January 17, 2022 By Kevin C. Limjoco

Extra Electrified Living

Available Current and Near Future Electrified Solutions

After producing the special Extra Time feature on the “Burning” Issue on Non-Combusted Alternatives to Cigarettes a few months ago, I realized that there were some details that I would want to further expound on as well as highlight a diverse sampling of new electrified solutions for mobility, recreation, exercise, and farming that are already available or will be available soon in our market.   

As I mentioned in the previous “electrification” article, there has been a sweeping accelerated revolution of electrified products and solutions being applied to almost every aspect of our lives, that are well beyond the conventional programmable battery-operated devices like toys with artificial intelligence, devices for self-pleasure, and vacuum cleaners. This electrified revolution is principally driven by our collective reactions from the destruction of our universal environment, resource management, and financial concerns. 

Let’s face it, if our environment was unscathed, with all our water sources and bodies together with the very air we all breath were all clean and wonderful, we wouldn’t have bothered engineering and immersing ourselves in the relentless pursuit for alternatives unless the efforts were for purely financial gains while the human race would have carried on with destructing our planet as if we had infinite resources and the earth magically healed itself on a daily basis without consequence.

 

Drift Motor Raptor 2.0

Inspired by enjoying an IQOS nicotine vape in the open air by the beach, I gathered this particular selection of electrified products that include previously tested mobility solutions like the Renault Twizy to the near future manned VTOL racing aircraft, the exciting new Airspeeder.

The Renault Twizy 80 is a clever electric microcar that is an effortless two-person EV mobility alternative to a scooter. It has been stealthily sold, run, and supported independently throughout the archipelago through William Go’s Renault Twizy Philippines (contact number 09178547059 Fb/IG/YT: @twizyph). Over 50 units have been sold already in just over a year with most deliveries being done outside of the Nation’s Capital Region. The sales outside of the metropolis makes more sense as you can enjoy the window-less little quadricycle more out in the countryside breathing the fresher air. 

Renault Twizy 80

The Twizy is so compact that his deliveries are being processed through a Toyota HiAce with the seats removed and using custom ramps which easily allows the van to swallow the whole unit. The model number represents the top speed achievable. The standard top speed is actually 85 km/h which is honestly sufficient for its intended commuter purposes with a maximum of 100-kilometer range on a single full charge depending on how you drive it. William sells the very attractive Renault Twizy for P680,000.00 in multiple colors which comes with a 3-year LTO registration included in the price. The 6.1 kWh lithium-ion battery is located underneath the front seat. 0 to 60 km/h is achieved in 8.6 seconds which sounds really slow but feels sufficiently quick on urban roads. The Twizy looks a lot faster than it actually is by design thanks to the Formula-E looking wheels that are mounted outside of the fuselage-looking body while the perspex panels on the doors allow you to see the front wheels and the road. Visibility is similar to riding a full-scale scooter. The Twizy uses a regenerative brake system that helps extend battery usage. Overall performance is fairly brisk and peppy, accompanied by the now familiar whine of the electric motor. 

Many dutiful electrified devices and solutions have been around for a long time. The self-powered toothbrush for example has been around since 1954, the first electric boat was developed by the German inventor Moritz von Jacobi in 1839 in St Petersburg, Russia which carried 14 passengers at 4.8 km/h, demonstrated to Emperor Nicholas I of Russia on the Neva River, and commercially produced electric cars have been in use in Britain and North America since 1897 albeit as taxis. By 1893, the Elco company in the US began selling commercially available full production electric-powered boats. In the early 80’s, using an Elco-powered flat-bottom aluminum Jon boat was the only way to stealthily find the best fishing spots on the fresh and brackish waterways in Southern California where I would fish for Sunfish, Bass, and Trout with my grandfather. In modern times Elco produces electric inboard and outboard engines that produce the equivalent of 5 hp to 250 hp.

With understandably increasing regulations to preserve the environment, with the additional bonus of clean and silent propulsion, such electrified boats are fast becoming the only medium legally possible to operate in North American continental waters. Studies have consistently reported that if only 5 % of the approximately 13 million registered boats in the U.S. today were powered with electric motors, 1 billion pounds of CO2 emissions would already be eliminated. A report by IDTechEx shows that the market for hybrid and pure electric boats and ships will rise rapidly to over $20 billion worldwide in 2027 for consumer’s vessels. So, North America is not alone in the movement to switch to alternative forms of clean fuel. More and more fresh and brackish-water lakes and reservoirs have become “Electric-Power” bodies of water. Crafts with gas-powered motors have been banned. Mandates such as these have caused more and more boaters to consider electric motors for their fishing boats, to continue enjoying their favorite outdoor sport at their preferred watering holes. We have to remember that more than half of the oxygen we breathe comes from the ocean and keeping our bodies of water free from emissions, oil, and other pollutants are instrumental to ensuring the future of our water and air. 

