How Do Electric Cars Work?

Electric cars look exactly like gas-powered cars, but they lack a tail pipe and a gas tank. Once you lift up the hood, the difference becomes dramatic. There isn't a huge engine or the things you would expect to see under a hood. You will see an electric motor, and it's controller. The motor needs no oil, no tune-ups, and no smog checks.

If you look in the trunk you will see the battery pack, (the EV's power source). The battery pack is just a group of batteries that act as a "gas tank." Everything else is basically the same, including the transmission, brakes, air conditioning, and air bags. Electric cars do not require special tires, but you are able to purchase them.

How Do Electric Cars Effect the Environment?

Compared to gas-powered vehicles, electric vehicles are considered to be 97% cleaner, producing no tailpipe emissions that can place particulate matter into the air. Particulate matter can cause asthma conditions, as well as irritate respiratory systems. Electric cars don't use half the parts that gasoline powered vehicles does, including, gas and oil, they are not at risk of shedding any worn out radiator horses, fuel filters, etc. to be dumped in our landfills, and leaking oil into our water supply. In a gas-powered vehicle, the engine must be kept running even when the vehicle is idle. When an EV is idle, the electric motor is not running and the vehicle is not using any energy.

With the depletion of the Earth's ozone layer and the shortage of our water supply, we have to look at alternative fueled vehicles that will not harm the environment, but will still provide us with a reliable source of transportation.

What Are the Pros and Cons of an Electric Car?

Electric cars have its advantages and it's disadvantages. One of its advantages is the silence. The first thing you will notice about an EV is that it's considerately quiet. This is good because it enhances your listening pleasure for music, conversations on your cell phone, or just giving you peace. There is also a disadvantage to this though. The drawback is that a lot of drivers depend on noise to control their driving.

Another advantage is the safety, and reliability. The tires and air bags work very efficiently. There are also safety features including, circuit breakers and fusible links installed to make explosions, fires, and electrocution unlikely.

How Safe Are Electric Cars?

Electric cars are extremely safe. If an electric car gets into an accident, it is considered to withstand impact a lot better than most gasoline powered vehicles, as the fluid filled batteries help to absorb most of the impact. However, there is one disadvantage to this, if the sealed lead-acid batteries should some how rupture and a person comes in contact with the fluid, the acid can cause serious harm unless cleansed with water very rapidly.

What Is the Performance of an Electric Vehicle?

Electric cars drive very similarly to a gas-powered car. The car is a well-balanced structure; the batteries are in the middle of the vehicle, giving the driver great handling ability. Most EV's can perform up to par with gas-powered cars, although they cannot achieve the same top speeds. Many EV's can beat gas-powered cars "off the line" because the electric motor produces full torque instantaneously. One disadvantage to an EV, is that the air conditioning can decrease the vehicle's range as much as 20%. The other electronic devices, usually, constitute no major change in the vehicle's range.

Bibliography Lauren M. Ryan H.