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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ha, where is Cruze on this issue. One heck of a capacitor, 1,080 farads to be exact. When you take your foot off the gas, guess you have to do that in city traffic occasionally. The alternator output voltage increases to 25 volts putting an additional load on the engine for regenerative braking that is used to charge this capacitor for electric energy storage that is used for the next time you have to hit that gas pedal.

But not for acceleration, just to relieve the load from the alternator claiming an addition 10% fuel savings in city driving. In addition to this capacitor, a down converter must be added to get 12 V out. They claim this system is only adding 20 pounds to the vehicle.

Now I am wondering if I can emulate this in my Cruze, simply by turning off all the unneeded electrical systems. Even to the extend of rolling down the window and leaving that AC off. Compressor coil is not too bad, around 3 amps, but that blower motor pulls over 20. So how much gas are these day time running lights costing us? And are they really effective in preventing accidents?

The real key problem in cities are intersections, and traffic lights that stay red when not a cross vehicle in sight. And 90% of the driving is done in city traffic.

DOT came into our town about 13 years ago, added several dozen or more traffic lights, dumped all the yield signs, added a whole bunch of street lighting, some are brighter in the day than at night, but will still get a ticket if your head lamps are off. Now it takes 50% longer to drive anywhere, but is for our safety. So far, no results about reductions in accidents, still have idiots that run red lights.

So we have the government going one way to consume a lot more energy, and the auto makers going the other way to try to save a bit. Read Los Angeles and other cities are even worse.

I live only five blocks from what use to be a 65 mph two lane state road that was dropped to a 55 mph road back in the 70's. Then they came in and made that a five mile long divided highway, loaded with traffic lights, a 250 watt street lamp every 100 feet, then dropped the speed limit to 35 mph. Now I have to creep at 35 mph until it drops to a dark two lane road again before I can hit 55 again. Around here, very little traffic after dark, what are all those lights burning for and why do I have head lamps? And why am I stopping at red light with not a vehicle in sight?

Just stupid questions I know, but I like asking stupid questions. Furthermore after driving on this same road for the last 40 years, not one new building was added anywhere.
 

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I will not go anywhere without my DRL's on. Even though my Volvo ate bulbs like crazy, I've been turned in front of by someone that didn't "see" me way too many times only for them to pull out halfway and screech to a stop...in the road. Not sure if they didn't see me or are just dumb. To me, burning through a few more headlight bulbs is worth it to avoid a potential accident by someone that didn't look twice.

That's pretty cool...along with start-stop technology, I think this would help save a good bit of gas that is otherwise just thrown away. I was thinking this morning creeping along I66 on the bus how all that energy was going to waste as it kept stopping and going, and started to look up stuff about hybrid buses...but apparently they don't save a huge amount of fuel (like 2 MPG for a MUCH higher cost than a regular bus) on most routes. Ah well...just glad I'm not driving in that crap.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
To maintain my pilots license a bi-annual medical exam is required. Eyes are tested for glaucoma, cataracts, periphal, depth perception, close and near vision, and for color blindness. And yes, drugs, either prescription or recreational. For a drivers' license, had to renew it two months ago, just reading an eye chart, and that is once every eight years.

If DRL's make any difference, I sure haven't noticed, people still pull out in front of you, maybe a depth perception problem, maybe just don't give a darn.

Practically all use the high beams for DRL's, where the two are placed in series reducing the voltage to each by 50%, but due to lower cooler resistance, the current only reduces by 25-30% while the brightness decreases by more than 70%. Then the contrast ratio factor on a bright sunny day, hardly even noticable.

In regards to the brights burning on quicker, for each 10% decrease in rated voltage, bulbs should last as twice as long, half voltage, translates to about 32 times the life ignoring leakage problems. But sure consuming extra fuel.

These are the facts. More facts are 75% of all truck accidents are caused by smaller cars pulling out in front of them. I even installed 155 DB horns in my motorhome, yet another test the drivers' license doesn't give, like a person being stone deaf.
 

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The Volvo just used the low-beams all the time, hence the short life (most bulbs lasted <1 year @ 20-30,000 miles a year). The later years used separate low-voltage bulbs.

They like to be weird though. Honda and everyone else I know uses the high-beams, and they are hardly much noticeable during the daytime.
 

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Good Read Nick neat little trick with the capacitor , less drain on those batteries to start off from a stop .
 

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The Cruze already has a very mild version of kinetic energy recover with the alternator. If you put your DIC on the volt page you can see it work. The Cruze attempts to charge the battery as much as possible while coasting/decelerating. You can see the voltage increase from 12.x to 14.5 when you lift off the gas for a while. Sometimes you can actually hear the HVAC fan speed increase.

The Mazda system is far more advanced but the Cruze has it too, in a limited way.
 

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Lyrical Wordsmith
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The Cruze already has a very mild version of kinetic energy recover with the alternator. If you put your DIC on the volt page you can see it work. The Cruze attempts to charge the battery as much as possible while coasting/decelerating. You can see the voltage increase from 12.x to 14.5 when you lift off the gas for a while. Sometimes you can actually hear the HVAC fan speed increase.

The Mazda system is far more advanced but the Cruze has it too, in a limited way.
I second this and i've noticed the hvac system increase. Smart GM is smart...
 

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DRL are quite useful in preventing accidents. I lost count of how many folk's heads have whipped around and focused in on the full-power low beams I use as DRL on my Cruze. Sometimes I even got a slamming of brakes when they realized they couldn't make it.

Neat trick Mazda is doing with that capacitor instead of depending on the alternator when accelerating. Might as well recover some of that energy thrown away braking instead of letting it turn to heat and brake dust...
 
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Seems like a pretty smart system... in my opinion, a good way of implementing the efficiency of high voltage/low current charging while still maintaining the traditional 12V electrical system. It should significantly reduce stress on the 12V battery as well. Here's an SAE article explaining the details:

Mazda introduces supercapacitor-type regenerative braking
Interesting... I've only had a chance to skim the above but I wonder if it's the same as Mazda Uses Capacitor To Save Gas | The Truth About Cars (from 2011) but delayed since TTAC mentions it'll be appearing in vehicles in 2012 yet the SAE article from 2013 says scheduled for May production...
 
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