Electric cars – vehicles of the present and the future

Electric cars – vehicles of the present and the future
Picture: Suwin Puengsamrong | Dreamstime
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Many inexperienced citizens believe that electric vehicles appeared quite recently, a maximum of 10-20 years ago. But this is very far from the truth.

As soon as mankind invented electricity, there were immediately progressive engineers and mechanics who tried to apply it to the task of creating an economical and fast transport. The device of an electric car has not yet been presented to the general public, but was already hatched in the minds of mechanics and scientists.

The first memory of a car powered by an electric motor comes from 1841. It was not a car in the full sense of the word, but a cart with an electric motor. It did not receive wide popularity and distribution, but enthusiasts continued to work on improving the design.

In 1899, the Russian engineer Ippolit Romanov developed an electric car that could travel almost 60 kilometers without recharging, while the side of the car was designed for 17 passengers. Its speed reached 40 km / h.

Many successful attempts to create such cars were made in Europe, America, Japan after the 2nd World War. For example, in the United States, General Motors distinguished itself, which began to produce mass-produced EV1 models. In recent years, the Tesla company has been thundering all over the world, which was able to raise electric cars from the sphere of uninteresting exotics to the rank of stylish and desirable vehicles.

The device of an electric car and the principle of its operation

The device of an electric car does not contain any secrets and difficulties, as it is based on well-known physical and technical principles.

Electric car
Electric car lithium battery pack and power connections. Picture: Erchog | Dreamstime

In general, the design of such a machine in the area of ​​the chassis, body, control may not differ at all from the classic transport. The main difference lies precisely in the motor, which does not run on liquid diesel fuel or gasoline, but on the generated electric current.

The principle of operation of an electric vehicle is as follows. It involves the mechanism of electromagnetic induction, which consists in the fact that in the presence of an alternating electric current in the conductor, a magnetic field arises, which, according to Ampère’s law, performs a deflecting action. There are two main components in a motor: a rotor and a stator.

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The stator remains permanently stationary and an electric current of a certain frequency is passed through it. The magnetic field generated in the stator acts on the rotor and it starts to rotate. The resulting mechanical energy is used to propel the vehicle. The speed of the engine is directly proportional to the frequency of the current and the number of installed magnetic poles.

In general, the device of an electric car is quite simple, but it requires very accurate and precise execution. The current for powering the stator is generated by batteries installed on board. Depending on the model of the machine, the batteries may have a different capacity, design, features of the mechanisms used.

Interesting fact! Many promising developments of antiquity were rejected by society or simply were not noticed.

Types of electric vehicles

Depending on how the electric vehicle is arranged and for what tasks it is designed, it is possible to carry out some classification of these vehicles. It is rather conditional and draws attention more to the features of operation, since by design all developments repeat each other.

Electric car
Picture: Kasto80 | Dreamstime

Allocate such machines on electricity:

  • Intracity. They have low power and speed of movement, they have special restrictions on maximum power. Small diameter wheels and light weight allow you to move in normal urban mode;
  • Microelectric vehicles. Designed for heavy urban traffic, with a small battery capacity. Used for small moves, trips to the store, to work and back, etc.;
  • Various creative options, such as tricycles;
  • Regular cars. Familiar cars, like some popular models from Tesla;
  • Cargo. Not yet very common, but in the future they can be used in large cities for domestic transportation and reduce emissions into the atmosphere;
  • Trolleybuses, trams, electric buses are also a fairly popular mode of transport in any major city.

It is also worth mentioning hybrids – vehicles on which both electric and gasoline engines are installed. Such vehicles are very popular all over the world, in particular, in Japan, the USA, Europe. The voltage of the electric vehicle in all the cases considered is different, since they require different operating power of the power unit.

Features of the hybrid electric vehicle

Hybrids have become widespread and popular due to their versatility and ease of use in almost any environment.

A high level of economy, excellent performance, a combination of the best properties of liquid fuel and current units make hybrids popular not only among individual buyers, but also among civil servants, police officers, etc. After a long downtime, such a car does not need to “warm up” and waste time. It is enough to use the electric motor and literally instantly start off. When you need more speed, power and an additional resource for a distance of movement, then you instantly switch to gasoline or diesel.

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There are various schemes for the implementation of hybrids, but the most popular is the version from Honda, in which both engines work in parallel. If necessary, any of them can be turned on or off without any difficulty. The operation of the electric vehicle in this case is distinguished by reliability, safety and high efficiency.

Interesting fact! The advantages of hybrids are great for DPS patrols, so they are used everywhere in this structure around the world.

Pros and cons of electric cars

Many people who hesitate in choosing a vehicle for personal use are concerned about the pros and cons of electric vehicles and whether they should now be considered a serious option for purchase.

