60,000 RPM? Yes please.

Understanding the broad stokes of current electric hybrid Kinetic Energy Regeneration Systems (KERS) is pretty straight forward. They are electrical motors that augment gas engines. Electrical motors become generators when use for braking; they recapture kinetic energy.

The engineers at Flybrid Systems are taking a less traveled road. They are storing energy by spinning a flywheel at just shy of the speed of light.

Flybrid 60,000 RPM? Yes please.

The system captures energy from the drive train when the driver lets off the gas. Instead of friction brakes clamping down on the spinning disc rotor, that torque is used to accelerate the flywheel. That kinetic is stored in the spinning flywheel, to be released back into the drive train when you hit the throttle.

As torque is delivered back to the drive train the flywheel slows down. When the driver slows, the kinetic energy is used to spin the flywheel faster, adding drag to the drive train that feels like braking.

Flybrid schematic 450x353 60,000 RPM? Yes please.

Right now mechanical KERS it’s used mostly in racing cars (but not Formula 1 which uses electrical energy storage) but it has been deployed to some capital vehicles like buses and garbage trucks.

One massive advantage to mechanical hybrid systems is that you can retro-fit existing vehicles without redesigning them from the ground up; it’s a sort of bolt-on solution. From a conservation perspective it is far preferable to increase the efficiency of existing vehicles rather than consuming additional resources necessary to build another vehicle from the ground up, so cheers to you, Flybrid.

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How to turn a shovel into an AK-47

01 450x600 How to turn a shovel into an AK 47

Time to shovel some bitches.

Some people are worried that you might be able to one day 3D print a gun. I wonder how they feel about this.

Because fo’ sho’, this dude turned a shovel into a rifle. This rifle:

54 450x299 How to turn a shovel into an AK 47

Vodka necessary for making rails look straight.

Now I have a couple of qualms, like it doesn’t have a real handguard and that’s gonna be a problem, and he didn’t heat-treat the shovelreceiver after he stamped it.

But seeing how he pretty much did it with an angle grinder and a hammer, I gotta cut slack where it’s due.

You can read the whole log here, it’s entertaining.

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That’s un-possible!

Using a laser to print metal parts. This is science-friggin-fiction. Of course it’s NASA who is putting it to the test, ’cause well, they can be awesome. Now to get the SLS program on the fast track.

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Rebuilding Belle

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“Nothing like how violent it looks”

Shinya Kimura sums up the feeling of both creating and pushing the limits of speed. The serenity of being totally present is the reward.

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Slow Mo Sunday Saturn V

30 seconds of Apollo 11 launch footage becomes 8 minutes of pure awesome at 500 FPS.

The Saturn V rocket is the most powerful vehicle ever made. It is also the loudest; the vibrations caused by the sound of a Saturn V rocket will cause heart cavitation and a horrible death. The camera filming all of this, never moves, and doesn’t skip a frame while running just a few feet from the epicenter of bedlam.

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