The following work is an attempt to overcome the problems associated with an electric two wheeler. The setup consists of a 4 stroke gasoline powered 35cc single cylinder engine mechanically coupled with a brush less PMDC generator capable of producing 1KW at 3000 RPM, a motor controller and a 48V 250W motorized wheel commonly found in electric two wheelers.
OPERATION :- The single cylinder engine utilizes gasoline to drive the electric generator to produce sufficient voltage and current to propel the vehicle which is fed to the motorized wheel via the motor controller. The energy produced here is directly utilized without storing it in the battery. Exclusion of battery helps in overcoming all the limitations associated with it such as
1) limited range and life
2) higher weight, cost and charging time.
Using an engine as a power source comes at a cost of tailpipe emissions which are zero in an electric 2 wheeler. But, when compared to gasoline powered 2 wheelers
1) Emissions are comparatively lower.
2) higher fuel economy can be achieved.
3) comparatively lower frictional losses.
4) low weight and maintenance.
Apart from these benefits, engine runs at lower and constant RPM thus reducing wear and tear inside the engine. Also, running at constant RPM gives space for optimizing the combustion inside the cylinder further helping to boost fuel economy and reducing emissions. Undoubtedly, such a setup can be considered as a cross between an electric two wheeler and a gasoline powered two wheeler. A very small rise in cost is observed as the cost of engine gets equalized with the cost of batteries and the PMDC electric generator only being the extra component added.
Such a system might prove fruitful for developing nations like India where charging stations are rarely available and electric 2 wheeler has not been a big success. Also, since a very small displacement engine is used alternative fuels can also be tried and tested to minimize or completely eliminate tail pipe emissions.
Speaking about the results of the prototype, the engine ran continuously for 3 hours on a liter of fuel under full load exerted by the generator on the engine . Thus the maximum range of the vehicle on a liter of fuel is the maximum distance covered by the vehicle in 3 hours.