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Should EVs Make Artificial Sounds at Low Speeds?

Discussion in 'Electric Vehicles' started by Brent, Apr 10, 2008.

  1. Brent

    Brent Member

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    #1 Brent, Apr 10, 2008
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 8, 2013
    Bill requiring minimum auto sound levels expected - AutoWeek Magazine

    I find silly the idea that cars need a minimum sound level. To be sure, noise is helpful for the blind, and I have (stupidly) come to rely on it when crossing a street, but I've also been surprised many times by engine-in-back buses and bicycles. I think the solution is not to mandate noise levels but to educate people to look both ways before crossing. For the blind we need better crosswalk technology, such as the beeping walk signals Santa Monica uses.
     
  2. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Is there actually any evidence that hybrids are getting involved in a higher percentage of pedestrian accidents?

    If people are managing to get themselves knocked down by existing ICEs, surely this line of reasoning suggests that we should all be knocking holes in our exhaust silencers.
     
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  3. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    The Noise Pollution Lobby will be all over this...
     
  4. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    At least it sounds like they're doing some kind of study first. I don't mean to be insensitive, but it really sounds like a solution in search of a problem.

    We should also factor in the advantages of having a silent running car. (Language NSFW)
     
  5. SByer

    SByer '08 #383

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    I'm sorry, but to even have gotten as far as it has without any sort of valid data whatsoever, it's the darned lamest thing. Once inner cities are filled with plug-in and pure electrics, there won't be a problem, the "lack of noise" will be normal. Tire noise is more than enough.

    If there is some kind of continuous noise requirement I only hope that, like lame-ass DRLs, it'll be put on separate fuses so those of us who know better can immediately disable it.
     
  6. domenick

    domenick Nerd

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  7. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    You all know there is an elegant solution for this problem ......

    ....

    ....

    ....

    the noisy diesel generator!!

    You can even use it to recharge the batteries :-D

    Cobos
     
  8. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Of course! Set it to cut in every half a mile or so. It needn't charge the battery, just chug away making a noise.

    Failing that there's always baseball-cards-through-the-spokes-of-the-wheels :biggrin:
     
  9. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    #9 vfx, Apr 11, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2008
    The term "Noise Polluion" by itself has 1,410,000 hits on Google. Add words like "laws" and "organization" and it's clear that it is a problem. that people have identified. The very idea of adding noise to a silent car is insane. These quiet people need to step in here (hear?) and stop this madness.

    I dashed off a note to these guys: Right to Quiet Society - Home Page


    This is a clip that I pulled from the search had a noise causing death:
    Dying for some quiet: The truth about noise pollution - health - 22 August 2007 - New Scientist

    Dying for some quiet: The truth about noise pollution
    • 22 August 2007
    • Andy Coghlan
    • Magazine issue 2618
    FRANK PARDUSKI SENIOR could arguably qualify as the world's first anti-noise martyr. He died on 5 June in Lancaster county, Pennsylvania, while attempting to slow down a 19-year-old motorcyclist who had been speeding back and forth outside Parduski's house. On impact, the 82-year-old was thrown 10 metres and died at the scene from multiple injuries.
    Parduski's death came as a result of his sheer frustration at being subjected to unwanted noise. However, alarming new evidence from the World Health Organization (WHO) suggests that thousands more people around the world may be dying prematurely or succumbing to disease through the more insidious effects of chronic noise exposure.
    Though preliminary, the WHO's findings suggest that long-term exposure to traffic noise may account for 3 per cent of deaths from ischaemic heart disease in Europe - typically heart attacks. Given that 7 million people around the globe die each year from heart disease, ...
     
  10. tonybelding

    tonybelding Active Member

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    A few days ago I found myself at the gas pump, and there was a Prius at the next pump just a few feet away. As I got started filling my car, I turned in time to see the Prius starting to roll away. I hadn't even known there was anybody in it, it was spooky -- but very cool. :cool:

    I look forward to startling a few people that way too. Except, I suppose, it'll have to be somewhere other than at the gas pump. :wink:
     
  11. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    Does Very Orange count as Loud?
     
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  12. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    lol!









    .
     
  13. Cobos

    Cobos S60 owner since 2013

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    Definately :)

    Cobos


    PS: To be slightly ontopic, I know many of the french EVs has a double set of horns where the second one is a lot softer. As I'm on a tangent here anyway, a bit like our trams which has a bell like horn they use to get pedestrians to stop crossing the street, and also a really really noisy airhorn which they rarely use.
     
