Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook 3 Share on Twitter 1 Share on LinkedIn Share on Reddit Tell A Friend Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites
Exclusive to OpEdNews:
OpEdNews Op Eds

Converting the Fleet Quickly

By       Message Craig K. Comstock       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   6 comments

Related Topic(s): ; ; ; ; ; ; ; , Add Tags
Add to My Group(s)

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H4 1/6/19

Author 82641
Become a Fan
  (1 fan)
- Advertisement -

How can our fleet of vehicles be converted to green energy quickly? It's not enough to specify the end-point. What is the process?

Internal combustion engines that run on a fossil fuel have to be replaced, in most cases, by electric motors and batteries to power them. However, does the whole vehicle need to be scrapped? If so, the process of replacing the entire fleet might take at least a decade.

Can our technological ingenuity create conversion kits, allowing the whole car to be kept except its gasoline engine, which would be replaced by an electric motor and large batteries? Outside the car would look exactly the same, and the cabin inside would also be unchanged except for the addition of some gauges showing the condition of the energy storage system. The wheels and brakes would also be the same, as would the transmission and steering.

Part of the resistance to a green energy transition is the huge investment in private vehicles, as close as a hundred of million garages. Imagine that drivers were told they could keep their cars, except for a switching out of the engines. Valuable private property could be kept, especially if the car or other vehicle was not o old that it would ordinarily soon be scrapped.

- Advertisement -

Since the cost of replacing the engine would be far less than getting a new vehicle, and would require only a short time at the shop, it would be much m ore practical to manufacture what was necessary and to offer attractive subsidies for the transition. Perhaps the only outer sign would be a proud insignia on the back plus an inconspicuous charging plug. Thus, the conversion of the fleet would be fast and relatively inexpensive.

Internal combustion engines could be sold on the scrap metal market and in the form of re-formed steel, perhaps be used, to some extent, to make new vehicles.

The conversion program would not prevent buyers in the market for new vehicles from getting electric cars or trucks, in which case there would be no emission of dangerous gases. New electric vehicles could present a range of comfort, performance, and economy (miles per kilowatt-hours).

- Advertisement -

Conversion would work most appropriately on cars that were relatively light, and whose drivers wanted good mileage rather than super-fast pickup.

Kits could be designed both by makers of many vehicles and also by independent companies, and would be installed mainly by professionals, probably by the shop where an owner was accustomed by having his vehicle maintained or fixed.

Clearly, a program of rapid conversion to electric vehicles would depend on an infrastructure of charging stations, which could be a new facility at the familiar filling station, or at work, or at home, or at strategically located stations for long-distance drivers. To the extent that battery packs were standardized to one of a few models, a driver could simply switch batteries, exchanging one that was low for one already charged, and paying for the service as we now pay for gasoline.

The design of electric motors is well understood. The main challenges would be to install the brackets to hold it is position to link to the existing transmission, to hold the battery packs, and to design batteries for easy replacement and quick charging.

To the driver, the car would not seem very different, except it would be quieter and electric motors, as drivers of hybrids know, can have fast pick-up from a stop.

- Advertisement -

Instead of holding on to their investment in fossil fuel driven vehicles, a program of subsidized engine replacements and even basic infrastructure would make it "cool" to go electric.

As my brother correctly points out, electric cars would not diminish global warming except to the extent that the electricity with which they were charged came not from generating plants powered, as now, almost entirely by fossil fuels ()coal, natural gas). The electric power must itself be green, and that will be the subject of another article. In the meantime, any source of electricity will at least enable people to make the transition to green power in their cars.


The Same But Very Different
(Image by Craig K. Comstock)
  Permission   Details   DMCA

 

- Advertisement -

View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Author of three recent books, Better Ways to Live: Honoring Social Inventors, Exploring New Challenges (2017); Enlarging Our Comfort Zones: A Life of Unexpected Destinations (2016); and Gift of Darkness:Growing Up[ in Occupied Amsterdam (more...)
 

Craig K. Comstock Social Media Pages: Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in       Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in       Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in       Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in

Go To Commenting
The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.
Writers Guidelines
Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Support OpEdNews

OpEdNews depends upon can't survive without your help.

