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Oil is a nonrenewable resource, whereas sunshine is limitless. So why

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Oil is a nonrenewable resource, whereas sunshine is limitless. So why  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Mar 2019, 12:35
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Question Stats:

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Oil is a nonrenewable resource, whereas sunshine is limitless. So why not run cars on solar power? Because a car powered by solar collecting panels would be fine on a sunny day, but as soon as the sun went behind a cloud, the car would no longer function.

Which of the following is presupposed in the argument against running a car on solar power?

A. Solar power is cleaner than fossil fuels, and it involves less geopolitical risk.

B. In most of the northern hemisphere, it can be expected that more than 150 days a year will be cloudy.

C. No system exists for storing solar energy for a car’s use when the car is not in direct sunlight.

D. No one has yet introduced a commercially viable process for massproducing solar cells that convert more than 10 percent of incoming sunlight into usable energy.

E. Consumers accustomed to the rapid acceleration of gasoline-powered cars will not accept the weak acceleration of solarpowered cars.

Source: McGraw-Hill's GMAT
Difficulty Level: 600

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Re: Oil is a nonrenewable resource, whereas sunshine is limitless. So why  [#permalink]

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New post 14 Mar 2019, 14:31
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"Which of the following is presupposed in the argument against running a car on solar power" means that it's the Find the Assumption type of question.

Situation: Why don't we give up oil-powered cars and use solar-powered vehicles instead, if they require energy that's available for everyone and limitless? It's because on cloudy days (or cloudy moments during the day) when sunlight is limited, the solar-powered car can't draw required energy from the Sun. Thus, it'll stop working and not be very useful for people on such days/moments.

Reasoning: The passage assumes that solar-powered car functions ONLY when it continuously receives energy from the Sun and there are no ways available to save the energy for times when sunlight is limited.

Let's see now, if we can find something similar in the answer choices.

A. Solar power is cleaner than fossil fuels, and it involves less geopolitical risk.
We're not concerned about cleanliness or geopolitical risks and the author absolutely doesn't need to assume that.

B. In most of the northern hemisphere, it can be expected that more than 150 days a year won't be cloudy.
So what? The passage doesn't state anything about the region where cars are going to be used. We're talking about solar-powered cars in general, so that assumption is irrelevant.

C. No system exists for storing solar energy for a car’s use when the car is not in direct sunlight.
BINGO! That's exactly what we pre-thought. Author must assume that in order to conclude that solar-powered cars won't function as soon as the Sun goes behind a cloud. If the vehicle can't draw required energy from some built-in energy system or battery, it'll stop working.

D. No one has yet introduced a commercially viable process for massproducing solar cells that convert more than 10 percent of incoming sunlight into usable energy.
The effectiveness of solar cell is not on the table. The argument doesn't concern mass-introducing solar-powered cars, so we're not interested in effectiveness of transforming sunlight into energy using currently available technology.

E. Consumers accustomed to the rapid acceleration of gasoline-powered cars will not accept the weak acceleration of solarpowered cars.
We worry about the simple functioning of solar-powered car, let alone its performance. Whether such cars will please potential customers is out of scope and we definitely don't need to assume that.

The clear winner is answer C!
GMAT Club Bot
Re: Oil is a nonrenewable resource, whereas sunshine is limitless. So why   [#permalink] 14 Mar 2019, 14:31
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Oil is a nonrenewable resource, whereas sunshine is limitless. So why

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