The electronic propulsion system for the Lunar Roving Vehicle was built by GM's Delco Electronics Corporation -- as a major subcontractor to Boeing. The Lunar Rover was used by astronauts Scott and Irvin to explore the moon's surface on July 31, 1971. Each of the vehicle's four wheels was powered by separate 1/4 horsepower electric motors connected by a harmonic drive mechanism. Silver zinc batteries were used.
On October 31, 1987, the solar-charged electric powered GM Sunraycer sprinted at over 70 miles an hour across the continent of Australia to win the inaugural World Solar challenge. Designed and fabricated by Hughes Aircraft, the vehicles used silicon solar cells as well as gallium arsenide cells. Batteries were 68 rechargeable silver zinc cells. The Magnequench motor, designed and built by GM Research Laboratories, used super-strength rare-earth iron-based permanent magnets.
In the GM EV1, a 137 horsepower AC induction motor converts energy stored in a battery pack into the torque needed for propulsion. The EV1 motor is computer controlled, quiet, and weighs only 150 pounds. Acceleration from 0-60 takes less than nine seconds. EV1 gets its energy from 26 valve-regulated lead-acid batteries. The two-seat commuter-type vehicle is being marketed by Saturn retailers in four western areas: Los Angeles, San Diego, Phoenix, and Tucson.(NAPSI)
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