May 5, 2008

Plug-in hybrids a necessity

Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) are vehicles that not only rely on an engine and an electric motor for motion but whose battery can be charged using an external electric source, these cars can be plugged in to any regular power outlet and charged. right now with existing battery technology there are plug-in that can run solely on electric power for around 100 kilometers (62 miles) per charge; better and longer range vehicles are coming out at a lighting pace, so the future of hybrid looks bright, though none of the mainstream car manufacturers currently produce PHEVs, most of the production is currently from boutique car manufacturers or enthusiast mechanic shops who retro fit your existing Toyota prius with an additional lithium polymer battery pack and some circuitry that works in tandem with out of the box prius power management/distribution system.

Imagine, a person driving every day a distance shorter than the car's electric range would never have to use fossil fuel (you can generate electricity from clean sources such as solar, wind, hydal and to some extent nuclear).

According to EPRI, half the cars in the U.S. are driven 25 miles a day or less. "A plug-in vehicle with even a 20-mile range could reduce petroleum fuel consumption by about 60 percent," says Bob Graham, Manager of EPRI's Electric Transmission program.