"Hydrogen is Bunk"

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Thread: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

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    "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    By MARK VAUGHN




    Any car company parading around a hydrogen- or hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered “Car of the Future”—and just about every car company in the world is doing that—is doing a huge disservice to future generations of people, not to mention squirrels, trees and bacteria.

    I don’t deny that we’re eventually going to run out of oil, but hydrogen is not going to replace it.

    The problem with hydrogen is getting your hands on any of it. Separating the hydrogen molecules from whatever molecules they’re attached to wastes way more energy than just burning gasoline to make the car go—six times as much by some estimates (see my last column). Don’t even mention trying to force it through a pipeline across the country and keeping those dinky little H molecules from leaking out all over the place.

    http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dl...8/newsletter01

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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    For the sake of argument:

    Solar panel on my home's roof makes electricity. The electricity is shot into a tank of water in my garage. The hydrogen separates from the water and is collected in its own tank. When I come home at night, I hook up my car to the hydrogen tank. The next morning, I am ready to drive to work.

    You may ask, why not just use a battery? The answer is: batteries are heavy and there is not an unlimited supply of lithium.

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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    Quote Originally Posted by HoosierRon
    For the sake of argument:

    Solar panel on my home's roof makes electricity. The electricity is shot into a tank of water in my garage. The hydrogen separates from the water and is collected in its own tank. When I come home at night, I hook up my car to the hydrogen tank. The next morning, I am ready to drive to work.

    You may ask, why not just use a battery? The answer is: batteries are heavy and there is not an unlimited supply of lithium.
    Bingo! I know a guy who uses his wind turbine to make hydrogen... although he doesn't power a car with it. Our turbines are just hooked into our homes power supply right now, but if a hydrogen powered car pops up on the market.... we be makin hydrogen.

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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    You won't be able to make enough or compress it to th pressure needed to provide any kind of range, though.

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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    You'd think it would be easy for GM to just use one of Opel's small gas engines built around one of their efficient people haulers like the Meriva (that kind of looks like the Hy-Wire concept) and make the engine Ethanol compatible. Or one of Opel's EuroV diesel engines like the incredible torquey for its size 1.3L CDTi and use that while promoting biodiesel.

    In the end they'd get it here a lot quicker and would help us towards energy independence. And they could offer such a car for half of the price of a Hydrogen Dream Car or even the Volt.

    The fact that GM is not talking about doing this is evidence that they are really not all that serious about giving us choices except to deflect criticism and deflect attention from their intense focus on cars like the big Lambdas.

    I noticed that at least at first, the Volt will be sold as a sedan thingy. After all, people need a Lambda in the other garage bay! Heaven forbid they sell a car like the Meriva here, it might dent profitable Lambda sales!

    Last edited by importedtuna; 08-15-2007 at 01:00 PM.

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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    Quote Originally Posted by importedtuna
    You'd think it would be easy for GM to just use one of Opel's small gas engines built around one of their efficient people haulers like the Meriva (that kind of looks like the Hy-Wire concept) and make the engine Ethanol compatible. Or one of Opel's EuroV diesel engines like the incredible torquey for its size 1.3L CDTi and use that while promoting biodiesel.

    In the end they'd get it here a lot quicker and would help us towards energy independence. And they could offer such a car for half of the price of a Hydrogen Dream Car or even the Volt.

    The fact that GM is not talking about doing this is evidence that they are really not all that serious about giving us choices except to deflect criticism and deflect attention from their intense focus on cars like the big Lambdas.

    I noticed that at least at first, the Volt will be sold as a sedan thingy. After all, people need a Lambda in the other garage bay! Heaven forbid they sell a car like the Meriva here, it might dent profitable Lambda sales!


    excellent points .. especially on the vehicle configuration. There should be a sedan and a wagon at launch if GM is serious about making this market work...
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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    Quote Originally Posted by prowlerjc
    You won't be able to make enough or compress it to th pressure needed to provide any kind of range, though.
    That depends on the technology available. If, in the near future, systems are efficient enough to go 300 miles without carrying hydrogen compressed to 10,000 psi, it won't be so much of a problem. However, I find it more likely that by the time such technology is realistic, smaller, lighter and more efficient batteries, in which case we wouldn't really need hydrogen.

