wind turbines

wind turbines

they should instal wind turbines at the front of the car for the noise that is gonna be required as a warning to pedestrians. could also add to charging the car while driving.
could be installed in a way so they would be hidden. They could adjust the pitch of the turbines to create ideal sound.

more power!!!

Frank99 | 12 januari 2017

>>>could also add to charging the car while driving

Unfortunately, physics is pretty unforgiving on this subject. Any turbine you add will add more drag than it will generate electricity. It may not seem like that should be true, it may seem like you should be able to design a turbine or place it such that it generates more electricity than it does drag, but you can't.

That doesn't mean you couldn't use one as a siren - old style air raid and police sirens were a motor-driven turbine - but that means the noise would get louder as you drove faster. Fortunately the NHTSA rule only requires noisemakers up to about 20 mph, then they can turn off.

Red Sage ca us | 12 januari 2017

Yet another perpetual stopping machine post. Yay.

The Law of Conservation of Energy -- 6th Grade Science
[ YouTube -- s409AG5dZ28 ]

JHB10 | 13 januari 2017

No, this is not a perpetual motion post, this is a perpetual noise post :)

dave.m.mcdonough | 13 januari 2017

no, they shouldn't. lol.

andy.connor.e | 13 januari 2017

The force needed to spin the turbine is implemented as drag on the car. For instance JUST AS SOMETHING TO REFERENCE, if 300newtons of force on the turbine generated 200Watts, the turbine would be putting 300newtons of force on your car as drag. So yes you are generating 200Watts from the turbine, but your car is also expending 200Watts to counter the drag force of the turbine. Sorry but physics doesnt work that way.

SamO | 13 januari 2017

I guess all propeller airplanes ✈️ Can fly forever too ;-)

dsvick | 13 januari 2017

"I guess all propeller airplanes ✈️ Can fly forever too ;-)"

+100 - LOL!!

Red Sage ca us | 13 januari 2017

SamO: +42! EXCELSIOR! The Ultimate Answer to the Ultimate Question of Life, the Universe, and Everything about "Why Was It So Important to Stay Awake in 10th Grade Physics Class?"

ColoDriver | 13 januari 2017

It doesn't work that way. Eventually the wind stops blowing and the plane runs out of fuel. Then they have to bring out a really really long ladder to get people down. That's why planes circle airports at low altitude.

andy.connor.e | 13 januari 2017

this is fun to read now

dave.m.mcdonough | 13 januari 2017

did you know you can mount a magnet to the front bumper, then hang another magnet in front of it? Put that plane on a treadmill!

andy.connor.e | 13 januari 2017

If you want to save fuel, i give you advice in courtesy of "get out and push".

Silv_c | 13 januari 2017

Ruthless hahaha thanks for the lesson all.

Lorem Ipsum | 13 januari 2017

Of course turbines wouldn't work, but that magnet on the bumper thing... Huh...

Bighorn | 13 januari 2017

If the wind stops, can't you reverse the propeller with the energy stored in the rubber band?

Ross1 | 13 januari 2017

There is an old known trick:
Hang a carrot in front, the donk will just keep on going and going and going.

Imagine how fast your Tesla would go with a whole bag of carrots in front!

KP in NPT | 13 januari 2017

"Ruthless hahaha thanks for the lesson all."

Welcome to the forum, @Silv_c ;-)

Ross1 | 13 januari 2017

but what does it mean?

Rocky_H | 13 januari 2017

@Ross, Heh, ICP reference?

science-isbetter | 14 januari 2017

Here's to hoping the questions are legitimate and not just recycled. Odd that Silv_c and Silb3r are both asking about wind turbines.

Here's the updated (and by no means complete) list:
Bert 19431
Michael Wanamaker 12/23/2016 (Magnetic generators for electric cars).
Silb3r 1/3/2017 (Wind Turbines)
JustinFrench 1/8/2017 (Generator on the Wheels)
Silv_c 1/12/2017 (Wind Turbines)

topher | 14 januari 2017

"If you want to save fuel, i give you advice in courtesy of "get out and push"."

Food is fuel. And at the moment in America, it takes 10 times the energy in fossil fuels to produce a given amount of energy in food (solar is not even counted in that). Horrifying. [yes, I know it was a joke. I am not picking on Andy.]

Thank you kindly.

djharrington | 14 januari 2017

I went through a phase converting things like tacos and candy bars to miles I could drive the MS or FocusEV. I find it amazing how efficient the cars are at movement efficiency.

