[ausev] hydrogen efficiency
Gil at Gil.Dawson.name
Mon Jun 2 15:25:06 GMT 2008
At 3:36 A -0500 6/2/08, Ian Ward wrote:
>I think the spirit of the AUSEV mailing list charter is specific to
>Austin area topics, but otherwise this is (IMO) a fairly valid topic
I absolutely agree with everything in your message -- for cars.
However, fuel cells may have a long-range place in our future -- in
airplanes. Not because of efficiency, but because of weight.
An experimental airplane using solar cells -> hydrolysis -> fuel
cells -> propeller was flown for THIRTY DAYS over Hawaii a couple of
years ago. They chose hydrolysis over batteries to fly at night
becuse the components weighed less.
This airplane was made by AeroVironment, headed by Paul MacCready
(1925-2007), who also made the first human-powered aircrft to pass
certain tests: the Gossamer Condor (one mile figure 8) and Gossamer
Albatross (English Channel). It made the front page of the LA Times
at the time, and was described in detail on their website. Details
have been taken down, because now they're selling this technology to
the military. You can still see some footprints, though, if you
search for "fuel cell" on the current website
"http://www.avinc.com/". They advertise planes that can stay
overhead for nine days. Not a record, but then not jet fuel, either.
Another place fuel cells may survive in the long run is interstate trucking.
But right now, and for cars, you have expressed the arguments well, IMHO.
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