HONOLULU, HI – December 12, 2011 – (Motor Sports Newswire) – Thrustcycle Enterprises LLC introduces a prototype cycle with a flywheel kinetic energy recovery system (KERS) that uses gyroscopic forces to keep it upright, as can be seen on: http://thrustcycle.com/. The flywheel/gyroscope simultaneously functions as stabilizer and mechanical battery, thus enhancing safety and improving performance and efficiency.
As stabilizer, their system will maintain a fixed plane in space unlike anything available today. As demonstrated on their website video, rather than merely dampen oscillations as gyroscopes function on ocean-going ships, when the cycle is hit with force from the side, it will slide but remain firmly upright. Similarly, when going into slippery turns, the cycle will be less likely to slide under and lose traction because the gyroscope will maintain lateral integrity. The stronger the external force applied to the system, the stronger the reaction in the opposite direction.
As mechanical battery, in addition to storing and releasing energy initially contained in the flywheel, the system recaptures energy ordinarily lost when braking. The energy is transferred back into the flywheel for later use in acceleration. Thus, range is extended by recycling energy. Additionally, the gyro/flywheel system will augment chemical batteries during periods of heavy drain when they are least efficient, such as during starting and accelerating. The system will, therefore, result in the chemical battery being used in a more efficient manner. Furthermore, the gyro/flywheel system is capable of improving performance by transferring a significant amount of energy to the drive motor(s) for bursts of speed. Drivers can tap a portion of the gyroscope’s energy to provide additional thrust and still maintain enough angular momentum to stabilize the vehicle.
While gyroscopic forces are problematic for standard flywheel KERS, Thrustcycle’s system uses those forces for stability and control. The new prototype is rear-wheel steered to demonstrate that such a configuration in a two-wheeled vehicle can be stable by using their gyroscopic system. This system, however, is not limited to the configuration and can also be implemented in front, and all-wheel steered vehicles, either all-electric or hybrid. In addition, three and four wheeled vehicles would benefit from a gyro/flywheel system, not only because of the KERS and increased stability, but because cornering is improved by shifting forces to the inside wheels.
“We will continue to make aesthetic and functional improvements, but the current focus is on demonstrating our core technologies.” says company president Clyde Igarashi. An improved carbon-fiber body design, retractable side wheels, lights and turn signals are all in the works. A smaller front-wheel steered scooter prototype will be demonstrated in the near future, with plans to implement similar systems for watercraft and hovercraft.
With the increasing need for more efficient transportation, the gyro/flywheel kinetic energy recovery system can play an important role in complementing chemical batteries while providing stability. For more information, please visit: http://www.thrustcycle.com/.
SOURCE: Thrustcycle Enterprises LLC