For example, if I eat two Big Macs, I could run ~10 miles on that energy (~1100 Cal). If I could feed my cars Big Macs, that 1100 Cal would equate to ~1.3kWh (assuming no losses); getting the following miles of driving:
Model S: 5 miles
Focus EV: almost 8 miles

Giving the mass difference between me and the cars, it's amazing how far they go on the energy!

Ross1 | 15 januari 2017

So, 120 Big Macs would be lighter and smaller than the Tesla battery pack...but you would probably require an exhaust pipe for emissions. can always cheat!

dave.m.mcdonough | 15 januari 2017

You guys make an excellent point, replacing the driver's seat with an exercise bike could turn big mac's into battery charge!

Tiebreaker | 15 januari 2017

Who said hamsters?

Ross1 | 16 januari 2017

Let's hijack this thread. It was stoopid to begin with.

Dont hamsters come out of the Gigafactory when it is finished?
Was it 200 million, I forget?

djharrington | 16 januari 2017

I thought more like 50 billion

dsvick | 16 januari 2017

I thought hamsters only came with the Kia Soul.

TSLA01 | 16 januari 2017

@Silv_c - For all of you who are pretending to know physics and are hammering the poor guy, open your mind a bit.

Imagine few small turbines, about 6 inches in diameter, embedded on the lower part of the bumper. They spin as you go due to wind force / car moving. Air moves through and exists the car at the bottom through a channel, so very minimal drag. With the turbines spinning, it will generate x power back to the battery. This is sort of like regen. braking.

An Engineer...

dsvick | 16 januari 2017

@TSLA01 - "Imagine few small turbines, about 6 inches in diameter, embedded on the lower part of the bumper. They spin as you go due to wind force / car moving. Air moves through and exists the car at the bottom through a channel, so very minimal drag. With the turbines spinning, it will generate x power back to the battery. This is sort of like regen. braking.

An Engineer..."

And if that would really work you have just invented a perpetual motion vehicle. All you need to do is file your patent and rake in the money. I'll not be holding my breath ...

andy.connor.e | 16 januari 2017


Maybe you should go back and take ELEC101. Because you are not understanding basic highschool physics.

djharrington | 16 januari 2017

Not to start a pissing match, but you've just illustrated why physicists ideate the invention, and then ask the engineers to design/build it.

mntlvr23 | 16 januari 2017

I think that what the perpetual motion people are saying, is that if a car is going to have drag anyway, you might as well try to harness some of the lost energy.

And what the physics people are saying is that, although you will have to have some losses due to drag, mechanisms to capture this energy will further increase the drag - and that the energy captured will always be less than the increase in energy needed above and beyond what is needed in the more aerodynamic (non-capturing) profile. ie - Perpetual Motion mechanisms defy the laws of physics.

topher | 16 januari 2017

"open your mind" (also known as "let your brain fall out") the rallying cry of people who want to believe something that has been shown to be impossible. Like "trust me", "you need to have faith" it is a sure sign that what follows is a lie.

Thank you kindly.

TSLA01 | 16 januari 2017

@dsvick @andy.connor.e @topher

1- I said nothing about a perpetual machine
2- I described nothing of a perpetual machine
3- There are already concepts about that out there
4- The small turbines will operate via wind movement, they don't need power from the battery
5- I never said they will give unlimited miles, I said x power.
6- You guys need to get your heads out of your a**

SamO | 16 januari 2017

7. TESLA is a thinking person's car. Not all are suited for ownership.

TSLA01 | 16 januari 2017

Exactly what I described earlier, for all those who are arguing.What a bunch...

Just look up Patent US 8710789

RP3 | 16 januari 2017

you mean that patent by the same guy that did this?

andy.connor.e | 16 januari 2017


You are forgetting the basic fundamental laws of physics. The force the turbine gets from the moving air is the same force it will put on the car. Meaning, if the turbine generates 50W of power from the wind, the car is going to require 50W extra to maintain its speed. Please learn physics.

dsvick | 16 januari 2017

OK, yes, you are absolutely right, if you install little wind turbines, or even large ones) you will generate energy that can be stored in the battery. However, the amount of drag that those turbines, regardless of the size, create will result in more energy lose than is gained.

Unless, by wind power, you mean that the car is not being driven and is just sitting still in the wind and the turbines are converting that into energy. Yes, that'll work. Of course you'll need to cover them up when you start driving ....

TSLA01 | 16 januari 2017

@andy.connor.e - "Please learn physics"

haha, please teach me. I forgot that YOU have already done the analysis and determined with the quantity of little wind turbines, their outpu kW, the channel design to re-route the air flow out (which would minimize the drag significantly), power generated while vehicle moving downhill (when Drag is not important), the aerodynamics of the car and the turbines position, the potential power it can generate when the car is parked, losses to convert power from mechanical to electrical, That Power in from turbines is < Power required due to additional drag.

