Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in "Cloud Cuckoo Land", where ever that is?

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Deckofficer
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

I was about to post, but seems orangebull beat me to this one. That is the beauty of AC, inductive charging. Size the battery to handle weekday commutes, then on Friday when you leave the city for a weekend of R & R, as you drive on the Interstates, they have buried the other half of the transformer under the roadway, and you can drive as long as your bladder will allow.

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jdh2550_1
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

Orangebull & Deckofficer,

Yeah - that's an interesting concept and I think there's a company in the UK that have teamed up with a race track to prototype stuff.

When I hear about these schemes I always wonder about efficiencies, size of air-gaps between the "two halves" and safety/failure modes. That's not to say that there aren't answers to all of that - I've just never seen a good discussion of them. Do you have any thoughts on that? Or any links?

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orangebull
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

My thoughts are that it will require a couple of things to make it efficient, and this is entirely from a layman's perspective. I'm no engineer, but I have an okay grasp of what makes technology work.

I think first that there needs to be an improvement in the efficiency of wireless elctrical transmission in general. My understanding was that MIT and the Witricity, Inc. company have reached 80% or better efficiency in terms of magnetic resonance based wireless transmission which is the new version of wireless electrical transmission.

My understanding is that Witricity, Inc. is developing a wireless charging mechanism for Toyota presently that would be designed for placement in a garage that would be a good starting point for any prototype of the concept.

Of course you can't energize the entire road, so the vehicles on the grid would need some kind of onboard telemetry that burst transmits speed, direction, and location based on gps data and onboard data, i.e. the speedometer data, so that a cell phone like link to a digital burst transmitter/reciever unit connected with a computer system controlling the grid that powers the coils in the road could flip on and off the sections of the road that need to be powered to excite the onboard reciever for the charging to continue.

I would think 400 foot sections of the road would need to be energized at a time to ensure that the car keeps receiving a charge. Why? Because in 1 second a car traveling at 60 mph travels about 88 feet give or take a few feet, so 400 feet would give you about 4.5 seconds of travel time, with the trailing edge of the grid turning off and the leading edge turning on based on the constant stream of telemetry data sent from the car to the smart grid controller.

I do believe that you are correct and testing in the race track environment will be needed to get the systems perfected initially. I would think a 5 mile circular track would be appropriate for the testing. Nascar or IndyCar should really start this kind of testing, but if they don't want to, I would urge the government to build a test facility somewhere in the Western US.

I think any system will need to be encased in waterproof PVC so that weather, and road salt doesn't negatively impact the devices implanted in roadways.

The onboard telemetry system would also have a meter that would measure the amount of electricity recieved by the car, and there would likely need to be a study done regarding how much energy is used at road speeds to in fact provide that much on board electricity, and a formula used to charge for the appropriate number of kilowatt hours consumed.

Of course the interesting problem that would also need to be worked out is the interesting data that has been found by Witricity developers already, that efficiency improves as more devices are powered by the original transmitter. In other words, say five cars are running along the same section of road, then it would likely be CHEAPER to power those cars because they are being powered by the same coils. It actually appeared theoretically possible that Witricity in fact overcomes Newtonian physics limitations, and that more power could be received than was transmitted. Of course Tesla, the guy who originally proposed this never thought Newton or Einstein got the physics right in the first place, so maybe Tesla was onto something.

For it to succeed on an industrial level, or become practical for implementation throughout the United States, Europe, China, Austrailia, Japan, or anywhere else in the world, the biggest hurdle will be the need for considerably increased power generation facilities. I would think this would be an excellent reason to turn the Sahara Desert into a major solar fired desalination/electrical generation facility to power Europe, North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa. It would also be a good reason to turn the Mojave, the Outback, and the Gobi into similar facilities, while placing large industrial wind farms just off the coasts of the continents, and along the Rockies, or the Andes, or the Alps, or the Urals, and building new more efficient electrical transmission facilities as well.

marcopolo
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

orangebull wrote:

My thoughts are that it will require a couple of things to make it efficient, and this is
For it to succeed on an industrial level, or become practical for implementation throughout the United States, Europe, China, Austrailia, Japan, or anywhere else in the world, the biggest hurdle will be the need for considerably increased power generation facilities. I would think this would be an excellent reason to turn the Sahara Desert into a major solar fired desalination/electrical generation facility to power Europe, North Africa, and Sub-Saharan Africa. It would also be a good reason to turn the Mojave, the Outback, and the Gobi into similar facilities, while placing large industrial wind farms just off the coasts of the continents, and along the Rockies, or the Andes, or the Alps, or the Urals, and building new more efficient electrical transmission facilities as well.

