Hydrogen Car Goes Down Like the Hindenburg: DoE Kills the Program

By Eliza Strickland | May 8, 2009 6:19 pm

hydrogen carThe dream of hydrogen fuel cell cars has just been put back in the garage. U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced yesterday that his department is cutting all funding for hydrogen car research, saying that it won’t be a feasible technology anytime soon. “We asked ourselves, ‘Is it likely in the next 10 or 15, 20 years that we will covert to a hydrogen car economy?’ The answer, we felt, was ‘no,'” Chu said [CNET]. While innovative new cars are a high priority, Chu declared that his department will focus on efforts that may pay off sooner, like plug-in electric cars.

Cars powered by hydrogen fuel cells have been a staple of clean energy dreams, as they’d produce only a trickle of water as a waste product, instead of sooty exhaust and carbon dioxide gas. The retreat from cars powered by fuel cells counters Mr. Bush’s prediction in 2003 that “the first car driven by a child born today could be powered by hydrogen, and pollution-free.” The Energy Department will continue to pay for research into stationary fuel cells, which Dr. Chu said could be used like batteries on the power grid and do not require compact storage of hydrogen [The New York Times].

But experts say there are a host of obstacles to overcome before hydrogen cars can regularly cruise America’s highways. They are still very expensive, and producing the hydrogen on which they run is not cheap, or completely clean, either. At the moment, most hydrogen used in fuel cells is extracted from natural gas, a non-renewable hydrocarbon just like oil. A new hydrogen distribution system would also have to be built from scratch – and won’t be cheap [The Wall Street Journal]. One recent report from the National Research Council estimated that the total cost of building hydrogen pipelines and filling stations could be as high as $200 billion.

The move to slash hydrogen research has been praised by some environmentalists, who say that the urgent need to cut carbon dioxide emissions, the leading greenhouse gas, requires that the government move quickly to spur the development of the most promising technologies. But David Friedman, a clean-vehicle expert with the Union of Concerned Scientists, disagrees and argues that all alternative-fuel cars come with drawbacks. For example, the darling of the moment, the plug-in-hybrid, is still too expensive, and there are still concerns about the longevity of its batteries. Instead of picking winners, says Mr. Friedman, the government must place bets on all of the above contenders and give them enough of a chance to prove themselves. “We keep jumping from silver bullet to silver bullet,” he says. “It takes longer than that to revolutionize the auto industry” [The Wall Street Journal blog].

Related Content:
80beats: Carbon Nanotubes Could Replace Platinum and Lead to Affordable Hydrogen Cars
80beats: Even With Public Funding, Hydrogen Cars Are at Least 15 Years Away
DISCOVER: Under the Hood of the First Real Fuel-Cell Car
DISCOVER: Future Tech test drives three hydrogen cars
DISCOVER: Lovin’ Hydrogen describes Amory Lovins’s vision of a hydrogen-powered future

Image: flickr / netwalkerz_net

CATEGORIZED UNDER: Environment, Technology
  • http://clubneko.net Nick

    O thank science!

    Hydrogen cars are such a boondoggle. All the inefficiency of having to store and transport dangerous, explosive, hazardous materials, all the benefits of being hugely, wastefully expensive and years and years away, when electric car technology is literally ready to hit the streets.

    Hydrogen car technology is a wag-the-dog move by big energy companies to put the switch from an oil-based economy to an electricity based economy years and years in the future.

  • Derek

    Woo-hoo! This is great news.

    A hydrogen economy appeals to a certain wealthy, fearful, aging, white, douchebag segment of the population that can’t imagine not replacing all those beautiful gas stations and refineries with equally fetching hydrogen facilities. A cynic might go further to postulate that hydrogen cars are just a public relations expense that allows automakers to trot out an endless parade of seemingly improving prototypes while blaming politicians and Big Oil for not creating the infrastructure needed to bring these technological marvels to the masses. Hydrogen research has been the cost of doing business, a check that buys good publicity, green cred, and an easy scapegoat, all without endangering that fat slice of fossil money pie.

    Now we can move forward and focus on solutions that will actually work.

  • Joe

    People with no imagination who are lazy and have to much money and time invested in the past will be the death of us all. Or NOT. Einstein said: Great spirits have always met with violent opposition from mediocre minds. These B^%$*&%ds would meter the air you breathe if they found a way to force you to pay for it.

  • http://911movement.org/ CB_Brooklyn

    I hope Discover will post the last comment I left.