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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    Quote Originally Posted by importedtuna
    You'd think it would be easy for GM to just use one of Opel's small gas engines built around one of their efficient people haulers like the Meriva (that kind of looks like the Hy-Wire concept) and make the engine Ethanol compatible. Or one of Opel's EuroV diesel engines like the incredible torquey for its size 1.3L CDTi and use that while promoting biodiesel.
    My previous and present experiences have taught me that what I really need is a car like the Meriva (or if it's not sold here a Mazda5). I live in Manhattan; I don't have a 3 car garage and the option of owning different vehicles for different functions. And all too often I find myself commenting that for such a big car, it's very difficult to put big things into the Caprice.

    Let's not even address the issue of parking in NYC.

    I hope there is a gasoline alternative on the horizon.

    I hope GM uses that to help remake itself into the industry leader it once was.

    And I hope it's a technology that is available in a full range of cars and trucks.

    Because frankly, I'm tired of listening to arguments between small car owners and big truck owners.
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    Re: Hydrogen is bunk

    Quote Originally Posted by JVal14
    However, I find it more likely that by the time such technology is realistic, smaller, lighter and more efficient batteries, in which case we wouldn't really need hydrogen.
    Exactly. That's why I think hydrogen is a technological dead end, at least for powering vehicles.

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    Re: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    Quote Originally Posted by likearock00
    By MARK VAUGHN




    Any car company parading around a hydrogen- or hydrogen-fuel-cell-powered “Car of the Future”—and just about every car company in the world is doing that—is doing a huge disservice to future generations of people, not to mention squirrels, trees and bacteria.

    I don’t deny that we’re eventually going to run out of oil, but hydrogen is not going to replace it.

    The problem with hydrogen is getting your hands on any of it. Separating the hydrogen molecules from whatever molecules they’re attached to wastes way more energy than just burning gasoline to make the car go—six times as much by some estimates (see my last column). Don’t even mention trying to force it through a pipeline across the country and keeping those dinky little H molecules from leaking out all over the place.


    http://www.autoweek.com/apps/pbcs.dl...8/newsletter01
    Maybe all of the scientists are full of bunk and you are the guru of them all. You should get your message across to some authority to put a stop to all this reseach before we financially corrupt ourselves.
    Last edited by Al465; 08-15-2007 at 01:48 PM.

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    Re: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    Hydrogen worked fine with the atom bomb...can't they just power our cars with a small thermo-nuclear device like the H-bomb ? I realize this would mean that GM couldn't export these cars to certain countries (North Korea, Iran, etc.), but hey, every solution has a downside !

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    Re: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    With all due respect, this guy is brain dead. Hydrogen does present some challenges over gasoline as far as production and distribution are concerned but these problems can be overcome with investment and a concerted national effort to make the change from Gasoline to Hydrogen.

    The best part about Hydrogen is that is the most democratic (small d) resource there is or ever was. What I mean is, it exists everywhere you have water. Every country can produce it from the richest to the poorest so no Arab Sheik, Oil Corporation or Venezuelan Dictator wannabe can hold anyone hostage ever again. I can make hydrogen in my own back yard if I want. Hydrogen is absolutely the answer!

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    Re: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    The problem with batteries is that their storage capacity gradually diminishes after a charge cycle. Eventually the battery will no longer hold a charge and will have to be thrown away. This is costly, inefficient, and perhaps even environmentally unsound.

    If hydrogen is not the answer, neither are batteries and electric motors. The latter may help to reduce our dependency on foreign oil, but it may cause us to become dependent on other resources like copper, steel, lithium. Right now the US is not short on copper and steel. I'm not sure about lithium, but I think we get it primarily from foreign sources. I'm sure someone will correct me if I am wrong. Hydrogen is everywhere, and eventually the technology will catch up.

    If you look at the gasoline engines produced in the early 1900s, they were highly inefficient. The produced small amounts of power relatie to their size, and they got really poor fuel economy, to boot. We have been working on the gasoline engine for over 100 years, and we keep making it better. We must allow hydrogen the same leniency. I can only imagine the naysaying, if the internal combustion engine were to be invented today.

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    Re: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    I totally agree with rsbaker!
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    Re: "Hydrogen is Bunk"

    Quote Originally Posted by windvale
    Hydrogen worked fine with the atom bomb...can't they just power our cars with a small thermo-nuclear device like the H-bomb ? I realize this would mean that GM couldn't export these cars to certain countries (North Korea, Iran, etc.), but hey, every solution has a downside !
    Cold fusion would really solve these problems. Unfortunately, we are still unable to create hot fusion. I guess we'll have to wait a few more decades.

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