The quiet invasion of the world by electric vehicles is being welcomed by many that are tired of paying the big oil man at the pump or with their tax dollars via subsidizes to the oil and gas industry. Many understand that they are also paying for their oil habit with shorter life spans due to air pollution caused by combustion or that the carbon from millions of cars is affecting global weather patterns. Even that gasoline smell (or fragrance as some would wish you to believe) that gets on your hands and clothes when you fill up your tank is mostly benzene, which is poisonous and more dangerous to your health than second hand cigarette smoke. Benzene comes from crude oil and is a known carcinogen that has also been linked to Leukemia, cancer and many other bad things. Benzene even at concentrations as little as one part per million have been shown to lower white blood cell count by as much as 15-18 percent!
It’s been an uphill struggle for Electric Vehicles, due to the relatively low price and ease of transport of oil for the last 100 years. However, with the additional demand on the global oil market by the population of such countries as China (1.3 billion) and India (1.2 billion), and continued instability of oil supplies from the Middle East means the days of cheap oil are no doubt behind us. Also giving life to the electric vehicle are recently advances in battery technology, the increasing necessity of countries to take action to mitigate a potential climate crisis and perhaps a desire of some governments to slow the flow of climate refugees have all contributed simultaneously to spur the current rush to electrify as much of the transportation sector as possible and switch to renewable energy production.
EV sales are exceeding many previous industry expectations manufacturers of the Nissan LEAF and the Chevy Volt are having a difficult time keeping up with demand in the first few selected deployment cities. While that is good news it’s also taking a considerably amount of time for them to ramp up production and to start selling in additional markets. Consequently it may still be some time before you see your first electric car or truck cruising almost silently down the street without a tailpipe, but make no mistake the electric transportation revolution is here.
Don’t be surprised if the first ever EV you see in person comes in the form of something other than an electric car. The EV could easily be a FedEx electric delivery van/truck or perhaps even an electric/solar powered boat or airplane.
“The EVs increasing arrival in our everyday life is nothing less than an electric revolution that will touch all segments of the transportation industry says Kenneth Burridge (editor-in-chief of EV.com).”
PlanetSolar the world’s largest solar powered EV boat has already completed more than half of it’s trans-global trek that started in Monaco and is currently enroute to the Philippines after having left Cairns Australia on the 18th of June.
The Turanor already has two records so far longest distance covered by a solar powered EV (15,000 nautical miles and counting) and fastest crossing of the Atlantic Ocean by a solar boat. The Turanor is a German made 31m long solar-powered yahct that can collect enough energy to store in its batteries via 500 sq m of solar panels that it can travel at 7 1/2 knots for three days without sun. The purpose of the round-the-world ocean voyage is help bring awareness that solar energy is a viable and reliable energy source and the world doesn’t have to rely on fossil fuels any longer for the majority of mankind’s transportation needs.
The Solar Impulse currently at the 2011 Paris Air Show is a prototype aircraft powered exclusively by sunlight–that can also fly all night using just the energy from it’s solar cells that it can acquire while flying during the day! The plans are for the Solar Impulse team to soon attempt a round-the-world flight, which would also prove the possibility of mankind being able to eventually produce a perpetual flying machine.