Honda FCX Clarity
How It Works
Inside the fuel cell:  Hydrogen and air flow from top to bottom in Honda's fuel cell through wave-shaped channels . Along the way, an electrolyte surface transforms the hydrogen into water and electrons. The cooling system  runs horizontally through the channels to keep the cell from overheating.
The 45.7-gallon tank in the rear of the car stores compressed hydrogen, which the fuel cell between the front seats converts into electricity and water.
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How far one one charging? Getting compressed hydrogen is WAY harder than finding a place to plug in.
So - Detroit wants 25 billion dollars and Honda has created a hydrogen based car and seems to be one of the few automakers that is really doing a great job (Toyota as well).
What...what are we missing here. Its not innovation. It's cluelessness? Is that it?
How about GM subcontract with Honda to put Honda engines into their vehicles. Powered by Honda like computers put Powered by Intel. Maybe that's the bailout - we'll give you 5 billion to retrofit all of your cars to work with Honda Hydrogen engines.
beantown179 -- Honda deserves credit for making a production Hydrigen vehicle -- but, FoMoCo demonstrated a Hydrogen engine a couple of years ago. Oh, and the planned Chevy Volt is fairly innovative, and somewhat more immediately practical.
Automotive economics are due to a lot of things, and I get tired of the constant bashing of US carmakers.
So, hooray for the Honda achievement, but it's hardly an indicator of total superiority.
The thing that worries me about the Volt is that it will carry a steep price,around $40K I seem to recall.At that price,I doubt they will sell like hotcakes.GM would probably have to sell each car at a loss just to "prime the pump" to get folks interested and buying them.
I think what could make all the difference here is to get away from storing hydrogen as a gas,and instead use a system of hydrogen production on demand,generated by a reaction of elemental zinc or aluminum powder with plain old water.The chemistry is simple: Aluminum/zinc metal takes an oxygen atom from water,and frees a couple of pure hydrogen atoms,which are fed to the fuel cell,(or burned in a modified IC engine). The exhaust in both cases is water. This is much safer and more compact than a high pressure hydrogen tank,and you can refill by stopping at a fuel station,and trading your expired container of aluminum/zinc oxide for a fresh container of elemental aluminum/zinc powder.
Check these links out: http://tinyurl.com/6xj5aj
hydrogen, in theory, is green. however, first you have to make hydrogen. you could use green electricity, but you still have to compress it, which uses more energy. plus, it would take a lot more hydro stations to become viable. sorry hydrogen fans, but--
the FCX does not get my green n' smart seal of aproval.
Hydrogen, whether used as a combustion fuel or in a fuel cell car, is far from practical for numerous reasons, and the all of its problems must be handled before it could ever compete with state-of-the-art batteries such as Altair's nanotitanate, A123's nanophosphate or the various lithium iron phosphate batteries available.
Hydrogen is far too expensive to use for a fuel unless it is made from fossil fuels, and that would defeat the purpose. If it's made from electrolysis, it requires several times more energy than it takes to operate an electric vehicle.
Hydrogen requires a combination of thousands of pounds of pressure at hundreds of degrees below zero-- unlike the gas tanks we use today for gasoline and similar fuels that cost less than $100. in mass production, the cylinders for hydrogen would be thick, heavy, expensive, and consume lots of valuable space. When you need to put all of your fuel in such cylinders, you cannot carry very much fuel in a vehicle.
Hydrogen does not have as much energy per pound as other fuels or batteries. No one is going to want to stop every day or so to refuel, especially at $12- $20 per gallon.
Hydrogen would require a terribly expensive infrastructure for delivery-- who would pay for it? Our government is drowning in debt. No investor would want to invest in a hydrogen infrastructure that is such a huge gamble, and no driver will want to buy an expensive hydrogen-powered vehicle if there is nowhere to buy the fuel it needs-- it's the chicken-or-egg thing: which comes first, the thousands of fueling stations, or the millions of cars that would need their service?
This is not a problem for electric vehicles: EVs can get by with any source of electricity right now-- and as more of them are built, special high-speed charging stations can give EVs similar range, and EVs will always provide better performance, less need for maintenance, and greater practicality than either gasoline or fuel cells have.
