Nov 9, 2011
Stephanie L

A Case For Hydrogen Fuel Cell Cars

Hydrogen Fuel Cell Cars

Fuel cell cars have the potential to reduce the demand for foreign oil and lower the harmful effects it has on our climate. These cars run on hydrogen rather than gas and their exhaust doesn’t put out any harmful fumes, just water and heat. A lot of challenges will have to be overcome before these vehicles can compete with hybrids and regular gasoline vehicles, but the benefits of this technology could be very substantial to our environment and everyone living in it.

Conventional vehicles produce a significant amount of air pollutants that contribute to smog and other harmful particles in the US. The hydrogen is produced by fossil fuels resulting in some pollutants, but much less than other vehicles. However, since hydrogen can also come from domestic sources such as natural gas, coal and water, fuel cell cars would decrease the demand for foreign oil. This would make our economy less dependent on oil transport from other countries and we would be less vulnerable to price shocks from the increasingly volatile oil market.

Most fuel cell cars can store enough hydrogen to travel as far as a gasoline-powered vehicle would between fill ups (approximately 300 miles), but this would have to be achieved without compromising the amount of interior space, the performance, and the technology in the car. All these factors would definitely affect the price. Manufactures are trying to make fuel cell cars more reasonable in price by bringing down production cost, fuel cell storage, and hydrogen storage to complete with conventional technology.

Fuel cell systems are not yet as durable as internal combustion engines, especially in some temperatures and humidity ranges. Their durability in the real world environment is currently half of what it is needed for commercialization. Life span, however, has increased a lot over the years: from 29,000 miles to 75,000 miles. Experts are hoping for 150,000-mile lifetime expectancy necessary for fuel cell cars to compete with gasoline-powered vehicles.

New facilities would have to be constructed for producing, transporting and dispensing hydrogen to consumers. Fuel cell technology would have to be embraced by the consumers before its benefits can be realized. Although there are concerns about the safety of these vehicles, many were also skeptical about hybrids, and they have worked out just fine. So we should definitely give the fuel cell cars a chance; they could change our economy and environment for the better.


4 Comments

  • Wow hopefully one day we will have hydrogen fuel cell cars in the U.S it would really help are environment. And save us from buying gas.

  • Great ideas and new, improved technology is coming to the renewable energy field at a fast pace. Even with the setbacks, alternative energy will soon overtake oil.

  • Please visit our site GreenergyNews.com, we are looking for green partners to share content with us, please backlink.

  • Green energy has come a long way in the last decade, it will only continue to grow in the future. It’s an exciting time for invention.

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