Aston Martinís Hybrid Hydrogen Rapide S features a twin-turbocharged V12 engine that burns hydrogen or gasoline. It will run in the 24-hour ADAC NŁrburgring race in Germany on May 17. (Source: Aston Martin)
Chuck, Thanks for keeping us up-to-date, along with post earlier this week, on developments with hydrogen in automotive. No question that advanced research is an important aspect of this industry and its future. Hope that continues.
Thanks Charles for keeping us update regarding the new technology . No doubt race track is the best place for the comparision between hydrogen sports car and hybrid cars but no conclusion can be drawn untill and unless the event takes place . However i have to admit that hydrogen cars are enviornmental friendly because they dont emit carbon dioxide .I am eagerly waiting for the conculsion after the race takes place .
I second Al's comment. This is quite cool innovation to check out. It's amazing that hydrogen is powerful enough to fuel a race car. I'll keep an eye on your posts for future hydrogen developments. After so many years of hearing about the potential for hydrogen, it seems really cool to see it actually happening now.
Elizabeth, hydrogen was used to launch the space shuttle. So it has the potential for powerful racing. What would worry me on the race track is a potential for an accident. As you recall the space shuttle had a little fuel leak and that did not end very well.
Chuck, the problems with hydrogen in the past is the same as the problems with hydrogen now. The biggest problem is fueling. I was working on a project and the construction management company had something going with one of the oil majors. One of the projects was a hydrogen fueling station. It was complex and very expensive. It will always be more expensive than a gasoline station. This is just physics.
If you go to Epcot center and go through the GM ehibit you will see hydrogen car mock-ups. These used the hydrogen for fuel cells.
While this is an interesting development as far as the racing using hysdrogen goes, the problem still remains the same. How do you fuel these things. A dual fuel capability is very good, and could perhaps lead to something useful.
You're unquestionably right, Louis. Big automakers do these things as a means of dipping a toe in the water -- seeing what other problems might be lurking out there that they didn't expect. When I started writing about these topics in '88, everybody -- GM, Ford, Chrysler, Toyota, Honda -- was doing battery-electric cars. They tried, they went their period of disillusionment, they came back and tried again. I suspect the same will happen with hydrogen. It will come and go for another couple of decades, depending on how much automakers are able to sink into these projects, knowing they won't get a payback for a long, long time.
I'd be curious NaperLou what the true end cost of a hydrogen station comes to these days. The last time I heard a figure was about $15mill in the late 90's and that was for basically a two pump kiosk type setup. Until that comes down you will never see hydrogen in use much outside of large population centers. Hydrogen is a very goo fuel but far from perfect. Production, fuel cost and storage are the three bigg elephants in the room. One proponent of hydrogen was claiming the energy equivilent of a gallon of gasoline was rather higher. He was comparing $3.50 a gallon gas with hydrogen that was running about $25 per. The majority of it is derived from pertroleum currently so thts not very surprising.
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