Auto executives told the Reuters Auto Summit in Detroit last week that a gasoline tax is best the way to boost consumer adoption of electric vehicles. The executives said that “unless gasoline is $3.50 or $4 a gallon, consumers are not going to want to buy those cars.”
The group’s comments echoed an October study from Lux Research contending that sales of battery-powered electric cars and plug-in hybrids would struggle in the next decade unless gasoline prices triple.
The summit’s automotive group took the idea a step farther, however, calling for a gasoline tax that would ensure greater interest in EVs and plug-ins. “Gradually raising taxes to the point where fuel costs $4 to $5 at the pump will do more to stimulate demand in next-generation vehicles like general Motors’ forthcoming Chevy Volt plug-in hybrid than any other policy initiatives,” including the government’s $25 billion loan program meant to spark innovation, a Reuters story said.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.