Archive for October, 2008

Mercedes’ Futuristic Formula Zero Sail Racer

Tuesday, October 28th, 2008

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Recently Mercedes Benz revealed images of its stunning Formula Zero Racer, a futuristic foray into the next generation of racing. Incorporating elements from luge, yacht, and Formula One vehicles, the zero-emissions racer is propelled by a wind-catching sail in addition to electric motors that are powered by renewable resources. The concept is a tribute to a future where cars will win races based not just upon their speed, but on how energy efficient they are. Read the rest of the story: link

Snow-Based Cooling System

Sunday, October 26th, 2008

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The transport ministry aims to introduce a system in fiscal 2010 to provide 30% of the cooling energy at New Chitose Airport terminal building in summer from snow collected in winter, ministry officials said Tuesday.

A regional office of the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism collected snow last winter at the airport and confirmed that it could retain up to 45% of it by September by covering it with heat-insulating materials. It has concluded that the snow could be used to chill the liquid used in the airport’s cooling system in summer and that doing so would lead to a cut of some 2,100 tons of carbon dioxide emissions annually, according to the officials.

Links: Japan Today, Ecogeek, SnowPower

Going Green and Burning Rubber in a CNG Mustang

Sunday, October 26th, 2008

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Going green doesn’t mean giving up wheel-spin-inducing, tire-shredding performance, as this 300-horsepower natural gas-burning Mustang GT proves.

German natural gas conversion specialists Green Autogas teamed up with tuning haus Rollin on Chrome to prove “green” isn’t synonymous with boring. Together they tweaked the Mustang’s 4.6-liter V8 to run on propane natural gas, then installed a body kit, carbon-fiber hood and 22-inch wheels. The lime-green paint is waaay over the top and we’re not wild about the wing, but Green Autogas is to be commended for the effort.

So is the car as green as it looks?

The CNG engine produces about 20 percent less CO2 than the gasoline engine it is based on and 95 percent less nitric nitrogen oxide (NOx) than a typical diesel, according to Motor Authority. It’s tough to put that in perspective, though, because no one’s provided fuel economy data or a cost-per-mile comparison with the stock ‘stang.

Autogas isn’t the first outfit to build a green Mustang. The BioConcept Mustang built by German tuners FourMotor used a biofuel-burning 2.0-liter turbodiesel that produced 280 horsepower and 368 foot-pounds of torque. The car was good for 152.2 mph and raced in the 24 Hours of Nurburgring.

As for the Autogas CNG Mustang, we’ll park it next to the sweet natural gas-burning Porsche 356 clone French boutique automaker PGO produces.

Photo: courtesy Autoblog.nl, Source: wired