  • http://911movement.org/ CB_Brooklyn

    The reality of free energy goes mainstream. On April 19, 2009 CBS’ 60 Minutes broadcasted a segment on Cold Fusion. Not only do they speak optimistically, they also state the Pentagon verified the free energy claims! The MUST SEE CBS video and article are linked below:

    Cold Fusion Is Hot Again
    60 Minutes: Once Considered Junk Science, Cold Fusion Gets A Second Look By Researchers
    http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2009/04/17/60minutes/main4952167.shtml

  • http://911movement.org/ CB_Brooklyn

    See the *Suppression by Murder* section in the following article for information on Dr Eugene Mallove:

    The 9/11 Truth Movement, Free Energy Suppression, and the Global Elite’s Agenda
    http://www.checktheevidence.co.uk/cms/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=182&Itemid=60

  • http://911movement.org/ CB_Brooklyn

    All readers should read the article linked in my previous comment titled “The 9/11 Truth Movement, Free Energy Suppression, and the Global Elite’s Agenda”. This technology (directed energy weapons, and other free-energy technologies) were used to destroy the Twin Towers. The data was gathered and analyzed by former Professor of Mechanical Engineering Dr Judy Wood. Legal documents have been filed.

  • Brian

    Next step: Let’s get real about fusion research.

    Decades of time spent, hundreds of millions of dollars spent, and they still haven’t even produced a demonstration system that can break even on a power I/O basis. Yes, I’m aware of the new laser based facility that might finally accomplish this. So what?

    Have you ever heard the lame explanations about how such a facility might be commercialized? Have you ever heard the WRONG stories that fusion power produces no radioactive waste?

    This is big, expensive science with no timeline (beyond those imposed by funding), no agenda (beyond more big, expensive science), and a lame goal (break even or slight positive net energy production). There will be another giant tokamak or laser or unobtanium-based system after this one, I feel certain.

    What everyone fails to get is that nature has solved this problem. It’s called Sol. Nature’s own fusion reactor is up and running and it has been stable for 5 billion years. It’s got another 5 billion before the warranty runs out. What human-built system has these kind of credentials?

    What we need to spend our time and money on is figuring out how to harvest the energy of the Sun. The furnace is already running and we just need a better heat exchanger.

  • http://911movement.org/ CB_Brooklyn

    Brian, you need to get the book titled “Fire From Ice – The War Against Cold Fusion”. It was written by Dr Eugene Mallove in 1993 and exposes how the DOE destroyed funding for free energy research. In 2004 Dr Mallove wrote an open letter to world scientists asking for research funds for Cold Fusion and Zero Point Energy. Unfortunately Dr Mallove was murdered a few months later. (The article I linked has all the information.) Also, see the video Race To Zero Point on google. There used to be a video about Cold Fusion but google removed it.

  • RJ Needles

    NOT SO QUICK!! NASA has spent billions on fuel cells and many more billions have been spent by researchers globally. The result – nothing, not even one break-through. However, this doesn’t mean hydrogen isn’t the best “fuel”, it just means an engine which fully utilizes the power of hydrogen isn’t generally know. That includes internal combustion by the way.

    The real technical break-through though may have just been made by the ZED engine research team. Their CEO was on national radio last Sunday — and like Chu he is from Berkeley. ZED is still under the radar, but what is known is that Greenberg Traurig of Washington, D.C. just finished the patents, and the #1 person of the Top 50 in the world “who can change the world” (Guardian newspaper – London) named Terry Tamminen (former head of California EPA) just met with the zedpower executive in Canada. Apparently the ZED engine packs 2.5-3.0 horsepower per cubic inch displacement which beats gasoline performance, and its fully scalable to any size vehicle, something electric will never do. Do your research – dig deep. Theres more to this story than meets the eye. For those in the know, apparently the best is yet to come.

  • http://Nano-Electric.com Nano

    Funny,

    And this is why the U.S. lags behind the rest of the world in technology, they never stay the course, or better put, the pockets are always lined just enough by lobbyists to redirect congress in the opposite direction eliminating any hope of progress with any energy alternatives.

    The same thing happened in 70’s with oil embargo, all talk, not sustained action, and when price of oil dropped back, the same old same old continued, no commitment of any kind to sustain development of alternative energy technologies, it all died and almost zero progress was achieved in all those years, in fact, we are more dependent on foreign oil than ever.

