Car Power - sunday 2007-05-27 0755 last modified 2007-06-06 0448
Categories: Nerdy
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Is there a distinct advantage to generating power within a car instead of drawing on it in a stored form? Yes, yes, technically fuel-based technologies are drawing on stored energy forms, but they require some intermediate conversion machinery to go from explosive liquid to forward movement. Presumably a rechargeable battery would receive its energy from a conversion step that could take place outside the vehicle, say from solar panels at home or the coal plant the next county over.

Too many of the solutions for weaning ourselves from petrol are just as unsustainable as importing oil. There are only so many restaurants with fryolator waste, only so many corn or potato crops (tortilla shortages in Latin America; lack of food has always been one precursor for revolution), extremely limited amounts of naturally available hydrogen (which requires more energy to make, meaning we use energy to power hydrogen cells, a net expense that will never serve an international fuel need), and only one planet.

Bob Zemeckis had it right. If only we could turn our trash directly into car power. The next thing can't just be a theoretically functional solution. It has to be sustainably so as well. So my question: can't we offload the power issue to our individual homes or communities or, at least, regional power supplies instead of trying out new ways to make questionably efficient power plants inside the car? Is the internal combustion engine really that great? I'm deficient in this department. Somebody educate me.


biodiesel from a...

biodiesel from algae farms on non-arable land --

a cheng on June 06, 2007 01:28 PM

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