It turns out that the TTxGP e-bike trial may be worth watching after all. At the official launch of the event, the organiser announced that 24 bikes from 16 teams will be on the start line of the Isle of Man course for the first ever zero-emission TT race on 12 June. MotoCzysz TTxGP racers: from the USA, MotoCzysz Alongside …
Mick Grant you say?
Theres a name I havent heard for a few years.
Just had a quick check online. Yes hes still around and 65 years old!
Looking forward to this race, even if it does seem like a gimmick, I just hope the TT spectators don't heckle the riders.
"Get off and push! You will go quicker and use less electricity!"
Zero emission - yeh
so WTF do they get their 'leccy from?
And err, what happened to the noise, atmosphere, etc?
midnight oil to be burnt?
Well *that's* not very environmentally friendly...!
Urrr, doesn't burning the midnight oil kinda defeat the whole point ?
If this is genuinely not a late April fool's joke, I would be extremely interested to see whether a 'leccy powered bike can last the distance. Unlike regular racing circuits, the TT course is 37.6 miles *per lap*, and that includes the climb up and over the mountain section.
The TT races vary between 4 and 6 laps - so between 150 and 225 miles of full on power delivery.
Usually the bikes stop at least once for fuel, but clearly that won't be an option for these bikes unless they're designing in the ability for a rapid battery swap-out.
I'm wondering whether they'll be incorporating kinetic energy recovery systems to make the most of the many many braking points throughout the 200+ corners on the circuit?
Re: Zero emission - yeh
You can very economically fuel these by rendering electric vehicle skeptics into biodiesel and powering a nice efficient generator with the result. You can offset the small volume of emissions this results in against the vast reduction in future emissions that their energy intensive lifestyle would inevitably generate.
They could be forced to have a little heating element dipped in a tub of Castrol-R, and a 500W hifi playing a recording of an MV500...
Would that help it be more like a proper TT race?
Is this going to be on the full TT course? How many laps? It will be interesting to see how slow they have to go to make a battery last one lap.
"And err, what happened to the noise, atmosphere, etc?"
Oh *Fuck that*! Somebody put a fucking muffler on existing motorcycles while we're at it!
There's a road behind my house, and it pisses me off to no end that every God-Damned motorcyclist in the county drives up and down it at ungodly speed blowing noise at me like I'm supposed to just sit there and say "Thank you Sir, may I have another?" You want to listen to motorcycle noise? Get a loop, put it on your iPod, put on some God -damn headphones and leave me the hell out of it.
PS: The Kingston University bike looks like somebody traced an Advair inhaler and put some wheels on it.
Re: Zero emission - Yeh
On the Isle of Man they get most of their electricity from a Gas-Fired power station in Douglas. There is a Diesel one in Peel and an Incinerator, but that pretty much only produces enough power to keep itself running.
Plus, if half the teams are coming from the US (with several others from India) unless they plan on cycling here I'm assuming that this, too, will generate emissions.
But, anyway, rather than being picky (much as I enjoy it) it is probably a good thing. Racing cars was popular long before the general public could afford them. And it was big events, like the TT (originally a car race over a completely different course) that made cars popular, accelerated the development and (at least in part) contributed to their becoming a mass-market product. These things always have to filter down from the top and, in this case, the top is motor-racing.
And, given that only a few weeks ago people were taking the piss and saying there were only going to be two bikes in this "race" (myself included), it is actually looking like a pretty good starting point. Well done to the IOM government (for once) for looking ahead and doing something different.
The key words are
"On the start line."
No mention of an actual race, then? Just a bunch of rolling mock-ups? An art show, if you will?
I'll be in the desert, watching the brits brew ~23 cups of tea per second, TYVM :-)
What? No smell of race fuel in the atmosphere? Lets hope its a while before this transfers to speedway racing. Hmm, Castrol R...please don't let them release a scratch and sniff card.
