The UK-designed e=motion will this week try to smash the land speed record for an electrically powered vehicle. The 10m-long electric car is due to mount its assault on the 245mph record on a road in Nevada.
The e=motion team also hopes to go a stage further and break the 300mph barrier in the speed trials, which will be overseen by motorsport’s governing body, the FIA.
The duo behind the car, Mark Newby and Colin Fallows, have already seen it break the unofficial UK all-electric record of 139mph. The car has no mechanical gears.
Main sponsor ABB has equipped e=motion with an industrial drive and two 50hp AC motors. Its direct torque control drive technology is used to provide acceleration across the whole speed range. A regenerative standard inverter converts the 600v DC output from the car’s four packs of 52 lead acid batteries into AC power for the twin motors.
To prevent overheating, each motor is adapted to include a forced ventilation system made up of a series of 24v DC fans. Sensors fitted to each motor winding will provide the team with real-time information about motor temperatures. To beat the world record e=motion will have to reach 252mph on two runs over a distance of 0.6 miles.
Weather permitting, the duo hope that by the end of this week they will have put behind them the disappointment of an earlier attempt on the salt flats of Tunisia, which had to be called off when the surface was declared unsafe.