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Comment Re:Coal won't cut it? (Score 2) 478

If you look at new power plants, nobody is building coal power plants. They're being dismantled far faster than new ones are being built. They're being replaced by natural gas and renewable power because it's cheaper. If you look at the last 10 years, coal has been declining quickly. Coal just can't compete economically, especially given that all of the cheap coal is now gone. The coal industry has been struggling hard to remain competitive (which is why so many coal jobs have been lost). Look at how many coal companies are going or have already gone bankrupt. Coal just can't compete.

Comment Re:Don't buy this (Score 1) 440

I've never had a problem with my Samsung front washer that I've been using for years. First of all, I leave the door open so it can dry out when not in use. Second, my particular model injects a tiny amount of silver into the rinse water that sterilizes clothes and prevents any mildew or mold from growing. The only issue I've had is the useless LED light doesn't work any more.

Comment Re:doubts (Score 1) 341

I like how our county water system is handled. The voters elect the directors. If they screw up they'll be voted out of office. Since the water is decent quality and is reasonably priced compared to nearby counties I'm fairly happy, especially compared to what I remember before the county took over the water system from Citizens Utilities. Under CU the water was undrinkable and came out of the tap brown. The county had to replace everything (and found CU was still using wooden pipes in places). The local county system is also quite transparent and sends out quarterly reports on the water system and what they are doing and what their future plans are.

As long as a government run public utility is answerable and accountable to the voters (and not politicians) I think it's fine.

Comment Re:A pipe dream for sure (Score 1) 273

The nice thing about electric motors is that they have torque, a LOT of torque. Put in a big electric motor and 80,000LBs shouldn't be a big problem. The other nice thing is they can deliver that torque at low speed, exactly where trucks need it. It probably won't even need a transmission. Hell, trains haul a hell of a lot more than 80,000LBs and they're powered by electric motors. In the US they're diesel-electric, where the diesel engine drives a generator used to power the motors. In other countries they're just electric without the diesel part.

Comment Re:Tesla will flourish if complexity is reduced... (Score 1) 273

They're certainly preparing for it. I was just at the factory getting my windshield replaced and they're moving everything around in preparation for the model 3. Also, unlike the Model X, they aren't putting any crazy new stuff in it like the falcon wing doors or seats. Even the model S has changed a fair bit under the covers to improve manufacturing.

The model 3 was designed from the beginning with manufacturability in mind. They already have a lot of experience with motors, batteries, inverters, etc. It wouldn't surprise me if they reused the electric motor used for the front wheels in the model S for the model 3 since the model 3 won't need the crazy horsepower of the performance versions. They learned a lot with their first models.

Comment Re:Wind resistance doesn't care (Score 1) 273

Most do have them. The Nissan Leaf didn't have proper cooling and their batteries tended to die in hot climates and rapid charging was hard on them. Most other EVs have liquid cooled batteries. Tesla also has liquid cooling for the inverter and motor and I suspect many other EVs have a similar setup since even my old Prius had liquid cooling for the inverter and electric motor.

Comment Re:Nothing says... (Score 1) 273

The all-wheel drive ones have less space in front, but considerably more than an ICE vehicle. For a truck this wouldn't be an issue since only one motor is needed though I suppose it could use two smaller ones and get rid of the differential. You can also get rid of the transmission, exhaust system, smog controls and a lot more. One thing Tesla is good at is a compact drive train. People often ask me where's the motor, especially when I pull up the cover in my trunk and expose the large storage space underneath it. Having a 416HP engine the size of a large watermelon helps.

Comment Re:Driverless (Score 1) 273

My Tesla has maintenance done every year or 12.5K miles, and that isn't required to maintain the warranty. The big services happen every four years (50K miles) where they replace the brake fluid and coolant. The motor is lubricated for 12 years. The yearly maintenance includes replacing the cabin air filter, wiper blades, rotating the tires (which should be done more often), a wheel alignment as well as cleaning the car inside and out. They also check the brakes and other things and apply any fixes that are needed.

I don't have to get my oil changed, belts adjusted, spark plugs changed, air filter changed or get emission checks. There's no ignition system or fuel pump to fail, no belts or belt-driven accessories to fail (like AC compressor, power steering pump, alternator and water pump). The water pump is electric and a sealed unit as is the AC compressor. Sealed units tend to be more reliable since it's much less likely they'll develop a leak where the shaft pokes through.

The only major issue I've had with my car is in the last year I've had three rims destroyed due to our roads going to hell. I've since gotten higher profile wheels so hopefully this will no longer be a problem. My car is an early one too. The newer cars are much more reliable and better since they have learned a lot in the last 5 years. The things that caused me issues have been redesigned (i.e. the door handles).

Also if things do fail they're much easier to access since there isn't a big engine in the way. If they do need to access the drive train on my car it's *much* easier than an ICE vehicle. Similarly, the battery can be swapped very quickly.

Comment Re: Driverless (Score 1) 273

Cooling big motors isn't a problem. The 416HP electric motor in my Tesla is water cooled. One thing is that they generate far less heat than the diesel engine they replace. There are electric motors in the tens of thousands of HP. Electric motors are easier to cool than an internal combustion engine. They don't need to warm up to their operating temperature. They can also have a smaller radiator.

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