Intermediate Form

Hydrogen Car Watch

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GM is now saying that it's concept hydrogen car, the Hy-wire, can currently go 149 miles. With a new tank design (that they claim is coming soon) the car will be able to go 280 miles. I usually refill the fuel tank of my current car around every 200 miles or so, so this seems to me to be in the range in which the car will become useful.

(That's assuming the mileage given can be taken seriously. By comparison, Edmund's says that my current car can get 342 miles on a tank of gas. I assure you it cannot.)

I'd imagine that this range could be increased by adding more tanks to the design... something that is interesting in light of the modular nature of the Hy-wire concept car.

I think that the right path for the energy consumed by cars in the future should be something like {fusion,fission,renewables,fossil fuels} → electricity → hydrogen → electricity → kinetic. In this cycle, electricity and hydrogen are used to transfer and store energy, respectively. This eliminates the dependence on a single source of energy found in today's oil → kinetic cars.

This is an advantage that competing energy sources, such as biomass do not have. With them, we can abandon our dependence on oil for our dependence on a single source of energy. With the more complex cycle given above, we can change energy supplies without replacing all of our motor vehicles.

- Tom | permalink | changelog | Last updated: 2003-01-13 18:10

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