If you value this article and the work of OpEdNews, please either Donate or Purchase a premium membership.

STAY IN THE KNOW
If you've enjoyed this, sign up for our daily or weekly newsletter to get lots of great progressive content.
Daily Weekly     OpEdNews Newsletter
Name
Email
   (Opens new browser window)
 

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Mindful Molecules

Investing in Psychoactives

Remaining calm about climate change

Cuban Missile Crisis in Reverse?

TV Madness

Comments Image Post Article Comment

These discussions are not moderated. We rely on users to police themselves, and flag inappropriate comments and behavior. In accordance with our Guidelines and Policies, we reserve the right to remove any post at any time for any reason, and will restrict access of registered users who repeatedly violate our terms.

  • OpEdNews welcomes lively, CIVIL discourse. Personal attacks and/or hate speech are not tolerated and may result in banning.
  • Comments should relate to the content above. Irrelevant, off-topic comments are a distraction, and will be removed.
  • By submitting this comment, you agree to all OpEdNews rules, guidelines and policies.
Connect with Facebook     Connect with Twitter            Register with Facebook     Register with Twitter

Comment:   

You can enter 2000 characters. To remove limit, please click here.

Please login or register. Afterwards, your comment will be published.
 
Username
Password

Forgot your password? Click here and we will send an email to the address you used when you registered.
First Name
Last Name

I am at least 16 years of age
(make sure username & password are filled in. Note that username must be an email address.)

5 people are discussing this page, with 6 comments  Post Comment


Bob Stuart

Become a Fan
Author 26603

(Member since Nov 19, 2008), 3 fans, 1 articles, 505 comments
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in


Add this Page to Facebook! Submit to Twitter Share on LinkedIn Submit to Reddit


  New Content

People have been doing conversions for decades. They don't make good cars. Try looking into synthetic, carbon-neutral fuels for old cars, and for long-range new ones. The current chorus for electric vehicles is singing a child-grade song. It should ask for sustainability, not a particular technology. Capitalism can screw up anything that general.

Your current "investment" should be scrapped ASAP anyway, because there is no technical reason for safe land vehicles to outweigh their average payload. You have been lulled into buying steel dinosaurs to increase consumption. Start with a velomobile, not a covered wagon.

Submitted on Sunday, Jan 6, 2019 at 6:48:49 PM

Author 0
Add New Comment
Share Comment
Reply To This   Recommend  (1+)
Help
 

BFalcon

Become a Fan
Author 28059

(Member since Dec 20, 2008), 21 fans, 3 articles, 16493 comments
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in


Add this Page to Facebook! Submit to Twitter Share on LinkedIn Submit to Reddit


  New Content

Replace the car that runs on gasoline with the car that runs on electricity produced from coal.

Rush and wrong decision.

Submitted on Sunday, Jan 6, 2019 at 9:25:16 PM

Author 0
Add New Comment
Share Comment
Reply To This   Recommend  (0+)
Help
 

Alexander Kershaw

Become a Fan
Author 500827

(Member since Nov 25, 2014), 3 fans, 279 comments
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in


Add this Page to Facebook! Submit to Twitter Share on LinkedIn Submit to Reddit


  New Content

Don't change the car or engine. Change the fuel. Ethanol can be used today in most cars. Any car that is fuel injected has a computer to regulate air and fuel. Those cars can use 50% ethanol without any changes. A software download can convert your car to run on 100% ethanol.

The infrastructure does not have to change. It is simple but so seldom discussed. Brazil now fuels its vehicles with up to 100% ethanol. Sao Paolo has the cleanest air of any super size city. See the movie ''Pump'' and read ''Alcohol Can Be a Gas''

.alcoholcanbeagas.com/node/518


Submitted on Monday, Jan 7, 2019 at 3:46:07 AM

Author 0
Add New Comment
Share Comment
Reply To This   Recommend  (0+)
Help
 
Indent

Eddy Schmid

Become a Fan
Author 512386

(Member since Nov 12, 2018), 66 comments
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in


Add this Page to Facebook! Submit to Twitter Share on LinkedIn Submit to Reddit


Reply to Alexander Kershaw:   New Content

Not true, Alex. internal combustion cars today, must be certified by their manufacturer to run on enthanol. If not, your warranty is void.

