Heroes

They're called 'electric highways,' and they might change everything about how we drive.

Charge-as-you-go technology could revolutionize the automotive industry.

They're called 'electric highways,' and they might change everything about how we drive.

Later this year, English engineers will begin testing a project that could revolutionize how we fuel our cars.

Called "electric highways," the technology is pretty much what it sounds like: roads that can power electric vehicles on the go.

If you've ever played the classic Super Nintendo game "F-Zero" ... yeah, it's kinda like that.


GIF comes from "F-Zero."

The project is an ambitious attempt by the U.K.'s government to tackle two of the biggest complaints about electric vehicles.

The biggest problems facing owners of electric cars (and what's possibly preventing others making the jump from gas) are the cars' limited range and the inconvenience of finding scarce charging stations.

The 2015 Nissan Leaf can travel 84 miles on a single charge. The Tesla Model S (with 70 kWh battery) can travel 230 miles. But with charging stations so few and far between — especially when compared to gas stations — electric cars still aren't a great fit for long-distance trips.

A Tesla Model S being charged at a car dealership. Photo by Johannes Eisele/AFP/Getty Images.

Here's what the engineers at Highways England will be testing.

Along the road will be a series of power converters and stations connected to power transfer loops built into the left lane. If all goes according to plan, vehicles fitted with wireless charging technology will be able to stay charged as they drive in the powered lane.


Photo from Highways England.

But why invest so much time and money into a project that's only going to affect a fraction of the world's cars?

Because it has the potential to change the future of the automotive industry.

As is the case with most technology, advances come in stages. As breakthroughs happen in the electric vehicle market, demand for them will rise and more people will shift to the newer, lower-emission technology.

In Highways England's technology road map, informed by the Automotive Council,the prediction is that by 2050, nearly every vehicle purchased in the U.K. will be an electric car or other ultra-low-emissions vehicle (ULEV).

Image from Highways England.

This is just part of England's long-term plan to build the infrastructure needed for electric vehicles to thrive.

They'll also be adding charging stations.

The British government's Road Investment Strategy outlines plans to install charging stations every 20 miles along highways. Their government's commitment to automotive innovation seems pretty far ahead of the U.S. government's. Hopefully, if the numbers continue to point toward a ULEV future, the U.S. will follow the U.K.'s lead.

Image from Highways England.

True

Upworthy and P&G Good Everyday are teaming up to find the people who lead with love everyday.

Know someone in your neighborhood who's known for their optimistic attitude, commitment to bettering their community and always leading with love? Tell us about them for the chance to win a $2,000 grant to keep doing good in their community.

Nomination ends November 22, 2020

via Brittany Kinley / Facebook

Brittany Kinley, a mother from Mansfield, Texas, had a hilarious mom fail her and she's chalking it up to being just another crazy thing that happened in 2020.

When Kinley filled out the order form for her son Mason's kindergarten class pictures, there was an option to have his name engraved into the photos. But Kinley wasn't interested in having her son's name on the photos so she wrote "I DON'T WANT THIS" on the box.

Well, it appears as though she should have left the box blank because the computer or incredibly literal human that designed the photographs wrote "I DON'T WANT THIS" where mason's name should be.

Keep Reading Show less
True

A lot of people here are like family to me," Michelle says about Bread for the City — a community nonprofit located in Washington DC that provides local residents with food, clothing, health care, social advocacy, and legal services. And since the pandemic began, the need to support organizations like Bread for the City is greater than ever, which is why Amazon is Delivering Smiles to local charities across the country this holiday season.

Watch the full story:

Amazon is giving back by fulfilling hundreds of AmazonSmile Charity Lists, and donating essential pantry and food items to help organizations like Bread for the City provide to those disproportionately impacted this year.

Visit AmazonSmile Charity Lists to donate directly to a local charity in your community, or simply shop smile.amazon.com and Amazon will donate a portion of the purchase price of eligible products to your charity of choice.

Somewhere in Salt Lake City, a Girl Scout is getting allll the good mojo from The People of the Internet.

Over the weekend, Eli McCann shared a story of an encounter at a Girl Scout cookie stand that has people throwing their fists in the air and shouting, YES! THAT'S HOW IT'S DONE. (Or maybe that's just me. But I'm guessing most of the 430,000 people who liked his story had a similar reaction.)

Keep Reading Show less
via UDOT / Facebook

In December 2018, The Utah Department of Transportation opened the largest wildlife overpass in the state, spanning 320 by 50 feet across all six lanes of Interstate 80.

Its construction was intended to make traveling through the I-80 corridor in Summit County safer for motorists and the local wildlife.

The Salt Lake Tribune reports that there were over 100 animal incidents on the interstate since 2016, giving the stretch of highway the unfortunate nickname of "Slaughter Row."

Keep Reading Show less