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Future Hydrogen Cars

Future hydrogen cars are not way off in some outlandish date, but rather they are right around the corner. Just look in the rear view mirror and the future of hydrogen cars is closer than you think.

Future Hydrogen Cars




Since the year 2000, there have been approximately 100 hydrogen car prototypes rolled out before the public yet hardly a soul knows about them.

The first hydrogen fuel cell was developed in the 1800s and the first official hydrogen fuel cell vehicle was the General Motors Electrovan developed in 1966.

In 2007, both GM and BMW expect to roll out 100 hydrogen cars to select customers. In 2004, Honda offered the first commercial hydrogen car as a lease to a family in Redondo Beach, California. In 2007, Honda leased the FCX hydrogen car to 17-year-old actress Q'orianka Kilcher, her first car. Brad Pitt also arrived in a BMW Hydrogen 7 automobile to the premiere of his new movie Ocean's 13 in Hollywood, California.

Future hydrogen cars however will see vast improvements over the vehicles that are being shown today. For instance, both Ford and GM have come up with plug-in electric hybrid hydrogen fuel cell vehicles and this trend will most likely continue.

Future hydrogen cars will combine technologies with hybrid electric cars or flex fuel vehicles to give consumers more choices and to offer alternatives for infrastructure issues. The biggest problem facing future hydrogen cars right now is not the cars themselves or the technology.

The biggest problem is the building of the supporting hydrogen infrastructure. Building facilities to create hydrogen, transport it and dispense it from a fueling station on every corner as is done with gasoline now, will take billions of dollar in capital investment, which the oil companies are shy to do.

This is why both BMW and Mazda have created dual fuel vehicles that can run off either hydrogen or gasoline with the flip of a switch. Ford has create the Superchief, which is a tri-fuel vehicle that can run off gasoline, hydrogen or E85 (ethanol) with the press of a button.

Future hydrogen cars will have this multi-fuel technology combined with advanced battery technology along with a few other surprises as well. One of the surprises for future hydrogen cars is that they may not run off compressed or liquid hydrogen at all.

Researchers are also working on cars that create hydrogen on demand from water or a hydrogen-rich chemical compound and then run this hydrogen through either a fuel cell or internal combustion engine. Others are using hydrogen peroxide to create a chemical reaction to turn a turbine engine to power the wheels of the vehicle.

Future hydrogen cars are still an emerging industry and only time will tell what finally shakes out to become the standard that we all adopt and accept.


Written by Kevin Lepton