[LINK] plug-in-hybrid-vehicles and grids

Karl Auer kauer at biplane.com.au
Mon Sep 7 15:52:15 AEST 2009

On Mon, 2009-09-07 at 15:26 +1000, David Boxall wrote:
> Plug-in-hybrid? That's a new one on me. From what I see, it just 
> combines the disadvantages of hybrids and all-electric vehicles. 

Maybe the way to all-electric, marketing-wise, is to pass through
various stages of gentle disconnection of the umbilical.

> On a different tack: how come compressed air hybrids get so little media 
> coverage? They're said to be more efficient than battery hybrids, under 
> some conditions.

I haven't looked into it much, so this may be revealing my ignorance,
but it seems to me that compressing air as a means of storing energy
must be one of the worst methods ever thought of. Compressing air heats
it; heat is easily lost. Pressure vessels are tricky at the best of
times, but the pressure needed to move a *car* would be terrifying.

As to the disadvantages of all-electric, there are really only two -
range and "refuelling" time. Both these "disadvantages" are mostly one
of perception - city dwellers who travel 40km a day for 360 out of 365
days of the year, rarely if ever exceeding 60kph, feel they must own a
vehicle capable of driving coast to coast on a single tank of fuel
because once a year they visit Granny. And almost all cars sit parked
for most of the day at work or at home - so for the all-electric, the
"refuelling" time is invisible. Even for cars that are under way more
constantly, the recharging issue is less an intrinsic problem than an
infrastructure question.

Regards, K.

Karl Auer (kauer at biplane.com.au)                   +61-2-64957160 (h)
http://www.biplane.com.au/~kauer/                  +61-428-957160 (mob)

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