    All I can say is government is sick, broken, it doesn’t work, and they are still taking back pocket money from lobbyists of big oil and utility companies, so with manipulated price of oil in control, we see gov. dump the most promising of alternative energies, hydrogen. All one has to do is study Tesla vs. Edison to understant why our gov. leaders go where the most money in the pockets is, and Edison was being funded by gov. Tesla wasn’t, and who decided this, utility companies who had vested interest in grid. If we had gone in Tesla direction, we would not have needed to waste hundreds of billions on transmission wire grid and hundreds of billions more lost due to line loss.

    Current hydrogen technologies may not be the total answer, but it is finally the right direction, and now, poof, you have to wonder who paid off gov. decision makers this time? Could it be utility companies again. lol Who was to have lost the most if hydrogen breakthrough was to be developed? Bottom line, from what I have seen personally, hydrogen is answer, just ask all those hundreds of thousands back yard inventors who are using hydrogen, like I have for years. How anyone can say there is not potential benefits with hydrogen is brain dead, Chu, are you listening? lol Simply put, we are so close to breakthrough technologies with hydrogen, just as Tesla had the best technology decades ago, it always comes down to the big bucks in the back pockets of gov. decision makers. I have to wonder who primed Chu’s back pocket so soon. lol

    Major mud in the face time is about to be seen by all, and I can’t wait, perhaps even as early as this year, and from the little inventors working from their home garages, not funded by the billions like all the rest, so don’t tell me hydrogen is the wrong direction, it is a key ingredient, not the main one, and this is what gov. is missing out on, you won’t need a new infrastructure for distribution, you won’t need a fuel cell, in fact, when you see this latest breakthrough hydrogen system, you will be amazed. It is just a matter of time, and if gov. would stop taking lobbyist money, we would have seen this decades ago.

    Nano

  • http://www.morohe.com Morgaine O’Herne

    Two points nobody’s made yet:
    1- hydrogen cells are a way to store that elusive solar and wind power that we need to be taking advantage of.
    2 – Although the big oil & energy giants may try to replace their grid with hydrogen fueling stations, it won’t work for them the way oil does; the reason? Hydrogen – unlike oil – can be produced locally by anyone, anywhere without the massive expense of equipment and labor required to extract fossil fuels from the earth.

  • Egaeus

    Several inventors have created a car that runs on plain water, but Big Oil and the Big 3 have been in cohoots with Big Government to prevent these vehicles from being available to the public. This has been overseen by the Illuminati and the Freemasons, who want to keep us poisoned with vaccines and toxins and feed us genetically modified food to turn us into super soldiers to fight the UFOs alongside Bigfoot and the Loch Ness Monster. Hail Xenu.

  • Membrane

    The first paragraph of this story quotes Dr. Chu as saying “we asked ourselves . . . ” about the best auto technology. How true this is, apparently. Word is Dr. Chu has so far declined to meet with General Motors CEO or chief of research. Given that the Obama Administration has fired the CEO and driven the company to the brink of bankruptcy, one would think he would have consulted with the leaing US auto technology company before embracing batteries so exclusively. I guess Dr. Chu feels he knows best.

    To RJ Needles, I am stunned at your assertion that there’s been no progress on fuel cells. Honda’s new FCV is being offered in California today for lease, 60% efficient, EPA rated 72 MPG, comparable to the Accord, Malibu and Camry in creature comforts and interior room. Toyota’s vehicle gets well over 400 miles per tank. Daimler plans 100,000 units a yar within a few years. Please, RJ. Pay attention. For starters, see startershttp://automobiles.honda.com/fcx-claritty/ http://www.cafcp.org or http://www.fuelcells.org

  • http://www.grinzo.com/energy/ Lou Grinzo

    I’ve been writing about hydrogen over on The Cost of Energy for a while. The question is not the purely technical one of whether we can make it work, but the economic one of whether it will be the best option compared to competing technologies, like plug-in hybrids running their on board internal combustion engines on algae-based biodiesel or cellulosic ethanol.

    Sadly, the facts are stacked pretty heavily against hydrogen as a transportation fuel. Either we make it from natural gas, which emits a lot of CO2 we don’t know what to do with, or we use a lot of electricity to make it from water via electrolysis, which is a far less efficient use of those electrons than if we used them to recharge an EV or PHEV. And with climate chaos breathing down our neck, we have to get as much mileage (literally and figuratively) out of our clean electricity supply as possible.

