustion engine replaced the things that went before that.  If we are allowed to exploit it, the US alone has enough oil for the next 150 years at current consumption rates, and more is being found all the time.  It's time to push the doom & gloomers out of the way and make some progress.  Or will we chant "save Gaea" as we march back to the cave?

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Directional drilling and fracking have pretty much ended any chances of us running out of oil.  Add to that the abundance of natural gas and the ability to synthesize fuels and lubricants from natural gas...  You may be surprised to know that we have such an abundance of natural gas that we are now beginning to export it.  Maybe we will start to see natural gas powered dirt bikes?  It has a very high octane rating.

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I agree with the synthesis of new kinds of fuels. Its funny because I didn't know that there was that much fuel available, probably because i've listened to so many people talk about how our supply of gas is running out. But when you ask someone who is not trying to convert everything to electric and get a real answer apparently we have more than enough to go for the rest of my life two times over. Im still very interested in seeing if electricity will replace combustion in motor vehicles, or curve it more. Again, most people neglect that 80% of our electricity is generated from fossil fuels and power is lost converting from fossil fuels to electricity to motion, which to me negates the whole environmental friendly advantage. 

 

But as far as combustion compared to electricity, will electric engines ever come close to the power to weight ratio and efficiency of combustion and from there on replace them? 

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Not to support electric vehicles or anything but with the thermal efficiency of a typical internal combustion engine running the Otto cycle being around 27% peak (however under normal driving conditions it's probably closer to 15%) a steam power plant running a basic superheat (Carnot) cycle is also 27% but can maintain that efficiency.  Many modern plants are super critical plants and run reheat cycles to bring their thermal efficiencies up to 35%.  Gas turbines (Brayton cycle) are the worst with even high pressure ratio turbines barely approaching 20% but when combined with a waste heat boiler (combined cycle) efficiencies of upwards of 40% are possible.  Slow speed diesel engines with waste heat recovery can approach 45% thermal efficiency but there are emissions issues due to high peak combustion temperatures.  Generating electricity from fuel is more efficient than burning fuel in an internal combustion engine to turn a wheel but... what about the transformer losses, transmission losses, and charging losses?  Well these are all fairly small.  The electric motor itself is very efficient generally on the range of 75-90% of what goes in comes out as rotating power.  The efficiency of a gas engine vs. generating electricity to charge a battery to run a motor seems to be a bit of a wash with neither case coming out ahead.  The advantage is that the power plant can generate the power much more cleanly.  Just remember, carbon dioxide (the devil to environmentalists) from a gas engine gets turned into biomass through photosynthesis.  Nickel from batteries poisons the earth.

Edited by 1987CR250R

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I believe the wheels are already in motion, no pun intended, to move away from petroleum based fuels.  Run a search for Hydrogen and you will find that most of the major auto manufacturers have been working on this technology for at least a decade.  The only reason we haven't seen this fuel come to market is because the same people that run the petrol/industrial/war complex also own all of the governments.  By controlling the fuel we use they control us.  But those days are soon to end.

 

The pundits will say that it takes too much energy to spit H2O and use the hydrogen, but there are numerous advances in technology that are making the use of hydrogen 100% feasible.  For instance, the Nocera leaf is a major breakthrough. 

 

BTW hydrogen has something like 3 X the energy potential of today's fuel. 

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Just remember, carbon dioxide (the devil to environmentalists) from a gas engine gets turned into biomass through photosynthesis.  Nickel from batteries poisons the earth.

 

Nickel from batteries came from the Earth.  It's the nickel compounds from batteries that are a problem.  Don't get me started on the stupidity that is the whole AGW/CO₂ thing, but it's interesting to note that the average car produces 1.5 pounds of CO₂ each day.  The average human produces 2.5 pounds/day.  This means that the people in Chine produce 5 times as much CO₂ as the people in the U.S. AND their cars do. 

 

Here's another little factoid just for Californians: If we assume that the global warming alarmists are correct, and that their computer models and assumptions are all 100% accurate :rolleyes: , and we also assume that California's own little version of Cap and Trade, Prop 39, will succeed to the fullest imaginable extent, it will reduce the CO₂ produced in California by 25%.  That will cost the economy 200 billion dollars over the next 25 years and reduce the global average temperature by 1/100th of one Fahrenheit degree.  That's worth it, eh?  

