How an Electric Vehicle Works

Recently, there has been more interest in using electricity to help reduce the amount of petroleum consumed by the transportation sector.

The plug-in hybrid vehicle and the dedicated electric vehicle are now available to consumers in the open market. By 2015, it is expected that many car manufacturers will be offering plug-in hybrids or dedicated electric vehicles in more models.

As the diagram to the left shows, electric vehicles store electricity in large battery banks. They are plugged into a wall outlet (either a 240-volt or standard 120-volt) for several hours to charge. An electric motor powers the wheels, and acts as a generator when the brakes are applied, recharging the battery.

Information provided by Constellation Energy, an Exelon Company.