Login



Peak Oil is You


Donate Bitcoins ;-) or Paypal :-)


One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction loss

How to save energy through both societal and individual actions.

One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction loss

Unread postby Graeme » Thu 12 Jan 2012, 16:47:19

One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction loss

No less than one third of a car's fuel consumption is spent in overcoming friction, and this friction loss has a direct impact on both fuel consumption and emissions. However, new technology can reduce friction by anything from 10% to 80% in various components of a car, according to a joint study by VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland and Argonne National Laboratory (ANL) in USA. It should thus be possible to reduce car's fuel consumption and emissions by 18% within the next 5 to 10 years and up to 61% within 15 to 25 years.

There are 612 million cars in the world today. The average car clocks up about 13,000 km per year, and in the meantime burns 340 litres of fuel just to overcome friction, costing the driver EUR 510 per year.

Of the energy output of fuel in a car engine, 33% is spent in exhaust, 29% in cooling and 38% in mechanical energy, of which friction losses account for 33% and air resistance for 5%. By comparison, an electric car has only half the friction loss of that of a car with a conventional internal combustion engine.

Annual friction loss in an average car worldwide amounts to 11,860 MJ: of this, 35% is spent in overcoming rolling resistance in the wheels, 35% in the engine itself, 15% in the gearbox and 15% in braking. With current technology, only 21.5% of the energy output of the fuel is used to actually move the car; the rest is wasted.

Worldwide savings with new technology

A recent VTT and ANL study shows that friction in cars can be reduced with new technologies such as new surface coatings, surface textures, lubricant additives, low-viscosity lubricants, ionic liquids and low-friction tyres inflated to pressures higher than normal.

Friction can be reduced by 10% to 50% using new surface technologies such as diamond-like carbon materials and nanocomposites. Laser texturing can be employed to etch a microtopography on the surface of the material to guide the lubricant flow and internal pressures so as to reduce friction by 25% to 50% and fuel consumption by 4%. Ionic liquids are made up of electrically charged molecules that repel one another, enabling a further 25% to 50% reduction in friction.


physorg
Human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe. H. G. Wells.
Fatih Birol's motto: leave oil before it leaves us.
User avatar
Graeme
NeoMaster
NeoMaster
 
Posts: 11884
Joined: Fri 04 Mar 2005, 03:00:00
Location: New Zealand

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby Kristen » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 00:22:33

That's good news if they can successfully convince the population to adopt new methods to reduce friction.
User avatar
Kristen
Intermediate Crude
Intermediate Crude
 
Posts: 699
Joined: Mon 17 Jul 2006, 02:00:00
Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 01:15:11

While it's nice these things are being developed, there is no way known to retrofit any significant portion of the fleet, nor is there ever likely to be. At the ordinary pace of implementing new technology in the auto industry, we can look forward to several decades of waiting to see this rolled out as standard. Look at 4WS, power steering, power windows, petrol injection, air bags and even seat belts all took decades to become standard.
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5867
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 05:47:46

In the mean time you could just reduce the number of miles driven by a third to a half and save a hundred percent of that fuel.
User avatar
vtsnowedin
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 3541
Joined: Fri 11 Jul 2008, 02:00:00

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby Tanada » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 06:01:50

I see how my fellow human beings drive and the idea of fitting all their vehicles with low friction tires is rather terrifying. Picture a mom in her 3.5 ton SUV on a rain damp surface with low friction traction hitting my subcompact fuel efficient car when she doesn't slow down for the conditions.

Besides that nightmare there have been ways developed many times to squeeze more efficiency out of ICE's, the problem is twofold. A) acceptance by the manufacturers and B) added weight and complexity to the vehicle. If you put every lone driver in a Go-Kart you would save millions of barrels of oil and space in parking/driving lanes. I don't anticipate that happening any time soon.
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
User avatar
Tanada
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8349
Joined: Thu 28 Apr 2005, 02:00:00
Location: South West shore Lake Erie, OH, USA

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby Heineken » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 09:44:13

How much will all this advanced friction-reduction technology add to the cost of a car? Aye, there's the rub!
"Actually, humans died out long ago."
---Abused, abandoned hunting dog

"Things have entered a stage where the only change that is possible is for things to get worse."
---I & my bro.
User avatar
Heineken
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 7029
Joined: Tue 14 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Rural Virginia

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 10:02:46

Virtually nothing 10 years after implementation, double in the first few.
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5867
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby Heineken » Fri 13 Jan 2012, 19:46:47

Then we will never get to the 10-year point with that fleet of frictionless cars, Chris.
"Actually, humans died out long ago."
---Abused, abandoned hunting dog

"Things have entered a stage where the only change that is possible is for things to get worse."
---I & my bro.
User avatar
Heineken
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 7029
Joined: Tue 14 Sep 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Rural Virginia

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby MarkJ » Mon 16 Jan 2012, 08:09:47

When I replaced 2 wheel bearings for a tenant's son recently, they ended up buying two different brands of wheel bearings. When I gave them a spin test, one spun twice as long as the other. Performance under load was probably worse.

To add insult to injury, their brakes were dragging, another wheel bearing was performing poorly, alignment was way off and all 4 tires were under-inflated. The older tires had legal tread, but didn't have a good seal on the rim, so they lose pressure quickly.

If I didn't perform the labor for free, they would have driven the vehicle until it literally stopped moving, couldn't stop, or failed the annual NY safety/emissions test.

As vehicle complexity and cost of vehicles, parts, insurance, parts markup and professional labor has increased, many people don't have, or aren't willing to spend money on safety and fuel efficiency related maintenance, repairs and upgrades.

