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Audi innovative thinking


Alessandro Belli

Founder and CEO

Produzione di cose nuove per mezzo di cose nuove

Il rapporto di noi H. sapiens con l'ambiente che ci ha generato, è di tipo atmosferico turbolento. Siamo esseri avidamente in cerca di soluzioni, di risposte a misteri, a domande, a bisogni. Ogni risposta apre la strada a nuove domande. Ogni idea nuova si ricombina con tutte le altre idee nuove. Abbiamo inventato il metodo scientifico, le belle arti, la politica, per inventare sempre cose nuove e bellissime. Non tutti ci riusciamo, ma tutti insieme si.

I contributi di Alessandro

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The Project

The present FP7-SST research deals with the possible synergy of the bicycle and all other forms of transport, public and private, for a sort of "fluid", seamless, individual urban transport.

It is an idea circulating at least from the seventies, gaining popularity in recent years, but not yet matched by a bike technology able to deliver on the "vision".

Currently available models, some excellent products, fall into a weight and dimension bracket that hasn't improved in over thirty years: 12-15 kg and in average over 150 cubic decimeters (litres), as a large suitcase.

BIKE INTERMODAL has set out to challenge those two parameters, aiming to improve significantly on them, seeking a "threshold level" of weight and volume below which the original "vision" would be met, possibly expanding the number of the "intermodal bikers".

Halving, for instance, the weight with respect to the average would make the bike appealing also to women, for which the current weight is well above the pain line, and help men, too.

Cutting down to "briefcase size" the volume, could in turn allow a care-free storage everywhere. In addition the public transport operators could consider this bike a "quantité négligeable", without limit to its admmittance onboard, whereas the current "suitcase size" poses a serious threat if more than a certain number of passengers would carry one aboard.

The crucial innovation of the project is a completely original, new way of making a hinged bicycle frame which combines light weight (due to a precise allocation of material), strength (through a pre-tensioned space-frame), high compactness when folded down (by means of members that adapt to one another) and automatic opening-closing (drawing from modern robotics, automated car tops, landing gears and suspension linkages).

The resulting improvement over the state of the art is double. A factor of 5 in the compacted volume of the bicycle, that is, 30 cubic decimeters (litres) vs. an average of 150 litres. A factor of 3 against the average of 12-14 kg folding bicycle. This including our power assist module by Maxon Motor.