Author Topic: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?  (Read 216272 times)

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Offline james_s

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #300 on: April 14, 2018, 03:06:23 am »
It's becoming obvious that this debate is futile. The naysayers argue from a purely emotional level, a belief not much different than a religious belief that something won't work or can't work, and no amount of logic or evidence that it does work or is working will ever convince them. No matter how many times I point out that something works perfectly well for a large number of people they will grasp at straws and dig up edge cases to deflect.

It's just a fact that EVs are here, people are driving them, they're plugging them in each night exactly as they plug in their phones. The sky is not falling, the grid is not collapsing, it's already present reality, not some kind of hypothetical sci-fi future. I suspect of the people for whom a current tech EV is a perfect fit for their lifestyle, we are at probably 5-10% market penetration. There is a LOT of room for growth before we even worry about strange edge cases like single car households with only street parking where they take a 3,000 mile road trip every 2 weeks and cannot rent a car because the trillions of other people wanting to take a road trip that same week have rented them all. That's just silly, it flat out doesn't happen.
 
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Offline Marco

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #301 on: April 14, 2018, 03:14:55 am »
Around 3/4 of the cars near me are street parked, it's not an outlier here in the Netherlands.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #302 on: April 14, 2018, 06:37:09 am »
Around 3/4 of the cars near me are street parked, it's not an outlier here in the Netherlands.

Then it doesn't apply to you or 3/4 of the people around you, so what? I'm sure you realize there are hundreds of millions of people for whom that's not the case?

Have a look at my home town for example https://goo.gl/maps/egY6Fw5mqfq

How much street parking do you see? There suburbs like this all over the country. Literally millions of houses with driveways and/or garages. I'm still confused why the fact that you live in an area where this isn't the case somehow means that it can't possibly be true somewhere else.
 

Offline nctnico

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #303 on: April 14, 2018, 10:12:28 am »
Around 3/4 of the cars near me are street parked, it's not an outlier here in the Netherlands.

Then it doesn't apply to you or 3/4 of the people around you, so what? I'm sure you realize there are hundreds of millions of people for whom that's not the case?
I think you should look much further than you home town and collect some real numbers to back up your claim (IOW: do the math). Look at New York for example. And then look at Europe. There are 3 to 4 times more people living in Europe compared to the US. I'm very sure your hundreds of millions of people is grossly over estimated.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 

Offline 2N3055

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #304 on: April 14, 2018, 11:19:34 am »
Around 3/4 of the cars near me are street parked, it's not an outlier here in the Netherlands.

Then it doesn't apply to you or 3/4 of the people around you, so what? I'm sure you realize there are hundreds of millions of people for whom that's not the case?

Have a look at my home town for example https://goo.gl/maps/egY6Fw5mqfq

How much street parking do you see? There suburbs like this all over the country. Literally millions of houses with driveways and/or garages. I'm still confused why the fact that you live in an area where this isn't the case somehow means that it can't possibly be true somewhere else.

And this is where me and other 250000 people live...

https://www.google.com/maps/@45.3360734,14.4272461,1861m/data=!3m1!1e3

It is absolutely tiring how people from USA don't want to accept that rest of the world is different. If we (people not from USA) say something different we are immediately either stupid or don't know better..
We're not. We just live somewhere else where socioeconomic, historic, geographic and all kinds of other facts are simply different.
So we think different and live differently in different environment wanting different things...

Regards,
Sinisa
 

Offline radar_macgyver

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #305 on: April 14, 2018, 02:42:39 pm »
It is absolutely tiring how people from USA don't want to accept that rest of the world is different.

Generalize much? The thread topic is about when EVs will become mainstream. Right now, they are not, but forum users who currently drive EVs decided to share their respective experiences to indicate that the many objections raised (eg: range anxiety) are largely irrelevant. I didn't see anyone other than you turn this into a USA v. the rest of the world argument. If it were, how would you explain Norway's EV ownership statistics?

