BMW will begin testing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles in the near future. The new generation of hydrogen vehicles are currently under development
This is good news for the regular garage owner?
I believe that we will be able to repair these hydrogen fuel cell vehicles in the after market but the car manufacturers will keep a tight lid on the battery driven EV’s, and we will only get the scraps.
Hydrogen Fuel Cell technology battles it out with battery power
Believe it or not the Hydrogen Fuel cell (HFC) technology is nothing new? The method of converting pure hydrogen and oxygen into water and electricity is a blast from the past, and goes back to the 1930’s (even older than me).
This kind of technology was also effectively used on the Space Shuttle Programme by NASA until it was all taken apart the other year. The older type of fuel cell equipment that produced enough power to propel a vehicle, was very large and would just about fit into a large van, and so something smaller had to be designed.
A smaller type of fuel cell had to be designed and it became clear that Toyota Motor Company were in the lead in the design of this technology. Toyota plan to have a smaller more powerful and efficient fuel cell in use in one of the cars by the end of 2015, (this year).
All the car manufacturers are looking at developing greener vehicle and it now looks likely that BMW the giant German car maker are looking at HFC technology to power their vehicles in the future, in fact it is thought that they come into some sort of research and development agreement with Toyota and hope that the two car giants can come out tops with the HFC engines fitted into their cars.
BMW forge ahead with Hydrogen cell technology with the Hydrogen 7 car
The battle between the different engine concepts is hotting up between the Hydrogen cells and the Lithium-Ion battery driven vehicles. BMW have brought out their Hydrogen 7 production car, with a hundred of them out on test. I understand that they have done this by turning a regular gasoline burning car into a Hydrogen burning car and the results are positive so far, the car retains all the comfort and exclusivity that you would expect from a BMW luxury car.
Audi have also bought into the fuel cell scenario, by purchasing patents of hydrogen fuel cell technology from a company called Ballard Power Systems
One more thing is missing from the stage: hydrogen filling pumps. Once such a network would be deployed, batteries would suddenly become the dirtier and more inefficient option, since using hydrogen only produces water, does not deplete Earth’s lithium reserves and does not pollute the environment in any way. They will also share the patents with the rest of the VW group, showing their intent and interest in the hydrogen fuel cell format for greener cars of the future.
We all know that there is no love lost between supporters of battery-electric cars and hydrogen fuel cell cars, but what is a realistic way to compare the two? One of the big advantages at the moment is that Hydrogen cell vehicles can travel five times longer than the EV battery electric cars on a single tank, and it takes just a few minutes to fill the tank with hydrogen, this can be compared with the 8 hours or so it takes to recharge a battery.
On the down side we do not yet have a good enough network of filling stations, I know that Germany have started to install them and I have heard the some of the big UK supermarkets are considering adding hydrogen to their extensive petrol station outlets, this could also be the case in the USA, especially the California area where they are very aggressive about greener pollutant free cars.
Time will only tell but although I am not an expert, I am very interested in what is happening and it may well be hotting up with the demise of the diesel engine, after they have had bad reports about pollution. In fact the authorities in Paris are going to ban the older diesel cars from entering the city in the near future, this after the experts were preaching how safe diesel cars were, they have now done an about turn and left us all in it?
Hyundai also developing hydrogen cell cars
The Hyundai company have developed the “Tucson Fuel Cell” car which looks just like a typical small SUV, but the difference is that it is’ powered by hydrogen. These vehicles use a Hydrogen fuel cell instead of battery technology. The fuel cell is replenished with hydrogen mixed with oxygen, and the result is a supply of electricity to power the car. Water is the only emission, that is emitted from the car, a great success.
Honda will also bring out their own Hydrogen cell version which is known as the FCX Clarity Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle .
Pellon Tyre and Auto-centre offer car and van servicing and repairs to all makes of vehicles. We are members of Unipart Car Care centres and give a nationwide guarantee for all our work and parts. We also sell Michelin Tyres online from our website www.pellontyres.co.uk by using the tyre selector and choosing your tyre size. We offer courtesy cars to local motorists who need to go to work and leave their car with us for work doing. We are also an official MOT testing station and are members of Motor-codes, who carry out checks for high standard of equipment and workmanship.