COPING with the peaks and troughs of electricity demand involves large amounts of overcapacity that sit idle for much of the day, or substantial amounts of storage. Hence the 1970s fashion for economy meters, storage heaters, and the campaigns to run our washing machines overnight, to level demand and avoid having expensive nuclear power stations operating at less than full capacity.

Fortunately, in Bill Brown’s scenario of people arriving home from work, plugging their car into charge, and putting on the electric central heating, television, kettle and cooker, he already has his own answer (Letters, February 25).

Few people want an electric car that only has enough battery to get them to work and back, an average of only 8.8 miles each way if we assume Scotland is close to English statistics. We will demand cars that cope with the longer trips we only take weekly or monthly. So the typical car will arrive home with a substantial amount of remaining charge and will be plugged in to top up for the next morning.

Rather than start charging immediately, it could wait, or it is entirely possible to use the car battery to supply the evening peak demand, and then recharge itself back to full overnight, then discharge a little to supply the morning peak demand too.

Take a simple car app. Add some input from the user about their planned driving: work and back during the week, the golf course on Monday and Thursday, a quiet Saturday and then a full charge on Sunday to visit the family on the other side of the country.

Then add some information from the power company which will use the weather forecasts to predict cheap times to charge and expensive times to feed back to the grid, and the car will be earning money.

Alan Ritchie,

72 Waverley Street, Glasgow.

THE relentless war against cars goes on (“Driverless cars ‘will decide who to hit in an accident’”, The Herald, February 26).

If we ever develop the technology that will allow the “computer brain” of a driverless car to make moral decisions then driverless cars will be the least of our worries. In any incident involving cars and other vehicles or pedestrians there is no way for anyone (human or robot) to make a decision, rational or not, as to whom to hit in preference as to who to miss.

You would need to know the “victim’s” past history and their future path. It is all pure science fiction. Apportioning blame to an electronic system and hence recovering costs will either never be legally possible or would put the manufacturers of such vehicles out of business very quickly.

The answer is that we will have robotic lawyers in the future to endlessly argue the case. It is the humans who will be redundant and left simply to argue amongst themselves. A brave new robotic world?

Dr Gerald Edwards,

Broom Road, Glasgow.