Monday, November 23, 2009

Hydrogen Cell Cars

Hydrogen cell cars are cars that use hydrogen as a fuel source. Unlike other “environmental cars” like hybrids (which are a combination of batteries and a gasoline fueled engine) hydrogen fueled cars offer zero emissions. The only bye product of the car is water. By having zero emissions, hydrogen cell cars are considered one of the possible alternative fuels of the future, but they are already here. In 2005 Honda leased the first commercial hydrogen car to a family in Redondo Beach, California. Being in the public market is an important step into hydrogen cell cars becoming more common on the road but there are two main problems that need to be overcome first. One is the cost of hydrogen cars and the other problem is that there is no sizable infrastructure laid out yet (fuel stations, refineries for producing hydrogen, and the transportation of hydrogen). At the moment, the cost for a hydrogen car is quite expensive with a Shelby Cobra costing $149,000. Hydrogen fuel is also expensive; at the moment hydrogen cells can cost as much as one to twenty dollars a kilo. Also, there is not a sizable infrastructure in place yet. At the moment California has the most at 13 (as of 2004), but plan to have around 170 by 2010.

Constructing a sizable infrastructure is the first step towards Hydrogen cell cars. President Bush allocated approximately $2 billion in hydrogen highway research. In Denmark, The Denmark Hydrogen Link Project started in 2005 with the goal of connecting a hydrogen highway infrastructure in N. Germany, Norway and Sweden. “
By 2015, Denmark Hydrogen Link expects to have 85-percent of the governmental cars in Copenhagen converted to hydrogen or electric vehicles. By 2025, Copenhagen is expected to have a 100-percent conversion rate”. Also a gradual shift is needed to ease into the hydrogen cell cars. First, hybrids (gasoline and hydrogen cars) need to be constructed until the cost in making, producing, and creating hydrogen cars drops. With a drop in price and an infrastructure to support it, hydrogen cars will be more accessible to everyone.

Works Cited:

Hydrogen Cars. October 2009. <>.

Llanos, Miguel. “Hydrogen cars ready to roll — for a price.” October 2009. <>.

Hydrogen Link. Hydrogen Link Denmark Association. October 2009. <>.

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