You may think you understand technology, but you seem to lack a basic grasp of economics. Replacemnent of ICE vehicles will be decided by which method of energy supply is the least disruptive, most economical,requires the least infrastructure, and provides the maximum convenience.

Such obvious dynamics seem to be far beyond the grasp of dreamers and Utopians.

In reality, only three technologies compete as economic energy replacement for transport fossil fuels. (with one outsider.) Fossil Fuel replaclement energy generation, is restricted to just two practical technologies. (with a number of small scale contributors).

The rest are fantasy!

Replacement for Transport fuels.

1) Improved battery/energy storage technology. This will keep improving until acceptable ranges are available.
2) Fast liquid electrical storage and recharging. Although still in infancy, practical prototypes exit and are being scaled for mass-production.
3) Bio-fuel. Shell, Chevron have teamed with Honda, Ford and Virent Energy Systems to produce an amazing breakthrough in the production of a renewable, zero emission, Gasoline, kerosene, diesel, replacement, without the defects of ethanol. If this can be produced on an industrial scale, at the projected $60-80 dollars a barrel,(since this requires no infrastructure or vehicle modifications) it would provide serious competition for all other transport energy.
4)The Outsider. FCV.

Electricity generation to replace coal/oil/NG.

1) Nuclear, (thorium. Nuclear technology exists, it works economically. The arguments against are genuine, but largely misguided and rendered irrational due to the emotional/moral/ideological bias of opponents.

2)Geo-thermal. While still a less mature technology, with the development of newer materials (graphene etc)Chevron has been able to obtain economically viable results from it's massive investments in Geo-Thermal plants.

Solar, wind, wave, ect.. will never be economically viable on an industrial scale, and are little more than heavily subsidised, feel good solutions.

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jdh2550_1
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marcopolo wrote:

Solar, wind, wave, ect.. will never be economically viable on an industrial scale, and are little more than heavily subsidised, feel good solutions.

Never say never.

BTW, you left out hydro-electric. That's a pretty major and well established source of energy.

There are also some interesting concepts being floated for high altitude "flying electrical generators". Basically two or more auto-gyrating rotors launched into the jet stream and tethered. That's a wind based solution and it can be deployed relatively close to the consumer (but, not in flight paths!) Yup, it's sure got a long way to go yet - but the basic technologies all exist.

I also expect off-shore wind farms will become relatively commonplace. What studies do you refer to that says these aren't scalable? There seems to be plenty of smart folks that think wind energy is the most easily developed alternative energy solution.

Oh, and of course lets not forget that oil is also heavily subsidized if you want to consider the true costs (but we don't even get a "feel good" factor!)

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jdh2550_1
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

orangebull wrote:

My thoughts are that it will require a couple of things to make it efficient, and this is entirely from a layman's perspective. I'm no engineer, but I have an okay grasp of what makes technology work.

I'm unclear on a couple of points:

1) Are you talking about creating a roadway where the entire length contains wireless power transmission equipment (but it's switched on selectively)?

2) Are you talking about (A) charging a battery (amount of energy transmitted > amount of energy being consumed) or about (B) powering a vehicle (amount of energy transmitted = amount of energy being consumed) or about (C) offsetting usage (amount of energy transmitted < amount of energy being consumed)?

Seeing as unlimited range seems to be predicated on the unwillingness of society to change their mode of transport then we should assume that the power consumed to travel is about the same. So, at your 60mph example a passenger car is probably consuming about 30HP (~20 kW) (that's a bit of a WAG!)

So, your technology has to be able to supply either (A) > 20kW or (B) 20kW or (C) < 20kW. For (C) let's just say 10kW? But all those numbers are only if it's powering just one car on that 400 foot section of road. But in the land of tailgating there could be two or (eek!) even three cars in that stretch. So, that multiplies everything by 3.

Now stretch that capability across multiple lanes and multiplied by thousands of miles.

Oh and you have to fit every vehicle with a standardized receiving system. That's good for the patent holder - but bad for everyone else.

I just think that wireless power transmission quickly becomes infeasible for "unlimited range" driving (the topic of this thread). It might make more sense in urban environments - where speeds and energy consumptions are lower and where there are traffic jams (so you can stay on top of the same spot longer and thus further reduce the level of power transmission required). However, battery vehicles are already suitable for urban commuting.

So, I still say: 'lectric for local and bio-diesel for distance (and plug-in hybrids for the "in between" cases).

Now, for a racing league it might be a great way to go...

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orangebull
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

First, on a per Kwh basis "WIND" is THE LEAST expensive form of electrical generation, REGARDLESS of subsidies, and that is per The Wall Street Journal.

