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The inside of an EV

Now that weve officially entered electric vehicle (EV) territory and it would appear were not going to slow down or shift focus, understanding just how an EV works is a nice tidbit of informationto have on hand. Granted, understanding the ins and outs of a typical car is likely not 100 percent understood by most of us, but we have a general idea. So now on to the EV

First, the benefits of an EV are relatively well-known they create less pollution and are much quicker off a dead stop. Now, theyre more expensive and dont get the type of range that a gas-powered car will get you, but those are the two areas that folks at Tesla and others are actively working on.

Nikola Tesla invented the alternating, current motor way back in 1887. What he didnt know at the time was that act would pave the way for the birth of the EV a century later. An EV converts direct, current electricity into alternating, current electricity. With direct, current electricity, electrons flow in one direction. But with alternating, current electricity, the flow can change and adapt, exactly what a vehicle needs when running on an electrical current.

An EV has a battery pack that is comprised of roughly 7,000 lithium ion cells (batteries) coupled with a coolant that runs throughout the pack to keep it from overheating. This is the power source, and with the inverter (a component to convert direct electricity into alternating electricity) the car is subsequently powered. Next, we have the induction motor which via the alternating current produces a rolling motion causing it to turn. The drivetrain is a single-speed transmission and like traditional drivetrains distributes power to the wheels directly from the motor.

To fuel up, EVs must be charged which is a simple current, plugged in, that recharges the batteries. A standard 120-volt outlet is common and charging times will net 2 to 5 miles per charge hour. Not a lot, which is why 220 / 240-volt circuits are also available, fetching 10 to 25 miles per charge hour. Better, but theres also athird option the DC charging EVSE device, which will get the vehicle 80 percent charged in 30 minutes.

Now that wasnt so bad, was it. Sure, theres a lot more going on under the hood but in a way EVs are much simpler to understand. Odds are they will be commonplace for a kid being born today. The future awaits!

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