Researchers have shown that ozone can be reduced when electric vehicle charging is done at night. That’s good news for both environmentalists as well as car owners of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, who typically choose to charge cars in the evening when drivers are more apt to be at home.
Ozone is a known pollutant that can cause harmful effects on certain individuals with respiratory ailments. It forms as hydrocarbons and nitrogen oxides, emitted into the air, react with sunlight. Two of the largest emitters of these pollutants are vehicles and electricity generating units.
Charging plug-in hybrid electric vehicles, also known as PHEVs, is already known to be more cost effective and reliable. But a new report issued by researchers at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the University of Texas have found that charging at this time leads to lower levels of pollution on average.
PHEVs have the capability to run off battery power and gasoline. When PHEVs run off battery power they emit no pollutants from their exhaust; however, the EGUs—which provide electricity to charge batteries—do give off pollutants. The vehicles have become more popular with consumers over the past decade due to high gas prices and improved performances of vehicles. Evening charging also benefits the environment when charging other batteries, such as golf carts.