What was described as ‘a breakthrough hybrid drive system that can dramatically
improve the performance, fuel economy, and pollution control of virtually all
cars and light trucks’ was unveiled in Livonia, Michigan, yesterday.
The Paice Hyperdrive system is claimed to be the first petrol-electric hybrid
powertrain that will be able to power all the types of vehicles that consumers
want, according to its developers.
“No other hybrid electric introduced or announced to date has been able
to match Hyperdrive’s performance, fuel economy, and environmental achievements,”
said Paice CEO and system inventor Dr. Alex Severinsky.
“Nor can any other be produced as economically.”
Severinsky said Hyperdrive’s advantages over other hybrids and vehicle powertrains
in current production are:
- It can double the fuel economy of most cars, sport utility vehicles and
- Emissions are significantly below all current and proposed regulatory limits.
- It can equal or better the speed, acceleration, grade-climbing and trailer-towing
performance of current vehicles.
- It can operate in all climates and weather conditions.
- It can be produced at costs similar to current vehicles because it uses
the same technologies and materials.
- It runs on petrol, diesel and other fuels in the existing distribution infrastructure.
“What makes Hyperdrive unique and superior among hybrid powertrains is
the use of high-power semiconductors, high-voltage power, and high-horsepower
induction motors in conjunction with efficient use of the internal combustion
engine to achieve almost maximum fuel economy,” said Severinsky, who claims
to be a globally-recognised power electronics systems engineer and expert on
lead-acid battery applications.
“This became economically feasible when high-voltage power semiconductors
became commercially viable in 1998.”
Paice has proven the concept in tests of a full-size prototype system on a
dynamometer and has collaborated with leading companies in the automotive, power
technology and control system areas, Severinsky said.
The company has two existing U.S. patents and others pending worldwide and
is now in discussion with auto manufacturers for commercialisation of the system
while assembling a core team of Tier One automotive suppliers to assist in design
and hardware production.
Paice will develop and produce the control module with embedded software based
on its patents.
On the road, a Hyperdrive vehicle will be driven by the petrol engine alone,
by the electric motor alone or by both together, depending on the power required
in different driving modes, Severinsky said.
A computer runs the system at its best efficiency.
The engine runs on regular petrol but, for a specific vehicle, compared to
a conventional counterpart, its fuel consumption will be about half.
This is because it needs only one-third to half the power and displacement
and it runs only part-time and always at its most efficient range.
Hyperdrive’s energy storage system consists of a bank of specally-designed
two-volt lead-acid cells and 48-volt battery modules.
To assure safety, every 48-volt module has an internal self-disconnect, which
activates automatically and instantly whenever the ignition is off, or in an
accident. Therefore no one can be exposed to live high voltage.
Exhaust emissions from a Hyperdrive vehicle will be significantly below any
current or proposed pollution control limits, anywhere in the world.
Hyperdrive has almost zero emissions in city driving, where air quality problems
are most acute. In most stop-and-go driving, the vehicle runs on electric power;
the petrol engine runs only briefly to recharge the battery, and never when
the car is stopped.
Carbon dioxide (CO2), the main ‘greenhouse gas’ culprit in global
warming, is also much lower than from today’s vehicles.
Fuel savings for consumers will depend on their vehicle’s size and performance,
Severinsky said, because Hyperdrive vehicles use, on average, 50 percent less
fuel than their conventional counterparts.
Owners will see especially dramatic improvement in their city fuel economy
when the vehicle is powered directly from the battery, he claimed.
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