Sector: CNG

Blade - CNG runner

Divergent Microfactories, a small company from San Francisco, has unveiled a prototype of a 700 PS supercar with a CNG-powered engine. While this is interesting in its own right, the most stunning feature of the Blade is... its 3D-printed body!
Divergent Blade - the 3D-printed CNG-powered supercar© Divergent Microfactories3D-printed, CNG-powered, ultra-light and rather stunning to look at - has the LaFerrari just become obsolete and overweight?

The car is said to tip the scales at as little as 1400 pounds (630 kg!), so given the engine's enormous power of 700 HP (the power to weight ratio is a stunning figure of 0,9 kg per 1 HP), the Blade accelerates from standstill to 60 mph (96 km/h) in below 2 seconds. That's some seriously breathtaking performance! And it's environmentally friendly, too, as the car runs on CNG whenever the fuel is available. If it's not, it can use petrol just as well.

As for the 3D printing part, Divergent claims it's a whole new approach that considerably reduces pollution, amount of resources required and costs. According to the company, making cars "greener” only when they're on the road isn't enough and it's also necessary to change the way cars are manufactured. After all, production is equally – if not more – destructive for the environment as years of day-to-day driving.

Society has made great strides in its awareness and adoption of cleaner and greener cars. The problem is that while these cars do now exist, the actual manufacturing of them is anything but environmentally friendly. At Divergent Microfactories, we've found a way to make automobiles that holds the promise of radically reducing the resource use and pollution generated by manufacturing. It also holds the promise of making large-scale car manufacturing affordable for small teams of innovators. And as Blade proves, we’ve done it without sacrificing style or substance. We've developed a sustainable path forward for the car industry that we believe will result in a renaissance in car manufacturing, with innovative, eco-friendly cars like Blade being designed and built in microfactories around the world.

Kevin Czinger, Divergent's founder and CEO

According to the company, time and space are saved by limiting 3D printing to minimum. And that's thanks to Divergent's own technology called Node – an aluminum joint connects carbon fiber tubing components to form chassis of the car. This is also where the Blade's ultra-low weight comes from, even though it's rigid and durable to provide safety and longevity of the design. Light as it is, the car uses less fuel than conventional vehicles (and the fuel being CNG, it's even greener and cheaper than it would be if it were only petrol-powered) and is said to cause less wear on roads. The Blade is expected to enter limited production soon. Does it forecast a revolution?


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Robert Markowski
source: Divergent Microfactories via NGT News 2012-2018 All rights reserved. By using this site you acknowledge that you accept its Terms and Conditions