Electric Car is the future of cars. It is gaining popularity with rapid improvements in its technology. It has environmental friendly concept and cost effectiveness too. This post will discuss about what is an Electric Car, its various types, components, how it works, Mobile Tune Up Technology, advantages and disadvantages.
What is Electric Car
Any Vehicle using more than one electric motors or energy saving rechargeable batteries is known as Electric Car. Electric Car produce less pollution than the conventional gasoline-powered cars. The concept was first conceived in 1880’s. Hungarian Anyos Jedlik is the first person to invent the initial type of Electric Motor from which he created a small model car in 1828.
Fig. 1 – Introduction to Electric Car
As the technology advanced, the imagination grew to create a better model for Electric Cars. In 1835, two small scale Electric Vehicles were created, one in Holland and another in USA by Thomas Davenport, who later on went to create the Electric Cars to run on non-rechargeable batteries. While these Electric Cars did not gain a lot of popularity due to its lacking in technologies, but gave an opportunity for upgrade and development.
Fig. 2 – (a) Electric Motor in 1828 (b) Initial Electric Vehicle
Types of Electric Car
There are mainly three variations of Electric Cars which has been classified by the usage of electricity to fuel. They are:
- Plug-In Electric
- Plug-In Hybrid
- Hybrid-Electric (HEV)
- This runs only on electricity.
- There is no requirement of petrol or diesel.
- There is nil emission produced.
- This is powered by electric and by fuel both.
- This can be easily switched between the battery and the fuel engine.
- For battery operation can be plugged in to charge when needed.
- There is moderate amount of emission produced when used in fuel mode.
- Powered by both fuel and electricity.
- This cannot be plugged in to charge like the regular plug in electric cars.
- These charges through regenerative braking.
- Compared to the above mentioned type of vehicles, this produces more emission.
Fig. 3 – (a) Electric Car (b) Hybrid Car (c) Hybrid Electric Car
Components of Electric Car
Electric Cars are efficient and environmental friendly when compared to the fuel cars. The components making the car efficient are discussed below.
- Battery (All-Electric Auxiliary)
- Charge Port
- DC / DC Converter
- Electric Traction Motor
- On-board Charger
- Power Electronics Controller
- Thermal System (Cooling)
- Traction Battery Pack
- Transmission (Electric)
Fig. 4 – Components of Electric Car
Battery (All-Electric Auxiliary)
The auxiliary battery furnishes electricity to power vehicle accessories in an Electric vehicle.
In order to power the traction battery pack, the vehicle has to connect to the external power supply which the charge port allows.
DC / DC Converter
For a smooth running of the vehicle accessories and recharge of the auxiliary batteries, the converter helps in converting the high voltage DC power from traction battery pack to a lower voltage DC.
Electric Traction Motor
Motor generators that perform both the drive and generation function are used by some vehicles. With the help of power from this traction pack, the vehicles’ wheels are driven.
Monitoring battery traits, such as the current, temperature, voltage and the state of charge while charging the pack. The process is of input of AC electricity supplied via the charge port converting it to DC power for the traction battery charging.
Power Electronics Controller
Controlling the speed of the electric traction motor with the torque it produces, the unit manages electrical energy flow which is delivered by the traction battery.
Thermal System (Cooling)
Thermal cooling helps in supporting a stable operating temperature range of the Engine, Electric Motor, Power Electronics Controller.
Traction Battery Pack
This helps in storing the electricity which would be used by the Electric Traction Motor.
Transfer of the mechanical power from the Electric Traction Motor which helps in driving the wheels.
How does Electric Car Work
The Electric Cars look the same as any regular fuel generated Cars, however the Plug in Cars don’t have the Tail Pipe and the Gas Tank. The source of the power of the Electric Car is the batteries which act as Gas Tank, supplying the Electric Motor the energy to run the vehicle. The battery’s Electrical energy gets converted in to Kinetic energy by the Motor of an Electric Car.
