My paper/project will be an introduction to the most common types of currently available alternative automotive fuels, such as hydrogen, ethanol, lpg, biodiesel and electric. From there I will go into detail about how each works, what its strengths and weaknesses are and (hopefully) conduct a gedanken/fermi problem to estimate the viability of applying an alternative fuel to a fleet of vehicles such as those operated by OWU, a fleet of taxis, a police department and finally nationwide. The possibility of a system of these alternative fuels (such as a biodiesel-electric hybrid) will also be looked at.
- Explanation of the purpose of the paper.
- Introduction to terms used throughout the paper.
- Relevancy of paper to society.
- How hydrogen is refined.
- How hydrogen is stored.
- Technologies utilizing hydrogen as a fuel and their application to the automotive world.
- The safety of using hydrogen in an automobile.
- How ethanol is made, including the future of mass production.
- How ethanol may be transported throughout the U.S.
- Benefits/ease of converting to an ethanol infrastructure.
- Sources for LPG, possibility of running out.
- Implementation of LPG into the automotive industry.
- Safety of using LPG in an automobile.
- How bio-diesel is made, including the future in terms of possible mass production.
- How bio-diesel can be utilized in an automobile in today’s world.
- Drawbacks to using bio-diesel.
- How would electricity be used to move an automobile?
- Implementation of storage of electricity onboard the vehicle.
- Generation of electricity in order to sustain the electric vehicle, including a look at the U.S. power grid.
- Diesel-electric hybrids.
- Ethanol-electric hybrids.
- Flywheel-electric hybrids.
- Implementation of gedanken/fermi problem to determine which system looks most promising, specifically for fleets of vehicles.
- Draw a conclusion on which technology looks most promising in the long run.
- Discussion of where the country and the world is headed in terms of alternative automotive fuels.
Here. A government site which provides a good jumping off point to start research.
Here. Same as above, though through the DOE.
Here. Application of alternative automotive fuels to fleets.
Here. Just ’cause it’s awesome.