I'm a mechanical engineer and have done fluid dynamics analysis and work with energy savings / generation projects on a daily basis. Half of you people on here think they know it all. Why don't you go work for Tesla? I'm sure Elon would love your enthusiasm and quick analysis based on words thrown on a blog. I love it.

dsvick | 16 januari 2017

"...Power in from turbines is < Power required due to additional drag." Sorry, you may not say it specifically, but what that is describing is a perpetual motion machine.

But it looks like you're actually saying that it has be going downhill or parked facing the wind in order to do what you say ... most of us drive in the real world though where we can't always match those conditions and where physics can't be worked around by tiny turbines.

Frank99 | 16 januari 2017

As an ME working on fluid dynamics, you have a lot of credibility in my eyes. But look through mine for a moment...

The document wants to create a duct that transfers air from a high-pressure area in a poorly (in an aerodynamic sense) designed grill to a low-pressure area where the air can smoothly leave the vehicle, then extract energy from the air flowing through the duct. The engineer in me suggests that they'd get significantly less drag by removing the turbine that they use to generate electricity, and letting the air flow smoothly through the nice duct they've designed.

Any help to make this more obvious to me?

pete3442 | 16 januari 2017

@TSLA01: you were closest above when you said "This is sort of like regen. braking." You are spot on in that regen breaking works by slowing the car down and converting that kinetic energy back into energy stored in the battery. In the same way, your wind turbines could convert movement of the car back into energy by increasing drag (which would slow the car down).

If you could deploy these turbines only in situations like you now mention (down hill and at rest) they could be a net positive. However, there is already regen braking (which is likely more efficient and definitely easier to modulate) and the net gains of wind while stationary are likely minimal at best (there is a reason windmills are so big).

If you just left the turbines deployed all the time, they would cause a net loss of energy due to inefficiencies and loss. For every downhill (where drag increase could help, like regen), there is an uphill where it does matter. For every headwind turning the turbines, there is a tail wind slowing them.

It might help to think of it this way for a flat road. Imagine that you hook a motor (driven by battery A) directly to a turbine. The motor turns the turbine and generates electrical charge stored in battery B. However, you can never, ever get more energy into battery B than you are taking out of battery A (that would give you a perpetual motion machine). Now, in your example, you are doing the same thing. The only difference is that, instead of connecting the motor directly to the turbine, you are using the motor to push the turbine through air to generate the charge. The same limitation apply though, because whatever force is applied to the turbine by the air is still supplied directly by the motor (because that is what is pushing it into the air).

El Mirio | 16 januari 2017

to me that sounds like a form of regen using wind turbines, meaning the turbines would only be exposed (open flaps) in deceleration phase, A good ROI sounds rather hard to achieve considering tesla has already regen, also probably noisy.

Rutrow | 16 januari 2017

Turbines for deceleration would reduce the amount of regen energy available for the wheels. Since the turbines would have more slip than the wheels would (much more positive connection to the driving force) there would be a reduced amount of regen power delivered to the battery than you'd have from wheels braking only.

Except in a headwind... huh...

(let the thread continue!)

Badbot | 16 januari 2017

" dsvick | January 16, 2017 I thought hamsters only came with the Kia Soul."

Dsvick you are WRONG a billion times GIGAFACTORY !

dsvick | 16 januari 2017

So as long as we're going downhill in a headwind we can drive forever ....

dsvick | 16 januari 2017

"Dsvick you are WRONG a billion times GIGAFACTORY "

Damn, wrong again ... :)

Rocky_H | 16 januari 2017

@TSLA01, Perhaps this will help you to understand. You want to collect energy from the motion of the car. That is kinetic energy. The equation for kinetic energy is 1/2 mV^2. Notice that the mass and velocity are the two quantities involved. Since you are not dissolving part of the mass of the car, by definition you would be reducing the velocity of the car by the energy those turbines are taking.

So to get that velocity back and keep the speed steady, you have to push the accelerator pedal harder. That is pulling more energy from the battery, running it through a motor/generator to put back into kinetic energy. Notice how that is the exact reverse of the process of the turbines just to replace the energy they are collecting? It's a closed loop. Whatever energy you could gather from any kind of turbine/alternator/generator by definition requires you to continually provide at least that much extra energy out of the battery to keep the speed steady. You can never gain anything.

This isn't just that someone hasn't quite fine-tuned to engineering to get it working right. This is actually provable with formulas and everything exactly why this cannot ever happen.