Sorry to have to disappoint you (again). As the main-stream media reported everywhere, the top Roadster model, modified, and complete with a mannequin behind the wheel together with its miniature relative, was just sent into a circum-solar trajectory—never to be seen again by potential eager buyers on this planet. But it is really fast, travelling at a speed of 6,864 miles/hour!
Better keep the dummy’s seatbelt fastened!
On the downside, the company’s less expensive “mass production” 4-wheeler is still months, perhaps years away from delivery to most of the folks who have plunked down the advance payment required with their order, as long as two years ago.
I’d wish to have that kind of business acumen, formerly associated with snake oil vendors at countryside fairs. Actually, just in case you are looking for a new investment, you may like to know that I have a “water frontage” property for sale in Florida, just sayin …
Before I get into more detail on the above, let me tell you about the story of a little secret of mine, never told before.
When I was in my early teens, approximately six decades ago, I had dreams of becoming a rocket engineer. At the same time, I was busy building various structures from Meccano sets and exploring pyrotechnics by mixing various chemicals.
There were some neat books on the latter; I got them either as loans from the local public library or as gifts from my Dad’s colleague. These books provided much interesting information.
My instincts were correct; there was much to be learned and more to be discovered.
It made me think of combining the Meccano system with my budding rocketry aspirations. In short, I built a model car with rocket propulsion.
When it came to test the system, lacking a flat or paved driveway, I set the contraption on our (infrequently) travelled neighborhood road, and ignited the rocket.
Voila, IGNITION, flames, and—no moving car. In fact, the whole contraption just burned a hole into the road’s asphalt.
Needless to say, my dear parents weren’t all that pleased when they learned about my rocketry activities.
That’s when I decided to stick solely with chemistry.
Lunch and Dinner
Really, what’s the rush? Doesn’t every good citizen enjoy lunch and dinner, chatting with friends and/or strangers for hours while waiting patiently for their EV-inventions to accumulate enough juice to get to their next destination?
As with all chemical systems, the EV-vehicle batteries obey the applicable laws of physics and chemistry. In practice, that means that the energy used to charge them needs to be “digested” in a coordinated fashion that allows the components to form into physically stable and potentially re-usable form of energy storage. That is not just an engineering-problem; it is a time-problem as well.
And those (solely) electricity-driven cars in existence are frequently looking for places to recharge. Their drivers don’t seem to mind the need for taking hour-long naps, going shopping in malls or online, or having an extended lunch and, possibly, dinner as well.
What could be more satisfying—if you have no deadlines to meet?
Furthermore, the required wait teaches an important lesson about physics and chemistry, namely nature doesn’t give a damn about what you want or may desire at the moment. Nature does not care about our deadlines.
Deadlines are (mostly) Real
For most people, deadlines are real. They either meet them or not. Especially in the latter case, they may have to find alternative employment or a good excuse pretty soon. Even meeting one’s deadlines may not guarantee anything due to disruptive new technologies, unforeseen competition, poor management decisions, and the entire myriad of other alternatives and eventualities.
Even if EVs were ever to become the primary mode of personal transportation (as some folks are dreaming of), the term deadline may need a serious revision. To wit: After 46 years of mankind having last sent a human mission to the Moon and back to Earth, the (President Obama) era-envisaged mission to planet Mars is slipping even further into the future. If ever achieved, it certainly would not be a cakewalk and, most definitely, not worth the effort—even if there might be a free Roadster in-waiting.
The Martians don’t mind though; they are not known to have EV-recharging stations anyway.