Going Green with Electric Vehicles: There Is Considerable Interest in Electric and Hybrid Cars Because of Environmental and Climate Change Concerns, Tougher Fuel Efficiency Standards, and Increasing Dependence on Imported Oil

By Deal, Walter F.,, III | Technology and Engineering Teacher, November 2010 | Go to article overview

Going Green with Electric Vehicles: There Is Considerable Interest in Electric and Hybrid Cars Because of Environmental and Climate Change Concerns, Tougher Fuel Efficiency Standards, and Increasing Dependence on Imported Oil


Deal, Walter F.,, III, Technology and Engineering Teacher


Going Electric

Humans by their very nature are mobile beings. From the earliest of times, when humans were hunter-gathers or nomadic peoples, they moved from one place to another in search of food, shelter, and changes in the seasons. The domestication of animals and invention of the wheel marked the beginning of major changes in the ways and distances that people traveled.

With the establishment of communities of people in towns and cities, transportation and mobility needs changed and improved. Carts and wagons and, subsequently, animal-drawn wagons enabled humans to quickly move larger quantities of goods over greater distances as compared to walking.

There are many parallel developments in the establishment of towns and cities, agriculture and food supplies, population growth, and transportation systems and technologies. As we "fast-forward" through the ages of sailing vessels, steam engines, and trains and into the age of the "horseless carriage," or what we now call an automobile or car, we can see that the automobile has provided humans nearly unlimited mobility to travel where and when they want! The first American automobile was constructed by Frank Duryea in Springfield, Massachusetts around 1893. Frank Duryea's brother, Charles, financed his car endeavors. Frank Duryea was a tool and die maker and imagined that his car could be markedly improved (Farber and Associates, LLC, 2009).

One of the first electric vehicles was built in Scotland by Robert Anderson. Anderson's "electric carriage" was crudely constructed by later technological expectations. However, historians do suggest that Anderson's work is noted as the first electric vehicle (Chapo, 2010). Later, during the 1840s, Thomas Davenport in America and Robert Davidson in Scotland developed more practical electric vehicles. Notable work was done in France and Great Britain in the manufacture of electric cars. America was a bit slow in getting into the world of transportation and electric cars. It was during this period of the 1820s through 1899 that all kinds of inventions beyond imagination were being introduced, as this was the zenith of the industrial revolution. It was during this period that the discovery of oil was made in Titusville, Pennsylvania, followed by huge oil discoveries in Texas and western parts of the country as well as the invention of the telegraph, radio, and the phonograph or gramophone. We would see that the development of the automobile would parallel all of those inventions that made major changes in the way that we make things, communicate, and transport people, goods, and services.

By the late 1890s mechanics and inventors began to develop electric vehicles in the United States. The Electric Carriage and Wagon Company in Philadelphia built a fleet of electric-powered taxis for the city of New York. A relatively short period of time--1899 to 1900--represented the highlight in the production of electric vehicles, as it was during this period that electric vehicles outsold all other types of vehicles. The design and manufacture of electric vehicles would continue for another quarter century but soon would be replaced with gasolinepowered vehicles. The discovery and production of oil and gasoline in the western part of the nation, along with mass-production techniques, would fuel the manufacture of low-cost, gasoline-powered vehicles. Ransom E. Olds is noted for inventing the concept of the assembly-line production method to produce automobiles. Additionally, Olds and Henry Ford, with his goal of building inexpensive cars for the masses of people in America, pushed aside the more expensive electric vehicles. Ford's use of line production techniques reduced his manufacturing costs and gave him a competitive advantage over other automobile manufacturers (Chapo, 2010).

During the early 1900s, there were many different brands of automobiles. Names such as Ford, Dodge, Chrysler, Oldsmobile, and Chevrolet are still around today. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Going Green with Electric Vehicles: There Is Considerable Interest in Electric and Hybrid Cars Because of Environmental and Climate Change Concerns, Tougher Fuel Efficiency Standards, and Increasing Dependence on Imported Oil
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.