Govt Plans to Develop Electric Car

Govt Plans to Develop Electric Car

Postby Richard Akindele » Tue Aug 29, 2006 9:04 pm

FORMER chairman, Nigeria Internet Group, Dr Emmanuel Ekuwem, has said the federal government is committed to the development of electric powered cars. Ekuwem who is the President of Association of Telecommunication Companies of Nigeria, said this at an IT workshop organised for journalists in Uyo at the weekend.

He said modalities were being put in place to improve on the limitations discovered in the prototype of the car.

"We discovered that the battery in the prototype can only last for a 45-kilometre journey before a re-charge.

"And so, the federal government is looking at the capacity of the battery, so that it can last longer before the next recharge," he explained.

He said the workshop's theme: "Empowering the press in a digital revolution", was timely since the media needed to be abreast of IT trends to enable them to chart a course for Nigerians.

Meanwhile, Akwa Ibom was last weekend, listed in the maiden Nigerian IT Directory, a compendium of major players in the IT industry in the country.

At the ceremony in Uyo, Governor Victor Attah described the initiative as an acknowledgment of efforts by states and the federal government to promote and reposition an economy supported by science and technology.

Attah, who said the state would increase its IT capacity, maintained that investment in the sector would reduce dependence on petroleum revenue in 20 years while its exploitation was environmental friendly.

In his remarks, Science and Technology minister Turner Isoun said the compendium, which would also be published in French language, would be a tool to fight cyber crime in Nigeria.

The compendium Isoun said, would also complement federal government's set goals of "Computer for all Nigerians Initiative", reduce computer illiteracy and promote public access to information technology.

The minister called for better collaboration from the private sector to subsidise computer price to enable Nigeria to achieve the 2015 UN Millennium Development Goals' target.

Richard Akindele
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Postby Richard Akindele » Tue Aug 29, 2006 9:46 pm

Has Nigeria ever built a production-grade car? If we did, I must have missed it.

How did we go from no car, to electric car?

There are too many problems associated with electric cars at this time that prevent them from being widely adopted.

1. The batteries don't last longer than 5 years before they have to be replaced. And they're not cheap. Most people in the developed world are shying away from the technology because of that.

2. Each charge cycle only lasts about 30 minutes before a recharge is needed. How far can you travel in 30 minutes? Instead of a pure electric car, Nigeria should be looking at hybrids. In a hybrid, when the batteries are spent, the petrol (internal combustion engine) system takes over.

3. Each recharge time may be several hours.

4. They can't go as fast as regular fuel powered cars.

5. Nigeria doesn't have stable elecricity. So if there's a power failure and your car needs recharging, you're out of luck.

There are so many other problems that make electric cars not ideal for Nigeria. I know we love to showoff in Nigeria, but I'd rather see engineers being practical.

As I always say, we should be focusing on fundamental technology, before we try to go advanced. Learn to crawl before you walk.

What Nigeria needs first are: stable electricity, clean water, roads, food, low unemployment, good schools, quality affordable healthcare, etc.
Richard Akindele
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