What happens when you give an energy scientist a gas-guzzling car? Data gathering and analysis is what happens! I started tracking the gas mileage of my 1991 Mustang 5.0L in 2005, and somehow forgot to stop tracking it.
It was just before my epic drive from Florida to California. Three days, 39 hours of driving, solo operation, and timed specifically to hit the peak of rush hour on arrival to LA. I probably wouldn’t make it if I tried to do that again!
Anyways, the interesting thing about gas mileage is that it tracks with lifestyle. Long trips spike up to highway MPG, but grad student living is all about short trips for tacos and/or solder.
So yes, it’s true, I spend all day furiously working with solar cells, and then drive home at 16 MPG. But at least it’s above 10 MPG!