Sep 09

Car Energy: What Does Horsepower Actually Mean?

It takes energy to make a car run; that isn’t a very difficult concept, but exactly how much energy a car takes depends on several factors. As cars have become more complex, understanding how much energy a car takes has also increased in complexity. In the end, however, it all comes down to horsepower.

How the Term Horsepower Came to Be

Horsepower is a term often heard when referencing the power output of a car engine. The word does sound a lot like its meaning, at least when it was originally conceived. In 1702, early steam engineers needed to a way to express to people how powerful their new engines would be. At that time, the most common form of industrial energy was literally horse power. Draft horses were used for hauling and working machinery when wind or water power was not available. Thus, the early engineers formulated a way to compare steam engine work output with that of horses in order to give people an idea of the devices that would be replacing the animals. The resulting term was simply named horsepower. Of course, since horses are not machines and no two horses provide exactly the same amount of power, the term was not originally literal, but it was estimated at about 180 pounds of torque per unit, or about the amount of power provided by the average horse on a mill wheel.

Modern Day Use of the Term

The term horsepower has since been refined to be a somewhat precise unit, although the actual energy amount measured can vary depending on country and type of energy measured. Car engines generally provide mechanical energy. Mechanical horsepower today is measured at 550 foot-pounds per second or 747.5 watts per second of energy. This standard of measurement will work for most vehicles that have a traditional gas burning engine that provide energy using pistons.

Hybrid and Electric Cars

Hybrid and electric cars have somewhat more complicated the idea of vehicle horsepower. Hybrid cars have essentially two engines. They have a traditional gas-powered mechanical engine, and then they have an electric motor that provides additional power. This is complicated because the horsepower rating for an electric motor is slightly higher than the horsepower ratings for mechanical engines. Electric motor horsepower is equal to 746 watts per second of energy per unit. If you like hybrid cars and are an eco-friendly consumer, check out other Green Energy initiatives here.

To truly understand the horsepower of a hybrid car, horsepower for the electric motor and regular engine should be considered separately. Considering how small the difference is, however, most car manufacturers state a vehicle’s horsepower as one measurement despite the differences in motors.

May 22

5 Best Lighting Designs For An Energy Efficient Home

An energy efficient home should utilize the latest technology when it comes to lighting fixtures. Fluorescent lighting is definitely the new standard in the twenty first century design of homes and buildings. First of all, a fluorescent light fixture uses on average three or four times less power than traditional incandescent light fixtures that are becoming obsolete. Large rooms in a home may need tube fluorescent light fixtures that provide maximum illumination. Such lighting fixtures are common in large kitchens, basements, laundry rooms and (more…)

May 18

10 New Renewable Energy Lighting Products On The Market

When you’re looking to go green, one of the first things you might be interested in would be saving money. A lot of people go green in order to get more cash in their pockets at the end of the month. Because of this, you might be wondering what types of things you need to do as a homeowner to help save money and the environment all at the same time. Believe it or not, switching the type of lights that you’re using can be a wonderful start if you are interested in having a greener home for the (more…)

May 16

Why You Should Buy Energy Star Labeled Light Fixtures

Energy Star light fixtures guarantee to save you money on electricity bills. The Energy Star label implies efficiency and such a statement is officially backed up by the United States government. Most Fluorescent light fixtures earn Energy Star ratings because they are much more efficient than traditional light fixtures that use incandescent technology for illumination. For example, fluorescent light bulbs use between three and five times less power than incandescent light bulbs. A 20 Watt fluorescent bulb is good enough to replace a 100 Watt incandescent bulb. Both of these fixtures would provide the same luminosity, which is a (more…)

May 15

Compare Environmentally Friendly Lights And Light Bulbs

With a number of next-generation lighting solutions and options to make use of, comparing them can be an important concern. Finding a more cost-effective, energy-efficient or environmentally beneficial way to illuminate your environment can provide a wide range of benefits. From reducing the costs and expenses of your home or business to protecting the environment for future generations, electing to make full use of the most sustainable and effective lighting solutions and fixtures may not be a concern that you can (more…)

May 13

Make Your Home Or Office Lighting Eco-Friendly

Lighting is a major source of energy use and it can create a great deal of waste. Those who want to learn how to make their home or office lighting more eco-friendly may want to try some of the ideas below.

Switching to CFL light bulbs is a great way to improve the lighting in your home or office. While CFL light bulbs require more of an initial investment than incandescent bulbs, they can use up to 75 percent less energy (more…)