Propeller-Drive CAR has VANE Control (Sep, 1931)

Propeller-Drive CAR has VANE Control

CARRYING the development of air driven automobiles a step farther, Emil Sohn, a Berlin aviation engineer, has invented a motor car that secures high flexibility of control from power of an airplane motor and twin propellers located in the rear, in the position of the rumble seat.

The propellers are mounted horizontally, the windstream being directed by means of adjustable vanes like the blades of a steam turbine. The powerful windstream tends to push the car forward at a tremendous speed when the vanes are set for “forward,” that is, slanting toward the rear. To go in reverse, the vanes are slanted forward, so that wind-stream pushes the car backward.

Chief among the advantages offered by this method of propulsion are: utmost economy; the ability to climb steep mountain grades; smooth passage over roughest of roads; and the elimination of all danger of skidding on wet or icy streets, due to downward pressure on wheels exerted by upward windstream.

  1. M.S.W says: March 10, 20109:25 am

    Would hate to be behind this vehicle on a dirt road.

  2. Eamonn says: March 10, 20109:31 am

    Well, I suppose it’s better than one of the ones with the huge exposed blades. So to reverse does someone have to get out and push?

  3. Eamonn says: March 10, 20109:33 am

    Never mind. Just goes to show I should pay better attention when I’m reading.

  4. Myles says: March 10, 20109:41 am

    I call BS on “utmost economy.“

  5. Jonas F says: March 10, 20109:46 am

    That looks like a -very- fuel efficient design! Or not..

  6. Don says: March 10, 20109:48 am

    @Myles: I’ll see your “BS” and call more BS on the rest, too. Including “the elimination of all danger of skidding”; I’m thinking the downward pressure is pretty small and would have minimal effect . . . .

  7. KD5ZS says: March 10, 201011:13 am

    At least it would be relatively easy to use an air cooled engine. Hey! they did do that; it was called a VW. Home built airplanes using VW air cooled engines have been made for years.

  8. Charlie says: March 10, 201012:08 pm

    Your comments remind me of the legendary Volkswaffe…

  9. pryapart says: March 11, 201010:37 am

    “the ability to climb steep mountain grades”…I don’t think so. I’d be surprised if the thing moves at all, much less up anything with a grade to it. And what about when it rains or snows – the aerodynamics on the vanes would be compromised. The only thing this would be good for is a nice breeze on a hot summer day. It’s interesting that we only see drawings of these type of ideas and not a working model. Yeah, msw, I can also see how fun it would be to be behind one of these things on a dirt road!

  10. Myles says: March 11, 201012:16 pm

    Propellers are not as efficient as direct drive for a land vehicle. They are at least doubling this inefficiency by then redirecting this airflow sideways. I guess quadrupling the loss is more likely. I would also be surprised if it moved at all.

  11. Jari says: March 11, 20104:04 pm

    “Thrust! I went over my calculations, hen, and I forgot the key element missing is thrust!”

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