The first time Soccer Mom has a horrible accident at a fueling station and ten thousand square feet of the surrounding area suddenly becomes a fireball, visions of the Hindenburg will make hydrogen a tough sell. Batteries have no such problem-- a nanotitanate battery, even when crushed, pierced by bullets, baked in an oven at hundreds of degrees or grossly overcharged, will not explode or catch fire.
Between the small fuel tanks hydrogen will require and its inherently short range between fuelings, hydrogen will need even more fueling stations than we presently have for gasoline-- where are you going to put such stations? Will anyone want such potential sources of catastrophe in their neighborhood?
Ordinary cars today can be converted to battery electric power-- that is what lots of people are doing today, quietly, without fanfare... they can be charged at home, cheaply, easily... they require little maintenance. This is not true of hydrogen fuel cells.
EVs are already in the process of replacing gasoline cars. It's happening. Even the most optimistic backers of fuel cells say it will be decades before they'll be ready for mass production. By that time, EVs will have taken over, and there will be no need for them... and that's only if they really can overcome all of the very daunting problems with hydrogen. It's never gonna happen.
I completely agree with billdale (and others). Hydrogen cars like this are dangerous, have a short range, and hydrogen is far too energy-intensive to be practical. I disagree about an increase if the number of stations needed, though. Honda claims the Clarity will get 280 miles on a charge. That's more than enough for most drivers if every gas station supplied hydrogen. On the other hand, if a practical, small, cheap, low-energy, high-output hydrogen generator becomes available (which is not likely to happen anytime soon), than many of these problems disappear. Any source of clean water can serve as a filling point, eliminating servicing location problems and possibly range issues. It would also solve the problem of producing the gas, and eliminate the need to store small bombs in the trunk. Then again, parts of the country are suffering from water shortages, and using it to power your car won't help that problem. All in all, electric cars are way too go, powered by nuclear plants (at least in the short term). As for the problem of nuclear waste, send it to the moon. Can't hurt anybody there.
top gear reviewed this car and loved it. their main criticisms of plug in electric cars are that they take, literally hours upon hours to charge, and that they have basically crippled performance.
hydrogen is around the same price as gasoline, and as soon as they are all over the place this car can be used just the same as your regular car. refueling takes no longer than would your regular gasoline engine. I would rather see this car become the standard, over battery electric cars.
billdale has made good points for EV's.
HOWEVER- He miss read this article. The current FCX has a 280 mile range, equivalent to my gasoline powered Honda CRV. So the argument of more frequent fuel stops is erroneous. Also the FCX does not use Liquefied Hydrogen, it uses Compressed Hydrogen! So his argument about "Hydrogen requires a combination of thousands of pounds of pressure at hundreds of degrees below zero" is also incorrect. The benefit of a hydrogen fuel-cell EV over a battery EV is weight. 100kW of batteries weighs more than the combined weight of the fuel-cell and hydrogen tank. Also refilling the hydrogen tank will be much faster than recharging a 100kW battery pack. I look forward to when I can produce hydrogen from my roof-top PV array and refuel my car with water. I believe that both battery and fuel-cell vehicles will share the road. Much like today with gasoline and diesel vehicles both being popular. The right technology for the it's proper use.
It always amazes me how our society allows money to govern our development of new technologies.
The only reason why there is such a great push towards hydrogen technologies is simple, consumers will still be slaves to today's current fuel distribution systems, the only difference will be that instead of shelling out hard earned cash for Gasoline, it will be Hydrogen.
But is this the most efficient and practical approach? Of course not, it just happens to be the one that puts the most money back into the hands of governments and corporate giants.
Water is the most stable, and universally available storage method for energy. Think about it, they hydrogen they will sell you will be derived from Water, which will be broken down by some method of Electrolysis, which in turn will be driven by power that is likely obtained from a polluting coal fired power plant. That hydrogen will then need to be compressed into liquid state, stored, and shipped to distribution centers where consumers will fill up. The Fuel cell in your vehicle will then react with the hydrogen to produce electrons and water. This entire process is completely ludicrous!
When you think about all the energy that goes into producing that Hydrogen, you got to ask yourself... Why not cut out the middle man all together? Why hold on to all that inefficient transport of energy from one state into another and distribution. Why not just fill your vehicles tank with water, and crack the hydrogen on demand and burn it as you need it. It's safe, readily available, and you can drink the stuff if you wanted to!