Second, to answer JD's question, Retrofit the entire road bed with coils to allow the cars to charge while driving, and create a smart grid that controls when each section of coils is turned on or off.

Third, Toyota thinks wireless charging is a good idea, they are investing HEAVILY into the technology. It has been my experience that Toyota is a very well run automotive company, so the technology has promise and potentially the power to deliver the goods needed to meet these criteria.

Evidence: http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/04/toyota-and-witricity-form-wireless-charging-alliance.html

http://www.engadget.com/2011/04/28/toyota-and-witricity-team-up-for-ota-car-charging/

http://www.boston.com/business/technology/innoeco/2011/04/toyota_announces_collaboration.html

Fourth, patent law, is only law, it can be changed. If the government needs to standardize something to meet the needs of next generation technology, the law can be changed fairly easily.

Fifth, the costs of oil FAR outweigh the costs of converting to a carbon neutral economy and doing it sooner rather than later, and the added benefit of the solar fired desalination/electrical generation in the Sahara would be the re-forestation that could occur in say, the Sahara where CO2 levels could hopefully be able to start to come down.

The economics of this are not utopian. The insurance industry has observed the costs of doing business in an environment that produces more severe storms on a consistent basis, and they don't work for THE MOST IMPORTANT INDUSTRY, the financial industry.

jdh2550_1
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

orangebull wrote:

Third, Toyota thinks wireless charging is a good idea, they are investing HEAVILY into the technology.

But a quick scan of those links doesn't make it clear to me if they're talking about stationary charging (bigger versions of today's wireless charging technology). Or a mobile, on-the-go system (as you envision). There's a BIG difference in practicality.

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orangebull
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

Here are specs on current developments in the field

http://www.witricity.com/pages/ev-charging-system.html

Yes, this is still at the stationary stage, but lets think about this for a second. Assume there is a standardized magnetic field transmitter and receiver. Assume that the telemetry issue can be resolved, and a steady magnetic field can be maintained, as it is now, you can move about inside the magnetic field and continue to recieve power, so... assume that the magnetic field travels with you thanks to smart grid technology as you drive, why shouldn't this work from a theoretical perspective what is the problem. If the magnetic field is maintained and the receiver remains excited, it would seem that this should work.

The question is can a material strong enough to stand up to road traffic that doesn't impede the magnetic field be used to encase a series of these transmitter units into the surface of road beds.

I'm wondering about kevlar?

Is this type of system possible?

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Of course there is clearly going to be a leap to go from 3.3 Kw charger to a 55 Kw charger, but this technology is only something on the neighborhood of 5 years old, so I hold out hope for the ability to do that!

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orangebull
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Think I'm kidding about Bombardier already doing this?

Think again!

http://www.primovecity.bombardier.com/en/benefits/PRIMOVE_for_cars.html

Like I said,

It will take one major thing, the political will to make the change, and an investment in electrical generation and grid infrastructure for the new carbon free roadway!

marcopolo
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jdh2550_1 wrote:

BTW, you left out hydro-electric.That's a pretty major and well established source of energy.!

I left out hydro-electric, since I was only referring to replacing "Fossil Fuels".

Quote:

Oh,and of course lets not forget that oil is also heavily subsidised.

Interesting, like you I always believed that the US gave $350 billion dollars worth of subsidies p.a. to the oil industry. In fact, the US grants almost no subsidies that pertain exclusively to the oil industry. ( a few arcane regs do remain, but only approx $1 billion).The reason the recent bill to remove oil subsidies failed, was because they don't exist! The bill was poorly written and ill-conceived and would have failed the Senate's more stringent legislation criteria.

Wind farms,like Solar, fail to provide constant base-load power on demand. At best, wind can only supplement an existing grid. In comparison, Geo-thermal or thorium pebble reactors provide, variable, constant base-load power, on demand economically. Wind solar etc, are just expensive toys, justifiable only in political/ideological terms, or small scale home use.

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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

In case you don't know who Bombardier is, exactly:

http://www.bombardier.com/en/corporate/about-us

So if you take Bombardier and Toyota and this little start-up called WiTricity, Inc. and you do the math, to me THE SOLUTION to the future of transportaiton IS OBVIOUS.

The Oil companies are going to fight this tooth and nail, but the car companies should be embracing this OLD TECHNOLOGY that Bombardier is using. The telemetry system they've developed, i.e. what looks to be an RF ID swith to turn on and off the coils as the vehicle is moving, coupled with a digital burst transmitter for the electric meter MAKES this ENTIRELY VIABLE, WITHIN A DECADE.