    I covered this US funding news in two posts in the last few days, linked below.

    http://www.grinzo.com/energy/index.php/2009/05/07/hydrogen-happy-trails-time/

    http://www.grinzo.com/energy/index.php/2009/05/08/a-response-to-gary-golden-on-hydrogen/

  • Chuck

    Apparently someone did not do his or her homework. Lithium Batteries cost a lot of money. They also take a lot of space. Why do you think the Volt can only go 40 miles on a charge? Batteries also take time to charge. It takes 8 kWh to go 40 miles. That is 8kw over one hour or 160Volts * 50 amps for one hour to go 40 miles Now to go 400 miles takes 10 times that. That is a HUGE battery and HUGE cost. Where do you get that kind of power to charge the battery? Who is going to wait that long at a station? Batteries are good for the interim but definitely not the solution. Gas has a lot of energy as a fluid. Hydrogen has a lot of energy. Hydrogen can be extracted from liquids. You have to respect Dr Chu, but I really don’t think he did his homework.

  • http://roadimage.blogspot.com/ Alan

    I have a good friend who unfortunately fell into the same trap CB_Brooklyn is caught in. Directed energy weapons were used to destroy the WTC? Please!

    Two things are required for any technology, regardless of how beneficial it may be, to hit the mainstream:

    1. Large corporations must be able to make money from it
    2. Government must be able to tax and regulate it
    Sad, but true.

    As to fuel efficiency, controlling CO2 emissions, etc: Let’s keep in mind that plant life requires CO2 to survive. So don’t get overly slap-happy about cutting CO2. Planting more trees and keeping a healthy lawn goes a long way toward cutting the amount of CO2 in the atmosphere. Massive expanses of concrete and asphalt, ranging from 8-lane highways to Wal-Mart parking lots, create “heating zones” locally and do nothing to clean the atmosphere. Plant a tree. Plant several. Shade for your home, cleaner air, and you’ll save on your electric bill as well. It’s a win/win. And watching the squirrels fussing over the pecans is just plain fun.

  • Colin

    Interesting decision – is this protectionist? It seems that fuel cell development is further advanced abroad than in the US. The eventual path determined by the US will probably dictate foreign development. This move has wrong-footed many companies.

    Is it right from a technical standpoint? Fuel cell cars offer much better range than electric. I think hydrogen storage and distribution is a BIG issue though. For example, Mercedes are experimenting with a high pressure hydrogen tank at 5000psi! What happens in a crash? Hydrogen storage has to be done more safely than this. There is a company called Acta that has been developing a catalyst that breaks down ammonia into hydrogen and nitrogen gas. Ammonia can be stored more easily at a safer 130psi in liquid form and can also be used as a fuel for internal combustion engines. Worldwide ammonia production is already at 140million tons/year – could this be scaled up? There has alos been a lot of experimentation with storage as metal hydrides.

    As Chuck points out, producing an electric car that has a respectable range involves massive batteries and huge cost. Battery technology appears to going in two different directions – high capacity or high discharge/charge. To acheive the sort of range everyone is used to, the batteries of a Tesla would have to have at least three times the capacity. If you look at the evolution of the lithium-ion battery , capacities have doubled in the 12 years since their introduction – acheiving treble seems unlikely anytime soon. The other route though seems a bit more promsising. There are now batteries than can be charged in 90 seconds (see Toshiba). If range is still limited to about 100miles, a 90 second refil doesn’t seem so bad.

    Ethanol as a fuel still produces CO2 so it is only really viable as a bio-fuel, rather than being synthetically manufactured. Brazil have championed ethanol power for years, however it requires the switch from food crops to fuel crops- is this ethical?

  • http://www.groovium.com Steve W

    The problem with fossil fuels is their transportation and distribution. Large-scale fuel cells are big, heavy, hot and need lots of input and output to run efficiently. Fuel cells can run on powdered coal, so put them in coal mines, close to the dirty fuel, and export the electricity through superconducting lines cooled by the LOX needed by the fuel cells. (Great employment numbers for the coal regions, BTW.) In L.A., put neighborhood fuel cells on top of old low-yield oil wells (fact: 60% of Southern California’s oil reserves are still untapped – the easy oil has been pumped already), and again, ship only the electricity.

    Has anyone done a back-of-the-envelope calculation on the surface area of the interstate right-of-ways already owned by the federal and state governments? You could line I-10 and I-40 with solar panels from Barstow, CA, to Beaumont, TX without needing any more land or legal clearance.

