Category: Alternative fuel vehicles

How many alternative fuel vehicles can you name?

A few weeks ago we featured electric cars as one industry that uses brushless DC (BLDC) motors. During investigation there was a blog I found that had a bunch of TLA (three-letter acronyms) for the alternative fuel vehicle industry. Below is a piece from the Schneider Electric blog that has defined these TLAs. That’s the beauty about blogs. There is always something to learn, but be careful, you can’t trust everything you read on the Internet.

Are you “trying to sort out all the different types of Alternative Fuel Vehicles now on the market? Here are some key terms and features of the industry and also a great resource that you can use to investigate further.

AFV – Alternative Fuel Vehicles. Alternative Fuel Vehicles (AFV) which run on ethanol, biodiesel, natural gas, propane, or hydrogen – all of which use less energy than gas.

FFV– Flex-Fuel Vehicles. Flex-Fuel Vehicles (FFV) are designed to run on gas or a blend of up to 85% ethanol.

EV – Electric Drive Vehicles. Electric Drive Vehicles-all use an electric motor to improve efficiency in some way, that motor can be powered by a battery, in combination with an internal combustion engine, or by a fuel cell.

  • HEV – Hybrid EV uses an electric motor and a combustion engine. These are designed to capture energy lost through braking (regenerative brakes) to power the electric motor.
  • PEV – Plug-In EV uses a highly efficient electric engine and electricity, powered by batteries that are charged by plugging into an outlet.
  • PHEV – Plug-in Hybrid EV use an electric motor and combustion engine and uses energy from a battery that is charged by plugging into an outlet or the electrical grid in some way. When electricity runs out the car continues using a gas engine or a generator (like an EREV).
  • EREV – Extended Range EVs when the battery runs out the combustion engine acts as a generator to power the battery and extend the range.
  • BEV – uses batteries to power the electric motor, fully runs on the plug in charge.
  • FCEV – Fuel Cell EV combines hydrogen fuel and oxygen to power the electric motor, the only exhaust is water – fully runs on the plug-in charge.

Learn more at the website

People have varying opinions on these alternative fuel vehicles. Some are adamant about using corn (that is used to make ethanol) to power vehicles when the corn can be used to feed people. Others feel the U.S. government subsidizes these vehicles and they should live on their own merits. Others say we should stop using fossil fuels altogether and go to these alternative fuel vehicles.

This post was written to help people become aware of he extent of alternative fuel vehicles in existence today. Some are in the testing stages and some are in production. Generally, these vehicles cost more than the gas powered vehicles so those that purchase them have a passion for the “green” environment. Some have enough cash to purchase these vehicles in order to save time by not purchasing gas. Right now there is an infrastructure problem. Slowly but surely towns, cities, and states are coming up with places to recharge your hybrid while on the road.

As you learn more about alternative fuel vehicles when you take STEM subjects, you will be able to make your own choice. We live in a land that provides you the opportunity to make choices and that is good. However, for each choice you make, you also incur responsibility. Be sure you choose wisely.


Quote for the Day:   ”Character, not circumstances, makes the man.” — Booker T. Washington