If you turned the Jodrell Bank radio-telescope on its side and filled it with cornflakes to create one colossal breakfast bowl, you would still have fewer cornflakes than there are kilobytes residing in just-auto's automotive research archive. Dave Leggett dives in to the cornflakes, sorry kilobytes, in search of a few interesting factoids to brighten your Friday arvo (links are to articles freely available to all).

  • The average wiper blade wipes the windshield over one million times in a year, and travels 800 miles in this time.

Read more RESEARCH ANALYSIS: Review of wiper systems

  • According to various research studies, vehicles are at a standstill for one-third of the time while in urban areas. Some manufacturers estimate that stop-start systems can boost fuel efficiency by a fifth.

Read more RESEARCH ANALYSIS: Review of stop-start systems

  • Western Lithium Corp is currently developing the Kings Valley, Nevada, lithium deposit into potentially one of the world's largest strategic, scalable and reliable sources of battery grade lithium carbonate.

Read more RESEARCH ANALYSIS: Review of advanced battery technologies

  • Bio-diesel and plastic fuel tanks are not good bedfellows. There have been concerns about using plastic fuel tanks to store bio-diesel. The main issue with bio-fuels is not in the plastic tank itself but all the metal parts incorporated into the reservoir which can have a corrosion effect.

Read more RESEARCH ANALYSIS: Review of fuel tanks

  • Over the past few years, a number of industry groups have emerged aimed at developing common standards in the vehicle electrical and electronic arena.  For example, AUTOSAR (AUTomotive Open System ARchitecture) was set up by carmakers and automotive equipment manufacturers to develop a standardised international electric/electronic architecture concept for vehicles. But some people feared AUTOSAR would squeeze suppliers...

Read more RESEARCH ANALYSIS: Review of the vehicle's electrical and electronic architecture

  • In Europe 20% of new vehicles now have an aluminium bonnet (hood)
  • Roughly every 100kg saved in vehicle weight offers 4% in fuel economy and the potential to save around one tonne of CO2 over the life of the car.
  • Toyota is using plastic components made from plants for its new-generation Prius. Known as ecological plastic, the plant-based foam and injection-moulded parts are found in several locations throughout the new car including the scuff plates, deck trim and seat cushions.

Read more  RESEARCH ANALYSIS: Review of material used in vehicle manufacture


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