Lately, Electric vehicles (EV) have emerged as the latest trend in the automobile industry with various commendable automobile companies such as Tesla, Nissan, Chevrolet, Hyundai, Kia, and many more plummeting straight onto the bandwagon. Moreover, companies like Audi, Porsche, and BMW shouldered this trend and started to position EVs on their sales as well.
Future of EVs
Electric Vehicles use electric motors whereas conventional vehicles perform with the use of gasoline fuel or diesel-powered engines. The electric motor recuperates its energy via a controller that manages the degree of power depending on the driver’s accelerator pedal use. Rechargeable batteries are used to power electric vehicles. These batteries also perform various other functions like the functioning of the lights and wipers, uninterruptable power supplies, etc.
The “plug-in hybrid” vehicles offer both gasoline or diesel engine while also offering an electric motor. While other electric vehicles completely forsake liquid fuels and operate solely on electricity. These are types of EVs are called “battery-electric” vehicles. Conversion of hydrogen gas into electricity is a methodology used to fuel “hydrogen fuel cell” vehicles power electric motors.
How Propitious an Asset the EVs are for the Environment?
Electric vehicles or EVs are veritably benefiting the environment at the cost of their incurred prices. According to recent figures, the quantity of light electric vehicles reached over 2.2 million units in 2019-2020, which is 9 percent higher than in 2018. EVs have a pragmatic influence on our environment.
Zero tailpipe emissions
Tailpipe emissions are a significant threat to human and environmental health which arises due to the combustion of petroleum-based fuels. This further results in the emission of noxious chemicals.
Conventional vehicles release these harmful gases into the air :
- Carbon Monoxide: reduces the amount of oxygen reaching the body’s organs and tissues, aggravates heart disease.
- Nitrogen Oxides: aggravates lung diseases, can contribute to asthma and other respiratory problems.
- Sulfur Oxides: aggravates asthma
- Carbon Dioxide: headaches and dizziness when exposed to an abundance of the compound.
- Benzene: is a known carcinogen.
- Ozone: causes lung damage and a variety of respiratory problems. Particulate Matter: decreased lung function, asthma, development of chronic bronchitis, nonfatal heart attacks, and premature death in people with heart or lung disease.
The substantial factor making electric vehicles an asset is that EV’s that run on electricity emit zero tailpipes (direct) emissions. Moreover, EVs induce considerably lower emissions over their lifetime than vehicles running on fossil fuels. Further, with EVs getting more prevalent and their manufacturing more widespread, there is a scope of improvising the efficiency of battery recycling and reducing the extraction of new materials for the production of batteries, thus reducing the dependency on mining.
Cleaner CO2 emission
Carbon Dioxide is a colorless, odorless, non-poisonous gas that exists in trace quantities (less than 400 parts per million) within ambient air. It is a product of fossil fuel combustion. Although it does not directly impair human health, it is a greenhouse gas that traps terrestrial radiation and contributes to the potential for global warming. Even in a 100 percent efficient combustion engine, oxygen will convert all hydrogen into water. Meanwhile, the carbon in the fuel would be converted to carbon dioxide, and the nitrogen already in the air would remain unaltered. However, we do not operate in a vacuum, we know the perfect engine that can provide us a 100% output does not exist.
Electric vehicles emit carbon dioxide, however, is much cleaner in contrast to the emissions from the most eco-friendly petrol engines. As per the U.S. Department of Energy, fully electric vehicles emit an average of 4,450 pounds of carbon dioxide each year. Conventional cars in contrast to EVs emit over twice as much annually.
Some automobiles, aircraft, and motorcycles use rotary engines of the Wankel design. These are collectively known as internal-combustion-engine vehicles (ICEV). ICEV requires high power-to-weight ratios, in addition to the internal combustion engines appear in the form of combustion turbines.
The ICE vehicles, emit large amounts of health harmful particle pollution. Each US gallon of fuel put into the tank of an ICE car produces at least 5 lb of carbon dioxide before it is burned. The emission of these particles can have dire consequences, which include asthma, heart attacks, cancer, and many other diseases. The only thing that could make an EV responsible for more carbon dioxide during manufacturing is the battery. The motor and simple drivetrain will take a lot less than an engine and gearbox in an ICEV. The electric vehicles meanwhile are not directly emitting these particulates into the street air.
Curtailing Noise Pollution
The lack of noise is one of the biggest boons of Electric cars. Electric motors are generally very quiet when compared with ICE vehicles and their exhaust systems and hence they generate less noise pollution.
Electric vehicles convert over 77% of the electrical energy from the grid to power at the wheels. In contrast to the conventional gasoline vehicles that only convert about 12%–30% of the energy stored in gasoline to power at the wheels. In addition to energy efficiency, electric motors provide quiet, smooth operation and stronger acceleration and high maintenance is not a prerequisite in an EV. HEVs typically achieve better fuel economy and have lower fuel costs than similar conventional vehicles. For example, the 2020 Toyota Corolla Hybrid at an EPA combined city-and-highway fuel economy estimate of 52 miles per gallon (MPG), while the estimate for the conventional 2020 Corolla is 34 MPG.
Night charging escorts cleaner energy
The overall energy consumption is relatively lower at night. It’s the only time when wind generation is most eminent in the energy mix. Thus charging during the nights leads to electric vehicles obliging in the consumption of better amounts of renewable energy.
Ford states that, at home, 95% of EVs get charged. It makes sense, as charging at night when the car is in the garage, is the easiest and most effective way.
While electric vehicles have a tremendous set of challenges ahead of them. However, their use could prove to be a huge asset to save the environment. Despite the skepticism about electric vehicles, more people are switching to these prototypes. Aside from the positive environmental impact, other reasons include reasonability in prices and inexpensive maintenance.
To sum up, it is, worth taking a second, vigilant look at some of these parameters that electric vehicles offer in the modern era.
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