Also, I lived half my life outside the US, in either a house with a garage, or an apartment with reserved parking spots. Is it common? Not to the same extent as in the suburban US, but not everyone parks on the street (when at home) either.

Go check out some user forums for EVs, there are plenty of folks who own EVs despite not having home charging facilities.


I think you should look much further than you home town and collect some real numbers to back up your claim (IOW: do the math).

I don't see you backing up any of your claims with data or references. Also:

https://www.census.gov/hhes/www/housing/census/historic/units.html


Cue next moving of the goal posts in 3... 2... 1...
 

Offline nctnico

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #306 on: April 14, 2018, 02:49:26 pm »
It is absolutely tiring how people from USA don't want to accept that rest of the world is different.
Generalize much? The thread topic is about when EVs will become mainstream. Right now, they are not, but forum users who currently drive EVs decided to share their respective experiences to indicate that the many objections raised (eg: range anxiety) are largely irrelevant. I didn't see anyone other than you turn this into a USA v. the rest of the world argument. If it were, how would you explain Norway's EV ownership statistics?
I already wrote that Norway (and Sweden and Finland) benefit from a very low population density, almost free electricity from hydro and a high capacity electricity grid for heating. In those countries many people already have a mains outlet near their car keep it warm during the winter. However those countries (with a total of 20 million people) are nowhere near representative for the rest of Europe (742 million people). And that brings me back to my (bottom line) point: because an EV works for a few today doesn't mean it can work for everyone with today's infrastructure. Exceptions don't make the rule.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2018, 02:54:38 pm by nctnico »
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Offline radar_macgyver

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #307 on: April 14, 2018, 03:33:39 pm »
And that brings me back to my (bottom line) point: because an EV works for a few today doesn't mean it can work for everyone with today's infrastructure. Exceptions don't make the rule.

If that's your viewpoint, we're in complete agreement. I (and I'm not alone here) did not get that impression from your previous comments - they were the logical inverse (ie, because it doesn't work for a few today, it can't work for anyone).
 

Offline edavid

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #308 on: April 14, 2018, 03:37:15 pm »
There are 3 to 4 times more people living in Europe compared to the US. I'm very sure your hundreds of millions of people is grossly over estimated.

Actually 2.3X the number of people, and 1.1X the number of vehicles:

http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/europe-population/
The current population of Europe is 742,525,139 as of Saturday, April 14, 2018, based on the latest United Nations estimates.

http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/us-population/
The current population of the United States of America is 326,267,282 as of Saturday, April 14, 2018, based on the latest United Nations estimates.

http://www.acea.be/statistics/tag/category/vehicles-in-use
There are some 291 million vehicles on Europe's roads, or one for every two people.

https://www.statista.com/statistics/183505/number-of-vehicles-in-the-united-states-since-1990/
This graph shows the number of vehicles in the U.S. from 1990 through 2016. Some 268.8 million vehicles were registered here in 2016.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2018, 04:46:08 pm by edavid »
 

Offline phil from seattle

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #309 on: April 14, 2018, 04:23:54 pm »
And that brings me back to my (bottom line) point: because an EV works for a few today doesn't mean it can work for everyone with today's infrastructure. Exceptions don't make the rule.
So, your argument is that we shouldn't have EVs because they can't work for everyone.  I'm pretty sure that none of the pro-EV folks ever said or even implied they would work for everyone. Mainstream doesn't mean 100%. I don't think it even means 50%.

And the big argument against EVs - that they really don't help solve the problem - has been disproven in multiple ways so we seem to be left with the silly argument that "they can't apply to everyone so they should go away".

At least the EVers are trying to help solve the problem of global warming. Happy to hear the anti-EVers approaches to that.  It's a very big problem and we all need to chip away at it. You may wish to see me as an arrogant, clueless American but at least I'm trying to do something about the problem. et tu?


