An old friend familiar to every tech buff and sci-fi fan - namely, the circuitry-addling electropulse blaster - has moved a large step closer to reality, according to reports. A vehicle mounted pulse weapon capable of stopping a (modern) car at 200m is to be demonstrated "next month", apparently. Flight International has the …
If your steering becomes to heavy that it's impossible to steer, then something is seriously up with your car, or its moving very slowly and has very wide wheels and very high gearing. At any speed above 5mph, normal manoeuvring doesn't require *that* much effort.
Having first driven a few cars that had no power assisted steering at low speed, I'll give you a tip - ManTheFuckUp.
PS: I love power assisted steering - my god, parking is so much easier these days.
I've driven some bangers in my time, I drove a Volvo 240 with faulty power steering for about 6 months, tiny steering wheel, geared for power steering but it wasn't working. Still perfectly drivable, just learned to keep the car moving when trying to park, not 'dry steering' as everyone seems to do nowadays with PAS. (I would've fixed it but the car wasn't mine and a second hand PAS pump cost about what the car was worth!)
Also agree with the old Citroens, lose engine and you do lose all suspension and brakes (no emergency circuit at all). It does take a few moments before the pressure dies so more than enough time to stop the car.
I've had to knock the power off to coast towards petrol stations a few times in PAS cars (what can I say, I'm disorganised), and though noticably heavier than my first non-assisted jalopy, it's not exactly a massive challenge. Just requires a little more muscle force. My arms are like twigs, BTW... similarly a loss of brake servo. The wheels can still be locked (ABS tends to go as well), you just have to shove the pedal harder and further. But if you've lost all power AND managed to massage the pedal enough to lose the boost, you've only yourself to blame - it normally takes a couple of decent stabs to exhaust the leftover vacuum.
I can see it being a problem in trucks and buses, but not cars.
(This sort of thing is why I fear a fly-by-wire future, however - lose power, lose all control)
A note on explosives
Detonators, which tend to be one of the bits that are *very* difficult (and dangerous) to improvise are tested agains Electro Static Discharge. They are not meant to be set off by stray radio signals or lightning pulses IIRC.
However a device deliberatley designed to induce large, close range currents *should* do the trick.
The problem. Strong enough pulse to trigger the detonator from far enough away (either ahead or behind the vehicle) to avoid damage from the explosion you just caused.
By the time they get this perfected every vehicle will have a mandated "On Star" type setup, for your protection of course - in case of an accident we can call help for you and little spawn in the back seat. Never mind the very big brother potential behind the curtain. Already being marketed in the states as a safety device "stopping high speed chases."
Mines the one with the 30 year old Rx-7. No Computer, No ABS, No Airbags, No Problem....
What no one seems to have noticed
The source is a flying publication, not a motoring one. Think: range. Think: size of blaster: Think: well think what is the real story that is lurking here? (Hint: think Daily Fail). I have an airport a mile away. Not only is the perimeter unsecured, a main road goes directly under the runway.
Might be interesting to see used on speed cameras and Talivans :=)
Aim, fire, shoot foot
So they've got this gadget which will kill a (modern) car at 100 yards by frying its electronics, and they're going to put it in a modern fighter plane full of sophisticated electronics which keep it flying. So the nearest thing to this gadget when it goes off is going to be....
Or am I missing something?
(Paris, cos she's more decorative, less expensive, and considerably more useful)
Never mind cars, could we use this thing on Gatsos and other speed traps?
I want one.
Would be just the thing for that person right on my ass when I can't speed up due to the car in front of me.
Would also be nice to use on the overly aggressive cops that like to follow close at night with high-beams on.
Sun roof? House brick?
You don't have a sun-roof? If you do, just lob a house brick out... :)
So , what happens if I am driving a good old fashioned diesel engined car or truck with mechanical fuel pump and fuel injectors , no emp will kill that engine .
Such a weapon will stop my (used to have it, regret getting rid of the thing) 1980 Mercedes diesel ... exactly, ummm how? Other than the radio, the only electronics on board are the diodes and regulator IC in the alternator. Control of the engine is done by mechanical linkage and vacuum. It has a mechanical fuel injection pump, no electric fuel pump at all. Other than the lights and obviously the starter, it needs no electrical power at all. On a warm day, where the glow plugs may not be needed at start-up, it can be push or pull started, or roll started down a hill with only moderate effort.
I suppose if the Marines were to drop one of the prototype Eureka machines on it, it could do some minor damage, but I'm not entirely sure of THAT, even.
So, bad guys should start using older Mercedes and Volvo diesels! That's the way around that "weapon." (No smarts need apply. Even the door locks and shift lever are electronically controlled...)
but don't they do that already? Every other car in afghanistan footage seems to be something like that, or the ancient japanese equivalent. Why else do you think May had one in Botswana?
Only problem with your Merc 280D is that by the time you factor in the extra engine weight and the severe lack of rev-ability, you've got the accelerative power of an asthmatic slug ... reportedly an 850cc Seat Marbella can take it, on a good day. And consequent poor economy with the dwindling DERV supplies.
Still, if the roads are rubbish, you'll make about as much net progress in either of those as you would a supercharged V8 Hummer. Jagshemash!
Tomorrow's World gadget..
hmm, I remember watching that episode.
Now I could improve on that, by outfitting Mr R/C Drone car with:-machine vision, improved hybrid ceramic capacitor (think XREP on steroids), and a heat seeker. Locates hot engine block and fires automagically.
Half a dozen XREP projectiles bouncing round the engine compartment are going to give the electronics a REALLY REALLY bad day and hopefully cause enough collateral damage to bring the car to a halt faster than the wrong kind of snow on E*ros*ar.
(scuttles off to the Patent office)
AC, because I don't want to be "detained without charge"...