Hydrogen Fuel Cells & a Test Drive

I am still wading through the Weather Makers, by Tim Flannery.  Heavy environmental books are not night time reading, at all. However, I did get to the section on fuel: oil, gas, hydrogen, and nuclear, which has been pretty interesting if only because it so alarming. The author describes the hazards of transporting hydrogen – the energy cost of transporting it would consume around 40% of the fuel carried, the very real possibility of igniting yourself and your car on fire – moving in your seat or an electric storm can cause the hydrogen fuel in your car to ignite. How would you test  drive a car like that? How could you encourage brand and customer loyalty if you are igniting people on fire? And here is the kicker, in today’s prototype there is a built-in reformer. What is a reformer? A reformer converts natural gas or gasoline to hydrogen. Huh?

It does beg the question, what is wrong with hybrid electric cars? If you have signed on for wind power at your home and can then charge your car at home, then your CO2 emissions would be…what?.. close to zero. What’s wrong with that? It does somewhat bring up memories of that movie, "Who Killed the Electric Car?" I enjoyed the movie but I’m sure there was a lot more going on at the time. The one person I really liked from the film was the battery maker, Wally E. Rippel. I thought he was the best part of the whole film. Hey! I just did a search on him and I found that he was a guest blogger on Horseless Age? Interesting blog name. Here is the title: Why Electric Vehicles Make Good Sense


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