Fueling systems must have ethanol impervious seals and gaskets, petrol seals and gaskets are not convertible.

However, there is no reason they can't be run on compressed gas straight from the factory in the short term.

Submitted on Monday, Jan 7, 2019 at 4:48:38 AM

Author 0
Add New Comment
Share Comment
Reply To This   Recommend  (0+)
Help
 

Eddy Schmid

Become a Fan
Author 512386

(Member since Nov 12, 2018), 66 comments
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in


Add this Page to Facebook! Submit to Twitter Share on LinkedIn Submit to Reddit


  New Content

Very good and accurate article. Private people have been converting combustion powered cars for many years with components off shelf that were not designed for this purpose, but despite that, in many cases have succeeded in their conversion.

IMHO, the suggestion by the author is excellent and displays good understanding of what we are facing today.

However, the realities we are also facing, is the massive corporate lobbying that will prevent any such program of ever getting off the ground.

I live in one of the sunniest countries around, and there's absolutely no reason whatever, for my country to embrace green power with open arms. Yet the reality is, powerfull lobbiests are doing their darndest to prevent this ever happening. You see we have massive coal resources, and our economy is in lock step with this industry, as is our Government which flatly refuses to face the Green revolution at all. In fact it does everything in it's power to neuter anything that looks like it may be viable alternative.

Take for example the humble motor car with it's combustion engine, the REVENUE our Government obtains from these vehicles is criminal. They tax fuel with an EXCISE tax, then a GST tax at the pump, everything to do with a motor vehicle, registration, insurance, service, parts, whatever, you name it, everything has a TAX component all going to fill the coffers of the Government. It is ALLEGED, the funds thus raised are supposed to provide better roads and infrastructure, but this has been debunked and proven to be a lie.

Now bring in the electric vehicle. Registration, insurance is still due, thus GST revenue would still be incoming, but the EXCISE from fuel and oil goes out the window. Our Government has admitted publicly, they could not function without that revenue. Servicing fees would also be hit hard, thus again, GST gained from those fees also goes in the bin.

Once you begin to do your sums, it become crystal clear, the Government will be in dire straights if they were to support electric vehicles, AS THEY SHOULD.

As far as I know, my country is the only country so far, that refuses point blank to encourage the uptake of electric vehicles.

Rather strange, as it appears our country is becoming a major supplier of materials for battery systems.

Submitted on Monday, Jan 7, 2019 at 4:45:21 AM

Author 0
Add New Comment
Share Comment
Reply To This   Recommend  (0+)
Help
 
Indent

Craig K. Comstock

Become a Fan
Author 82641

(Member since Oct 16, 2012), 1 fan, 35 articles, 23 comments
Not paid member and Facebook page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Twitter page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Linkedin page url on login Profile not filled in Not paid member and Instagram page url on login Profile not filled in


Add this Page to Facebook! Submit to Twitter Share on LinkedIn Submit to Reddit


Reply to Eddy Schmid:   New Content

It's been three decades since climate scientist James Hansen testified to Congress about human-caused global warming, but the emissions of greenhouse gases are higher, not lower. I'm concerned not about an ideal response, but one that may be possible. People want to keep their cars, whether fairly new or used but not worn out.

As you say, mechanically adept people have been converting for years, in some cades quite successfully, but kits would make this possible on a mass scale, at a much smaller expense than replacing the whole vehicle.

I agree that running electric cars on power obtained from coal or fracked natural gas would be absurd, except when unavoidable during a transition.

Once voters have cars that run on something other than fossil fuels, they would demand subsidies for a green transition, no matter how much propaganda we hear about the climate science not being "settled."

A program of mass conversion would put a lobbyist in every garage, a lobbyist for more extensive green energy

Submitted on Monday, Jan 7, 2019 at 7:57:15 AM

Author 0
Add New Comment
Share Comment
Reply To This   Recommend  (0+)
Help
 

 
Want to post your own comment on this Article? Post Comment