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New Technology Poised to Improve Electric Vehicle Efficiency

Fuel-Efficient CarsResearchers at North Carolina State University recently developed a new type of inverter device that is poised to revolutionize the electric vehicle industry.  An inverter takes the DC current from the battery and changes it so it can be used by an AC motor.  The new inverter is lighter, smaller and more efficient than inverters being used in today’s existing models.  According to the researchers, the new device will drastically improve the range and energy efficiency of electric vehicles. 

By utilizing silicon carbide, the researchers discovered they could transmit 99 percent of the energy into the motor, 2 percent more than the best existing silicon inverters on the market today. 

The device was created using off-the-shelf parts, meaning that large-scale manufacture of these new inverters may prove simple.  Better still, there appears to be an opportunity to develop even smaller, lighter prototypes.

This is a significant step, according to Iqbal Husain, the head of the university’s Renewable Electric Energy Department.  He cited consumers’ anxiety about electric vehicle range as a significant barrier to mainstream adoption of the energy-efficient vehicles.  By improving range, he anticipates a greater volume of vehicles may soon fill the streets around the country.

Read the full story here.

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