  • http://www.geocities.com/stardolphin2/link3.htm Frank Glover

    Yes, there are hydrogen production, transport and storage issues, but:

    “dangerous, explosive, hazardous materials”

    And gasoline is…what?

    Look at the warning signs on gas pumps and the NFPA 704 hazmat warning on a tanker truck sometime.

    You clearly don’t remember the Ford Pinto…

  • Stunned

    OK, let’s get things straight. Hydrogen is infinitely less dangerous than gasoline or propane or natural gas. All of which are being used in cars today. Point one: Hydrogen gas CANNOT puddle. It cannot collect in garages or low spots or enclosed areas. Point two: The way hydrogen fuel tanks are designed, they are nearly impossible to rupture in a way that would cause all of the fuel to escape at once. They’ve even created a tank that stores the hydrogen suspended in a gel-like substance that only allows the gas to be released from the gel material at a specific rate. Even if it did rupture… Remember point one. Hydrogen goes straight up into the air at a ridiculous speed. Point three: hydrogen has LESS energy in it than any of the other above fuels. So an explosion of one pound of hydrogen will produce less of a bang than one pound of gasoline, propane, or natural gas. Point four: All cars running today can be converted to hydrogen for less than $1000.00. Point five. Contrary to the lies, hydrogen is the EASIEST of all fuels to create. You stick two electrodes into some salty water in a tank in your back-yard, connect them to a solar panel and voila! you have hydrogen. Ain’t that amazing? No need for using natural gas, is there? also using the solar panel you can compress and store the hydrogen in another tank and then fill up your car any time you want for free… Ohhhhhhhhhh… NOW I understand… FREE. How could I be so silly!?! Of course the powers that be cancelled hydrogen research. It’s the only technology that had any chance of actually working. I see know.

    BTW. I REALLY wish idiots would stop using the Hindenburg as an example of why hydrogen shouldn’t be used. That happened almost SEVENTY FIVE YEARS AGO, people! GET – OVER – IT! Technology has come a long, LONG way since 1937. I think we stopped using canvas bags as hydrogen storage containers back in eighties or nineties when we stopped clubbing our women over the heads and dragging them off to our caves.

    Yeeesh!

  • Christina Viering

    GOOD POINTS!

  • pete oesterle

    Actually , the electric car is a better way to go . We already have a huge investment in an electric infrastructure. Electricity is already available everywhere! It’s portable and easily convertible already !
    What is needed to allow a car to travel any distance? A support infrastructure.
    Steven Chu sees the answer that already makes sense !

  • Jason

    You realize that they’re not discounting using hydrogen as a viable clean energy source, but simply formatting it differently?

    Instead of hydrogen cars, there will be hydrogen based electric plants that supply electricity to clean running plug-in vehicles. This eliminates the need for complex storage, compacting the hydrogen efficiently and allows to maintain roughly the same infrastructure, although with improvements made to the electric grid with the demands to be placed upon it.

    To hear the ranting/raving going on in here it feels like some of you may have missed the point. This is a much more logical and reasonable step, especially with how popular plug-in cars are becoming and how much more advanced battery technology is becoming in opposition to fuel cell.

    If you want a cleaner planet quicker, this is the wisest course of action and definitely the most cost efficient.

  • NicoleW

    Oh dear! New infrastructure and filling stations could cost as much as $200 billion?! Where on earth would the goverment/private business get that kind of money to get us off the foreign oil? Hint: how much did they just waste on the “stimulus” package and TARP?

    Are we really going to transition to electric cars at the same time that cap & trade is going to exponentially increase the cost of electricity? Yet another example of government keeping us so busy trying not to be poor that we have no time to keep an eye on them.

  • FILTHpig

    LOL @ Egaeus!

  • Brian

    Given some of the bizarre postings here, I feel obliged to add my own:

    All we need to solve the hydrogen storage/transportation problem, is metallic hydrogen. There is some theoretical idea that metallic hydrogen may be stable at room temperatures and pressures. Therefore I propose that we begin subsurface mining of metallic hydrogen on Jupiter immediately!

    Never mind that no one knows if metallic hydrogen exists at all. Never mind that no one knows if metallic hydrogen exists on Jupiter. Never mind that no one knows if metallic hydrogen can be feasibly oxidized. Never mind that the pressures involved would turn the miners, or their equipment, into a reasonable facsimile of metallic hydrogen. Doubt is for the weak-kneed!!

