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Will Your Next Car Be Covered In Morphing Dimples? 138

cartechboy writes Golfing and cars, not much in common there. But that's about to change thanks to a new technology from a research lab at MIT called Smorphs. The idea is simple: put a set of dynamic dimples on the exterior of a car to improve its surface aerodynamics and make it slipperier, and therefore faster. Pedro Reis is the mechanical engineering and research spearheading this project. A while ago Mythbusters proved the validity of the dimpled car form in a much more low-tech way. The concept uses a hollow core surrounded by a thick, deformable layer, and a smoother outer skin. When vacuum is applied, the outer layers suck in to form the dimples. The technology is only in its very earliest stages, but we could see this applied to future vehicles in an effort to make them faster and more fuel efficient.
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Will Your Next Car Be Covered In Morphing Dimples?

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  • by Max_W ( 812974 ) on Friday July 25, 2014 @03:11AM (#47529189)
    It is a lot. Why car industry does not make cars like this?
  • by Pentium100 ( 1240090 ) on Friday July 25, 2014 @04:59AM (#47529483)

    Because it looks ugly. Also, the laws in my country limit the maximum speed to 130km/h, so I don't care that denting the car will make it faster - I can break the law already if I want (my not very aerodynamic car made in 1982 with 80kW gasoline engine running on LPG can go at around 165km/h (and going 35km/h over the limit would result in a huge fine)), I do not really need a faster car). Also, saving 11% money on fuel but having to buy a new car would not pay off unless you drive a lot.

  • by CauseBy ( 3029989 ) on Friday July 25, 2014 @12:26PM (#47532195)

    It's true that Euro cars go a little farther on the same gasoline. In America we weigh the tradeoff between safety and fuel efficiently differently than they do in Europe. That's why many European cars aren't allowed on America's roads, because they don't meet our standards. The Euro-built cars on American roads are designed to meet America's higher safety standards. Likewise, American cars don't meet some European standards, but not because of safety.

    Are Euro cars really faster? I have a hard time believing that. Don't you guys have teensy tiny little bitty cars and trucks? It's hard to imagine them keeping up with American cars doing 95 miles per hour on interstate highways.

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