Tag Archive | polymath

Short Course in “Electrified Cars” By Polymath Richard (‘Dick’) Byrd, Esq. Of ‘Wolfeboro’, NH.

by Anura Guruge



Dick, who had owned a Toyota Prius for many years, just upgraded to a Prius Prime. I (very ignorant when it comes to electrified cars) had no idea what the difference was and why Dick was so excited about the Prime. When I asked for clarification, Dick, as is his wont, came up with this brilliant and pithy tutorial. It was too good NOT to publish and share. So, for your edification.


I’ll give you a short course in “Electrified Cars.”  There are now three types of “Electrified” vehicles now for sale:
Hybrid Electric Vehicles (HEV):  These have a small battery, which traditionally have been Nickel-Metal-Hydride (NiMH) chemistry, typically about 2 KwHr capacity. and you have no ability to externally recharge the battery.  As the car is driven, the traction electric motors draw energy from the battery when appropriate, and then they put energy back into the battery when appropriate.  This has been the design of the classic Toyota Prius since its inception in the U.S. in 1999.  These cars are medium size cars, carry five passengers and luggage and get over 50 mpg.
The great efficiency of this configuration comes mainly from three factors:
(a) The Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) never has to be idling.  The car can startup under electric-only power and then bring the ICE into play when appropriate depending on throttle opening, temperature, speed, battery reserve energy, as well as other factors.  So, sitting at a traffic light everything is dead off. – No idling.

     (b)  The hybrid car uses dynamic braking, so when you press on the brakes, the computer slows the car by turning the electric motor into a generator and this both slows the car and charges the battery.  This efficiently transfers the kinetic energy of the moving car into potential energy stored in the battery.  In non-electrified cars this energy is dissipated as heat by the brake disks.

    (c) This one is more complicated, but very important.  The computer uses the ICE to charge the battery only when the ICE is being used also to propel the car, which greatly improves the efficiency of generating electricity.  If I want to put 10 horsepower (Hp) of electricity (aprx. 8 Kw) into the battery and I started up the ICE to do that, I would be running the ICE, with all of its horrible internal losses, just to produce that 10 Hp. – Very inefficient.  BUT, if the ICE is already running at say 50 Hp driving the car, then I can draw off the additional 10 Hp much more efficiently since all of the ICE’s internal losses are already being expended in driving the car.  I hope that makes sense to you.

Plug-In Electric Vehicle (PHEV):  These include my Prius Prime, the Chevy Volt and several others.  The battery is externally chargeable, and gives 25 – 50 miles of electric range, and then the vehicle operates like any hybrid, combining the ICE and battery for the best results.  Since the majority of working folks have a commute drive of less than 25-50 miles, this means that for most of their use of the car, they will only need electric power.  However, unlike a pure electric car, the PHEV can easily do a cross-country trip with no electric charging needed.  My Prius Prime uses an 8.7 KwHr Li Ion battery which is about four times the size of the battery in our old 2006 Prius we enjoyed for 12 years.
Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV):  The Tesla, the Chevy Bolt, and the Nissan Leaf are the best selling of these pure electric vehicles.    They have no ICE and are powered only by a Li Ion battery supplying electric motors. The battery capacity in now-available BEVs varies greatly, and therefore the driving range of the vehicles varies greatly.  Early BEVs had only 50 – 80 miles of range, but that was not very popular.  Remember, when a BEV its out of charge, you are struck at the side of the road!   Tesla upped the game a lot with around 200 miles of range in their cars.  The Chevy Bolt has 238 miles of range and the Leaf is moving up to 210 miles with their upcoming 2019 model.  Batteries in these cars are all Li Ion, and energy capacity is in the 60 -80 KwHr range.  Currently, these Li Ion batteries cost about $180 per KwHr, making a 80 KwHr battery account for about $14,000 of the cost of building a BEV!  Remember, though, there are great savings in manufacturing costs by eliminating the ICE and transmission.
     The electric motors in BEVs are typically permanent magnet, three-phase, AC synchronous motors.  Since the speed of a synchronous motor varies with the input frequency, the car’s D.C. battery voltage is fed to an inverter that supplies the variable frequency power to the motor.  These motors work at voltages in the 500 – 800 volt range.  This high voltage is necessary so as to reduce the current loads.  The Tesla electric motor can produce a whopping 700 Hp! – This requires about 500 Kw of electric input.  If the operating voltage is 500 volts, then you have about 1,000 amperes flowing into that motor.  The total capacity of the service entrance in your whole house is only 200 amperes, so this car at max power requires the current equivalent of five US households, drawing the maximum energy their service entrance panels can put out.  Wow!