Famously back in 2012, the Tûranor PlanetSolar, a 115-foot long, 86-foot wide catamaran yacht powered by 537 square meters of solar panels, completed a 60,023 kilometer circumnavigation of the Earth after 585 days without consuming any fossil fuel. Cleverly, the name Tûranor, derived from J.R.R. Tolkien’s novel The Lord of the Rings, translates to “The Power of the Sun”. About a year later and after a motor refit, the Tûranor PlanetSolar broke its own record, crossing the Atlantic Ocean from Las Palmas to Saint Martin in the Caribbean in only 22 days, four days faster than what was achieved on the same route the year before.

Tûranor PlanetSolar

To reduce hydro friction and increase both speed and range, some larger boats and new small watercrafts use hydrofoils. The Access Plus Group, known for being the distributors of Ducati, Indian, and BETA Motorcycles, as well as Polaris and Italjet in the Philippines is now selling the brilliant new LIFT 3 eFoil Explorer board for the SRP: P750,000.00. The LIFT 3 eFoil Explorer is 5’9” long and 31” wide that can support weight up to 300 pounds and managed by a hand-held waterproof controller. The boards are built with highly refined steel tools to forge the carbon fiber parts at extreme temperatures and heat. The result is a unique marbled carbon fiber that is light and very robust. With a 90-minute full charge, the fully electric propelled LIFT 3 eFoil allows the rider to joyously work out his or her core for two solid hours at up to close to 50 km/h of speed depending on water conditions and if you can stay on!

Superbike Champion TJ Alberto on the Lift 3 eFoil

Ariihoe Tefaafana surfing the Lift eFoil

Access Plus is also selling their new THOK-powered Ducati electric bicycles beginning with two models, the 22 kg. e-Mountain Bike MIG-S that utilizes a Shimano E8000 250-watt motor and 630Wh battery setup that supports speeds up to 25 km/h with 52 lb-ft (70 Nm) of torque priced at a SRP: P379,995.00 and the e-enduro TK01-RR that uses a Shimano EP8 featuring a higher maximum torque of 63 lb-ft (85Nm) and maximum servo assisted ratio of 400% with a 630Wh battery setup that supports speeds up to 25 km/h with a 12-speed drive unit, Shimano XT 4-piston brakes, 180 mm Öhlins RXF 38 fork and Öhlins TTX shock absorber at a SRP: P499,995.00. (Interested buyers can all Arlene Peralta at +632.7954.5752 or +63 956 291 9218, or AJ Maralit at +63.977.843.5534)

Ducati TK-01 RR

Ducati MIG-S

The exciting all-new Airspeeder is designed with the concept of a global flying car racing series built by Alauda Aeronautics. The initial races are mostly limited by range. The race series has 10 pilots individually flying head to head in a circuit over the course of 30 minutes with two pit stops each. Each battery is supposed to allow around ten minutes of flying time. Pilots will switch speeders at regular pit stops. The Speeder uses a 500 kilowatt battery pack to power 8 high-powered electric motors. The lightweight aluminum and carbon fiber chassis with pilot weighs roughly 250 kg. The flight control system provides automatic extra safety measures to protect the pilots by creating buffers between vehicles as they race head to head. The Speeder has an even greater power to weight ratio than an F1 race car with a top speed of 200 km/h. The two confirmed race venues are supposed to be California’s Mojave Desert and the desert near Coober Pedy in South Australia for 2022. The racing will be done fairly low to the ground through pylons and air gates, similar to the Red Bull Air Races. Alauda Aeronautics is building its vehicles at its test facility Adelaide, Australia. 

It is a very bold and supremely optimistic effort but I am thankful that the effort exists to encourage competitive development in this area of potential transport. Who knows, we all could be flying our own eVTOL machines in a decade’s time. The finance giant Morgan Stanley has supposedly suggested that flying cars could create a $1.5 trillion industry by 2040.

Even if drones have been used for farming for several years now around the world, it was only back in August 2018 at the PhilRice Central Experiment Station in barangay Malayantoc, Santo Domingo, in the province of Nueva Ecija during a Volkswagen Philippines media event, did we get to physically witness the brilliant optimization solutions applied to farming. To manage farms more efficiency and economically utilizing a combination of RBG cameras, thermal imaging, and multi-spectral imaging, drones can be purpose-fitted for aerial survey and mapping, security & surveillance, real-time plant health assessment, pest and fertilization control, livestock management, soil analysis, and so much more to increase productivity and crop yield in the agriculture industry. In some estimates, global food production will need to increase by between 60-100% over the next decade and we certainly do not want to double the world’s food production by clearing approximately one billion hectares of rainforest land, so precision agriculture is critical. 

Popular industrial designer Christopher Paris Lacson has been tirelessly working on organically Philippine-inspired and sourced mobility solutions under his Meep and Banatti brands. With Meep, he is working on an elegant and practical public transportation replacement to the iconic Jeepney and with Banatti he has been able to produce a functioning all-electric motorcycle called the Falcon. The Falcon can be geared for city or highway use with top speeds ranging from 65 to 110 km/h, using a 3.3 kW 70Nm motor and 48V lithium-ion battery that fully charges from a household wall socket in 3 to 4 hours for an estimated range of 60 road kilometers. He is also working on a Banatti all-electric watercraft Banca alternative too. 

