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EVcast #238. School's Out!

Saturday, May 23rd 2009 @ 4:13 PM (not yet rated)    post viewed 6095 times

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Host Nikki Bloomfield is joined by lifelong educator Chris Connors from Make Magazine and Marc Geller, EV advocate and blogger from Plug in America.  They discuss encouraging young people into the world of EVs through education, hands on experiments and workshops.


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Paul Cummings
Free Access
PaulCummings said on Sunday, May 24th 2009 @ 9:19 PM:

Thanks for today's show Nikki, Chris and Marc- it would be nice to see more science in general, and more hands-on work in particular, in our schools, starting them young.  I wish I had had such access to this when I was a wee lad- perhaps I would not be so electrically deficient now;-)  Below are some of the links y'all mentioned, for those who are interested:

MIT Sea Perch program:

Boston Museum of Science "Engineeing the Future" course:

The "Electric Dreams" book: 

The link to the EV University is on the left side, at:  - or at least, it will be- the link is still to a survey they are doing for this online EV University

Sherry Boshert's site, with a link to her book, Plug-in Hybrids:

And the links for Nikki's guests:

Chris Connors web site:

Marc Geller's blog:

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a guest said on Monday, May 25th 2009 @ 2:05 PM:

A great show, I was one of the student Chris mentioned. I can tell you that my education has definitely shaped my career and life aspirations. I hope to soon be designing electric cars for the rest of my life. Additionally, I plan to create as much publicity about electric cars as possible. For those who are interested about my start with electric cars: My 1980 comuta-car project was an important part of my high school education.

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a guest said on Monday, May 25th 2009 @ 9:30 PM: You can charge your electric car from strips embedded in the road at intersections. 2:43

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Rick Covert
Free Access
RickCovert said on Tuesday, May 26th 2009 @ 1:39 PM:


Again a truly great show but for a different reason then your previous shows. Your pitch to educate school kids and teenagers reminded me of my path to EV's.

I was in grade school when I had my first introduction to things electrical It all started with an interest in radio fueled by a curiosity of why my radio signals faded at night. This led to that 100 and 1 electronic projects kit which led to more radio circuits and then the crystal radio set and ham radio. It set me on the path to understanding electronics of power devices through all of the electronic theory books that have served me well in my understanding of the technical aspects of EV electronics even to this day.

This interest in electronics happened during and after the first oil shock of '73-'74 and I saw this strange vehicle called the Citicar. It was a cheese wedge shaped vehicle which was really a glorified golf cart with a roof and a death trap but it was the first vehicle that sparked my imagination over what could be. I also got interested in solar panels back then and had a Popular Science magazine from 1975 on a fully energy self-sufficient farm with solar panels and a wind turbine. The farm even produced its own natural gas from pig and cow waste. All I know is that my imagination was fired up back then. High School killed it substantially though. Getting a reasonable electric car in 1979 when I first learned to drive, (In New Jersey, where I grew up, you can't legally drive until you're 17½ and then only during the daytime until you became 18) was all but impossible. They were just not viable due to the lack of power electronics transistors and/or controllers and proper series DC motors for electric cars. The power electronics were just not there in 1979. The only choice beyond gas was this if you had the bucks like Jack Nickleson did.

Rick, from the oil capitol of the world, Houston, TX. Smile

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