Leccy bikes work very well thanks
Yay! Leccy bikes - most excellent. There are plenty about, more than you might think from even this article. As if by stealth they are being designed and produced around the world - and some very good specimens can be had too. This race I can't wait to see.
I'm no tree hugger and like my dose of the ole unleaded as much as the next one. But commuter life for me has transformed with one of them thar Vectrix maxi scooters. A bit pricey to buy, but with a break-even of 1.2 years against by regular hack it was a complete no brainer.
If one wants to get all super-Green there are ways of running one of these completely without causing emissions - it has been done successfully already. But I'm quite content to do my bit for CO2 emission by using leccy sourced from coal/oil/gas/nuclear etc via the nashnul grid. My point is that we can better contain CO2 at the point of electricity production than we can from the tailpipe of the average car/bike. Whether we do or not is another matter entirely.
Hydrogen fuel cell? About as likely as LPG that got absolutely nowhere. The national grid is already up and running as a fuel distribution network. Why would we want to perpetuate shuttling liquid energy around our already congested roads?
Whats needed is vision, not perpetuation.
The unmistakeable sound of.....
Each bike is equipped with a 500W amplifier & stereo speakers to replicate the pleasure provided by the superb 1960's 6-cylinder Honda 250.
Another project for me
This fall/winter I am restoring my Honda CB400t. What that is done think I will start on an electric cycle. Maybe with a sidecar full of batteries.
Yeah Mick Grant!!!
On his electrisickle. he won't be leaping the island's hump backed Ballaugh bridge at the speeds he managed when he raced for Kawasaki back in the day...
That's what the noise sounds like on Sulby straight!
Change the tune.
Electricity generated in a power station is more fuel efficient than a million smaller combustion engines all giving off heat, vibrations and sound. Besides, electricity can and is often produced from renewables. In case you hadn't noticed.
Sounds like a good idea this race.
"I'm wondering whether they'll be incorporating kinetic energy recovery systems to make the most of the many many braking points throughout the 200+ corners on the circuit?"
Yeah, but they're only allowed to use them for 6.8 seconds each lap and they're limited to 80hp...
TT electric race is 1 lap
look at the TT website here for the race calendar
roll on june
All the details on the official site...
This is ground-breaking stuff (the electric bikes, not Mick Grant). I hope it works out.
I wish I could be there for this (and the noisy races too)!
@Danny Thompson, @David Wiernicki
Good lord. An American who doesn't have a 150 mile daily commute and can survive without air conditioning. I'm shocked!
"Hydrogen fuel cell? About as likely as LPG that got absolutely nowhere. "
I'd agree except for 1 thing. The very quick re-filling of an LH2 or LPG tank. I'd recommend looking at Voller (who got Kw size H2 & LPG fuel cells going) but they have ceased trading (http://www.voller-energy.com) and are looking for funding or a buyer, which sort of makes your point.. However most countries have a gas distro network and liquid or (liquefied gas) fuels do carry a lot of energy. Of them all LH2 is the biggest pig to make and store. It's true it *can* be derived by electrolysis of water. Its *very* unlikely to be in commercial use. But the whole stick-a-nozzle-into-a-tank *feels* like the right thing to do to car drivers. Even if the tank is at 5000psi (or -450F for LH2).
Change is inevitable in this area. After it takes place people will say the direction of that change was inevitable as well. Batteries, flywheels, LPG, H2, Methanol, lifetime nuclear battery (not a joke). I doubt it's ever that obvious while it's happening.
80hp on a bike at the right (6.8sec) moment could make quite a difference.
"80hp on a bike at the right (6.8sec) moment could make quite a difference."
David is talking about regenerative braking. When you consider that race bikes can pretty much lock up the wheels at will (not that you want to!), all that 6.8 sec of 80hp can do is recharge the battery a trifle. Might get you a few hundred extra yards at race speeds, but that's about it. My guess is that there would be added unsprung weight, which would make it more of a hinderance than a help, at least for racing.