Last time i checked i have never seen a tank of water explode on impact during an accident, sure you might get a bit wet in an accident, but it's certainly not dangerous now is it? Taking the energy out of water on demand is the most efficient means of powering a vehicle, and it certainly makes the most sense to anyone with half a brain.
But then we come back to the same question, why are they pushing Hydrogen technologies so hard?... Oh yes.. i remember now.. $$..
Until we as a people can learn to get our priorities straight, we will continue to develop our science and technology at a snails pace that is governed by those with the fattest wallets, and not by our limitation to learn and develop as human beings.
This honestly makes me sick to my stomach. Go do some homework and look up Stanley Myers, and the water powered vehicle and tell me if you do not feel the same.
Wow, this new model of Honda looks so cool. Mike from http://learnhowtojumphigher.net guide.
I'm not sure I quite understand the relevance of this fuel cell thing. Does it really save money and is it really beneficial for the environment? And why can't we make hydrogen driven cars sooner? This is something that we have thought about for decades, yet it is still decades away? Something ain't right...
WE NEED TO LOOK A LITTLE HARDER AT THIS PROBLEM HYDROGEN,OR IS IT A SOLUTION OR PART OF ONE I ASK YOU TO BEAR WITH ME A MUNITE IS IT NOT TRUE THAT EACH AND EVERY TOWN OF ADIQUITE SIZE HAS A WELDING SUPPLY CYLINDER STORE COMPLETE WITH HYDROGEN, OXYGEN, PROPANE ETC. ALL THAT YOU WOULD NEED TO EXPAND UPON. AND DOES NOT EVERY HOUSE HAVE THE HYDRO RUNNING TO IT CAN WE NOT BRING IN EXISTING TECHNOLOGY IN SEVERAL WAYS AT THE SAME TIME. WE CAN BOTH GREEN WASH OUR EXISTING TECH BRING IN NEW WITH AN EDGE IN INCENTIVES TO CLEAN TECH
BUT THE REAL WINNERS ARE OUR GRAND KIDS OUR LEGACY COULD BE CLEANING UP OUR PLANET WITH ZERO EMISIONS AMANDORY NEW LAW I CALL IT JOHN HENRYS LAW IT WILL PROMOTE GOOD HEALTH AND HELP ERASE CANCER BECAUSE THE CAUSES WILL BE
REMOVED FROM THE PLANET. DONT LET THEM BRAINWASH YOU INTO BELIEVING THIS IS ALL FAR IN THE FUTURE ITS NOT ITS NOW IF WE WANT IT . DEMAND A CLEANER TECHNOLOGY NOW THIS CAR MAY NOT BE THE SOLOUTION BUT ITS A SMALL START IN THE RIGHT DIRECTION. WHAT DO YOU THINK?THE GREEN SHADETREE MECHANIC.
can we pull hydrogen from the atosmephere in stead of storing it. wouldn't that be better
smartguysml and several other folks have made very pertinent comments. Although, any technology (EV,solar, geothermal...) which is green and releases less pollution and terrorists needs to be embraced. But there are Several things in favor of this Hydrogen/Fuel Cell Honda vehicle. 280 miles on a single fill, Faster refill than any EV, Several other countries are testing this technology in their public transport buses and taxis, Nothing but water comes out of tailpipe. Also all this talk of Hydrogen cylinder being dangerous is incorrect, nowadays they make hydrogen cylinders which will puncture and release gas safely on impact, please research before commenting. Also, anyone who has purchased a propane gas cylinder from any gas station/grocery store can understand why it would not be too expensive once this thing gets going. Once fuel cells become cheaper, EV will be thing of the past and Flex-Fuel will sound like an financial institution's executive, selling "derivatives of derivatives".
Oh great, the huge tank of compressed hydrogen is right in front of the plastic bumper rated for a 5 mph impact. Will this car also come with combustable/explosive hazard signs?
As someone who regularly uses my car for transport, I think it's really important that climate-friendly cars come into use as soon as possible.
If global warming is true, then we don't have long to undo the mess we've made, and hydrogen cars will do a lot to help.
John from sportsbettingreview.co.uk - a concerned citizen.
Bring on the green revolution!