Thursday, March 10, 2011

French Hybrid Design Study Uses Wind Turbines To Recharge Batteries

Remember a few years ago when every wannabe gangsta was buying those awful “spinner” alloys for their beat up old Chevys and Oldsmobiles? Well, French artist and teacher Thierry Dumaine (who sounds like a character from a historical romance) has taken the concept of the spinner and applied it to an imaginary hydrid he calls the Ventile.

It’s all very simple. You know those bicycles that have pedal powered lights? Same principle, though in this case the fans are turned by the circular motion of the wheels and not by being affixed to the wheels themselves.

The fans power a generator that helps recharge the Ventile’s batteries. I don’t know how well this would work in the real world, mostly due to the Law of Conservation of Energy, but really who cares.

The Ventile is a sweet looking ride; sort of like the result of a 1930’s Ford being reinvented by MINI. There’s also a large underbody fan that is turned by air rushing over the vehicle’s underside; a far more realistic prospect for energy production. It’s not unlike that wind turbine car those two Germans used to cross Australia a few weeks back.

Dumaine’s creation was an entrant in the 2011 Michelin’s Challenge Design showcase, an annual exhibition of new automotive design talent on the web. You can check out our gallery below.

By Tristan Hankins


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