The most concerned sectors
The sectors most concerned with Electric Vehicle (EV) technology are delivery and shipping services. These include entities such as UPS, USPS, DHL, etc. While integrating EV changes in their business model, these corporations will also have to contend with other up and rising competing delivery service providers, of which Amazon is an example. As the EV technology evolves, this should help the sector ensure a fast, effective, cleaner and more sustainable shipping and delivery service.
Some analysts are forcasting technological advances could even render existing delivery business models obselete. This would have grave negative economic effects for the traditional corporations mentioned above. As the demand for their existing services potentially declines, much of their investment in EVs could then go to waste.
Competing firms such as Amazon have been inovating to lead the shipping process into a new more environmentally friendly delivery solution. General Motors is another player at the forefront of this industrial evolution. Their Green inovation can be seen through the number of new brands of EVs they are bringing to the market. These include Cadillac, Buick, GMC, and Chevrolet.
The new problems that electric vehicles could cause and the companies that would resolve those issues
EVs have been plagued by several problems. An EV relies entirely on batteries for its mobility. As this energy source is heavily solicited, its temperature can vary from -30* to +50* celsius in the span of seconds. This extensive use of batteries makes them prone to catching fire.
An EV incorporates some of the most advanced technological components to optimise its efficiency potential and provide the best driving experience possible. However, these require a sophisticated and connected computer system to manage a multitude moving electronic parts. As a result and when compared to a traditional combustion engine, this advanced and connected technology makes an EV more vulnerable to hacking.
Another issue raised by the growing move to EVs is the recycling of their energy source, batteries. Unfortunately, batteries are the most poluting part of the EV. Redwood Inc, a company based in Carson City, Nevada plays a major part in the creation and design of EVs. As part of their business model, they aim to recycle lithium-ion batteries. To do so, they are looking to bring reusable batteries to the market and to recycle existing batteries as alternative electrical storage systems. Their industrial development seeks to reduce the poluting paradigm of EV batteries at the end of their battery life and to limit their harmfull potential on the environment.
The Electric Vehicle infrastructure (charging stations for example)
The number of new charging stations for EVs has increased exponentially. Many buildings around the world, especially in the US, have integrated charging stations for EVs, as the propotion of this kind of car has increased over the last few years. Charging stations are becoming more widespread than ever.
They have recently come up with 2 types of charging stations; one which is usually found in parking lots or on the street. It is named: a supercharging station. They provide a fast recharge facility for the battery. However, using quick recharges too often can damage EVs because of the high power and energy being supplied to the battery over such a short period of time.
Another type of charging station, defined as safer than the supercharging station, is normally found in office and condominium buildings as well as traditional homes. As this system takes more time to charge up, it is not as aggressive on the EV’s equipment. Over the long term, the battery life of the car is expected to be optimized by using this recharging process.
Which companies lead the Electric Vehicle Revolution?
The three manufacturers of EV’s, considered leaders in their field, are Nissan, General Motors, and Tesla. They have sold more than 60% of EVs since September of 2018. Their sales have been increasing massively since the pandemic. Their inovations and the quality of their products are encouraging the general public to acquire EVs. If this trend persists, we could be looking at a healthier environment, on top of a high product satisfaction from owners of EVs around the globe. A Win Win for the planet and the consumer of EVs.
A wide number of companies have started to embrace this new technology. Many factors have convinced indivuals EVs might be the way to go:
- A step towards a greener future in the world: reduced gas emissions entering the air, less environmental pollution.
- A cheaper and more accessible car: Reduced prices of EVs, less energy and maintenance cost to make them function.
Due to these accumulated factors, this should increase the overall number of users of EVs over time.
A list of companies using EV’s are the following: Apple, Aspark, Audi, BMW, Bollinger, Byton, Cadillac, Canoo, Chevrolet, Faraday, Future, Fisker, Ford, Genesis, GMC, Honda, Hyundai, Jaguar, Kia, Lotus, Lucid, Mazda, Mercedes Benz, Mini, Nissan, Pininfarina, Polestar, Porsche, RAM, Rivian, Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Volvo.
Are there alternatives ?
An Electric vehicle might be more ‘environmentally friendly’ on paper than a traditional combustion engine, however it is not completely clean. It relies the extensive use of electrical energy. There is no guarantee this power source does not come with a negative carbon footprint.
The components required to build an EV depend on raw materials, the extraction of which adds to world polution. The recycling of batteries remains an environmental issue which has yet to be resolved with a technology that is satisfactory.
As an alternative, Hydrogen vehicles are looking to compete with EVs on the road to clean transportation. This type of energy is generated from a chemical reaction as its source of power. This works through a process which makes hydrogen react with oxygen through a cell providing energy under the form of electricity.
A Hydrogen vehicle depends on a hydrogen fuel cell. The vehicle does not require the same quantity of batteries. The recharging process does not depend on an electrical grid. The hydrogen cells are fuelled up rapidly.
However, the infastructure and industrial process to make this energy available is not carbon neutral. The energy source, Hydrogen, is produced from feedstocks such as natural gas or electrolyzed water. These substances are not commonly available and have a negative carbon footprint to produce.
Hydrogen cars have been recently introduced to the market. Since 2021, the Hyundai Nexo as well as the Toyota Mirai, are now publicly available.
Hydrogen could provide alternative ‘clean’ vehicles. However many companies prefer to use traditionnal electric vehicle batteries because it is a more familiar concept.
According to Ford Motor Company, a hydrogen vehicle could only produce three-fifths as much carbon dioxide as a vehicle running on gasoline blended to 10 percent ethanol. There are still issues with using hydrogen fuel-cell technology. Furthermore, these vehicles are still not 100 percent reliable.