Electric car
Picture: Rido | Dreamstime

The advantages of electric vehicles are as follows:

  • The most significant is the minimum cost of refueling. Fortunately, electricity in our country has a fairly low cost and a full charge in order to travel 100 km will cost about 15-20 rubles. At the same time, the situation with gasoline will be more sad;
  • Ease of service. No need to buy and change any spark plugs, oil, filters, other consumables. There is no need to regularly visit the service and spend money on it;
  • The quiet operation of the motor is also a plus for many. The operating unit is almost inaudible while driving, just remember the movement on a brand new trolleybus;
  • No dangerous exhaust gases that poison the city air;
  • Purchase for the future. Apparently, in the coming years or a decade, humanity will massively switch to electric cars. By buying it now, you are at the head of this process.

As for the negative points, they also exist and look like this:

  • A small selection of cars and high prices. The price they ask for an average Tesla is quite comparable to the cost of a good Mercedes of recent years. Therefore, many prefer the second option;
  • Limited number of refills required. Even in the country’s capital, there are very few places where you can charge your car. Therefore, you will have to carefully monitor that the charge is enough for the planned daily distances;
  • The downside of electric cars is that the batteries are very expensive, so they need to be protected. Also, in the cabin it will not be possible to fully use all the electronics, for example, air conditioning, as this will quickly absorb the available battery charge.

This is the main thing to consider for a person choosing a vehicle.

Purchase and the nuances of an electric car

After we have seen the pros and cons of electric cars, it is worth paying attention to the prospects of this type of transport. Is it worth buying this type of vehicle, spending a lot of money and will it be the right step? The answer here is not so clear cut.

Electric car
Picture: Boumenjapet | Dreamstime

If you just want a good proven car for solving everyday problems, a developed service and repair system, predictable problems and their easy solution, then it is best to buy a classic gasoline or diesel unit. This is still relevant and carries only advantages.

If you are one of the brave people who are trying to keep up with the times and look ahead, then such a purchase will be justified, although you need to be prepared for some of the disadvantages and inconveniences mentioned above.

As for the prospects of the transport in question, they are very large. It is expected that in the next 10 years, humanity will massively switch to electric cars.

Spread Scale

Over the past few years, the market for electric machines has expanded and spread to all developed countries of the world. If until recently such a purchase was an extravagant step for lovers of the new and unusual, today it is already a proven and profitable step for a comfortable ride and cost savings.

According to available statistics, in 2017 the market of the cars in question grew by 60% at once! At the moment, the dynamics is maintained and in the future this process will become even more widespread. Around 750,000 new cars were sold worldwide in 2017, of which approximately 290,000 were hybrids.

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All major concerns, seeing such market trends, actively began to develop their options and present them at auto shows around the world. Mercedes, Volkswagen, Porsche, Aston Martin and many other manufacturers have already shown their creations. In Russia, there is also an increased interest in this topic.

Interesting fact! In the post-Soviet space, in relation to cars, some conservatism is noticeable and the popularity of gasoline and diesel does not subside here.

Oil prices and popularity of electric cars

By themselves, the prices of petroleum products and oil have virtually no effect on the popularity of cars with electric motors.

But the spread of the latter can greatly affect the cost of oil, as it will become less in demand on the market. There is even a conspiracy theory that major oil corporations hold back the development of other energy sources so as not to lose their monopoly in the market and their windfall profits.

At the moment, the number of cars on the current does not affect the price of oil in any way, so it is too early to talk about any dangers for this traditional energy source.

How Tesla works

Elon Musk, a South African-born US billionaire businessman, has revolutionized the world of electric vehicles.

Electric car
Tesla plug-in electric car chassis in front of Tesla Model. Picture: Rafael Ben Ari | Dreamstime

He was one of the first in modern times who decided to put the production process of this transport on stream and make them part of everyday reality. Such undertakings did not go unnoticed, so the name of this person became known to the whole world.

How does a Tesla electric car work? Everything is the same as any other similar products. The device of the electric car is as follows: the body here almost completely repeats that of the Mercedes business class.

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The battery and motor are designed for maximum efficiency, economy and longevity. The downside of Tesla vehicles today is considered to be a too underdeveloped service system, which often leaves the owner of such an expensive car to the mercy of fate with his problems.

How to choose a car and features of its service

The device of an electric car must be known at least in general terms by every person who is going to purchase it. To buy a good vehicle, you need to follow these tips:

  • The very first thing is the range from fully charged batteries. For budget models, the power reserve is about 150 km;
  • Features of mechanics. Chassis, transmission, suspension and other elements must be in perfect order and consist of reliable components. When buying, it is better to enlist the help of a person who understands the design of an electric car well;
  • Price. You should not overpay, because for a lot of money you can also take a chic gasoline or diesel option.

As for the service, there should be no problems here. Electric motors are well known to any engineer and mechanic, the rest of the car completely repeats the design of a classic vehicle. The only service advice is to contact advanced service stations that are able to carry out accurate diagnostics.