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Discussion Starter #61
Powerwall.... Do these batteries actually exist? The web page is a little vague about availability, not to mention price. In any event, Powerwalls are unlikely to resolve Germany's grid issues. What's apparent is that the EV enterprise is dependent on the advancement of battery technology. Powerwalls have a stated capacity of 6.4 kWh. (From Tesla's page: Each Powerwall has a 6.4 kWh energy storage capacity, sufficient to power most homes during the evening using electricity generated by solar panels during the day. Multiple batteries may be installed together for homes with greater energy needs.) It appears we're not there yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #63
Yes, that was my point. Storage is the problem. Mandating EVs, as Germany has done, is betting on battery technology, rather than FCVs like the Toyota Mirai or Honda Clarity see https://ssl.toyota.com/mirai/fcv.html and 2017 Honda Clarity ? Clean Vehicles | Honda Not as elegant as the Tesla 3, both appear to be a serious contenders. Is this what German auto makers want? A competition for the immediate future of cars between the heavy hitters in Japan and their own formidable line-up? Maybe not, here is an artice from Renewables just the other day, Germany not about to ban non-EVs - 100% renewable - Renewables International
 

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Discussion Starter #65
Not sure what your point is my Hungarian friend. Porsche was fortunate. Japan placed 6 cars in the top ten. I don't expect any of this impressive technology to find its way to local showrooms anytime soon. If this was a race for bragging rights, clearly Japan won.
 

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VAG is taking positions, as well as other manufacturers with race vehicles powered by other means besides hydrocarbons.
 

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Discussion Starter #71
Except 95% of the hydrogen comes from cracking hydrocarbons. Cracking water with electricity is horribly inefficient at producing hydrogen.
Hello Urlik,
Is cracking hydrocarbons for hydrogen (presumably you mean natural gas) a bad thing? As for cracking water, there is plenty of wind and solar generated electricity that needs to be stored somehow.
Storing that energy as hydrogen which can then be converted back into electricity only seems like alchemy. How does one judge its inefficiency? The IC engine is, even at this stage of its evolution, inefficient. The hydrogen economy appears to be the future.
 

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Hello Urlik,
Is cracking hydrocarbons for hydrogen (presumably you mean natural gas) a bad thing? As for cracking water, there is plenty of wind and solar generated electricity that needs to be stored somehow.
Storing that energy as hydrogen which can then be converted back into electricity only seems like alchemy. How does one judge its inefficiency? The IC engine is, even at this stage of its evolution, inefficient. The hydrogen economy appears to be the future.
Efficiency is measured by comparing energy input to the end energy output. If we were a total wind/solar power provider then there would need to be a way to store excess production but the smarter choice today is throttling back hydro and fossil fuel plants during excess poduction times. This saves the fuel and water with no potential energy production losses. Cracking gas for hydrogen wastes a lot of energy and it makes much more sense to do a NG engine instead. If you wanted to take the hydrogen produced and burn it to generate electricity at peak it would actually be a net energy loss just like pumped hydro electric storage.
 

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Discussion Starter #74
Hello Urlik,
Efficiency and making sense is not what we are discussing, but the future of personal vehicles. I don't expect NG to be a player in the future of personal vehicles. Though the last time I checked Honda still made one. (I'm not sure one could actually buy one however.) With regard to efficiency of hydrogen production, the question is: is there a net benefit? The consensus seems to be yes, though the quality of that benefit is obscure. Government subsidies are to be expected. The cost of a consumer hydrogen fill-up will be subsidized one way or another. Actual conversion efficiency within vehicles will vary. There is a lot to be proven yet, but electric cars require electricity on a scale we can't anticipate. What do we have in abundance that might meet that demand, water.
 

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Efficiency and making sense ALWAYS matters. It's what makes things economical and consumers as a whole almost always gravitates to the best value.
 

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The following applies only to the USA (and even more so to Texas) because the average mindset of the people is different than other countries:

With the Wind and Solar companies competing with the Oil and Gas companies, logic and efficiency will not always be the 1st consideration even though it should. Energy storage will continue to be an issue as the O/G industries will fight any expansion of W/S that does not in some way benefit them. S/W needs either storage or cooperation from the O/G industry to be more efficient and the O/G does not want to loose any bit of market share (or profit) to the S/W, so it will continue to be an issue. The government could solve the problem, but that would require going against the powerful lobby of the O/G industry and until the climate is more of a concern, that will also not happen.

While I expect there will be more electric vehicles over the next few years, I expect far more mild hybrid vehicles to be sold in the next 10-20 years. With VW/Audi introducing the 48V systems and battery costs dropping, I expect many automotive manufacturers to add hybrids at a higher rate than pure electrics. When people see they can get 50% better mpg in a "normal car/SUV" without paying a huge premium up front and not have to worry about a charging station, sales will climb.

This is not to say that electrics are not practical for most of the population, they are. Convincing them to buy them is another matter entirely.
 
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