Sparse plug-ins for electric cars spark creativity

Oct 19, 2008 By PHUONG LE , Associated Press Writer

(AP) -- Owning an electric vehicle requires more than global-cooling ambitions. It takes guile, planning, sharp vision, a silver tongue - and a 50-foot extension cord. Steve Bernheim knows accessible outlets like a firefighter knows hydrants. He has to - his Corbin Sparrow runs only 25 miles on a charge.



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User comments : 9

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axemaster
4.5 / 5 (2) Oct 19, 2008
It only goes 25 miles per charge? How did he expect this to convince anybody? I'd lose my mind driving a car like that...
Ashibayai
3 / 5 (1) Oct 20, 2008
He said he's just like a normal driver, "except my car has a much smaller carbon footprint and has a cheaper energy source."

"And it only goes 25 miles per charge which makes my life a logistical nightmare..." -should be attached to the end of this article.

Looks like a smug storm is forming in Redmond?
DGBEACH
4 / 5 (1) Oct 20, 2008
25 miles really isn't very far. The Chevy volt should help things along though (battery technologies) and make pure EVs more mainstream.
holmstar
4 / 5 (1) Oct 20, 2008
25 miles isn't very far, but then again, there are lots of people who only drive 5-10 miles per day, so I could see this being practical for some people. (who don't travel out of town much)
jeffsaunders
3 / 5 (1) Oct 20, 2008
encourage everyone to live closer to work. AS did riding horses and coaches to work a 150 years ago.
WidgetGuy
not rated yet Oct 21, 2008
This seems to be a situation that cries out for a Website where people can search for available outlets. A little PHP, a little MySQL and, Bob's yer uncle, you have the framework to support a nationwide resource for those brave souls who have embraced EVs as early adopters. I didn't see any mention of such a Website in the article or in the comments. That seems pretty odd because, to me, the idea is a no-brainer.

If there is no such Website, I'd be happy to host one and I'll also write the code needed to implement it (I'm an e-commerce consultant by trade). I would welcome assistance from a graphics designer to make the site as attractive as possible.

Information about available outlets, their electrical characteristics (voltage, plug-style, etc.), whether they're available 24/7/365 or have time/day restrictions, whether permission must be obtained before use, and all of the obvious location information, could be stored in a pretty simple database. People who want to share an outlet can come to the site and add their information using a contributor's form. The contributor would, obviously, not need to own an EV to offer to share his/her electrical outlet. Perhaps we can find someone willing to donate placards that say "Use My Outlet" which can be located near the actual outlet. People needing an outlet can search for one using the location information via a search form on the Website. When they get to the address, they can look for the placard to find the actual outlet.

The domain name "usemyoutlet.org" is currently (21 Oct 2008. 8:34AM US/CDT) available. If anyone reading this thinks this is a good idea and would like to help get the word out, I'll reserve the domain name, rent a host and get the site up ASAP. If you're interested in helping promote the site (or even if you just want to offer encouragement), please contact me directly at web.sell.intl@gmail.com.


DGBEACH
not rated yet Oct 21, 2008
Sorry but I'm kind of confused about something...offering electrical plugs is all nice, but what do the drivers do while they're waiting for their vehicles to charge? I can see McDonalds jumping on this bandwagon pretty quickly.
Somebody offer a healthy alternative quickly!!!

...maybe even a brothel or two :)))
CWFlink
not rated yet Oct 21, 2008
Remember... unless the electricity is coming from nuclear or hydro power plants, carbon is being emitted during the generation of the electricity. And unless I'm mistaken, the overall efficiency (power plant efficiency, transmission efficiency, charging efficiency, motor efficiency, etc.) and impact on carbon footprint is actually worse than if the car ran on pure ethanol, and maybe even worse than on ordinary gasoline!

I think serious consideration needs to be given to mass-produced micro-reactors, distributed widely across the country. Just like cell phones took off in the 3rd world because the cities did not need to be wired, micro-reactors could bring power quickly without awaiting the building of a huge electric power grid to carry power from Midwest windmills to charging stations across the country (and predominantly on the coasts.)
CWFlink
not rated yet Oct 21, 2008
Reference to "micro-reactors" aka Small Nuclear Power reactors (July, 2008):
http://www.world-...f33.html