As the global warming is increasing every year and with it, there is a significant rise in temperature every summer. Many numbers of steps are being taken all over the world to keep a check on the factors that contributes to global warming. Some of them include using Eco-friendly vehicles that emit an almost negligible amount of pollution in the environment.
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One of these vehicles that are relatively popular these days is what we call, Electric Rickshaw or E-Rickshaw. They are also known as, Ricks, Tom, and Tuk. They have been becoming more popular in some cities since 2008 as an alternative to auto rickshaws and pulled rickshaw because of their low fuel cost, and less human effort compared to pulled rickshaws.
They are widely accepted as an alternative to Petrol/Diesel/CNG auto rickshaws. They are three wheels pulled by an electric motor ranging from 650-1400 Watts. They are mostly manufactured in China; only a few other countries make these vehicles.
These Battery-run rickshaws could be a low-emitter complimentary transport for the low-income people, who suffer most from a lack of transport facility.
Design and Construction
These E-rickshaws are built on M.S (Mild Steel) Chassis, consist of 3 wheels with a differential mechanism at rear wheels. The motor brushes less DC motor manufactured mostly in India and China. The electrical system used in Indian version is 48V and Bangladesh is 60V. The body design from most popular Chinese version is of very thin iron or aluminium sheets. Some variants made in fiber are also popular because of their strength and durability, resulting in low maintenance. The body design is varied from load carriers. Passenger vehicles with no roof, to full body with a windshield for drivers comfort.It consists of a controller unit. They are sold by voltage supplied and current output, also, the number of MOSFETs (metal oxide field effect transistor) used. The battery used is mostly lead acid battery with a life of 6–12 months. Deep discharge batteries designed for electric vehicles are rarely used. The weight of the electric car has also been a recurring design difficulty in them.
In India almost all claimed to be manufacturing the vehicle are merely importing it from China and assembling them. Though the manufacturers in India are less in number, manufacturers claim that in the vehicle production is less and cost is a little at higher but they offer higher quality products and also offer services and warranty, these manufacturers market the product as an Indian make and are also popular because of uniqueness in their product and providing a branded product. The FRP (fiberglass reinforced plywood) body e-rickshaws are also popular in India and are manufactured in India due to high shipment cost from China they are cheaper to Indian manufacturers, where a Chinese version of FRP Rickshaw will cost 0.5 times more than an Indian make.
The cost varies from Rs.85000 to 125000. The cost is added due to a battery (Lead-Acid battery) which costs around Rs.17000-22000.
E-Rickshaw Boom in India
When E-rickshaws and electric alternatives to traditional public transport were first introduced in India, they were done so in the form of Chinese battery operated rickshaw that were not only built cheaply but also did not run well in Indian conditions. This made the Government and people question the safety and efficiency of battery rickshaws.
However, with Indian manufacturers stepping in and providing a quality product at competitive prices, the situation has indeed changed. Now there is a boom in the Indian commercial scene for the demand of battery rickshaws, and they don’t just prove to be an excellent investment opportunity but are also a great Eco-friendly alternative to traditional auto rickshaws.
No more worrying for Fuel Price thanks to E-Rickshaws
Not only are E-rickshaws much cheaper than fuel driven rickshaws, but they are also cheap to upkeep and maintain. They provide a host of employment opportunities for the unemployed, and they can serve as a great revenue model for anyone who invests in them. Who needs to worry about petrol and diesel price hikes when all it takes it plugging in your rickshaw into an electrical outlet?
Solar Power to Charge E-Rickshaw
Cheap to run, you say? We say, free to run! With solar power backing the charging station, now you don’t just have to forget about fuel, but also about electricity. With immense pressure on the national’s electric grid already and worries of power cuts, let the sun be your only need to power up your vehicles. There are many solutions for solar power charging stations that don’t only keep your vehicles charged but also charge backup battery packs while you’re driving around your E-rickshaw.
E-Rickshaw an excellent Investment Opportunity!
Besides being so affordable in price, very easy to run and upkeep and its many socio-economic benefits, these E-rickshaws are also great investment opportunities. You can place ads in the sponsored areas around the rickshaws and make money from just running these E-rickshaws. Most cities in India are now giving benefits to those who run battery rickshaws and encourage the use of this Eco-friendly public transport. This is a great opportunity and a very innovative way to advertise the product and in a very effective way.
Electric rickshaws are most popular in Asia. The low-cost Chinese version being the first to show up on streets. They are mostly used in China, India, Bangladesh and Nepal, also in low numbers other parts of Asia they have been showing up. China, Japan, India, and European countries (Switzerland, France, and Germany) have researched and developed electric tricycles for commercial transport and are attempting to capture the growing market in Asia.
In Delhi alone, the number of these E-Rickshaws is over 100,000 as per the government officials by April 2012. You may find these E-Rickshaws outside almost every metro station in New Delhi.
The number of job opportunities these Rickshaws provide to a large number of people is commendable and most of all they are doing the job without causing pollution in the environment.
The battery operated vehicles are the future of automobiles and the day is not far when every vehicle on the planet will be battery driven, and its source of power will be none other than the sun itself.