Ok now go out and buy a Prius Prime.  So far, for the 200 miles I have driven, my average fuel mileage is over 66 mpg.


Dick’s brand new 2018 Prius Prime.


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by Anura Guruge

Full Moon Over “Mirror Lake”, NH, By Polymath Richard (‘Dick’) Byrd, Esq. Of ‘Wolfeboro’, NH.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE.


Over the last month or so I have posted photos, articles and a poem by Dick Byrd: lawyer, software entrepreneur, painter, poet, photographer, raconteur, Photoshop maestro, philosopher, writer, race car driver, mechanic & all-round-nice-guy.

Given his Photoshop wizardry, I always ask Dick as to how much Photoshop is there in a given picture — in this case, Full moon over ‘Mirror Lake’, that being where Dick currently lives, waterfront (though he has sold his place and moving ‘soon’).

This is what he said about this picture:
“Below is a photo of the moon setting over Mirror Lake in the evening from my kayak.

I photographed the shot of the moon and also the shot of the horizon over the trees while I was in my kayak.  BUT, I used Photoshop to put the two photos together.

I’m concerned that I made the moon just a little too big.  I wanted the “huge-Moon” affect you do get when the moon is close to the horizon, but I might have overdone it.  What do you think?

 It is also difficult to know just how much light glint to put in the water.  I did just a little of that.  I might try to improve on it.”

This should set you up for this Wednesday’s rare Blue Moon Supermoon and partial eclipse.


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by Anura Guruge

A Photo Of “Mirror Lake”, NH, By Polymath Richard (‘Dick’) Byrd, Esq. Of ‘Wolfeboro’, NH.

by Anura Guruge



Click to ENLARGE.


Over the last month or so I have posted photos, articles and a poem by Dick Byrd: lawyer, software entrepreneur, painter, poet, photographer, raconteur, Photoshop maestro, philosopher, writer, race car driver, mechanic & all-round-nice-guy.

Given his Photoshop wizardry, I always ask Dick as to how much Photoshop is there in a given picture — ‘Mirror Lake’ (above) being where he lives and this was from his deck.

This is what he said about this picture:
“Of course there is some photoshop.
I took out a couple of houses visible thru the trees at the far side of the lake to get that totally rustic view.
I increased the saturation a little on the sky and reduced it a little on the trees and water.


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by Anura Guruge

British Charles Babbage, “The Father Of The Computer”, Was Born This Day 226-Years Ago.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE and read here. Wikipedia: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Babbage


A section of his analytical engine and you can see the digits.


Another of the British polymaths of that era. We were blessed.

He had quite the mind. Pretty amazing all the things he successfully turned that mind to.

226-years ago. Sobering. Wonder what he would make of today’s smartphones, such as say the Google Pixel 2.


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by Anura Guruge

A Photo Of Myrdal, Norway By Polymath Richard (‘Dick’) Byrd, Esq. Of ‘Wolfeboro’, NH.

by Anura Guruge



Click to ENLARGE.


First a poem-in-prose and now a picture taken in Norway.

Dick had this to say about this picture:
“Here is a photo I did that I like a lot. It was taken on a trip we took through Norway about three years ago.

