EVs or electric vehicles are all the talk nowadays, people would like to go green and be a better person for the world. This move towards electric cars or related greener fuel reduces the carbon footprint that is left by us in this world. These moves also enable us to keep the world or change it to a better place for future generations.
Why Is Electric Vehicular Transportation Required?
To explain the need for EVs, let us take a look at the example of the United States. In the US, transportation alone causes almost 28% of total emissions. This 28% percent might not look that big, but this percent is more than enough to impact the environment inversely.
The aim in the US is to cut these emissions by almost 50% by 2030, meaning that the transportation industry will have to cut out on carbon. Granted, carbon and its compounds are important to humans, even we are partially made of it, but the presence of carbon dioxide in more amounts than the norm is pollution.
So, in such a situation, we see that we must change ourselves, our lifestyles to a greener version, for sustainable development. Thus, conversion of the cars we drive to electric ones is a brilliant way to get started.
What Are The Drawbacks Of This Change?
Firstly, at the moment, the average cost of an EV is much higher than its internal combustion counterparts. The example for this higher cost can be seen with any car manufacturer who provides a gas-powered version and an electric-powered version of the same model, like the Mercedes Benz EQS, which is like the S-Class of electric vehicles but is more expensive than an S-class.
Next, the change itself, meaning that people will have to change from their normal gas-powered cars to electric ones. This process is going to be very expensive, as people prefer to stick with their cheaper vehicles.
Another factor of difficulty is the range and charging stations. The charge of a fully-charged EV might last for this particular distance, and most probably its gas-powered counterpart might do a better job at getting to a further distance using petrol or diesel. Thus, there must be an increase in the battery capacity of these EVs for them to be convenient to the customers.
Charging stations are also a problem and the biggest one of them all. Due to the low capacity of these EVs, they will have to charge up on the go. At this juncture, we will need chargers to be placed throughout the route of our journey, and at the moment, the number of charging stations is relatively low.
Charging Stations & Gas Stations
Charging stations are like your normal gas stations or petrol pumps. They are locations that allow you to fill up or charge your car when you are running low on power.
In an ideal situation in a gas station, a driver sees that they are running low on fuel, so they pull into a gas station that is nearby and refuels the car to its full tank in about 4 to 5 minutes, which also depends on the tank of the car.
Moreover, gas stations are found everywhere, and the drivers won’t have to be anxious about whether or not they will reach a particular destination or to the nearest gas station. But, as mentioned before, drivers who drive electric vehicles will have to constantly monitor their range and plan or be anxious about reaching a particular place. The reason for the anxiety in a way boils down to 2 distinct points. Firstly, the lack of charging stations, and secondly, the ridiculous time they take to charge up.
An Improvement For Charging Stations?
Now, for this situation, people think that we can just install some charging stations here and there, and the problem will be solved, or sometimes they might think why can’t existing petrol pumps be repurposed or alongside with electric chargers.
Granted, they seem like good ideas, but they have an underlying issue, that is the charging time. Depending on the type of charger that is being used, it might take a person from just 6 minutes to almost a whole day just to get 100 miles or 160 kilometers, which also depends on the battery size too.
So, the only solution to this problem would be to install charging stations where people can park their cars for a prolonged period, like residences, workplaces, parking lots, etc.
The Types Of Charging Stations
As mentioned before, gas stations and charging stations are somewhat the same. But, the factor that makes them different is the types of electric chargers, which constitute the time taken for an EV to get charged.
Currently, there are 3 main types of chargers Level 1, Level 2, and DC fast chargers. As the order might suggest the Level 1 chargers are the slowest and use a 120 volt AC outlet which adds about 2-5 miles per hour. Nowadays, phones have 120 V chargers.
The Level 2s are a bit more serious. They use a 240V AC outlet, which adds about 10 to 60 miles per hour. These types of chargers are intended for those who want some fast charging and some public charging stations.
DCFCs are the best of the best in the present. They can add about 180 to 240 miles per hour. These types of chargers are used in public places, where cars are expected to come and go for charging. All these different types of chargers have their installation and maintenance costs which range according to the type of charger.
There is a bright future for EVs, but there are hurdles along the way, one of them is the charging stations. For a smooth transition from gas vehicles to EVs, governments and people will have to use time and resources to do so.