In the 1970s, two energy crises forced the world to conserve energy and examine the possibility of alternative fuels. However, these crises proved to be short. By the time auto manufacturers began developing prototypes of alternative fuel vehicles – one such example was Volvo’s famous model that ran on vegetable oil – the crisis had ended. Today, renewed interest in alternative fuels is driven by several factors including energy diversification, pollution caused by traditional energy sources, and questions of national energy independence. As a result, alternative fuel together with vehicles and other devices that use it have become a lucrative industry.
One of the biggest markets for alternative forms of energy is the transportation sector. In the United States, for example, 20 million barrels of oil are consumed daily, 14 million or 70% of which fuel the transportation needs of businesses and individuals. This means transportation is the single largest non-industrial end user of energy. Put a different way, in the United States airplanes, cars, and trucks consume more energy than is used for heating and powering homes.
But what might be some viable alternatives? Some alternative transportation fuels, like liquid nitrogen, compressed air, compressed natural gas, and even coal are more “experimental” than others, such as liquefied natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas, which have not yet been thoroughly tested. The alternative fuel vehicles that currently dominate the market for hybrid vehicles are those which utilize hydrogen fuel cells, electricity, biodiesel, and ethanol. Coming from plant-based sources, ethanol and biodiesel are already being widely used- This is due to diesel engine vehicles and FlexFuel vehicles that are designed to handle a mix of up to 85% ethanol. Hydrogen fuel cells vehicles rely on the universe’s most abundant element, can be refueled much like a current gasoline engine, and produce only water vapor as a by-product. Electric cars, even though they may not have convenient refueling options as the other three alternative fuel forms, can utilize energy from truly green sources, like solar and wind power.
Though each of these fuel alternatives meet our need for options in an increasingly competitive natural energy market and will help to reduce single source dependency, there are, of course, problems. When dealing with different technologies and applications of technology, proper application and market integration takes time and money.
In a diverse global energy market, new and innovative products, do, however, also present great opportunities for rapid growth.
EVS Translations is a language service provider for global corporations with a special focus on the automobile and energy sectors. As a German company and long-standing translation partner of many automobile market leaders, EVS Translations understands the importance of effective multilingual communication in the automobile industry.
EVS Translations is a full-service DIN ISO 9001 and DIN EN 15038 certified automobile translation company with a global presence, over 20 years’ experience and the ability to work cross time zones. Streamlined processes and in-house teams allow completion of even the most challenging multilingual automobile translation projects (high volume, tight deadline, IT resources) in a cost-effective manner.
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