 

Offline radar_macgyver

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #310 on: April 14, 2018, 04:28:09 pm »
@phil: I found this interesting (but old) report: http://www.seattle.gov/Documents/Departments/OSE/FINAL%20REPORT_Removing%20Barriers%20to%20EV%20Adoption_TO%20POST.pdf

I wonder how much of it has been implemented.
 

Offline 2N3055

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #311 on: April 14, 2018, 04:31:08 pm »
It is absolutely tiring how people from USA don't want to accept that rest of the world is different.

Generalize much? The thread topic is about when EVs will become mainstream. Right now, they are not, but forum users who currently drive EVs decided to share their respective experiences to indicate that the many objections raised (eg: range anxiety) are largely irrelevant. I didn't see anyone other than you turn this into a USA v. the rest of the world argument. If it were, how would you explain Norway's EV ownership statistics?

Also, I lived half my life outside the US, in either a house with a garage, or an apartment with reserved parking spots. Is it common? Not to the same extent as in the suburban US, but not everyone parks on the street (when at home) either.

Go check out some user forums for EVs, there are plenty of folks who own EVs despite not having home charging facilities.


I think you should look much further than you home town and collect some real numbers to back up your claim (IOW: do the math).

I don't see you backing up any of your claims with data or references. Also:

https://www.census.gov/hhes/www/housing/census/historic/units.html


Cue next moving of the goal posts in 3... 2... 1...

Thank you for asking, no I don't generalize much, or that often.  How about you? I didn't say ALL Americans are like  that..
I wanted to say that I'm pissed when Americans do that. Because I expect better...

I personally said I would LOVE to own an EV if :
1. price wasn't 2x of same IC vehicle
2. I had a reliable way of charging it.
3. I don't have a range anxiety. EV would perfectly fit my use case in that regard.

That being said, thank you for excellent link to census data. Which exactly explains the disconnect we have here..

From census data (2000) it shows that on average more than 60% of people in USA live in houses with easy capability to charge at home.
Norway has almost same population as Croatia (5 vs 4 Mil), in  country that is vast and about 50% of housing is detached single homes. So almost the same as USA. In Spain, 65% of people live in apartments, Germany 55% etc. In Croatia, there are many detached houses in the cities, but parking on the street... In Italy too...  So yes, numbers do tell the story..

Sad truth is that you cannot extrapolate any conclusion from existing EV ownership. Current EV owners are enthusiasts and those that are lucky to be in position to be able to afford and operate EV.
They are more anomaly than something that can be used to extract plans how to go forward.

As you yourself say topic was "mainstream use of EV". Not so soon, not until infrastructure is built. And that is something that will be really hard somewhere and not so much somewhere else..

Regards,

Sinisa



 

Offline Marco

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #312 on: April 14, 2018, 04:57:16 pm »
I find the Zinc cycle intriguing. You could imagine a system where zinc would serve as the storage medium in a flow-battery/zinc-recoverer, while in a car it would be fuel for a fuel cell. The flow battery would be at tank stations and at home. The flow battery doesn't really care that zinc in alkaline solutions doesn't plate nicely, it gets mechanically removed and compacted, and the fuel cell doesn't have to plate at all.

It's a bit of a chicken and egg problem though, no tank stations, no cars. Electric cars have it easier, because every mains socket is a (slow) tank station. It would need to be forced by government. On the plus side, the tank stations could provide distributed grid electricity storage.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2018, 05:05:14 pm by Marco »
 

Offline nctnico

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #313 on: April 14, 2018, 05:06:01 pm »
And that brings me back to my (bottom line) point: because an EV works for a few today doesn't mean it can work for everyone with today's infrastructure. Exceptions don't make the rule.
So, your argument is that we shouldn't have EVs because they can't work for everyone.
That is not my argument. People keep raving on about how easy it is to charge yadda yadda yadda but from their own little bubble they seem forget that the electricity needs to come from somewhere and thus needs to be transported. If the majority of the cars are EVs upgrading the grid (at some point) alone will require a massive investment  which needs to be paid for one way or another. Also include that people are seeking acknowledgement that they made the right choice by buying an EV as an early adopter.
Quote
And the big argument against EVs - that they really don't help solve the problem - has been disproven in multiple ways so we seem to be left with the silly argument that "they can't apply to everyone so they should go away".
That is not true and easy to proof mathematically. Depending on how electricity is generated an EV can produce more CO2 per distance travelled compared to a fuel economic car. This has been proven over and over again so we are not going to do a recap in every post.

You really should put EVs in a context where there is a lot of development when it comes to renewable energy and alternative ways of getting cars moving. Bio-fuels, (hydrogen) fuel cells, etc are also under development and each have their own advantages/disadvantages. Nothing is set in stone yet.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2018, 05:17:47 pm by nctnico »
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Offline phil from seattle

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #314 on: April 14, 2018, 05:14:04 pm »
@phil: I found this interesting (but old) report: http://www.seattle.gov/Documents/Departments/OSE/FINAL%20REPORT_Removing%20Barriers%20to%20EV%20Adoption_TO%20POST.pdf

I wonder how much of it has been implemented.

I read it when it came out but had forgotten it. Thanks for reminding me. When it came out I recall thinking it was part of the "consultant full employment movement". A lot of scattershot ideas with basically zero meat (private charger sharing, for example). The only half way reasonable one was DCFC (think ChaDeMo, not death cab for cuties...) on city properties and that hasn't happened. In fact, instead of requiring that apartment construction include EV charging in parking spaces (or at least wiring for it) they have now allowed apartments to be built with no parking at all. And the extent of their support is adding a handful of Level 2 chargers in random on-street places. (It's been shown that L2 chargers get approximately 1 use every two days, FAIL.). The number of L2 chargers in private lots has been increasing but that was not due to any government efforts - driven by customer demand. Probably the biggest addition has been a large number of chargers at the airport parking structure and that has it's issues that I won't go into here. For one of the most progressive cities in the US, Seattle doesn't even make the top 10 "EV friendly" city list. Though, it continually ranks high in EV ownership.
 

Offline phil from seattle

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #315 on: April 14, 2018, 05:20:42 pm »
That is not true and easy to proof mathematically. Depending on how electricity is generated an EV can produce more CO2 per distance travelled compared to a fuel economic car. This has been proven over and over again so we are not going to do a recap in every post.

You really should put EVs in a context where there is a lot of development when it comes to renewable energy and alternative ways of getting cars moving. Bio-fuels, (hydrogen) fuel cells, etc are also under development and each have their own advantages/disadvantages. Nothing is set in stone yet.
Then you really are ignoring all the points that have been made and the studies link.  I don't see how repeating them will help.

If bio-fuels and hydrogen are your answers, you really have not done your homework.
 

Offline coppice

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #316 on: April 14, 2018, 05:20:53 pm »
I find the Zinc cycle intriguing. You could imagine a system where zinc would serve as the storage medium in a flow-battery/zinc-recoverer, while in a car it would be fuel for a fuel cell. The flow battery would be at tank stations and at home. The flow battery doesn't really care that zinc in alkaline solutions doesn't plate nicely, it gets mechanically removed and compacted, and the fuel cell doesn't have to plate at all.
Zinc-air batteries were being used in transport applications before lithium ones. They sound great, as energy density is good, zinc is fairly light and plentiful, and you don't need to carry the air. They seemed to have too many degradation issues to reach the big time, though. The article you referenced doesn't seem to offer any major breakthroughs.
 

Offline james_s

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #317 on: April 14, 2018, 05:28:01 pm »


It is absolutely tiring how people from USA don't want to accept that rest of the world is different. If we (people not from USA) say something different we are immediately either stupid or don't know better..
We're not. We just live somewhere else where socioeconomic, historic, geographic and all kinds of other facts are simply different.
So we think different and live differently in different environment wanting different things...

