Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




CAR TECH
When fueling up means plugging in
by Elizabeth Boyle
Newark DE (SPX) May 24, 2011


A Chevrolet Volt, being shown during an Earth Day event in Wilmington.

Obama orders US agencies to buy green vehicles
Washington (AFP) May 24, 2011 - The US administration will only buy vehicles using alternative energy sources to equip its fleet by the end of 2015, President Barack Obama announced Tuesday.

The timeline is part of Obama's plan to cut US oil imports by a third by 2025 and put a million advanced vehicles on the road by 2015.

"By December 31, 2015, all new light duty vehicles leased or purchased by agencies must be alternative fueled vehicles, such as hybrid or electric, compressed natural gas or biofuel," Obama said in a memorandum sent to heads of all US executive departments and agencies.

"The federal government operates the largest fleet of light duty vehicles in America. We owe a responsibility to American citizens to lead by example and contribute to meeting our national (energy) goals."

The memo updated a previous text dated October 5, 2009 in which Obama had asked that government agencies reduce their vehicle fleet's oil consumption by 30 percent.

At the time, the president was still counting on Congress to pass a bill fighting global warming, an initiative that ultimately failed in the face of opposition from lawmakers and that seems unlikely to return to the top of the Obama administration's agenda.

But Obama has continued to seek stricter pollution norms for light vehicles and trucks through regulation.

His latest memo also limits the size of the administration's vehicles and requires rigorous management of the fleet to correspond to needs. Emergency and security forces' vehicles are granted exceptions to the rule.

Want a Nissan Leaf? Join the 20,000 people on the waiting list to get one. The Chevy Volt got your eye? General Motors ramped up availability earlier this year to try and meet demand. With the latest generation of electric vehicles gaining traction, new findings from University of Delaware researchers are informing automakers' and policymakers' decisions about the environmentally friendly cars.

Results of one study show the electric car attributes that are most important for consumers: driving range, fuel cost savings and charging time. The results are based on a national survey conducted by the researchers, UD professors George Parsons, Willett Kempton and Meryl Gardner, and Michael Hidrue, who recently graduated from UD with a doctoral degree in economics. Lead author Hidrue conducted the research for his dissertation.

The study, which surveyed more than 3,000 people, showed what individuals would be willing to pay for various electric vehicle attributes. For example, as battery charging time decreases from 10 hours to five hours for a 50-mile charge, consumers' willingness to pay is about $427 per hour in reduction time.

Drop charging time from five hours to one hour, and consumers would pay an estimated $930 an hour. Decrease the time from one hour to 10 minutes, and they would pay $3,250 per hour.

For driving range, consumers value each additional mile of range at about $75 per mile up to 200 miles, and $35 a mile from 200-300 miles. So, for example, if an electric vehicle has a range of 200 miles and an otherwise equivalent gasoline vehicle has a range of 300, people would require a price discount of about $3,500 for the electric version.

That assumes everything else about the vehicle is the same, and clearly there is lower fuel cost with an electric vehicle and often better performance. So all the attributes have to be accounted for in the final analysis of any car.

"This information tells the car manufacturers what people are willing to pay for another unit of distance," Parsons said. "It gives them guidance as to what cost levels they need to attain to make the cars competitive in the market."

The researchers found that battery costs would need to decrease substantially without subsidy and with current gas prices for electric cars to become competitive in the market. However, the researchers said, the current $7,500 government tax credit could bridge the gap between electric car costs and consumers' willingness to pay if battery costs decline to $300 a kilowatt hour, the projected 2014 cost level by the Department of Energy. Many analysts believe that goal is within reach.

The team's analysis could also help guide automakers' marketing efforts - it showed that an individual's likelihood of buying an electric vehicle increases with characteristics such as youth, education and an environmental lifestyle. Income was not important.

In a second recently published study, UD researchers looked at electric vehicle driving range using second-by-second driving records. That study, which is based on a year of driving data from nearly 500 instrumented gasoline vehicles, showed that 9 percent of the vehicles never exceeded 100 miles in a day.

For those who are willing to make adaptations six times a year - borrow a gasoline car, for example - the 100-mile range would work for 32 percent of drivers.

"It appears that even modest electric vehicles with today's limited battery range, if marketed correctly to segments with appropriate driving behavior, comprise a large enough market for substantial vehicle sales," the authors concluded.

Kempton, who published the driving patterns article with UD marine policy graduate student Nathaniel Pearre and colleagues at the Georgia Institute of Technology, pointed out that U.S. car sales are around 12 million in an average, non-recession year.

Nine percent of that would be a million cars per year - for comparison to current production, for example, Chevy plans to manufacture just 10,000 Volts in 2011.

By this measure, the potential market would justify many more plug-in cars than are currently being produced, Kempton said.

The findings of the two studies were reported online in March and February in Resource and Energy Economics and Transportation Research, respectively.

.


Related Links
University of Delaware
Car Technology at SpaceMart.com






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





CAR TECH
Japan carmakers to work over weekend: industry body
Tokyo (AFP) May 19, 2011
Carmakers will work over the weekend and take two days off during the week to save energy amid power shortages caused by Japan's quake-tsunami disaster, an industry body said Thursday. Factories will be closed on Thursday and Friday from July to September as the country faces the prospect of blackouts in the wake of the March 11 twin disasters that devastated Japan's northeastern coast and s ... read more


CAR TECH
Twin GRAIL Spacecraft to Launch Site by Lockheed Martin

A Wrinkly Old Reveal Clues To Its Past

MoonBots Challenges Teams to Conduct Lunar Missions with LEGO Robots

Earth's Nearest Neighbor Within Reach

CAR TECH
Sibling rivalry: Why Mars became a planetary runt

Mars Science Laboratory Mission Status Report

Mars Exploration Rover Spirit Laid To Rest

Endeavour Crater Just Three Miles Away For Opportunity Mars Rover

CAR TECH
New deep space vehicle to be based on Orion: NASA

NASA Announces Key Decision For Next Deep Space Transportation System

Welcome home, Paolo!

Testing Spacesuits in Antarctica - Part 1

CAR TECH
Top Chinese scientists honored with naming of minor planets

China sees smooth preparation for launch of unmanned module

China to attempt first space rendezvous

Countdown begins for Chineses space station program

CAR TECH
US astronaut grapples with 'tears in space'

Spacewalkers Prepare for Third Excursion

Expedition 27 Crew Undocks from Station

Astronauts to try spacewalk 'hokey pokey': NASA

CAR TECH
ASTRA 1N delivered to French Guiana

Russia sends two Soyuz carrier rockets to French Guiana

ILS Proton Successfully Launches Telstar 14R And Estrela do Sul 2 for Telesat

Satellites for Asia and India are orbited on Arianespace's third Ariane 5 mission of 2011

CAR TECH
Kepler's Astounding Haul of Multiple-Planet Systems Just Keeps Growing

Bennett team discovers new class of extrasolar planets

Climate scientists reveal new candidate for first habitable exoplanet

Free-Floating Planets May be More Common Than Stars

CAR TECH
Orbit of GSAT-8 Satellite Raised Further

'Self-healing' coating piques U.S interest

World Record in Ultra-Rapid Data Transmission

NASA's NPP Satellite Completes Thermal Vac Testing




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement