14 December 2017 – An ultra-low cost reusable rocket engine, Prometheus, using liquid oxygen–methane propellants, is set to power Europe’s future launchers. Today, ESA and ArianeGroup signed a contract to develop a full-scale demonstrator to be ground tested in November 2020. Prometheus demonstrates the systematic application of an extreme design-to-cost approach, new propellant and innovative manufacturing technologies. It lowers costs to a tenth of those for Ariane 5’s Vulcain 2 engine.
[esa.int] – Prometheus to power future launchers
[wikipedia.org] – Prometheus (rocket engine)
[eucass.eu] – Prometheus, a LOX/LCH4 Reusable Rocket Engine
[spacenews.com] – ESA kickstarts Prometheus reusable engine with first funding tranche
[spacenews.com] – France, Germany studying reusability with a subscale flyback booster
[popularmechanics.com] – Europe Is Building Its Own Reusable Rocket
14 June 2018 – The ESA Council met today in Paris to discuss the path towards the future exploitation of Ariane 6. In view of the progress made in the Ariane 6 programme, Participating States have decided on the completion of the development up to full operational capability and agreed to fund industrial incentives associated with the development of Ariane 6 and P120C solid rocket motor.
[esa.int] – ESA decides to complete Ariane 6
[wikipedia.org] – Ariane 6
[twitter.com] – Ariane 6
[arianespace.com] – Ariane 6 user manual
[flugrevue.de] – Erster Startauftrag für die Ariane 6 [9/2017]
German solar car. Price 16,000 euro. Range 250 km. On a sunny day the owner gets 30 km “for free” from the sun. Did you hear that, Australians? Californians? 35 kWh battery needs to be rented additionally. Deliveries starting by the end of 2019. The producer hopes to sell 10,000 cars per year.
Lightyear One is a 5 student initiative, a follow-up of the successful participation’s of the Solar Team Eindhoven at the World Solar Challenge in Australia in 2013, 2015 and 2017 (three times a win). Prototype completed by 2019. 23 potential buyers. Price tag: 119,000 euro ex BTW. The Lightyear One Car will by on the road by 2020. The car has 4 motors, one in each wheel. In April the initiative managed to collect 5 million euro investment money, which suffices to complete the prototype. The hope is to sell 3,000 cars eventually.
[omroepbrabant.nl] – De Lightyear One… rijdt in 2020 over de Brabantse wegen
[lightyear.one] – Official project site
[automotivecampus.com] – Lightyear groeit snel
[pcmweb.nl] – Lightyear One: Elektrische auto op zonnepanelen
[linkmagazine.nl] – Sioux koopt Lightyear One ‘Signature Edition’
[ed.nl] – Lightyear al naar Automotive Campus Helmond
New electric car from Sweden, the Uniti. Project began at the university of Lund starting with a crowd funding of €1,227,990. To be bought online and brought to your doorstep (still by a human driver). On the market as of 2019/2020, first in India.
Range: 300 km, weight 450 kg, charge to 80% in less than 15 minutes, 75 kW peak power, 0-80 kmh < 3.5 sec, battery 22 kWh, efficiency 20 km on 1.0 kWh. Topspeed 90-130 kmh, depending on the version. 2 passengers sitting behind each other. The car has autonomous driving functions. Price tag “under €19,900” or ~$23,400 USD.
German industrial giant Siemens is involved and a production facility near Malmo will produce 50,000 units per year as off 2018.
Students of the Technical University of Eindhoven in the Netherlands have developed a “100% recyclable car”.
Should be on the road by the end of 2018.
Made from flax fiber and sugar.
Elektromotor 15 kW, 6 x 10 kg batteries.
Speed 100 kmh
Range 240 km
Not suitable for a first date.
2 km of rail has been embedded in a road near Stockholm, capital of Sweden. Purpose: offering the infrastructure required to charge vehicles while they are driving, reducing the need for have batteries. If the entire Swedish highway network of 20,000 km would be equipped with these kind of rails, batteries would only be needed to bridge a maximum of 45 km, reducing the size of car batteries with a factor of 5-10.
In deze podcast praat interviewer Ingelou Stol met:
– Gerardo Daalderop van chipfabrikant NXP
– Merien ten Houten van start-up Amber
– Maurice Kwakkernaat van TNO
[hightechcampus.com] – High Tech Podcast #1 – Toekomst zelfrijdende auto
Trolleybuses in Arnhem, the Netherlands. Could this be an intermediate solution for trucks as well? How about catenaries for highways only? The result would be that trucks only needs small batteries, “for the last miles”. During long distances travel the truck’s batteries could recharge via the catenary as well.
Most people realize that official mileage data from car manufacturers are bogus. On average their figures are 42% better than reality as established by the International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT). The ICCT was one of the clubs that helped unveiling the VW diesel scandal. One of the main reasons behind the discrepancy is the 1992 old test method called NEFZ (“Neuer Europäischer Fahrzyklus” or “New European Driving Cycle”).
Meanwhile there is new test method WLTP (“Worldwide Harmonized Light Vehicles Test Procedure”) that should shorten the distance between test and reality. WLTP is in force since September 1, 2017 for new cars
[spiegel.de] – Die Verbrauchslüge
Hyperloop Transportation Technologies (HTT) is a mode of underground transport in a sealed tube or system of tubes through which a capsule travels free of air resistance or friction conveying people or objects at very high speed of up to 1200 kmh or twice the speed of a short or medium range plane. This would mean that a distance between Paris and Lyon of 466 km would take less than half an hour to bridge. Toulouse announced it will build the world’s first full scale HTT system in the world, for test purposes. Proposed advantages: low energy, silent, fast, 3m tube can be buried underground with no disruption of the landscape. Would make medium range flying, like in Europe, superfluous.
[wikipedia.org] – Hyperloop