Fig. 5 – Working of Electric Car
The user/driver turns on the car or powers the car. Selects “Forward” or “Reverse” option and steps on the accelerator pedal as shown in the Fig. 5. Electric motor has only a single rotating element called the Potentiometer. The motion from the motor is transmitted to the car wheels through Controller. The power is controlled by Controller which helps determine which parts or accessories require more power and thereby helps in distribution of the battery energy.
If the Car has to move “Reverse” then the flow of electricity through the motor is reversed which changes the rotation of the Motor. This makes the wheels to rotate in the opposite direction. The Electric Cars have a Regenerative braking system along with conventional friction braking.
In Regenerative Braking System, when the User/Driver releases the accelerator pedal and pushes the brakes, the motor acts as a generator and converts Car’s kinetic energy to electrical energy which helps in recharging batteries. This process reduces the speed of the Car. The User can also apply the conventional Friction braking system for stopping the car immediately. The rest of the components like the Air Bags and Air Conditioning is the same as the fuel powered cars.
Comparison Between Electric Car and Fuel Car
Let’s discuss the basic differences between a Electric Car and Fuel Car in accordance with its major features.
The combustion engine found in the electric cars is not found in the fuel cars which lead to no tailpipe. In Electric cars however there is a rechargeable battery.
Electric cars run on electrically charged batteries making them dependent on Utility Energy Industry. Petroleum is the main source of energy for the fuel cars.
For electric car, there is a limited range it can travel for every recharge, while the fuel efficient cars have various capacities. They can usually run for longer distance.
The time taken for battery recharge is comparatively longer than it takes to fill up the gas tank.
Battery operated cars are less expensive to maintain when compared to the fuel car range.
Electrical Cars are more environmental friendly with no emission of toxic gas and hence they have been adopted fairly on a larger scale with the climatic changes happening. The same cannot be said for the fuel cars.
Mobile Tune Up Technologies in Electric Car
The Mobile Tune Up Technology was developed by the Hyundai Motor and its sister company, Kia Motors. In the electric car, the technology allows the driver to control the efficiency, the performance which includes the driving comfort by setting the car’s responsiveness, air conditioning, power generated through the braking, the speed limit. All of this happens through the application in a mobile phone or the smart phone or a tablet.
Fig. 6 – Mobile Tune Up Technology in Electric Car
With every positive upgrade on the technology, there comes a hurdle. To prevent any security issues with respect to uploading of the personalized setting on the company server, there is a block chain technology is applied to encrypt the data.
Advantages of Electric Car
The advantages of Electric Car include:
- Distance – The travel distance between every recharge is almost up to 150 – 180km before the battery gets drained.
- Environment – No Greenhouse gases emitting such as CO2, NOx and PM10s.
- Fuel – No Oil Consumption by the vehicle.
- Convenience – Recharge of the Cars as per the customer’s convenience will be provided soon. Electric grid will be available in close proximity either in the parking lot or the customer residence which will help in and charging the car overnight while in parking.
- Cost Effective – Due to the long lasting battery technology, Electric Cars have cost effective batteries than the regular cars.
- Maintenance – Compared to the regular cars, the Electric Cars are cheaper to maintain.
- Pollution – With a silent engine, there is less noise pollution.
Disadvantages of Electric Car
The disadvantages of Electric Car include:
- Range – Not all Electric Vehicles have long distance range. On a full charge, most of the EV’s run a 60 to 100 miles, with a very few small Electric Cars can run anywhere between a 200 to 300 mile range.
- Time Consuming – A full recharge usually takes an overnight time compared to the fuel filling which can happen in a few minutes. This becomes time consuming when there are emergencies although there are tool kits which are available in the market for faster recharge and bringing down the time.
- Initial Investment – It’s a huge investment for an initial purchase of the car along with the additional tool kits when compared to the Fuel Cars.
- Inconsistency – Not all countries have adopted the Electric car in the market. Hence the charging stations are inconsistence. Although some countries have a considerable market growth in this segment, the frequency of charging station found is less. This makes it difficult for the consumers.
- Restricted Choice – The choices of the Electric Cars in the market have increased considerably when compared to previous few decades. But as compared to the other models, the variety of cars has been restricted.