Only political will is needed to make this happen.

Hmmm, America energy independent, and us no longer paying the gas station $4 a gallon, and no longer polluting the environment because Uncle Sam spent a couple of trillion to rebuild America's roadways with PRIMOVE technology, and a couple of trillion to shower the Rockies with windmills and the Mojave with solar cells. Yeah, sign me up!

marcopolo
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

orangebull wrote:

Retrofit the entire road bed with coils to allow the cars to charge while driving, and create a smart grid that controls when each section of coils is turned on or off.

Exactly as I said, you have no concept of economics! Like most Utopians, you start with some mad premise, and then try to fit society around that premise.

It's easy to say, "the costs of oil FAR outweigh the costs of converting to a carbon neutral economy", based on some absurdly unrealistic idea of how to accomplish such an absurdity.

Statements like " The economics of this are not Utopian. The insurance industry has observed the costs of doing business in an environment that produces more severe storms on a consistent basis, and they don't work for THE MOST IMPORTANT INDUSTRY, the financial industry", show what little grasp you possess of economics. The insurance industry is an integral part of the 'financial industry'. You are confusing hypothetical actuarial projections, required by the insurance industry, with reality.

In fact, for all your angst about road transport pollution, The PRC's entire 77 million vehicles, don't equal the annual pollution created by just two container vessels bringing PRC manufactured Solar panels to the US!( 5 more ships, and you equal the entire US road transport pollution.)

If you want to reduce harmful emissions, economically, starting with the world 100,000 merchant fleet would be a far more practical method than rebuilding the US road system!.

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Quote:

Interesting, like you I always believed that the US gave $350 billion dollars worth of subsidies p.a. to the oil industry. In fact, the US grants almost no subsidies that pertain exclusively to the oil industry. ( a few arcane regs do remain, but only approx $1 billion).The reason the recent bill to remove oil subsidies failed, was because they don't exist! The bill was poorly written and ill-conceived and would have failed the Senate's more stringent legislation criteria.

I thought there were still tax breaks associated with various aspects of the oil industry? Even without any explicit subsidy there is the whole matter of fighting wars to secure "stable" supply.

Quote:

Wind farms,like Solar, fail to provide constant base-load power on demand. At best, wind can only supplement an existing grid. In comparison, Geo-thermal or thorium pebble reactors provide, variable, constant base-load power, on demand economically. Wind solar etc, are just expensive toys, justifiable only in political/ideological terms, or small scale home use.

Two points here:
(a) FEGs are designed to deal with the variability issue (the Jet Stream being pretty darned constant).
(b) I don't take "replace fossil fuel" to mean "entirely replace fossil fuel". I take it to mean less fossil fuel and more of the alternative forms. Thus "supplementing an existing grid" is perfectly acceptable. Especially if you switch it around and say fossil fuel will exist as a backup to when atmospheric conditions don't allow harvesting enough wind or solar energy for an extended period of time.
(c) These peak and trough conditions can be mitigated by storing energy during the peak and reclaiming it during the troughs. Remember that we don't have to use batteries for one example we can use pump-and-store hydro systems.

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marcopolo
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

jdh2550_1][quote wrote:

thought there were still tax breaks associated with various aspects of the oil industry? Even without any explicit subsidy there is the whole matter of fighting wars to secure "stable" supply.

There are a few, small arcane subsidies, largely relating to small independent operators.The Oil Industry can hardly be held accountable for US foreign policy. In fact the largest oil exporter to the US is Canada. It's been awhile since the US needed to fight a war with Ottawa.

Quote:

less fossil fuel and more of the alternative forms. Thus "supplementing an existing grid" is perfectly acceptable.

Perhaps. I would argue that despite huge taxpayer subsidies, the power generated is really uneconomic.

To digress, what do you think of the announcement by Virent/Shell that the first tests of a FF substitute have proved successful? At less than $2.00 per gallon for safe, non pollutant fuel,the bio-fuel industry looks to be back in business! (see new thread)

I would really like to hear your thoughts.

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marcopolo][quote=jdh2550_1 wrote:
Quote:

thought there were still tax breaks associated with various aspects of the oil industry? Even without any explicit subsidy there is the whole matter of fighting wars to secure "stable" supply.

There are a few, small arcane subsidies, largely relating to small independent operators.The Oil Industry can hardly be held accountable for US foreign policy. In fact the largest oil exporter to the US is Canada. It's been awhile since the US needed to fight a war with Ottawa.