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I believe the wheels are already in motion, no pun intended, to move away from petroleum based fuels.  Run a search for Hydrogen and you will find that most of the major auto manufacturers have been working on this technology for at least a decade.  The only reason we haven't seen this fuel come to market is because the same people that run the petrol/industrial/war complex also own all of the governments.  By controlling the fuel we use they control us.  But those days are soon to end.

 

The pundits will say that it takes too much energy to spit H2O and use the hydrogen, but there are numerous advances in technology that are making the use of hydrogen 100% feasible.  For instance, the Nocera leaf is a major breakthrough. 

 

BTW hydrogen has something like 3 X the energy potential of today's fuel. 

 

Lets look at some basic chemistry.  If I take a water molecule and invest energy to separate the hydrogen atoms from the oxygen then recombine the hydrogen with another oxygen atom and form the same bonds what have I gained in the world.  At least when you combust a hydrocarbon fuel you end up with more useable energy than you started with.  We will take the simplest hydrocarbon, methane.  After simply raising the energy level to the activation energy the hydrocarbon molecule breaks the carbon hydrogen bonds and releases one free carbon and 4 hydrogen atoms which then react with oxygen to create four hydrogen-oxygen bonds and two carbon-oxygen bonds for every molecule of fuel.  Of course the hydrogen-oxygen bonds release the most energy and the release  lot more energy than it took to break the hydrogen-carbon bonds.  Therefore, you have a net release of energy out of your system.  You even gain from the carbon-oxygen bond forming as well (but it is a significantly smaller contributor).

 

If you go to the hydrogen store (well your welding gas or scientific supply) and buy a tank of hydrogen it will have been cracked from natural gas.  The only places I have seen that need to generate small amounts of hydrogen regularly so the cost of using electricity to do it are insignificant.  Generally this hydrogen is used as a chemical reagent or as a coolant in something like electrical power generator.

 

Hydrogen will only be the answer if we go nuclear and have so much cheap energy to waste that we can afford to split water with electricity.

 

There are however more efficient ways to make electricity from chemical energy and those are fuel cells.  And yes they can run on hydrogen and oxygen but they can also run on natural gas and oxygen.  Efficiencies are extremely high typically 75% but upwards of 90%.  Combine that with electric cars and you might be on to something but we need to stop wasting money and time on this hydrogen crap if we really want to save the world.  Hydrocarbon fuels are what we have right now and there are so many improvements that can be made to the way we utilize it but we must first get out heads out of our asses.

Edited by 1987CR250R

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using hydrogen seems kind of pointless to me also for reducing CO2.    Also a  H2 powered vehicle will most likely still be a internal combustion engine just like we have now, only a cleaner fuel. So going back to the OP question, I don't see anything other then electric as a motor source.   

 

There has not been any new engine/ motor types developed in about 150 yrs.  We still only have electric motors, steam or gas turbines, and reciprocating piston engines, and the Wenkle ( probably spelled that wrong).  They all really work the same, heat up a fluid, trap it so it creates pressure and use that pressure to push on something.

 

Oh, I forgot rockets.   We need a completely new type of engine. if we really want to do interesting things.  I have no ideas on this so I will go with rockets

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using hydrogen seems kind of pointless to me also for reducing CO2.  

 

First, please explain to me where the carbon comes from in the combustion of hydrogen.

 

Then show me ANY real evidence that carbon dioxide needs to be reduced.

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CO2 comes from creating energy at power plants to make the hydrogen, unless its nuke or a hydro dam.  I don't believe CO2 is a problem and most of the global warming alarm is BS and out of humans control anyway.  Its was just my opinion and others that if you did want to reduce CO2, hydrogen was not the fuel to use, unless we stop using fossil fuels to make most of our electricity,  same thing for electric powered cars.

 

If you wanted to go all electric or hydrogen for a motor fuel, then we better start building nuke plants and dams.

 

But what about something really new? Not a fuel but a actual engine / motor type.

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