  14. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    Yeah, I (and others) have mentioned the dual horn idea in the past. Would be really useful particularly in those parking lot situations when you want to alert someone to your presence without seeming like a total ass. I seem to remember someone mentioning this as a feature on the EV1... like a gentle 'bonk' noise you'd get if you flashed the high beams or something (I might be mistaken). Anyhow it's a good idea. Don't know if Tesla has implemented anything like that, but it seems they haven't.
     
  15. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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  16. insndrvr

    insndrvr Member

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    A good possible solution would be to have some sort of short range transmitter on each vehicle. Then a small pocket sized device can be used to detect of an approaching vehicle, either with an audible or vibrational response, I am sure it could even work to give a sense of direction from which the vehicle is approaching by sampling the signal over a few milliseconds.

    This could also be used in conjunction with other safety systems, you could have a receiver on your bike to alert you if a vehicle is approaching from behind you, or if one is coming up to a cross street that you are approaching. Cars themselves could use receivers to detect and display for the driver where other cars are and which direction they are moving. Ultimately this type of system could be used in the situations that they proposed in the series Future Car where cars are automated and use all sorts of data to know where they can and can't go.

    There won't be a day when suddenly ever car is automated, but if the non-automated cars could transmit their presence and direction, the automated systems could make adjustments for these vehicles, giving them more space and more time to respond.

    Making cars noisy is a "band-aid" fix to a bigger problem, and American politicians seem to be really good at trying to pass laws to fix the symptoms of real problems, instead of trying to find the root cause and address that.
     
  17. BBHighway

    BBHighway Member

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    They will probably pass a law that requires installation of those backup beepers, except they will run all the time, not just for backing up. Some airports have electric shuttles that beep continuously whenever they are running.

    If I have to listen to a constant beep-beep-beep while I drive around in my sports car, I'll cancel my order!

    This would be a good roundabout way for the oil industry and conventional ICE automakers to crush the EV industry before it gets too big
     
  18. doug

    doug Administrator / Head Moderator

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    #18 doug, Apr 17, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2008
    The end of the AP video suggests lawmakers are eager to do something now even without a study. Help me Jebus.


    EDIT: Sorry, I listened to the vid again and it said "car makers" not "lawmakers."

    "Car makers say they are anxious to address the issue, and the study may not even be necessary."
     
  19. malcolm

    malcolm Active Member

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    #19 malcolm, Apr 17, 2008
    Last edited: Apr 17, 2008
    Okaaay....

    So why don't we take the sound that the electric car makes normally and simply send it out in front of the vehicle in some sort of cone-shaped distribution pattern?

    USA Today

    Shape and direction of the distribution cone could be orientated for curb-side pedestrians at distances appropriate to, say, 30-40 mph.

    Essentially, the car is louder from the front as it approaches you - sound levels could be matched to existing ICE vehicles, although the quality of the sound will be distinctively different. This would only require a smaller increase in sound energy since it is focussed where it is needed, rather than having to substantially increase the sound energy all around in order to get enough of it directed ahead of the vehicle. It could even be set so that the car DOESN'T get louder as it approaches you - interesting experiment - but not good safety.

    I'm sure a few enterprising individuals would want to play their car stereos through it. Knight Rider Theme? Al Gore speeches? Jet aircraft? Ocean surf?? Whale songs???? But the system will probably have to sound "motor-ish". :)

    Wouldn't have to be on all the time, either. Above a certain speed, wind and tyre noise will make any car noisy enough (in any case, blind people don't need to cross freeways). The system could cut in when speeds drop below 45mph(?) or cut out altogether if it detects another vehicle a few yards ahead.

    At really slow speeds (below 10mph?) it wouldn't be needed either as the driver should be able to stop in time. So the volume could rise and fall as the car picks up speed from 10 to 45.

    Presumably the people inside the vehicle would still experience the same dB levels as in an unmodified EV.
     
  20. vfx

    vfx Well-Known Member

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    There are 250 million cars, quickly expanding to the 300 million population in the US.

    Would you like every car on the road making noise or would you have them transmit a silent signal that is received by a box that is carried by one of the 10 million blind in the US? It could "point" to passsing cars by vibrating or beeping.
     

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