  • Stunned

    Who said anything about fuel cells? You can run ANY gasoline engine on hydrogen with only small modifications to the engine and fuel delivery system. Also, for those who espouse the plug-in electric car… Let’s see anyone “fill-up” an electric car in anything less than 15 minutes to half an hour… Ain’t gonna happen. How ’bout when your batteries wear out in 5 to 10 years. You got an extra $10,000 lying around to replace ‘em? “Cuz THAT is NOT part af ANY electric car warranty. Those batteries have a specific life span of how many charges they can take before becoming garbage. And once that # has been reached, you’re screwed. Beyond that, how many of those plug-in car lovers would be willing to be spending 15 minutes to 2 hours “filling up” their car after every 50 to 150 miles? (Depending on the vehicle.) You’d be spending half of your drive of any long distance “filling up” you vehicle. Idiocy. Hydrogen can be used NOW. In all vehicles NOW. For less than $1000 per vehicle NOW. No battery to replce, no complicated and less than perfectly efficient fuel cell, just a tank of compressed hydrogen – (Don’t even think it. Hydrogen is safer than ANY of the current fuels being used.) – and a modification to the engines’ fuel delivery system. Let’s see… How much is the cheapest plug-in car? About $40,000 for anything most of you would even consider being seen in. How much to convert a current vehicle to hydrogen? $1000. Will you ever be able to travel as far on a battery as you can on a tank of hydrogen? No. Never. The amount of energy available between a couple of dissimilar materials (A battery) will never equal that available from hydrogen. NEVER. The materials available to us at this time have nearly reached their peak in their ability to store energy. It’s gonna take an entirely new material or materials to improve the battery technology enough to make it a realistic vehicle technology. Othrwise there’s just no point to battery powered vehicles. They can’t be refilled quickly. They cost nearly double what a conventional car does. And always will. They have a VERY limited distance they can travel before neeeding a recharge. And the battery will NEVER last as long as a fuel cell or an engine that runs on hydrogen. So, please, you electric vehicle lovers… STOP IT! You’re just embarrasing yourselves. They have NO benefit over hydrogen whatsoever. PERIOD. Slow to recharge. Expensive. Batteries that go bad and cost you $10,000 or the car is GARBAGE. There are no benefits. Get over it. It was a promising idea 20 years ago, not anymore. Something better and more effective and efficient has come along to fill that hole. It’s called hydrogen. It can be made on every ocean coast using the sea water as the hydrogen supply, and tidal generators for converting the water to hydrogen. – Self contained energy production infrastucture. – (No external power required to create storable and transportable energy.) Gee, wouldn’t want something like that would we?

  • Jason

    Speaking to the issues of battery charges taking too much time; there are a few ways of attacking this. According to Who Killed the Electric Car California built a significant charging infrastructure allowing people to charge wherever they parked. Additionally, new research suggests Li batteries can be charged and discharged in 10 seconds, caveats being power infrastructure can’t deal with that kind of voltage dump, but one option is to slow charge batteries in stationary refueling stations and quick-dump them to vehicles throughout the day.

    Beyond that the real benefits of electric over Hydrogen is availability. The only place I know of that Hydrogen is available is Iceland and California’s neat little FCX lease for over $700/mo.

    Right now, hybrids work. They’re available today and improving gas mileage by 30%. Regardless of Hydrogen’s potential it’s limited availability and current costs are not what Stunned indicates. On top of that, every new technology impacts the environment and landscape in potentially unacceptable ways. The biggest objectors of offshore wind farms and tidal generators are environmentalists protecting the turtles & birds, and the ultra-wealthy beach dwellers protecting their views.

  • http://www.blogger.com/profile/11582174260796955260 Stjepan

    [Moderator’s note: Stjepan’s 6 comments have been deleted because they were rambling and off topic.]

  • RICK BADMAN

    If plasma igniters are used to make water into fuel by separating the oxygen from the hydrogen and burning the hydrogen with very high temperatures, water could become the fuel of choice in the near future.

    Then there are stacked flywheels that may allow a car to travel over 1000 miles nonstop. Use rock quartz or one of my ultra-stressed crystaline materials for the flywheels and seal the units with either water or forced air being used to cool the motor/generator armatures.

    If my rotary engines work, they could be used to run a generator to respin the flywheels up to speed and power the drive motors. They would use plasma igniters to burn gas at first and then water. Some of the electricity generated by the generator would power the igniters and in the city or during rush hour, flywheels would power the motors.

