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Slideshow: GM, Honda Team Up on Fuel Cell Challenges

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William K.
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Another big fuel cell concern.
William K.   7/11/2013 11:09:02 PM
I also like the concept of a fuel cell powered car, een more if it would run on something like natural gas or propanbe, or even diesel fuel vapor. But that is nit the problem that I see. In this corner of Michigan they steel caatalytic converters for just a very few dollars worth of those nobel metals. The theft of fuel cells for a hundred dollars worth of platinum would be an epidemic, probably even start an armed robbery ripoff string. How to maintain posession of your fuel cell?

Probably the solution is to find another catalyst that is both cheap and plentiful, and I would prefer that it be a bit toxic so as to make things harder for those who steal them. So we need for a bunch of chemists to start thinking and come up with the reactions and the needed catalyst. Because it does not seem reasonable that a fuel cell could function without that catalyst.

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Re: Ultra pure water for fuel cells
EBarnacle   7/11/2013 11:28:55 PM
Thank you.  As you say, the corporations tend to be opaque to those on the outside.  I appreciate the suggestions, though.

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Fuel Cell Catalysts
Burghermeister   7/12/2013 4:35:32 AM
This is an obvious sign that GM and Honda wish to share the costs to develop fuel cells. This kind of activity is not new, has been done in past with battery technology developmenet....and makes sense providing IP boundaries are observed. 

Fuel cells represent a really clean, reliable, 24/7 generation technology until/if Nuclear Fusion power generation is ever sustainable. Fuel cells have been around since the 1800s when they were created in a lab, and are now a subject of much commercialization activity. They are being applied to both  stationary and mobile power generation. Data Centers are among some of the early adopters, due to their power reliability/cost requirements coupled with grid margin instability and weather events. Verizon recently announced their intention to increase Fuel Cell installations after hurricane Sandy did not take down a local Verizon operation there, which had FC power generation in place.

New/novel Fuel cell catalyst materials are constantly being pursued for cost reductions as platinum is a very rare and costly material.  Check out FuelCellToday.com for some of the latest developments. 

This is a new hopeful from the national labs:


There are several other interesting developments, including specific iron oxide coatings for direct photocatalysis based Hydrogen generation.  This may be a highly significant finding to enable cost effective Hydrogen production, which Fuel cells react with air to generate electricity.  Then you are pretty much in the EV domain, with obligatory controls and motors....and some buffer energy storage for surge requirements.


Charles Murray
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Re: Fuel Cell Catalysts
Charles Murray   7/12/2013 6:32:24 PM
Good points, Burghermeister. As I mentioned in a sperate comment, the U.S. Advanced Battery Consortium (USABC) did the same with electric vehicle battery development back in 1990.

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Fuel Cell Efficiency
jlinstrom   1/20/2014 1:55:37 PM
Obtaining hydrogen as a fuel is a hassle I can only imagine (rural Montana) but I had to go off-topic to find out HOW energy efficient hydrgen is. Why is this not menationed in all the new research/product development stories? 
Batteries are heavy/costly/short-lived/short-legged - yet they continue to get trumpets... Hydraulic energy recapture - ditto.

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