Meep Jeepney

Banatti Falcon

Banatti Banca Concept

Another great source of affordable high quality electrified mobility is through DRIFT MOTOR, located at the Valley Fair Town Center, Ortigas Avenue extension, Taytay, Rizal. (GM Bugayong 09174646222). Drift Motor has a comprehensive product list of very desirable fully-electrified scooters and bicycles in multiple colors. The YPRO looks like a traditional modern two-person scooter that retails for P75,000.00, with full LED lighting, 2000w motor, 55-kilometer range, 6-10 hour charging time, and a top speed of 65 km/h. The awesome Raptor 2.0 electric fat mountain bike sells for P85,000.00, has a 50 km/h top speed, 60 kilometer range, uses a 500w motor to assist with the Shimano gearsets or power it all the way, has full LED lighting and takes between 4 to 8 hours to fully charge. For even more versatile mobility, Drift Motor also sells the e-Scooter Streetray which has 4-speed modes with a 35 km/h top speed, up to 75 kilometer range, weighs 22 kg., full LED lighting, 500w motor, and takes between 4 to 6 hours to fully charge for P39,000.00.

Drift Motor YPRO

Drift Motor Raptor 2.0

Drift Motor e-Scooter Streetray

There are many all-new fully electrified EV cars coming to our market to compete with the likes of Jaguar, Nissan, BYD, and Chery. One brand in particular that I reckon should also find its way to our market is Weltmeister aka WM Motor. Weltmeister (which means World Champion in German) became the first Chinese EV startup to operate its own manufacturing facility back in 2016. With the promise of selling more affordable full-featured crossover solutions that are said to have acceleration from 0-100 km/h in less than 9 seconds with up to 520 kilometers (325 miles) of range on a single charge. I hope the brand does find its way to our market.  

Segway Philippines has been around for years now selling the famous two-wheeled, self-balancing personal transporter. But now they too are offering a plethora of electrified mobility solutions from mountain bikes to go-karts and so much in between to make your head spin. The Ninebot Gokart PRO model has a range of up to 25 kilometers with a top speed of 37 km/h and sells for P97,999.75. The Segway Dirt eBike X160 has a range of about 65 kilometers and has a top speed of 50 km/h and retails for P310,000.00. (Segway | Ninebot Philippines, Tel.: (+632) 8253-9050 Mobile: (+63961) 000-7301 / (+63977) 839-6005) 

Segway eDirt water X160

Ninebot Gokart PRO

With our exploration with non-combustible alternatives to cigarette smoking in particular, there are some key points which we wanted to reemphasize because of its importance to both non-smokers and smokers alike.

The smoke from a burning cigarette contains over 6,000 chemicals, about 100 of which have been identified by public health experts as harmful or potentially harmful. With the advancement in science and technology, non-combustible alternatives (NCAs) such as e-cigarettes, heated tobacco products (HTPs) like Philip Morris International’s IQOS, and snus have been developed for those adults who would otherwise continue to smoke. When scientifically substantiated and manufactured under appropriate quality and safety controls, they can be a better choice than continued smoking. 

Photo: iqos.com

The primary cause of smoking-related diseases is the harmful and potentially harmful compounds found in cigarette smoke. Most harmful compounds found in cigarette smoke associated with smoking-related diseases are produced when tobacco is burned. The high temperatures created by the process of burning tobacco cause the production of the majority and high levels of harmful chemicals detected in cigarette smoke. Non-combustible alternatives to cigarettes like IQOS, do not burn or combust tobacco and do generate smoke. NCAs produce an aerosol instead, which is fundamentally different to cigarette smoke because there is no combustion. 

Nicotine 

Nicotine occurs naturally in tobacco. While addictive and not totally risk-free, nicotine is not the primary cause of smoking-related diseases. NCAs deliver nicotine, as this is one of the characteristics adult smokers look for in alternative products. Providing NCAs that are acceptable to adult smokers and satisfy their needs increases the likelihood that they will be able to switch completely and abandon cigarettes for good. Certain people, however, should not use products that contain nicotine, such as minors and pregnant women. 

Smoke-free products 

Adult smokers who would otherwise continue to smoke may choose to switch to less harmful alternatives. These products deliver nicotine sans combustion and provide a satisfying taste, ritual, and sensorial experience. There are various types of products within the NCA product category, including HTPs, e-cigarettes, snus, and oral nicotine pouches. Each type uses different methods to deliver nicotine without combustion. HTPs generate a nicotine-containing aerosol by heating tobacco filled sticks to temperatures sufficient to release nicotine and flavors from the tobacco without reaching the burning point. E-cigarettes or vapes heat a liquid solution containing nicotine and flavors to produce an aerosol, which some call a vapor.

The scientific concept behind NCAs

As the burning of tobacco produces the vast majority of harmful chemicals in cigarette smoke, eliminating the burning process, as is the case with NCAs, means that the levels of harmful chemicals generated can be significantly reduced compared with cigarette smoke.

For NCAs to be successful in reducing population harm, it must be scientifically proven to be significantly less harmful than cigarettes and it should be satisfying for current adult smokers. Taste and rituals should be similar to smoking, sans the burning.

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