Saturday, December 14, 2013

Electric Buses

I am still rather skeptical of electric cars, although I admit to be pretty impressed by the advances of the past five years. Electric bikes have made sense to me for a while, and on some days other small electric vehicles such as a segway don't seem entirely crazy.

Electric buses actually make a whole lot of sense to me though. Rather than charging in the morning, then running all day most have overhead wires which power them. Modern battery technology means that they don't have to stay under the wires all day. They can charge for most their route, but if they need to move away from the wires for short distances during emergencies or to pick up passengers they can do so.

This seems like a best of all worlds. The problem with electric cars is the battery. The cost per mile of buying batteries eats up the entire cost difference between gasoline and electricity. Also they have to recharge for so long limiting range. By running off overhead wires a trolley bus seems to eliminate those problems.

The only downsides I can see are the wires which are pretty ugly, and the fact that like all public transportation it only works well in high population density areas.

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