Concept cars, gotta love ’em. Speaking of concept cars, here’s one made out of carbon fiber for you. The Flake, designed by Da Feng, is his final project from Conventry University, after three years in the making.
The Flake is covered in 250 carbon fiber pieces, each one connected by carbon nano-tube wires to solenoids. These in turn help the vehicle lay flat or stand up. When the body is laying flat, this decreases drag and increases speed, and when upright, the panels help slow down the vehicle.
The Flake car also encompasses what the designer calls D-Wheels. These D-Wheels are made out of twelve independently extendable legs, which allows an adjustable contact surface. “As they turn on a wheel hub, the “legs” extend and contract in response to the road surface and vehicle speed. Because the bottom part of the “wheel” flattens at high speeds, turning the circle into a D-shape, Feng calls them D-wheels.
“The D-wheels track ground surfaces and adjust accordingly, making the wheel a part of the suspension system, he said. Because of the D-wheels’ increased traction, Feng says the Flake could also be a capable off-roader.”
Although this carbon fiber concept car is just a concept, the designer hopes it will inspire others as a practical solution. To see more, check out this video of the Flake.