Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Janique Goff: Are flex-fuel vehicles the answer?

Alternative fuels like biodiesel and ethanol are becoming more and more ubiquitous parts of life in many countries. Green technology advocates, like Janique Goff, note that these fuels have been mixed with conventional gasoline in the past few years and vehicles that use alternative fuels exclusively have been released. Moreover, specially designed flexible-fuel vehicles are experiencing renewed popularity. These vehicles are capable of running on either gasoline or biofuels (ethanol, usually) and provide the benefits of being able to run on in part on biofuels as desired or when needed.

Janique Goff Image Credit: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Biofuel

Flex-fuel vehicles have been around for a very long time; the Ford Model T, the world’s first commercially available mass-produced car, was capable of running on ethanol and gasoline. The flex-fuel would regain attention during the 1970s oil price crisis, when petroleum was in desperate short supply.

Janique Goff Image Credit: autoblog.com

Advocates of green technology such as Janique Goff note that different countries often utilize different designs and fuel ratios in their respective flex-fuel vehicles. Older flex-fuel vehicles in Brazil have two tanks—the smaller one containing gasoline, which is used to start up the engine faster in cold weather. Flex-fuel vehicles in Europe and the United States are optimized for up to 15% gasoline and 85% androhydrous ethanol, changing in ratio only during winter. Today, Brazil and the United States lead the world in the use of flex-fuel vehicles.

Janique Goff Image Credit: navitasadvisors.com

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