We were held over at at train stop in this tiny town of Myrdal, and so I was wandering around taking photos.

It does have some Photoshop enhancement, l but then everything I do has Photoshop enhancement.”


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by Anura Guruge

“Dinner At Luigi’s”, A Short Poem In Prose, by Richard (‘Dick’) Byrd, Esq. Of Photoshop Fame.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE and read. Enjoy.


Dick Byrd is a polymath: lawyer, software entrepreneur, painter, poet, photographer, raconteur, Photoshop maestro, philosopher, and writer.

You have already seen his Photoshop artistry and some of his writing. Now a poem-in-prose.

P.S., Dick added this in his e-mail with the poem: “Don’t worry, the subject of this poem is purely fictional, not about anyone I know personally.


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by Anura Guruge

Edmond Halley, Of Comet Fame, The British Polymath Genius, Was Born This Day, 361 Years Ago.

by Anura Guruge


Click to ENLARGE and read here. Wikipedia: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edmond_Halley




I did a post on Edmond Halley (29 October 1656 to 14 January 1741 (new Gregorian calendar)), on the anniversary of his death, on January 14, 2017.

So, I am not going to repeat myself. {Smile}. Instead I am giving you the above two YouTube videos, which are good, and the Wikipedia entry.

OK?

But, please check my earlier post. You will be glad that you did.

Google Doodle for Edmond Halley's 355th Birthday, November 8, 2011 (old calendar).

Google Doodle for Edmond Halley’s 355th Birthday, November 8, 2011 (old calendar).


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by Anura Guruge

“Alice In Wonderland” Lewis Carroll’s 185th Birth Anniversary — In Lieu Of Google Doodle.

by Anura Guruge


lewiscarroll


There has never been a Google Doodle for British polymath Lewis Carroll, real name: Charles Lutwidge Dodgson.

Other authors, artists and mathematicians, of course, have been honored.

I have a hunch, and that snippet, above, on the left his painting of a young lady, who was his muse for “Alice in Wonderland”.


Last Google Doodles:
**** Check Category ‘Google Doodle’ (sidebar) for other Doodles >>>>


by Anura Guruge


Edmond Halley, Of Comet Fame, But Really A Brilliant, British Polymath Died 275 Years Ago — Today.

by Anura Guruge


Click to access the Wikipedia entry for “Edmond Halley”.


Edmond Halley (29 October 1656 to 14 January 1741 (new Gregorian calendar)), though best known for COMPUTING the periodic orbit of the comet that bears his name, was quite the man.

Son of a wealthy soap-maker in London, Edmond had the privilege of being able to pursue the many things that interested him.

Just a few of his many amazing achievements include:

  • Financing and publishing Sir Isaac Newton’s, quite literally earth-moving, Philosophiæ Naturalis Principia Mathematica (Mathematical Principles of Natural Philosophy) — which among other things included his eponymous laws of motion.
  • Worked out how to determine the size of the Solar System by observing transits of Mercury and Venus across the face of the Sun.
  • Reliably catalogued the stars in the Southern Hemisphere.
    ….
  • Built a working diving bell!
    ….
  • Realized that some comets were periodic and calculated the orbital period of one, 1P/Halley — which he never got to see!
    ….
  • Britain’s second Astronomer Royal.

He was an exceptional mathematician. He also made some major contributions in the fields of meteorology, geophysics and physics,


halleys_comet_-_may_29_1910

Halley’s famous comet; 1P. In 1910. Click to ENLARGE.

Last time around was in 1986 when it didn’t put on a big show because the Sun was between the comet and Earth when it was at its closest to Earth.

Next time — 2061! 45 years hence. I will not be around.

Google Doodle for Edmond Halley's 355th Birthday, November 8, 2011 (old calendar).

Google Doodle for Edmond Halley’s 355th Birthday, November 8, 2011 (old calendar).


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by Anura Guruge

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