The pathway to diversification hinges on the use of alternative fuels (alcohol fuels, biodiesels), fumigation, dual fuels and fuel cells, all in an attempt to reduce dependence on the barrel of crude oil. Another pathway is the use of hybrids. Hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) â is a vehicle that uses both an auxiliary electrical power source, such as, fuel cell or battery along with an internal combustion engine for propulsion. Over the past 100 years, efforts have been made to improve the efficiency of ICE. Only in the past 25 years have significant improvements been made. Carburetors were reliable and lasted throughout the life of the engine but cylinder to cylinder distribution of air/fuel ratio was poor in multi-cylinder engines. Throttle body injectors did not last long before the adoption of port injection as the industry standard. This happened at a time when micro-computers (electronic control modules- ECU) were widely introduced into automobiles towards the late 1980s. With all these tweaking, the efficiency of ICE has not improved significantly. Hence, the focus is now on the development of HEVs and electric vehicles (EV).
Last date updated on July, 2014