Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Bolivia - Hybrid Car Revolution

Bolivia, this humble South American nation is caught in the storm of next generation Hybrid Car technology. Current Hybrid Car technology works on Lithium-Ion batteries which are charged while the vehicle is running on conventional fuel like petrol or diesel. These batteries are very light and provide power longer than other types of batteries. Such hybrid technology cuts the dependence on conventional fuels by as much as 50% according to some estimates. The working principle of a Hybrid Car is simple. The Lithium-Ion batteries are put on charge while the vehicle runs on conventional fuel. A charging motor charges the batteries using little power from the conventional engine. Once the batteries are fully charged, the power source can be switched from conventional fuel to battery. This reduces consumption of conventional fuels and reduces carbon emissions.

So, where does Bolivia picture in this. The irony is that Bolivia has the largest deposits of raw Lithium Carbonate which is required to get Lithium to produce Lithium-Ion batteries. Currently a lot of big car manufacturers like Toyota, Honda, BMW and Audi are vying for taking Hybrid Car technology to the next level. This can only be accomplished by producing better Lithium-Ion Batteries by the millions to be fitted in next generation cars. Their dependence for lithium ore on Bolivia is natural which is not going to provide easy access of this resource to foreign multi-nationals. Bolivia is looking for a fair deal which would help their country to also prosper along with the technological development of the western world.

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