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Fuel cell penetration is still difficult
|Hydrogen powered vehicle emission may be higher than the fuel vehicle fuel cell to popularize the cost is too high, the clean automobile industry upstart, with all kinds of new energy vehicle technology, a new era of automobile seems to point the day and await for it. In fact, some so-called "zero emission vehicle" dirty "may be more than a conventional automobile".
Hydrogen: more pollution than the vintage car
Where is the automotive engineer, where will hear this voice: hydrogen is the fuel of the future.
In the automotive industry, hydrogen powered cars has been speculation for decades, but has been Big word seldom accompany great deed. However, from the perspective of Honda, modern and Toyota automobile company recently published in Losangeles and Tokyo Motor Show statement, from the beginning of the spring 2014, hydrogen powered cars will debut in a major auto show. This seems to indicate a hydrogen powered car was coming.
As a transportation fuel, not gasoline, diesel, kerosene hydrogen, natural gas and other hydrocarbon fuels that all contain carbon, so the combustion does not produce greenhouse gases carbon is the main component, at least in the engine is so.
But, as long as the oxidizer is air instead of pure hydrogen, then hydrogen burning like the burning of fossil fuels, will generate various harmful nitrogen oxides. They are the extent of damage to the air quality even more than carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas.
Also because of this, the transformation of the internal combustion engine, a hydrogen fueled idea is always warm, even if such power transformation than choose other clean energy cheaper.
The German car company BMW has produced several hydrogen powered super car, the results demonstrated that they are not better than before by catalytic exhaust purifier vintage car cleaner.
Fuel cell: the cost to be reduced
Then, the industry has turned its attention to the fuel cell.
Fuel cell without combustion can extract chemical energy from hydrogen, the principle is similar to reverse electrolysis by electrochemical treatment: two kinds of synthesis gas water, and generate current. In this process, the fuel cell to release water vapor and heat. Fuel cells are currently the most simple is the "proton exchange membrane, English abbreviated to" PEM "".
In essence, the fuel cell powered vehicle is a vehicle, equipped with a hydrogen fuel tank, no bulky battery power, and 3 to 4 times higher than the internal combustion engine. It solved two problems: battery powered vehicle mileage charging time limited and.
The latest figures show, a box of hydrogen for fuel cell vehicles traveling 480 kilometers, and full of a box of hydrogen in just 5 minutes. Like battery powered cars, it is classified as a "zero emission vehicle".
Another attraction of the fuel cell is sustained cost reduction. In 2007, the Honda Corporation launched a fuel cell powered vehicle Clarity, costs $3500 per kilowatt. No wonder that produces only 200 prototype. But manufacturers continue to improve technology, now will reduce the cost to $1500 per kilowatt; if mass production, is expected to drop to $50 per kilowatt, be roughly the same with ordinary diesel consumption.
Another bottleneck hindering the development of fuel cell catalysts. Electrolyte in PEM with platinum and palladium as catalyst, expensive. If we can find a cheap substitute, large-scale promotion will undoubtedly contribute to fuel cell. The study is expected in 2020 before the breakthrough.
Zero emissions: rely on renewable energy
However, the above description is not enough to prove, the temptations of the fuel cell power era.
First of all, the hydrogen fuel supply is a problem. At present, there are about 100 American hydrogen filling stations, of which only a dozen public oriented, all the rest to industry, military, government agencies and research institutions, internal use only.
The California government has approved America plan, in the next 10 years to spend $20000000 to build more than 100 hydrogen filling station for the public. In the America, if want to make hydrogen filling station like gasoline station as dense, spend up to 500000000000 dollars.
Another problem is that the extraction process will produce a lot of carbon dioxide and hydrogen. At present mainly by natural gas and water vapor to extract hydrogen, the process itself is not particularly environmental protection. Colorado is a federal agency to produce 1 kg of hydrogen, will produce 11.9 kilograms of carbon dioxide.
If you want to truly realize the "zero emissions", hydrogen obtaining must adopt expensive electrolyte in water treatment, but not cheap means for natural gas steam reforming.
Used to split water into hydrogen and oxygen to the electricity in the production process to ensure that does not produce greenhouse gases. To meet this requirement, the only way is strictly depend on wind energy, solar energy and nuclear energy and other renewable energy. Unfortunately, renewable energy is not popular at present.
Due to the lack of clean electricity, electric cars and hydrogen powered vehicles could eventually become a source of pollution is more serious than gasoline, diesel powered cars. Car manufacturers hope that policy makers can realize this point, do not blindly popularized the so-called "zero emission vehicle".