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What is a Hybrid Vehicle?

Simply stated, a hybrid vehicle is one that utilizes more than one source of energy to move or propel the vehicle. Depending upon the type of vehicle in question, it may utilize a combination of many different types of energy sources. Some of the most commonly used energy sources in hybrid vehicles include:

Petrol or Diesel
Rechargeable Energy Storage System
Natural Gas
Compressed Air
Human Power (pedaling, etc.)

Human powered hybrid vehicles are perhaps illustrations of the simplest use of the hybrid technology. For instance, a moped is a human powered hybrid vehicle. It utilizes an electrical motor or an internal combustion engine along with the mechanical energy created by the pedaling done by the rider. However, in recent times, new technology is available in the form of hybrid cycles. The pedaling of the rider creates energy, which gets converted into electricity which then powers the motor, but also charges the battery. It is then possible for the motor to also use battery power. Such cycles are currently available in the market.

Hybrid technology is also widely used in the case of heavy vehicles. Heavy goods vehicles, buses, mobile hydraulic machinery as well as ships and railway locomotives use hybrid engines in their technology. However, the most popular use of hybrid engine technology can be seen in cars.

Many different engine types can be used within the hybrid technology. Perhaps, the most common of these technologies is the hybrid electric-petroleum engines.

These engines use the electrical power of the motor as well as the gas power produced by the engine in varying degrees to provide propulsion of the vehicle. The engine can be a mild hybrid, where the electrical motor and the battery are used as standby sources of energy, or it can be a full hybrid version, where all three components- the gas engine, electrical motor as well as the battery, are all fully engaged in the process of creating energy.

There is also hybrid technology available that creates Continuously Outboard Recharged Electric Vehicle or COREV. In this technology, the electrical power drives the vehicle and needs to be recharged on a regular basis.

On the other hand, there is also another distinct side of hybrid technology. While a vehicle is commonly considered hybrid if it uses more than one form of device for propulsion, even those vehicles that are capable of using more than one fuel at a time for efficient performance are considered hybrid vehicles. This technology is driven by what is called Hybrid Fuel. However, vehicles that use hybrid fuel are commonly called Dual Mode vehicles to avoid confusion with typical hybrid vehicles. While some dual mode vehicles combine electricity with a diesel engine, most commonly, hybrid fuel is a combination of fuels mixed in the same tank. These fuels include gasoline, ethanol, Methanol or Biobutanol.

There are also hybrid vehicles that utilize compressed air as a source of power. They are called fluid powered hybrids.

Eagle Technologies is a Factory Automation company in Bridgman, MI serving clients all over the world. The areas Eagle Technologies specializes in cover many motor and energy related industries such as Automotive, Green Alternative Energy, Healthcare, Food Processing Consumer Products, and Military. Contact Eagle tech at for more info on these subjects and many others.

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