Oh, c'mon - you of all people must understand that oil is a world wide traded commodity. It doesn't matter that we buy it from Canada - if it did then OPEC wouldn't have any effect on us. You're a smart guy - far smarter than me - so don't use the same dumbing down of the arguments - I expect more from you. ;-)

The Oil Industry might not be to blame for US foreign policy (although I sure would have liked to have been a fly on the wall in some of Cheney's meetings with the oil execs!). However, the "oil age" is dependent on a stable supply of the stuff - and thus it is necessary that the US set foreign policy appropriate to that reality.

The Oil Industry may not cause unrest in the Middle East - but they do profit every time the price of oil goes up because of worries about unrest. It's not the price of production that sets the market price.

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Quote:

less fossil fuel and more of the alternative forms. Thus "supplementing an existing grid" is perfectly acceptable.

Perhaps. I would argue that despite huge taxpayer subsidies, the power generated is really uneconomic.

I guess we can agree to disagree on this one.

Quote:

To digress, what do you think of the announcement by Virent/Shell that the first tests of a FF substitute have proved successful? At less than $2.00 per gallon for safe, non pollutant fuel,the bio-fuel industry looks to be back in business! (see new thread)

I would really like to hear your thoughts.

I've posted some on the other thread but it might get lost while you rubes and shills debate with the fantasists and utopians! ;-) (that's a well meaning joke aimed equally at all parties - myself included)

My beef is that you keep referring to it as pollutant free. I very much doubt it is. At point of use there will be other harmful pollutants emitted (it's pretty much impossible to 100% cleanly burn complex hydrocarbons). At point of production there will likely be pollutants created as well.

I haven't looked into the feedstock or production issues surrounding this new wunderfuel - where's a good source of info?

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Deckofficer
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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

I have enjoyed all the comments and links offered on this thread. I am a member of at least 12 automotive forums dealing with hot rods, those knuckle-dragging, Neanderthal rides with insane power to weight ratios and totally contrary to my green side but I have been into hot rods for 40 years. The logic offered here has been very insightfull. I used to work in the oil industry as a Merchant Marine Deckofficer BCO aboard drilling rigs that are so far offshore and water depth that they are in fact vessels, requiring by International Law a marine compliment of officers. I can tell you first hand that the corperate mindset of oil companies is they really do not care that their product's by-products are destroying the enviroment. They however see the writing on the wall and are now calling themselves "energy companies" and as bottom line thinking prevades, they too are investing in renewables. So evryone's thoughts here are right on track, besides as a hotrodder, I love my EV's full torque at zero rpm.

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Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

jdh2550_1 wrote:

Oh, c'mon - you of all people must understand that oil is a world wide traded commodity. It doesn't matter that we buy it from Canada.

I was responding to the erroneous, but widely held belief the US government pays direct subsidies to the Oil industry of 500 billion. The fact that these subsidies just don't exist, is important from the point of accuracy!

Quote:

The Oil Industry may not cause unrest in the Middle East

On the contrary! Total Oil (France) instigated and financed, (with the assistance of the French government secret service), the overthrow of Qaddafi. This became necessary when Qaddafi decided to embark on negotiations with the PRC, as a potential buyer for Libya's oil. Qaddafi loyalists, were confronted with the devastating power of NATO's air-force and French special service 'advisor's'.

Total wanted the Libyan leader dead, and NATO tried it's damnedest to deliver! The PRC left Libya, humiliated, after being confronted by the US Med fleet. The PRC will not forget such a humiliation! The three giant PRC Oil companies are all headed by men who are graduates of the PRC special Communist Elite Academy for State Secret Security Forces. The PRC response has been to commence on a massive Naval Weapons Expansion program. The world just got a little scarier, thanks to Total Oil.

Quote:

My beef is that you keep referring to it as pollutant free.

I agree, with the more accurate description of 'Carbon Neutral'. However, I would also maintain that Joe Public, not being expert in such things, will accept that Carbon Neutral is just as environmentally friendly.Thus Shell wins in the Court of Public opinion, if not totally accurately. As ole Ronnie Reagan would reply to your correction "There y' go again.."

(Just ask Jimmy Carter 'bout the importance of perception!)

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marcopolo wrote:
jdh2550_1 wrote:

Oh, c'mon - you of all people must understand that oil is a world wide traded commodity. It doesn't matter that we buy it from Canada.

I was responding to the erroneous, but widely held belief the US government pays direct subsidies to the Oil industry of 500 billion. The fact that these subsidies just don't exist, is important from the point of accuracy!

Well I interpreted your post that said "we don't fight wars with Canada" as the summation of "we don't buy from unfriendly places therefore the costs of war don't come into the question".