Regards,
Sinisa


Where am I not accepting that other parts of the world are different? I started this whole debate with something along the lines of "if you live in a different situation then this doesn't apply to you" so if it doesn't apply to you why are you even debating? Are you seriously saying that suburbs are exclusive to the USA? While I'm not as worldly as some, I have traveled to much of the two Western provinces of Canada, and I've been to the UK and in both places I saw a very similar situation to home, mostly houses with driveways and/or garages. The UK was the most different as a large number of the houses were duplexes and of course much smaller than the houses I'm used to but houses none the less with private parking.

After all this, I'm still seeing the argument "Well it doesn't work for my little corner of the world therefore it won't work for anybody" and when I point out that there are *millions* of people who live in situations where it will work and in fact does work I get fingers in the ears "La La La La La!!!!" and restating some previous tired argument or trying to turn this into some one country vs another country debate. Stop trying to claim that I'm saying EVs will work well for everybody or that every other country is just like the USA, or that the USA is superior to other countries because I've said none of this. These are counter-arguments invented in the heads of the naysayers.
 

Offline mtdoc

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #318 on: April 14, 2018, 05:44:21 pm »
I have traveled to much of the two Western provinces of Canada, and I've been to the UK and in both places I saw a very similar situation to home, mostly houses with driveways and/or garages. The UK was the most different as a large number of the houses were duplexes and of course much smaller than the houses I'm used to but houses none the less with private parking.

The same is true for tens of millions of Europeans. Germany and France have many large suburbs. True in the Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary as well. Less so in southern Europe but still quite common IME.  I say this as someone who has travelled extensively throughout Europe - including one 8 month continuous visit.

Just as some Americans make generalizations based on their limited experience, some Europeans are guilty of the same.
 
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Offline coppice

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #319 on: April 14, 2018, 05:48:30 pm »
While I'm not as worldly as some, I have traveled to much of the two Western provinces of Canada, and I've been to the UK and in both places I saw a very similar situation to home, mostly houses with driveways and/or garages. The UK was the most different as a large number of the houses were duplexes and of course much smaller than the houses I'm used to but houses none the less with private parking.
I don't know which parts of the UK you went to, but off street parking is only available for a small percentage of UK homes.
 

Offline nctnico

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #320 on: April 14, 2018, 05:59:02 pm »
That is not true and easy to proof mathematically. Depending on how electricity is generated an EV can produce more CO2 per distance travelled compared to a fuel economic car. This has been proven over and over again so we are not going to do a recap in every post.

You really should put EVs in a context where there is a lot of development when it comes to renewable energy and alternative ways of getting cars moving. Bio-fuels, (hydrogen) fuel cells, etc are also under development and each have their own advantages/disadvantages. Nothing is set in stone yet.
Then you really are ignoring all the points that have been made and the studies link.  I don't see how repeating them will help.
You don't need a study to take the CO2 emissions from the EPA website for a fuel economic car and look up the CO2 emissions per kWh electricity for a country or region. It is simple primary school calculus.
The problem with many studies is that they just acknowledge the opinion of who paid for doing the study.
Quote
If bio-fuels and hydrogen are your answers, you really have not done your homework.
Well bio-fuel has been around for decades already. But it is there and growing steadily. The best thing is: it doesn't require changes in infrastructure or equipment people have. The downside is that it isn't new or very different so it is not sexy.

I have also ran some numbers on bio-fuel. If the US switches to fuel economic cars which use about half compared to the current cars then the US should be able to run nearly all the cars on bio-fuel made from agricultural leftovers (according to the numbers from Poet-DSM when it comes to fuel production per surface area of land used for agriculture). And no, this doesn't take any land away for growing food! Also most of the existing cars can run on bio-fuel already or easely be adapted.

Hydrogen has the advantage that it can be made from water using electricity and it also solves the storage problem. Very interesting for wind turbines and/or solar on or near water (sea or lakes). The efficiency isn't great but if placing an extra wind turbine is cheaper compared to batteries then the choice is easy.