    Then you have the steam rotary engine that will run mainly on water for steam and fuel. My ideas, if they work, could cut transportation costs significantly.

  • Harv

    I’m sorry I didn’t see this story sooner. I doubt that I will get much feed back. I really get a big laugh reading all the comments, they are typical. Most of which seem like well intentioned BS. From my experience “Stunnded” seemed to know what he was talking about.

    Ten thousand miles ago I purchased a experimental hydrogen generator for my car with the idea of marketing them if it worked. I’ve been testing the thing for months. Guess what, IT WORKS! It increased my mpg by over 20% at 60 mph. It does just as well when I running at 40 mph. Also, it burns cleaner and has more power. It runs on baking soda or lye and distilled water. You don’t need to build huge plants/factories to extract hydrogen form whatever or service stations to dispense hydrogen fuel, all that crap just cost lost of money (of course that is the idea, baffel the people with BS and take their money). How much is does a quart of distilled water and a box of baking soda cost? (Holy Crap, we have to figure a way to get more money out of this). Hook the generator up to your car battery and have at it. (Jesus, folks. this is not rocket science). I add water and baking soda every 1000 miles or so. It does not void the warranty.

    Folks, it works!! Zero problems!! Great performance!!

    At the present time the thing cost $900 to $1700 (retail) depending on engine size. These things would not be expensive to mass produce.

    If you want to know more about it send me an email. I’m always happy to talk to entrepreneurs.

    Here is an idea, if these things were made in China they would probably cost less then $150 each to bring into the country. Boy, would that upset a lot of big shots in the oil an auto industry.

    However, I am not going to get too excited about this because I really think that the government will end up squashing this if it really begins to catch on. In the mean time, though, I expect to sell a few thousand of these a year and by maintaining a low profile I will do OK.

    Again, the unit on my car works great. If you think the government, big oil or the auto industry is really interested in helping solve the problem you are dead wrong. All they want to do is screw you.

    Happy motoring.

  • Dave in Calif

    I see San Diego is building a new salt- to fresh water plant, when they do this maybe they can siphon off some hydrogen? Throw in some electrodes and whalla H2.

  • Betty

    With all the talk about it not being feasible is malarkey. It is true that “easiest” way to produce hydrogen is to burn petro fuel, BUT that is only if you intend have cars that require the “gas” be pumped into the car. Hyrdogen on Demand vehicles would not require you to pump anything into them but water and should work well with gray and salt water to boot.

    Hydrogen on Demand (HOD) power has been around for at least 80 years. Due to the funding cuts, companies that had been researching HOD vehicle technology has had to put these projects in suspended animiation. Although a viable and fast to road alternative, electric cars still use fuel, the electricity comes from power plants which are more than likely going to burn coal, natural gas, or oil to produce the power. Many have limited range and power considerations. If you have to travel on roads/highways/loops where you go over 45 miles per hour, the electric car is not allowed in many states thus you are relgated to the surface streets. The trade off here is taking more time to get to your destination.

    The answer here folks, is not to cut one technology for another. For example, we should be looking at both short term and long term solutions to the problem. For example, the fastest way to reduce at least 30 percent of the emissions in this country is to FORCE companies to send their non-essential employees home to work. This is a quick solution that saves both the employee and employer money. This would include knowledge workers, call centers, and office workers. The biggest investment in this case is bandwidth. In some cities, this might comprise as much as 50-60 percent of the work force.

    In addition, USE biofuel such as biodiesal (100 percent) for the trucks, trains and possibly even Jets. Did you know that Algol OIL (produced from Algae) produces a very high yield per acre while reducing 80 percent emissions and can be grown just about anywhere. As far as commuting transportation is concerned, the air car, air bus, and air pod technologies are on the cusp and we should see them in this country (USA) soon late 2010 and 2011. The air car for example, has a range of around 800 miles on a charge, takes 4 hours to charge, and is capable of speeds over 100 miles per hour. Also, on the horizon is capacitor technology.

  • K

    I have to agree with promoting large FC for use by utilities first.

    A vehicle owner is only going to use his FC car a few hours a day. Most will use them less than one hour per day.

    It simply makes sense to maximize the use of a very expensive device. And FC in vehicles will face temperature extremes and vibrations that a utility can minimize.

    The big question is really cost. Current and future. I recommend a trip to FuelCell Energy Corporations web site. They are based in Connecticut and have been selling big FC installations for quite some time. Real stuff, not someday, stuff.

    They seem to produce for about $1M/MW.