Thank you for correcting the $500B direct subsidy question. I believe you. Now, how do we have a sensible discussion that brings in the economic value of the in-direct benefits the oil industry receives from war and the unrest in the Middle East?

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The Oil Industry may not cause unrest in the Middle East

On the contrary! Total Oil (France) instigated and financed, (with the assistance of the French government secret service), the overthrow of Qaddafi. This became necessary when Qaddafi decided to embark on negotiations with the PRC, as a potential buyer for Libya's oil. Qaddafi loyalists, were confronted with the devastating power of NATO's air-force and French special service 'advisor's'.

Really? Wow, that's very sad/worrying/disgusting (choose whatever negative connotation you care).

That just strengthens my argument that if "Big Oil" can control the deployment of our forces they do so for a very real economic benefit. So, in all your discussions that needs to be taken into account. The trouble is that it's just about impossible to quantify. That doesn't mean it doesn't count.

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My beef is that you keep referring to it as pollutant free.

I agree, with the more accurate description of 'Carbon Neutral'. However, I would also maintain that Joe Public, not being expert in such things, will accept that Carbon Neutral is just as environmentally friendly.Thus Shell wins in the Court of Public opinion, if not totally accurately. As ole Ronnie Reagan would reply to your correction "There y' go again.."

(Just ask Jimmy Carter 'bout the importance of perception!)

I don't disagree with you. So much policy is set by public opinion because the policy makers pander to the biggest audiences. Perception trumps reality - I understand that as well. That's why marketing is such an important issue. It can either be used for good or evil (sorry for the melodrama - that's meant to be funny). We can either continue with feel-good marketing funded by those interested in the status-quo. Or we can figure out how the nerds, scientists and engineers can learn to market the truth more effectively...

The thing that bugs me about my discussions with you is that you're really intelligent and incredibly well researched. Yet, you resign yourself to the fact of "hey, you can't change public opinion and so let's just make a buck". (OK, that's an oversimplification and I don't really mean it as offensive because I really enjoy your point of view).

I wish I were a better marketer. I wish I had a gazillion dollars to spend on marketing. Marketing is probably the most powerful force in existence relating to all of our discussions.

__________________

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas. No Worries." - JDH, CuMoCo || "Make Volts Not War" - anon.

marcopolo
Offline
Joined: 05/10/2009
Points: 837
Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

jdh2550_1 wrote:

Now, how do we have a sensible discussion that brings in the economic value of the in-direct benefits the oil industry receives from war and the unrest in the Middle East?

Well, it not really possible to have a serious discussion! You say "economic value the oil industry receives form war and unrest in the Middle East", Oil Industry could rely, "hey, we were doing just fine until the US decided to back Israel with uncritical support".

As I say, untangling US foreign policy, is very difficult.

Quote:

Really? Wow, that's very sad/worrying/disgusting (choose whatever negative connotation you care)

Yeah, All of the above! But do you notice how a semi-government owned oil company doesn't attract the criticism, leftists reserve for US interests and the big five?

Quote:

That just strengthens my argument that if "Big Oil" can control the deployment of our forces they do so for a very real economic benefit. So, in all your discussions that needs to be taken into account. The trouble is that it's just about impossible to quantify.

Hmmm...I guess it's very hard to quantify! The French, Russian, and PRC governments deploy their Oil Companies as national assets. In contrast, BP, Shell, Chevron, Exxon or Comoco-Phillips are more like influential citizens. The difference is subtle, but real.

Quote:

The thing that bugs me about my discussions with you is that you're really intelligent and incredibly well researched.

Aw,..Shucks..:)

Quote:

Yet, you resign yourself to the fact of "hey, you can't change public opinion and so let's just make a buck".

Not really, I do pursue ideological causes, funded by the bucks I make in conventional business! But, I try to be realistic. I don't possess a science, engineering background. But law and banking teach risk assessment. (well, should!) Learning to fight only battles that can be won, with logistical resources that can be realistically recruited.. Industrial development is not really about technology, it's about investment.

Quote:

I wish I were a better marketer. I wish I had a gazillion dollars to spend on marketing. Marketing is probably the most powerful force in existence relating to all of our discussions.

Oh, heavens John, don't sell yourself short! You have accomplished a remarkable feat. You have succeeded where so many others have failed. Even to get to this stage, is a truly heroic achievement! But yes, marketing requires very different skills than science and engineering. It's about compromise and empathy. Understanding that people buy what they want, not what they need or should have! Customers don't care about abstract efficiency! Customer's pay for image,perception, and emotion. To market a product widely, it's a real exercise in democracy. It's all about the customer, and how they feel. (Not the marketers ideology).

