[YesAuto Fresh Technology Interpretation] Although Musk’s SpaceX company had a fatal failure in the latest rocket launch, it still did not dispel his private exploration of space. On the way to explore space, Google from Silicon Valley used another way to emphasize their attitude towards this matter, so you saw the moon rover with the Audi logo in the article, should Audi have to join in too? Is this lively? In my opinion, this is like Audi's vision for automotive technology. Audi and the German Space Engineering Team of Part-Time Scientists have completed a lunar rover named Audi Lunar quattro, and is expected to implement a lunar landing plan in 2017. What we have to do today is to take a look at Audi's mass-produced technologies from the perspective of this lunar rover.

■ Why build this lunar rover?

Google Lunar XPRIZE lunar exploration competition is a lunar robot competition launched by Google, with a total prize money of up to 30 million US dollars. The specific competition task is: the participating team should design and complete a vehicle that can conduct lunar exploration, then launch it to the lunar surface for a detection mission at a distance of 500 meters, and return clear and high-quality photos. Currently, there are 16 teams participating in this competition around the world.

■ Audi Lunar quattro lunar rover

■ Audi lightweight technology on the lunar rover

Audi’s lightweighting started very early, and it was the first to study the all-aluminum body in the 1980s. At the Hannover Motor Trade Fair in Germany in 1985, Audi showed the Audi 100 with an aluminum body for the first time and used a painting to express it vividly. With the concept of lightweight, two women in the painting easily lifted the body of the Audi 100.

Obviously, the pursuit of lightweight not only for space probes but also for automobiles has always been better and more extreme, just like the original meaning of the word “ultra”-extreme and extreme.

■ New application of Audi quattro four-wheel drive technology

The surface of the moon is composed of rock fragments, breccia blocks, sand and dust, also called lunar soil. These fragments of sand and gravel are caused by the impact of meteorites on the rocks on the outer layer of the moon and the swelling and shrinking due to the large temperature difference between day and night. In addition, there are large and small craters on the surface of the moon. The uneven, sandy and gravel pavement puts forward the off-road requirements for the lunar rover.

The term quattro currently represents the general term for all Audi's four-wheel drive technology, and no longer simply refers to the purely mechanical four-wheel drive technology equipped with the Torson differential, like the horizontal engine platform four-wheel drive technology without the Torson differential. Audi's electric four-wheel drive technology can also be named quattro.

■ Autonomous driving on the moon

For us to buy a car, perhaps automatic driving and four-wheel drive technology may be unnecessary configurations, but for a rover flying to the moon, this is the most basic ability. Therefore, the automotive technology we usually see may have evolved from cutting-edge fields such as aerospace.

■ Power comes from solar energy

Nowadays, affected by the energy crisis and the environment, mankind has to actively look for more environmentally friendly and abundant energy sources, and solar energy is one of the most easily available and inexhaustible. However, due to the limitation of solar cell technology, the efficiency of converting electric energy is still very low. The highest photoelectric conversion efficiency of ordinary monocrystalline silicon solar panels is only 24%, so the future potential of solar power technology is still very large.

■ The influence of temperature on the lunar rover

Low temperature has an impact on the lithium batteries used in the Audi Lunar quattro lunar rover. In particular, the lithium iron phosphate battery has the worst low temperature performance among the lithium batteries. The electric energy released at -10°C is only 89% of the maximum capacity. about. At present, in China, we can see that the models using this battery include BYD’s Qin and E6, SAIC Roewe E50 and BAIC E150EV, etc. Because lithium iron phosphate batteries have the advantages of low price, large discharge capacity, non-toxic and non-polluting, so Many car manufacturers choose it after weighing various factors. In addition, low temperature will also have a serious impact on other electrical equipment.

How to spend this long night with low energy consumption and safely, the movie “Interstellar Crossing” shows a method: during the long space journey, astronauts can enter the low-temperature dormant water bed to sleep, and can set the wake-up time by themselves. . The principle of low-temperature dormancy is to freeze humans to minus 196°C in a very short period of time, so that cells can stop activity, so as to achieve the purpose of extending human life indefinitely.

Therefore, low temperature is still an insurmountable barrier for battery technology. Whether it is a lunar rover or an ordinary electric vehicle battery, it is difficult to withstand the test of the earth’s cold conditions, let alone the lunar surface at minus 183°C. Perhaps this is one of the reasons why electric vehicles cannot replace internal combustion engine vehicles in severe cold areas.

to sum up:

You can say that Audi is not doing business properly, but creating a precedent for the development of aerospace probes by an automobile company has instantly increased its force. This also shows that technology has no boundaries. In this Audi Lunar quattro lunar rover, we can see that many similar technologies are applied to the automotive field. Aerospace technology and automotive technology can learn from each other in some aspects. I hope that with the advancement of science and technology and the development of commercial aerospace industry, private moon landing projects may be realized. Maybe in the future, human beings can not only drive on the earth in a car, but also take a self-driving trip on the moon!