Saturday, August 21, 2010

Impromptu Mini-E meet up in Carlsbad on Saturday September 18th

Greetings Mini-E Pioneers!

Julie and I invite you down (both 1 year pioneers and 2 year pioneers) south to Carlsbad for a great Saturday and potential long weekend for those of you with a free schedule.

Here is the plan.

Thursday the 16th is The Encinitas Classic Car Show, this is an epic event in downtown Encinitas and if you’re game you can display your Mini-E along with mine at the event. That night there will approx 500 cars with many of them woodies in downtown Encinitas.

Saturday the 18th is Wavecrest Woodies. This is the worlds largest collections of woodies, many traveling here from the east coast and some shipped from around the globe. It is a spectacular site and a free event.

Saturday after The Wavecrest show at 4pm we will have a meet-up at our home in Carlsbad. Julie and I will be bar-b-Q-ing and we will be drinking our estate wine from our vineyard. We will also be explaining our zero energy home and what techniques and strategies we used to build it.

During the whole time from Thursday until Sunday you may use our charger at the home and we have a city charger in Encinitas by appointment. So you can have a long weekend in San Diego County with your Mini-E with access to charging.

Lodging is available very inexpensively ($65 a night at various motels) or expensively ($500 a night at Avaira or La Costa resorts )

We have a guest room at the house and Julie and I will open that up to one person or couple, free of charge who would like to stay the whole weekend beginning on Thursday night or just Saturday night.

First come first serve.

Hope you can join us, whether one or 20 we will have a great time.

Peder & Julie

Friday, August 20, 2010

The Chargers, here they come!

In my role as the Hwy 101 Coordinator for the city of Encinitas, I assisted Encinitas as they became part of the Field Trial with two Mini-E's. they had great success with the cars but unfortunately the fleet users had to return the cars.

It was instructional for our fleet guys and gals to have these for a year and determine that they really work great, especially in a city that is 7 miles by 10 miles with a fleet of a 100 vehicles that never leave the city. They were a bit impractical for the city with no storage in the back but next iterations of the electric car will deal with that shortcoming.

Encinitas continues its efforts in Solar PV and the electric car. Being in the San Diego Metro area, we are slated to receive many public chargers. The first series of meetings for commercial property owners interested in EV chargers has been scheduled with Encinitas as a host city.

Below is text from the brochure posted above.

Mini-E #183 19,100 miles.

Come join us for one of the
following short meetings to
explain how your business
can get involved in the largest
Electric Vehicle Project in
U.S. history !!

The EV Project is made possible by a $115 million stimulus grant from the Department of Energy.
The project will deploy nearly 15,000 electric vehicle chargers around the country, including over 1,500 commercial units for public charging in the
San Diego Region. These charging stations will be
installed in conjunction with the release of the first
of many electric cars to hit the market...the Nissan Leaf and Chevy Volt.

Informational meetings for
Business and Property Owners

Meetings will be held in 6 convenient locations throughout the county: (light refreshments will be served)

Saturday, August 14, 2010

How many light bulbs does it take to plug in an electric car?

I’m having a blast driving Mini-E # 183 now in my 14th month with almost 19,000 miles on the odometer.
The car has been rock solid with no mechanical problems and the fun factor of driving the little electric pocket rocket continues every time I fasten the seatbelt. Overnight trips are becoming common to favorite hotels and destinations where charging infrastructure exist. Gas cars are starting to resemble the steam locomotives of the late 1800s.

So I got to thinking last night, how many light bulbs does it take to plug in an electric car?

Think for a moment of the power required to move a 3,000lbs car like the Mini-E, or Nissan Leaf through the urban and suburban jungles of the big city for 12,000 miles a year. Freeways, parkways city streets and parking lots, all traveled in the normal course of a year’s driving for most Americans.

If powered by traditional gasoline engines we could all do the math fairly easily. For a 20mpg car it would burn 600 gallons of gasoline weighing 4,800lbs costing $1,800 a year. For a 30mpg car it would burn 400 gallons of gas weighing 3,200lbs costing $1,200 a year.

For most typical drivers, that car in your garage ignites, explodes, burns and exhausts its way through 4,800lbs of refined gasoline (most of it imported) every year in order to power the car for 12,000 miles.

Simple (or incredibly complex) enough so far.

But how about the electric car?

Driving around Newport Beach the other night at 0- dark hour and seeing all the light bulbs on in storefronts, art galleries, light poles, signage, and parking lots and just about everywhere, I thought to myself, those light bulbs run on the same octane as my electric car. I wonder how many light bulbs does it take to plug in an electric car? Or more accurately stated, How many light bulbs will the electric power needed to drive my Mini-E for 12,000 miles illuminate?

The answer I came up with was shocking! Please double check my math and tell me I’m wrong because even I don’t believe it!

Drining Mini-E #183 for 12,000 miles requires the same energy to Illuminate exactly four standard 100 watt light bulbs for a year. Or stated another way, it takes four light bulbs to plug in an electric car.
Four light bulbs!

The math works like this,

Four 100 watt light bulbs illuminated for 24 hours would use 9.6 kwhs of electricity. This multiplied by 365 days a year equals 3,504kwhs a year to illuminate those four light bulbs.
The Mini-E gets 3.5 miles per kwh. 3.5 miles multiplied by the same 3,504kwh used by the four lightbulbs equals 12,264 miles. For the Nissan Leaf which gets 4 miles per KWH the miles climb to just over 14,000 miles.

If 100 watt light bulbs were just illuminated for 1hour a day the power needed to drive an electric car 12,000 miles a year would equal the electricity used by 96 light bulbs.
Four, 100 watt light bulbs illuminated for the year, or 96, 100 watt lightbulbs illuminated for one hour a day for a year.

Think how many billions of high wattage incandescent bulbs that we are shifting to CFL and LED lighting saving 70% to 80% in energy usage.

Lighting Four light bulbs uses the same power as driving an electric car for 12,000 miles.

The future is indeed getting brighter, and much cleaner.
Oh, and the answer is zero, Light bulbs don't plug in electric cars.
Ha Ha!

Mini-E #183, 18,875 miles.