Challenges in a Hybridized World Term Paper

Pages: 11 (3118 words)  ·  Style: APA  ·  Bibliography Sources: 16  ·  Level: College Sophomore  ·  Topic: Transportation

¶ … Hybridized World

Annotated Bibliography

Hybrid Cars: All about Hybrid Vehicles, Hybrid Theory of Operation, Pros & Cons, Tax Credits, Oil Pricing, Nitrogen Tire Inflation (2007) CarBuyingTips.com Online available at http://www.carbuyingtips.com/hybrid-cars.htm

This report explains precisely what a hybrid vehicle actually is and explains the different modes of operation of a hybrid vehicle, of which there are five. The hybrid only gets better gas mileage sometimes and not at all modes of operation. The myths surrounding the hybrid are also examined in this work.

Hybrid Cars (2007) All You Wanted to Know about Hybrid Cars. Online available at http://www.hybrid -- cars.info/articles/History-of-Hybrid-Cars.

This report explains the pros and cons of purchasing a hybrid vehicle.

McCormick, John (2007) Vehicles Tap into New Technology. Auto Insider. 18 April 2007. Online available at http://detnews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070418/AUTO02/704180313/1320/AUTO04

In this work, the author examines the differences between the diesel and hybrid vehicle and examines the pros and cons of each.

4) Amos, Christopher D. (2006) Are Hybrid-Electric Vehicles a Good Buy for Fleet Government Fleet September/October 2006.

In this work, the author examines whether hybrid vehicles are the best choice for fleet purchase. Examined are fuel costs, replacement costs, and the costs of purchase of the hybrid vehicle.

5) Hybrids are Becoming Mainstream (2005) Physorg.com News. Online available at http://www.physorg.com/news4570.html.

This work reports a survey of hybrid owners in relation to their satisfaction with the hybrid vehicle.

6) Top 3 Picks for Hybrid Cars (2007) for Hybrid Cars. Online available at http://forhybridcars.com/info/Hybrid-Cars/Top-3-Picks-for-Hybrid-Cars.html.

This work reports the top three choices for hybrid cars among consumers, which include the Honda Civic Hybrid, the Honda Insight, and the Toyota Prius.

7) a Brief History of the Hybrid (2007) Hybrid Vehicles. Online available at http://www.go-hybrid.info/.

This work explains the additions that the owner may purchase to make the hybrid vehicle more serviceable to the owner. These additions include: (1) stealth mode; (2) extra batteries; and (3) solar panels.

CHALLENGES in a HYBRIDIZED WORLD

Objective

New vehicle technologies such as hybrid electric automobiles and diesel-electric buses and trucks are lauded as important tools in the fight against global warming and rising fuel costs, but they also pose new challenges and risks. This work will review the reasons that support, as well as those that do not support purchase of a hybrid vehicle.

Introduction

In 1905, the application for a patent of hybrid gasoline and electric motor power train was the beginning of the existence of the hybrid motor. In fact, hybrid trucks were first built in 1918 and when a company developed a hybrid vehicle capable of 70 miles per gallon, the consumers were not interested, choosing instead gasoline powered vehicles. In the decade of the 1960s, automobile emissions were first looked at closely as well as the health effects that were caused by the internal combustion engines. (Hybrid Cars, 2007; paraphrased)

I. Overview of Hybrid Vehicles

Hybrid vehicles have two types of engines that work in unison. The first is a standard engine powered by gas with the second being a "...electric motor assist that is powered by a nickel-metal hydride (NiMH) battery pack." (CarBuyingTips.com, 2007) Theoretically speaking, this type of combination of gas and electric hybrid technology results in better gas mileage as well as lower exhaust emission from engines. Hybrids should not be misunderstood to be the equal to electric vehicles because the hybrid car is gas powered combined with the electrical motor assist. Some of the hybrid vehicles are labeled 'clean fuel property' by the Internal Revenue Service with hybrid SUVs "like the Lexus RX400h being labeled "SULEV rated which means they are 'Super-UItra-Low-Emission-Vehicles' and this appeals to environmentally conscious prospective car buyers.

II. Myths Relating to Hybrid Vehicles

Common myths concerning hybrid vehicles are stated to include those as follows:

1) Hybrid vehicles require being plugged in for purposes of charging;

2) Hybrid vehicles get up to and even over 70 miles per gallon;

3) Hybrid vehicles have a rechargeable battery that has a life of only two years;

4) Hybrid vehicles, when out of gas allow one to drive on the electric motor.

