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Road vehicles can expend a significant amount of energy in undesirable vertical motions that are induced by road bumps, and much of that is dissipated in conventional shock absorbers as they dampen the vertical motions.
An electromagnetic linear generator and regenerative electromagnetic shock absorber are disclosed which converts variable frequency, repetitive intermittent linear displacement motion to useful electrical power.
The innovative device provides for the superposition of radial components of the magnetic flux density from a plurality of adjacent magnets to produce a maximum average radial magnetic flux density within a coil winding array. Due to the vector superposition of the magnetic fields and magnetic flux from a plurality of magnets, a nearly four-fold increase in magnetic flux density is achieved over conventional electromagnetic generator designs with a potential sixteen-fold increase in power generating capacity.
As a regenerative shock absorber, the disclosed device is capable of converting parasitic displacement motion and vibrations encountered under normal urban driving conditions to useful electrical energy for powering vehicles and accessories or charging batteries in electric and fossil fuel-powered vehicles. The disclosed device is capable of high power generation capacity and energy conversion efficiency with minimal weight penalty for improved fuel efficiency.
Table of Content:
- HOW IT WORKS
- MANUFACTURING CONSIDERATIONS
We have been carrying out a proof-of-concept study to evaluate the feasibility of obtaining significant energy savings by using optimized regenerative magnetic shock absorbers in vehicles. In addition to other potential applications, the use of such shock absorbers might allow for improved energy efficiency in electrical vehicles through the conversion of otherwise parasitic mechanical power losses into stored electrical energy, thereby leading to longer distances between battery recharges.
We recently carried out two experiments that validated a simplified eddy current damping model which, together with a “road bump” model (discussed further below), has been used to estimate the average power/energy recovery that might accrue for a 2500 lb automobile traveling on a “typical” road in the United States. The estimates are summarized in Table 1, and suggest that with a set of optimized regenerative shock absorbers, the average vehicle on the average road driving at 45 mph might be able to recover up to 70% of the power that is needed for such a vehicle to travel on a smooth.