Tennessee College Plug-In Hybrid Concept Seeking Commercial Backing

A group of five Middle Tennessee State University students and their engineering professor, Dr. Charles Perry, are seeking to transition their bolt-on plug-in hybrid system from a proven concept in the field to a commercially viable product.

An un-named backer has stepped forward with reportedly strong support to see the idea through for fleet use initially.

The system is estimated to add maybe $3,000 to the cost of a vehicle and could be used around town to augment mileage by at least 50 percent, if not run in all-electric mode for 100-percent fuel savings.

Perry holds the Russell Chair of Manufacturing, and has previously come up with 40 patented ideas while working 28 years for IBM.

Wheel-hub-motor-retrofit-kit

“The whole point was to demonstrate the feasibility of adding the electrical motor to the rear wheel of the car without changing the brakes, bearings, suspension – anything mechanical,” Perry said.

The Honda test mule uses lithium-ion batteries to drive two 200-pound-feet torque three-phase DC brushless permanent magnet motors on the rear wheels that are much like the Protean motors reported yesterday, and which in fact are a very old idea dating back to the early 20th century, and now revived.

This iteration of the wheel-hub motor concept is distinguished by a very svelte design that is integrated as part of the rear-wheel’s brake hub, and “visually transparent” from the outside of the mounted wheel. As you’d expect, the size of battery required would depend on applications.

His financial backer is “totally committed to us,” he said, and will accompany him on presentations seeking further support.

“We have gained proof of concept in terms of feasibility,” he said. “We need quite a bit of money to have proof of product. What we’ve achieved is a demonstrated technology, not a proven technology. Investors want to see proven field-tested performance and reliability. We have to pass through this transition, from feasibility to true, viable product.”

MTSU via CleanTechnica


  • Ralphie

    I wonder if these would work on all wheel drive cars? I’d love to boost my Audi’s MPG.

  • Jerry

    9-7-12

    Hello Dr Perry

    Good day !!!

    Your Plug in Hybrid Concept is awesome !!!!!

    It will surely turn out to be the invention that will set the
    benchmark for the automotive industry worldwide.

    Thumbs up !!!!!

    J. Lim
    Manila, Philippines

  • Bill Garrison

    Dr. Perry,
    Have you heard of kickstart.com? It is a different way to get financial support for projects like yours. Where conventional funding comes from a few large investors, kickstart.com engages the entire web community to seek smaller individual contributions which can add up to millions in just a few weeks. I know there are millions out there who would go crazy for the opportunity to help get your invention to the open public market. It is certainly worth investigating. By the way, if you want to try your invention on an older vehicle, my 1984 toyota van would love to volunteer :) Have you considered how this concept might transfer its benefits to a houseboat scenario? there are thousands of boaters going crazy trying to find economical ways to run their boats with alternative methods of propulsion.

  • Dan Taylor

    Hi Dr. Perry,

    Interesting concept! And very timely. Would you be able to use this with rear disc brakes? Would it work on AWD vehicles? I have been doing my own brakes for about 25 years and can see that you have thought this through so as to make for an easy installation. I would be interested in this. I have a 2002 Lexus RX 300 (AWD) and believe it would be a perfect vehicle for your application.

    Thanks in advance,

    Dan Taylor

  • Dan Taylor

    Hi Dr. Perry,

    Interesting concept! And very timely. Would you be able to use this with rear disc brakes? Would it work on AWD vehicles? I have been doing my own brakes for about 25 years and can see that you have thought this through so as to make for an easy installation. I would be interested in this. I have a 2002 Lexus RX 300 (AWD) and believe it would be a perfect vehicle for your application.

    Thanks in advance,

    Dan Taylor

  • Matt S

    Will this kit work on a car with rear disc brakes?

  • DENNIS SZYMANSKI

    dr. perry

    hi!

    how would you like to install your hybrid device on my 2011 chevy malibu. i’ll pay for it. it would great
    advertising for your device.

    dennis

  • tman

    If this kit works with both rear disc brakes and drum they will be in business. It would appear that it would work easily with rear disc since the kit rotor would serve as a platform for the rear disc to mount on . In any event even at 3k, this kit is a steal since given an electric brushless motor will likely last the not only the lifetime of a car, but the person. Thus you could swap most if not all the parts when you buy a new car. Possibly only replacing the battery pack, and maybe have an adapter plate for the rear wheel bolt pattern. This invention could be pure gold when you amortize the cost, benefit over the life of the owner.

  • Jan

    Hi,Dr Perry:
    It’s great to see this news publish and I was been thought about it every since the gas prise went higher and higher!!!but since I’m a female and I don’t have the tech to test it. I use too wishing this tech were came as quick as like the iphone population^_^..^_^!
    now, it happen.I even share this on my facebook page to tell all my friends and family about it!!!
    I have a 2006 Land Rover/LR3 Suv car. and would like to use your tech install it to my car.so my question is does the tech you creat can help on my gas bill or maybe need to wait for while since that’s suv car???and have you had any related store already learn this tech in my local area which sacramento,CA???Tks!!!

  • Steve Bullock

    Why not beef up the vehicle’s alternator to charge the battery?
    Seems like a logical alternative and eliminates (mostly) the plug. Also, a golf cart has regenerative braking, why not your system?

  • Steve Bullock

    Why not beef up the vehicle’s alternator to charge the battery?
    Seems like a logical alternative and eliminates (mostly) the plug. Also, a golf cart has regenerative braking, why not your system?

  • Keay Edwards

    Dr. Perry as an engineer I am very interested in your kit idea. How much progress have you made and how can I contact you directly. Also does your system automatically disengage when breaking? Do you have any write-ups on the system?

    I look forward to hearing from you.

    Thank you,
    Keay Edwards

  • Vue

    Dr. Perry, kudos to you and your team. I like the concept of using a compact design to adapt to current vehicles. This product will do very well in Portland, Oregon since we are a environmentaly freindly state.

    Very intested on when it will be avaliable to the public?

    Thanks for your time and hope to hear from you.

    Vue

  • Harold Keown

    Dr. Perry

    I recently purchased a 2012 Prius V. My dream car is a plug in HEV Prius V. Since my car has a battery pacck and controllers would your system work someday on my car as Toyota has decided to not pursue plug in cars but manufacture a Hyddrogen fuel cell vehicle in 2015. Thank you for and consideration. I would happily pay for the rear wheel system.
    Harold

  • Harold Keown

    Dr. Perry

    I recently purchased a 2012 Prius V. My dream car is a plug in HEV Prius V. Since my car has a battery pacck and controllers would your system work someday on my car as Toyota has decided to not pursue plug in cars but manufacture a Hyddrogen fuel cell vehicle in 2015. Thank you for and consideration. I would happily pay for the rear wheel system.
    Harold