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Old 12-08-2010, 03:41 PM   #41
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Watching the guy push it, it looks like a regular real mower would be easier to use.
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Old 12-08-2010, 03:49 PM   #42
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Originally Posted by Lazarus View Post
Here you go. Compressed air powered lawn mowers.

My advice to the lawn mower engineer - don't quit your day job.
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Old 12-09-2010, 08:41 AM   #43
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Here you go. Compressed air powered lawn mowers.
Thanks for posting, looks like a fun little hobby/tinkering project. I'm sure that a commercial, engineered one would be much more efficient and effective (was the grass even getting cut?). And again, lawnmowers don't need to be so optimally efficient, it's not so much a power efficiency thing, it's about reducing the disproportionately large amount of pollution from these devices. It just seems like air, compressed from a motor plugged in a socket, or pumped from a modern vehicle would be a relatively simple way to reduce the pollution from lawnmowers, even with the losses along the way.

In the 70's, GE produced an electric lawn tractor. I'd consider this for home use, but then I'd have expensive batteries with maintenance issues sitting unused 99.45% of the time. An air tank seems much more practical. And you'd have a portable device for filling tires, running air tools, etc.

I really do think there is a commercial application for these - maybe MDI should focus on that market and actually ship something?

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Old 12-09-2010, 11:52 AM   #44
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I'll tell you one place that I think air engines might be a very good idea - lawn services.

They use these really dirty gas engines, no catalytic converter, etc. And they need a truck to take them from place to place. Mount a couple air tanks on the truck, fill them up overnight, and refill from a PTO from the truck engine. Or maybe just while driving, with a 'fifth wheel' on the trailer, so you wouldn't need to mess with the vehicle? Then you'd be refilling from a relatively clean source with all those pollution controls. Seems better than trying to clean up a million lawn tractors and weed trimmers (yuk - two cycle!) and leaf blowers. Overall efficiency probably isn't that big a deal, wrt the cleaner air.

IIRC ,pollution-wise, running a lawn mower one hour a week was worse than commuting with a car for the entire week.

-ERD50
Yep, absolutely, lawn mowers are awful polluters.
Problems I have heard with compressed air is the amount of power it takes to compress the air.

Since compressed air lawnmowers don't exist yet, I have electric. Good solution for now, but the compressed air would definitely have advantages if they can get the efficiency under control.
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:04 AM   #45
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Plug in Prius ran only 6 miles on electric!

Three hundred pounds of batteries to replace the energy of maybe a half gallon of gas. And the electric motor has to drag the gas motor around under electric power then the gas motor has to drag the electric and the 300 pounds of batteries under gas power. Not the model of efficiency.

Prius plug-in stutters in bitter cold - Video - Technology
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Old 12-10-2010, 03:54 PM   #46
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Not sure why anyone is doing work on air cars, from the wiki posted here (and consistent with what I've read and heard). And solar or wind powered compressors make even less sense, at least in our lifetimes most likely.
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The overall efficiency of a vehicle using compressed air energy storage, using the above refueling figures, cannot exceed 14%, even with a 100% efficient engine—and practical engines are closer to 10-20%.[6] For comparison, well to wheel efficiency using a modern internal-combustion drivetrain is about 20%,[7] Therefore, if powered air compressed using a compressor driven by an engine using fossil fuels technology, a compressed air car would have a larger carbon footprint than a car powered directly by an engine using fossil fuels technology.
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Old 12-31-2010, 09:42 AM   #47
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Another energy solution.
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Old 12-31-2010, 10:03 AM   #48
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Great balls of fire!
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