It's much cheaper for many people to buy more gas, or buy another cheap used vehicle than to maintain/repair and/or buy/finance a better vehicle.
User avatar
MarkJ
Intermediate Crude
Intermediate Crude
 
Posts: 649
Joined: Tue 25 Mar 2008, 02:00:00

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby SeaGypsy » Mon 16 Jan 2012, 08:47:17

I ran a 1969 Hillman Hunter Safari Wagon for most of the 25 years I have driven. It taught me, with it's original workshop manual, many great skills. Once common enough that there are a few in every big country town, rare enough to get noticed and be offered piles of free parts all over the country, zero mechanics costs/ anything from 20/40 MPG depending on driving style. I went from that to a late model GMH (Opel/ Commodore/ Chevy) generic V6 wagon. There wasn't a day in 2 years with that car I didn't wish I stuck with the Hillman. Solid, simple, beautiful.

http://www.automobile-catalog.com/auta_details1.php
SeaGypsy
Expert
Expert
 
Posts: 5867
Joined: Wed 04 Feb 2009, 03:00:00

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby MD » Sat 24 Mar 2012, 06:50:17

57% of all energy used is dissipated as waste heat.

So 1/3 of the energy required to move your car down the road is waste heat due to friction?

Another 1/3 is due to moving unnecessary mass.

Solve the mass problem and the waste heat problem will solve itself, for the most part.

The math is pretty simple. The cultural momentum isn't.
Stop filling dumpsters, as much as you possibly can, and everything will get better.

Just think it through.
It's not hard to do.
User avatar
MD
COB
COB
 
Posts: 4329
Joined: Mon 02 May 2005, 02:00:00
Location: On the ball

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby Tanada » Sun 25 Mar 2012, 07:21:53

MD wrote:57% of all energy used is dissipated as waste heat.

So 1/3 of the energy required to move your car down the road is waste heat due to friction?

Another 1/3 is due to moving unnecessary mass.

Solve the mass problem and the waste heat problem will solve itself, for the most part.

The math is pretty simple. The cultural momentum isn't.


If you look at a vehicle weight from 1972 and compare it to 2012 for the same passenger/cargo capacity you will see the mass has been greatly reduced already. Aluminum mag wheels, aluminum cast engine blocks and transmission housings. Stamped steel so thin it will dent if you lean on it too hard. The cars I grew up with had steel frames and steel bumpers and glass lights on the front. All of that has been replaced with unibody stamped steel thin metal and plastic bumper and lens covers that die in a 5 mph bump.

The waste heat now comes from the ICE throwing away so much of the energy in the fuel and in the braking system because most people race right up to the traffic at the stop light and slam on the brakes instead of letting the vehicle coast a hundred yards and then gently braking. If you pay attention and modify your driving style you can save a huge volume of fuel, but most people never learn how by observing others, they are not taught it in driving class and they sure don't learn it watching TV. I routinely get 33-38 mpg in a 12 year old Honda Civic with mixed city and hwy driving one third/two thirds. It isn't hard. You do have to pay attention to driving and not txting/talking/whatever.

Even better with a set of regenerative brakes and a flywheel you could save up some of that lost momentum, but that would add complexity. You could also convert to a standard vehicle to use a Crowder 6 cycle engine but nobody ever put it into actual production. Mostly because it does fine in southern climates but has problems anywhere the water for injection undergoes freezing temperatures for extended periods of the year. Still it would work in Africa, India, Indonesia, Australia and most of South America and north of the equator up to about the 30 degree north line. If you used it in colder area's you would have to have some sort of heater set up to keep the water from freezing and seems how it needs distilled water for low maintenance operation you cant add anti-freeze to the tank. http://www.autoweek.com/article/20060227/free/302270007
I should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, design a building, write, balance accounts, build a wall, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, pitch manure, program a computer, cook, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.
User avatar
Tanada
Site Admin
Site Admin
 
Posts: 8349
Joined: Thu 28 Apr 2005, 02:00:00
Location: South West shore Lake Erie, OH, USA

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby ralfy » Sun 25 Mar 2012, 22:41:46

Unfortunately, new technologies may still require petrochemicals and other resources, and given global demand, this type of efficiency is still not enough. The benchmark was probably given by Birol of the IEA: we need the equivalent of one Saudi Arabia every seven years to maintain global economic growth, and that includes whatever "business as usual" is needed to allow for this shift, such as ensuring that even more people worldwide buy and use passenger vehicles.

Given that, we will ultimately be forced to let go of passenger vehicles (including EVs), and concentrate on regular electric rail to carry critical supplies along longer distances, with animal and muscle power for local areas, and EVs and even diesel-powered vehicles for emergencies (e.g., EVs for ambulances, trucks for locations that are difficult to access).
http://sites.google.com/site/peakoilreports/
User avatar
ralfy
Fission
Fission
 
Posts: 2358
Joined: Sat 28 Mar 2009, 10:36:38
Location: The Wasteland

Re: One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction los

Unread postby Keith_McClary » Mon 26 Mar 2012, 14:14:50

One-third of car fuel consumption is due to friction loss

"It should thus be possible to reduce car's fuel consumption ... up to 61%"
"Western meds aren't working any more"
-Dmitry Orlov
User avatar
Keith_McClary
Fusion
Fusion
 
Posts: 5362
Joined: Wed 21 Jul 2004, 02:00:00
Location: Suburban tar sands


Return to Conservation & Efficiency

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests