ELECTRIC VEHICLES

WHEN WILL AFRICA FULLY SWITCH TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES?

In the 21st century, most countries, and especially European countries, have fully switched to electric vehicles but it seems Africa is behind in technology. 

Many world leaders have set goals to phase out the petrol and Diesel engines, but they haven’t set any strict laws on the dumping of used cars in Africa.

Africa will pay the price for the electrification of the highest percentage of the world by being an appreciative dumping ground for gasoline cars. With more cars dumped into the continent, phasing out of petrol and Diesel engines will become more difficult since no other countries will accept importing the cars.

THE MAJOR PARTS OF AN ELECTRIC VEHICLE (EV)

  1. The motor

The motor in an EV replaces the normal combustion engine. The motor is run by an Alternating current (AC) from an inverter connected to the battery. Instead of the noisy combustion engines, nearly silent motors are the backbone of the EV.

If it were not for the motor power balancers, the EV would travel at unbelievable speeds owing to the great power of its motor. To cater for real-life situations, the EV balances its acceleration limits accordingly.

  1. The battery

The EV battery is a wonder of its own. The Lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery used is of a great density meaning much power is stored in a small battery. 

According to Hyundai, the battery life depends on the charging fashion. Hyundai also stressed the fact that a car battery that is charged promptly within daily rides of not more than 70 km could stay for nearly 22 years.

The average battery under conventional circumstances can run for 350km without a recharge, a great challenge to the conventional combustion engine.

  1. The rechargeability

The normal combustion engine does not work when a car slopes downhill or retards to rest. The EV on the other hand recharges as the car slopes downhill and also the retardation power to generate more valuable power for its battery. This feature is the reverse function of the EV’s motor.

THE MAJOR FACTORS REQUIRED TO FULLY ROLL OUT ELECTRIC VEHICLES IN AFRICA

Charging points

Electric cars need charging points just like the normal petrol cars need fueling stations. Electric charging, on the other hand, takes approximately 17-19 minutes thanks to the high voltage charging. This charging time will soon lower to ignorable values.

Electric stability

There needs to be a 24/7 power supply at charging points without any blackouts. 

Public acceptance

This is the major move to the electrification of transport in Africa. Without public acceptance, EVs will never be seen filling our roads soon.

WHY AFRICA IS LAGGING IN ELECTRIC VEHICLE MODERNIZATION

Low Power Supply: Africa’s distribution of electricity is very low and that is affecting the strategies laid out for EV (Electric Vehicle) modernization. Electric Vehicles require high power charging points with unshakable power connections In contrast to that, African countries receive thorough power blackouts which will ultimately affect the distribution of the required infrastructure. 

According to several sources, most African countries are below 50% in electrical distribution. To fully adopt green driving, a country should be nearly 70% electric.

The only remedy for this will be car owners buying extra batteries for emergency use which will increase the cost of buying an EV and further reduce space available for luggage.

For African countries to get to that level, most of them will spend nearly fifteen years because of the poor economy. That means a delay of up to 2035. According to the EU, by 2035, there will be no more petrol and Diesel cars in circulation around Europe.

HOW CAN AFRICA MOVE TO ELECTRIC VEHICLES 

For Africa to move to electric vehicles they need to get Electric grids. These electric grids will provide uninterrupted power supplies to the charging points and will be easier to roll out since they will be following main transport routes. The grids will also be free from time-to-time power outages.

The thorough response to the electrification of Africa’s transport has had countries like Kenya reportedly publishing about the sharp rise in the number of new EV companies registered per year. The more EV companies in Africa, the faster we move to this new technology.

CONCLUSION

Our foremost call is for the rapid adoption of the latest technology in Africa and the subsequent increase in science and innovation at home.

Emmy Jayson

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