    Most of their sales are to Korea. The government there is heavily subsidizing FC utilization.

    fyi http://www.fuelcellenergy.com/

  • Uk PHIL

    WHAT ABOUT THE NICE OLD MAN ON YOU TUBE THAT THREW OUT HIS ENGINE AND ATTATCHED AN OVERUNITY MAGNEITIC MOTOR TO HIS GEERBOX AND DRIVES LIKE A NORMAL CAR?
    OR THE TWO OZZI GUYS THAT HAVE AN OVERUNITY MAGNETIC MOTOR THAT WILL POWER A WHOLE HOUSE? THAT ONE MADE NATIONAL NEWS, COME ON GUYS, “THEY DONT WANT YOU TO HAVE IT”

  • Brian

    Anyone who types in all capital letters deserves to be treated like the lunatics who stand on street corners, shouting at the universe. Every major city has one or two of these at minimum.

    THE OLD GREY MARE SHE AIN’T WHAT SHE USED TO BE!
    AIN’T WHAT SHE USED TO BE!
    AIN’T WHAT SHE USED TO BE!

  • No name

    How about investing in the air car technology.

    http://www.mdi.lu/english/

  • waldo

    i have made a hydrogen generator using 2 coke cans one inside the other,a plastic soft drink bottle cut in half a piece of scrap wood cut round to fit the bottle,tubing through the lid,add water and baking soda a battery charger and i made hydrogen….how cheap is that!

  • D.Clayton

    Hydrogen is the future!

  • Greg Gregg

    If you want a good reason for Hydrogen, The current wave of electric vehicles will be powered by Lithium Ion batteries. This means we are going to be concentrating Lithium salts, not a common element in the environment, and making it available as a pollutant. Lithium is used as a drug for bipolar patients. look it up. In normal people it reduces your IQ and makes you more prone to errors and accidents in work situations. We already have a problem with intellectual poverty in the U.S.. What will it be like if we have a lot of lithium in the environment. hydrogen is non toxic. It makes sense.

  • danielle

    try powering electric appliances and or cars with french fry oil. you never know. it could work.

  • someone

    i think most of u that r saying this needed to go away r idiots. i mean r u guys retarted this is a great idea so what that is going to take 200 billion dollars to make stations to fill up ur hydrogen cars it cant be much cheeper to make stations to charge ur electrice POS car also how much did this country want to spend on free health care this year??? Another problem with the electrice is that everyone will have to get new cars which will cost more money and then what r u going to do with all these gas powered cars. i know what ur thinking we’re going to melt them down and use the steel to make new cars right?? guess what WRONG!!!!! that was the plan in cash for clunkers and guess where those cars r now, thats right sitting in an old baseball feild that is also on americas to-do list. but with the hydrogen program we can change r already( key word here) PAYED FOR gas powered cars into hydrogen powered cars. yes the hydrogen program needs some work like how were going to make the hydrogen but this cant be fixed without the funding to do it

  • http://www.whygmmatters.com/ thomaswhite

    Cheaper pricing after I got quotes from other shops. Was skeptical at first but nevertheless I decided to try after reading so much positive reviews about TTS CarCare; thinking it wouldn’t go wrong as it is under the wing of TTS Eurocars, giving me further assurance.

  • http://whygmmatters.com/ jenniferwilsonus

    The current-generation Lexus GS hasn’t caught sold as well as Lexus had hoped. While other models in the company’s stable…..

  • http://www.agrnetwork.com/ rickytailorus

    Car Insurance: A comprehensive Car Insurance policy for your car that keeps it secure against damage caused by natural and man-made calamities, including acts of terrorism. Avail of Own Damage, Personal Accident and Liability cover all in one policy…..

  • Watchingtheweasels

    Let’s be honest here. Killing Hydrogen powered technology because it won’t be ready for a decade has to do with GM, GE, the Chevy Volt, and re-election…not what is good for our country in the long run (breaking our crude addiction).

  • JayCason

    I think it is very stupid of the government to allow someone like Chu to make such an idiotic decision. We have no politicians that have a backbone. It is all about the rich getting richer. It is all about the auto industry making the decisions along with the oil companies. They are in it together. Hydrogen is good for our country and all others. There has been cars that get over 100 mpg since the early 60’s. However, not mass produced because the oil companies made a deal with the auto industry. I have seen the cars first hand and know they worked. I have used the hydrogen on my own truck with great success. This is a bad decision for all of us.

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