Dirty is in the Details: Electric vs. Electrified Powertrains

In this Sustainable Energy Seminar, Dr. Andrea Strzelec, Program Director for Engineering Professional Development, will discuss the future of vehicle powertrains and why a more thorough analysis is needed to evaluate which vehicle technologies are "cleaner" or "dirtier."


There is a lot of very important discourse about the need for a cleaner and more energy efficient future. This is fantastic! However, it can also be fanatic and lacking in scientific truth. Engine bans and “Zero Emissions” vehicles are perfect examples of this. 

I want to stipulate that the issues surrounding CO2 emissions are real and problematic. However, just like all hot button issues, there are a lot of false claims surrounding this issue that need to be addressed. Knee-jerk reactions based on faulty assumptions or an incomplete view of the engineering analysis will not solve the problem, and in some cases may make it worse. In this talk, I will try to explain WHY.

There is a significant difference between “electric” and “electrified” when it comes to vehicle powertrains that is necessary to understand. In addition, much like “there is no free lunch” there is also no such thing as a zero emissions vehicle or ZEV. Drawing the “box” for our analysis has to be done honestly for comparison – there is just one global atmosphere for us to inhabit – so there is no hiding the truth. 

In this talk, I will focus on the details of why word choice matters when it comes to clean vehicles, and how….. “dirty” is in the details.

Registration is required for this webinar through Zoom. Click here to register for this and all other webinars as part of the Sustainable Energy Seminar series.

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