Winston S Churchill got it right when he said, "people say they want honest politicians! When what they really mean is politicians who seem honest, but perform dishonest acts for the peoples benefit, without the people being required to accept responsibility for often necessary, but ignoble acts, in the national interest".

Dullards, hate free enterprise and marketing, because they are too lazy, or stupid to understand. Yet they resent the feeling of being fooled, everyone knowing more, being left behind. Not getting the joke!

Really clever marketers, invent stuff for dullards to believe in, conspiracy theories, socialism, fascism, -(ism's generally). Each concept is equipped with hero's and villains. Each philosophy, movement, cult, etc.. is designed to give such people a sense of secret knowledge and relief from inferiority. Look at the green movement, it's become all about power, politics, hating capitalism, big oil, big industry, etc..

If I wrote an expose about Fox News, or how Glenn Beck, Rush Limbaugh, Top Gear, criticised global warming, EV's etc.. I would have a huge response from the green left. But, try to interest them in something really productive for the environment, like the abolition of bunker oil, and I would be lucky to attract two or three responses.

Look at the struggle Ross Blade has endured marketing the world first EV sedan in Australia. Australia is full of indignant WKTEC believers, all bleating loudly about how evil Texaco and GM conspired to deprive them of the right to purchase an EV. So, Ross Blade produces an award winning EV, far superior to the EV1, able to be purchased retail.

Whats the result? Not even the "Green Party" buys one!

For those reasons, I think that Virent is far better doing a deal with the devil, and achieving success with powerful allies, than relying on the supporters of green ideology.

__________________

marcopolo

jdh2550_1
jdh2550_1's picture
Offline
Joined: 07/17/2007
Points: 2338
Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

marcopolo wrote:
Quote:

Yet, you resign yourself to the fact of "hey, you can't change public opinion and so let's just make a buck".

Not really, I do pursue ideological causes, funded by the bucks I make in conventional business! But, I try to be realistic. I don't possess a science, engineering background. But law and banking teach risk assessment. (well, should!) Learning to fight only battles that can be won, with logistical resources that can be realistically recruited.. Industrial development is not really about technology, it's about investment.

Actually, I probably should have said something like "in discussions like this one you seem to resign yourself to the position that we can't change public opinion". You see, I agree with all that you say about marketing, fighting winning battles, ideology et al.

Where I choose to disagree is that I want to figure out a way to change public opinion. To rely on the power of emotions to make people both feel the need to change (negative emotions) and rewarded by the feelings they get after changing (positive reinforcement). Also to rely on better communication to show that " 'lectric for local. Diesel for distance" is more than a slogan but actually a very useful way of deciding which vehilce to buy.

But before we can persuade the public we have to persuade the investors that it's better, then we have to persuade the investors that we will be able to persuade the public (and thus have a market). Only then will we get the investment dollars we need.

I've highlighted "choose to disagree" is because I recognize that your position is valid and thus raising money for Virent is easier than raising money for electric maxi-scooters (although we're doing OK given the "economic climate" or perhaps "perceived risk climate"). However, I think it's worthwhile here to choose to set aside the easier path (Virent) for the more difficult path (EVs) because that more difficult path is not impossible and it bears bigger gains.

It's a risk vs. reward trade-off. I'm a risk taker. Hopefully one day I'll get the reward! (other than the bruises I have for previous risks that didn't actually offer any reward!!!) ;-)

Quote:

Oh, heavens John, don't sell yourself short! You have accomplished a remarkable feat. You have succeeded where so many others have failed. Even to get to this stage, is a truly heroic achievement!

It's my turn for an "aw shucks" moment. We'll be hugging next! ;-) Thank you though - I appreciate it and I do feel good about what we've achieved so far. But as you know there's no prizes awarded for "we're nearly there!".

Quote:

But yes, marketing requires very different skills than science and engineering. It's about compromise and empathy. Understanding that people buy what they want, not what they need or should have! Customers don't care about abstract efficiency! Customer's pay for image,perception, and emotion. To market a product widely, it's a real exercise in democracy. It's all about the customer, and how they feel.

Agreed 1000%. And that's why we have a Director of Marketing ;-)

Quote:

Winston S Churchill got it right when he said, "people say they want honest politicians! When what they really mean is politicians who seem honest, but perform dishonest acts for the peoples benefit, without the people being required to accept responsibility for often necessary, but ignoble acts, in the national interest".

Is Winny the most widely quoted person ever? Seems like he has a quote for every occasion. Smart guy.

Quote:

Dullards, hate free enterprise and marketing, because they are too lazy, or stupid to understand. Yet they resent the feeling of being fooled, everyone knowing more, being left behind.

