Two main drawbacks of a typical electric vehicle are limited range and relatively slow charging rate. One might recall Tesla’s Model S that got really close to overcome those issues, but with a hefty price tag and far from vast coverage of its Supercharger stations people are still looking for something else. Where to get more power and juice for batteries? Recently Audi’s engineers introduced new solution for this problem – taking power from shock absorbers!
During British presentation of the New A3 e-tron head of Audi’s R&D department briefly described principles of the system in question. While driving on uneven surfaces car’s suspension has to work really hard. And all that movement creates heat that is usually just wasted into the air. Really rough roads can warm up shock absorbers to a proper sauna temperature – about 125 degrees Celsius.
However, there is a way how to collect that energy an turn into electricity. There are no details so far, but it should work similarly to widespread regenerative braking system that catches energy from hot braking discs during deceleration.
Of course it won’t solve range anxiety problem, but with more and more systems like this we’ll have more efficient vehicles keeping Greenpeace happy and oil moneybags livid!