The "El Kamina" is the product of Juha Sipila,
a Finnish entrepreneur and politician.
The El Kamina is a 1987 Chevrolet El Camino which has
been converted to run on wood gas. The name is a play
on words in the Finnish language with "kamiina"
The idea of using wood gas for powering vehicles isn't
anything new. In fact the technology was first invented
in the 1920 by a Frenchman. But it wasn't until the second
world war when fuel supplies - especially in the UK -
were severely rationed that they became popular.
Engineers of the time figured out that wood gas generators
were perfectly suited for use with conventional internal
combustion engines, with just a few minor modifications.
Today's wood gas generators are even more efficient, and
they manage to extract around 75 percent of the fuel energy
from the wood.
The system used in Juha's El Camino allows him to cover
a respectable 125 miles on one tank of wood pellets -
which weighs in at around 175 lbs (80 kgs). Although thanks
to the El Camino's extra storage space it can carry enough
wood to cover 800 miles!
The added weight of the wood gas generator, coupled with
the lower power output means the El Kamina isn't quite
as fast as when it left the factory. But it can still
top 87 mph, making it easily capable of motorway cruising.
The downsides to the system are the fact it takes around
20 minutes to get the burners hot enough to produce the
necessary gas, and when its all done you've got the messy
job of cleaning them out.
if as fuel prices continue to rise, that'll
be a small price to pay for an affordable, renewable and
efficient source of fuel.
Similar and related vehicles:
Splinter Wooden Supercar
Source: Juha Silpa via dailymail