I don't think it's really fair to call them dullards These are the folks with less critical reasoning training who are responding the way you said they're pretty much guaranteed to respond - i.e. emotionally (the paragraph I agree with 1000%). Calling them derogatory names is to suggest that they're doing something "wrong". They're not. They're relying on emotion rather than logic - that's not "bad". The folks giving the message are relying on this and they are attempting to elicit those emotions to support a predetermined agenda. Depending on the perceived popularity of the agenda they will be more or less transparent in their messaging. And every marketer by their very definition has an agenda - whether you want to call it an ideology or not.

Just like the term "everything in life is politics" (or whatever the exact words are) I'm just saying that "everything in life is marketing". And I wish I could bring myself to live by that phrase better - so I'm not selling myself short. I just recognize that I don't market myself or my causes in the best way when I fallback to what I consider logical arguments and ignore the emotions that my style of discussion can generate. (Oh boy, I shouldn't even go there!!!)

Quote:

For those reasons, I think that Virent is far better doing a deal with the devil, and achieving success with powerful allies, than relying on the supporters of green ideology.

And I think Virent is a worthwhile piece of the puzzle but that it in no way spells the death of the EV. I find it very curious that you have such a "black and white" view versus a more nuanced view. Well, actually, I suspect you have a very nuanced view and you post the "black and white" version to illicit responses - that's "marketing" for you! ;-)

__________________

John H. Founder of Current Motor Company - opinions on this site belong to me; not to my employer
Remember: " 'lectric for local. diesel for distance" - JTH, Amp Bros || "No Gas. No Worries." - JDH, CuMoCo || "Make Volts Not War" - anon.

Scotter
Scotter's picture
Offline
Joined: 02/17/2011
Points: 79
Re: Unlimited range for electric cars or am I living in ...

Slightly off topic --Graphene supercaps will charge off of 110V very quickly. Most gas stations have outlets (I have a great story about this) -- with the new graphene batteries & supercaps things get really interesting. The graphene supercap, demonstrated by UCLA and others is about 600 Wh/Kg (compared to high end lithium at 160Wh/Kg -- the Nissan Leaf batteries are under 100Wh/g). The Graphene supercaps are turning out to be cheap(ish) and easier to make than expected (make graphene using a Lightscribe(tm) DVD burner at home!). Supercaps will charge in a matter of minutes, not hours. Even Envia has a new super safe Li-Ion battery in production that is a lot cheaper to make than LiFePO4 batteries, at 400Wh/Kg, charging is 10x faster than conventional.

Then Hong Kong Polytech showed that a self-charging battery using Graphene and two metals (gold and silver?) will self-charge off of exposure to heat! Then there's the new solar cells using Graphene that have been "doped" with two different compounds forming an PN-Tranasistor (sp?) that will produce power from a wide range of light frequencies and very low lumens, and are much better than conventional cells, plus they are cheap to make.

I will not be buying ANY batteries for my EVs for a couple of years because some of this new tech will be on the market in 2 to 3 years and prices will be 1/4 of what they are today. Although I will be making my own graphene sheets this summer to experiment with.

--Scott

PS. The story -- I lent a Vectrix scooter to my son-in-law in LA. He rides it daily to work. One day he was riding it home from a seminar and ran out of power. He coasted into a gas station, and asked if he could "plug in" to recharge so he could make it home, only a couple more miles. A kind hearted asian lady from behind the counter came running out to see what he meant by "charging the scooter". She gets very flustered, beat red in the face and yells in broken English (I'm just quoting her, not making fun): "you can not do that!", pointing upwards she screams, "camera everywhere!" "there, there and over there!" pointing in all directions, "I get fired!" "boss watching" -- repeated two more times. My son-in-law sat there and said he'd pay for the power ($5, that's an awesome profit for them). She repeated the same sequence of personal expression... He offered to buy anyone at the pump some more gas in trade for power. Repeated her mantra. Frustrated, he calls his uncle who arrives a little later with a 2500W gas generator -- 45 mins later he was on his way. Two days later he goes back to the gas station, the owner comes out and explains he next time tries to get power that he would call the police, unless he bought hot dog and can of pop... My son-in-law explained that he's use less than 10 cents of electricity. The next day there was a sign over the power outlet: Power $15 per hour. The local 220V 60A (13Kw) charge stations at my work charges $.50/hour. Amazing.

__________________

--Scotter and his scooter
2007 Vectrix VX-1 Maroon
2007 Vectrix VX-1 Silver
2008 Vectrix VX-1 Blue
2008 Vectrix VX-1 Silver
Other EV projects in the works

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