These are indeed, only myths and not statements based on hybrid vehicles facts. Hybrid theory relates that the hybrid vehicle will react differently and that the different reactions of the hybrid vehicle are dependent upon various current modes of driving. Typical driving is said to be divided into five modes. Throughout the expanse of the five modes the hybrid vehicles will transition through stages when the electrical motor is operating and others when the gasoline engine is operating and even stages where both of these engines is in operation. Understanding the vehicle's operation in each mode is critical if one desires to get the highest possible gas mileage and if one wants to minimize the engine emissions output. The five modes of operation in the hybrid vehicle are those as follows:

1) Full stop - During this mode the gasoline engine shuts down eliminating idling and reducing engine emissions. The electric motor engages to move the car when the gas pedal is pressed. Much fuel may be saved in heavy city traffic if one understands this hybrid vehicle mode of operation.

2) Low Speed/Initial acceleration from a stop - it is this mode in which one may save the largest amount of fuel with a hybrid vehicle and this is counter to the gasoline fuel use, which is largest at this specific mode of operation.

3) Heavy Acceleration - There is not near as much fuel saved in this mode of operation as advertising would like one to believe.

4) Highway Driving - There are no savings to fuel whatsoever at this point because during this mode of operation the hybrid vehicle guzzles just as much gas as any other gas engine.

5) Braking, Coasting and Deceleration - it is stated that "When you brake or coast, forward kinetic energy that in standard car normally gets dissipated as heat is instead converted to electric energy. This is accomplished by using the old reliable spinning electrical motor in its other role, now as a generator to charge the battery pack. This is why hybrid cars never need to be plugged in, despite old wives tales, you might hear. This process of charging the battery is known as regenerative braking." (Ibid)

During backing up a hybrid vehicle, the gas engine is not in operation and the electric motor is engaged though "using the old reliable spinning electrical motor in its other role, now as a generator to charge the battery pack. This process of charging the battery is known as regenerative braking." (Ibid)

III. Pros of Purchasing a Hybrid Vehicle

Hybrid vehicles run cleaner with Toyota making claims that their vehicles are 'Up to 80%" cleaner than the conventional gasoline engine;

Hybrid vehicles are environmentally friendlier than the conventional gasoline engine vehicle and have lower engine emission. Toyota claims their cars are UP to 80% cleaner than conventional gas engines

The hybrid vehicle comes with an 8-year warranty on the hybrid vehicle system;

Hybrid vehicles earn tax deductions and credits for 'clean fuel property'. The deduction in 2006 was a dollar for dollar reduction in taxes.

If a large enough group drive hybrid vehicles oil consumption would drop and OPEC would be forced to lower gasoline and oil prices;

If the largest part of driving time is spent in a "stop and go" fashion at the slow speeds that characterize city traffic then the hybrid vehicle purchase will see great benefits;

In some states, driving a hybrid vehicle earns you the perk of being a single occupant vehicle in the HOV lane, no more tickets!" (Ibid)

IV. Cons of Purchasing a Hybrid Vehicle

There are also stated to be 'cons' or negative factors associated with hybrid vehicle ownership. Some of those 'cons' are stated to include the following:

If most of the driving is on open highway at high speeds, then little benefit will be seen in hybrid vehicle ownership;

Some high demand hybrids have waiting lists and often sell for premiums over window sticker price

Hybrid cars and Hybrid SUVs can cost a few thousand more than their conventional gas engine counterparts

Gas savings can take years to recoup the additional cost of buying a hybrid vehicle

EPA fuel economy estimates are overstated and one will not actually witness these estimates in reality. (Ibid; paraphrased)

The following table illustrates how hybrid vehicles actually get better gas mileage in the city than they do on the highway.

Hybrid Vehicle

City MPG vs. Highway MPG

Vehicle Brand

Hybrid Model

Standard Model

City

Highway

Ford Escape Hybrid

Lexus RX 400h Hybrid

Lexus GS 450h Hybrid

N/a Yet N/a Yet Honda Accord Hybrid

Honda Civic Hybrid

Honda Insight Hybrid

2007 Toyota Camry Hybrid

N/a Yet N/a Yet Toyota Highlander Hybrid

Toyota Prius Hybrid

Source: (Ibid)

The work of John McCormick entitled: "Vehicles Tap into New Technology" states that: "One of the leading contenders is the diesel engine, which is up to 30% more efficient than a gasoline motor. Diesel… [END OF PREVIEW]

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