Meanwhile I'll wait and see where things go while filling my car with the highest blend of bio-fuel I can find at the gas station.
« Last Edit: April 14, 2018, 06:05:20 pm by nctnico »
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Offline mtdoc

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #321 on: April 14, 2018, 06:02:43 pm »
While I'm not as worldly as some, I have traveled to much of the two Western provinces of Canada, and I've been to the UK and in both places I saw a very similar situation to home, mostly houses with driveways and/or garages. The UK was the most different as a large number of the houses were duplexes and of course much smaller than the houses I'm used to but houses none the less with private parking.
I don't know which parts of the UK you went to, but off street parking is only available for a small percentage of UK homes.

The question of course is what percentage?  10%?  That would still be a very large number.

The other important point is that as long as you can park directly next to your home (even if it is not "private") - you can still charge an EV.

When I travel with my Volt, I bring a heavy gauge extension cord and often plug in to outlets in parking garages, outside of buildings, etc.  There's even an "App for that"  - called PlugShare which shows places others have found to charge their EVs.
 

Offline Marco

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #322 on: April 14, 2018, 06:22:16 pm »
Zinc-air batteries were being used in transport applications before lithium ones. They sound great, as energy density is good, zinc is fairly light and plentiful, and you don't need to carry the air. They seemed to have too many degradation issues to reach the big time, though. The article you referenced doesn't seem to offer any major breakthroughs.

It doesn't use batteries in the car, it uses a fuel cell. The problems of car batteries are less of a problem in flow batteries, you have more room before dendrites can reach the cathode, parts can be easily serviced, electrolyte can be replaced etc. The fuel cell meanwhile gets flushed with fresh electrolyte each mechanical charging cycle so it doesn't accumulate crud very quickly.

It's not a problem of breakthroughs, it's problem of bootstrapping. EV can start small easier than mechanically recharged Zinc fuel cells.
 

Offline coppice

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #323 on: April 14, 2018, 06:47:25 pm »
I don't know which parts of the UK you went to, but off street parking is only available for a small percentage of UK homes.

The question of course is what percentage?  10%?  That would still be a very large number.

The other important point is that as long as you can park directly next to your home (even if it is not "private") - you can still charge an EV.

When I travel with my Volt, I bring a heavy gauge extension cord and often plug in to outlets in parking garages, outside of buildings, etc.  There's even an "App for that"  - called PlugShare which shows places others have found to charge their EVs.
I don't know where we might find proper figures for this, but I'd guess 10-15% of UK homes have off street parking. I would be surprised if its much more than that. Few people have an assigned street parking spot, but more importantly the sidewalk/pavement between the kerb and the house is public land. The house owner can't just dangle a charging cable across that space, and they have no right to install a charging unit at the kerb. In many older towns, the streets are too narrow to even offer enough space at the kerb for a for a box like that. A mother can barely push a pram along the pavement as it is. It would require a massive change in policy to alter this. Its massive because issues of exclusive use/ownership of what is now public space will arise. Sadly, nobody is even trying to discuss this kind of preparation for an electric car future.

Taking a long charging cable wouldn't be much help in the UK. Unless you are travelling to a friend with an unusally large amount of off street parking, which can accommodate your car as well as theirs, you won't be able to plug that cable in.

If the 10-15% with off street parking had electric cars it would make only a small difference to the emissions in UK cities, especially as this 10-15% are in the less densely populated parts. You need a solution that can scale to, say, 50% to start having a meaningful impact.
 

Offline nctnico

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Re: When Will Electric Cars Become Mainstream?
« Reply #324 on: April 14, 2018, 07:06:27 pm »
The same is true for most of the cities in the Netherlands as well. If I want to charge an EV at home I'd need an extension cord and hope nobody pulls it out at night. Not to mention cars will drive over the cord so it may not be a safe solution. All in all charging at home is not a viable solution for densely populated areas where people don't have a private parking space.
There are small lies, big lies and then there is what is on the screen of your oscilloscope.
 


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