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Thread: An interesting read on electric vehicles and the experience in regional areas

  1. #11
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    Hydrogen is difficult and expensive to store, not only for the reasons given above, but because it will leak through almost any material including steel of a useful thickness, with the problem exacerbated by pressure. Since hydrogen is flammable over a very wide range of proportions with air, this leakage is a severe safety hazard.

    About 99% of hydrogen produced today is via a not particularly energy efficient process from natural gas. It can be produced by electrolysis from water with the only byproduct being oxygen, but this process is energy inefficient and the hydrogen produced is much more expensive that from natural gas. From renewable electricity sources to the wheels of an electric car is probably about twice the energy efficiency of going from the same renewables to the wheels of a hydrogen car.

    These problems can be surmounted when the problem cannot be solved using batteries, as with long distance haulage, but there is zero evidence that hydrogen will ever become competitive with batteries for private cars.
    John

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  2. #12
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    If hydrogen is going to be sourced from water, what will be the ramifications to the environment?
    Water is a finite resource, in short supply in many areas of this country.
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  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by V8Ian View Post
    If hydrogen is going to be sourced from water, what will be the ramifications to the environment?
    Water is a finite resource, in short supply in many areas of this country.
    When used (or 'burnt') it becomes............................ water.

    DL

  4. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by 350RRC View Post
    When used (or 'burnt') it becomes............................ water.

    DL
    That alone could cause massive environmental change, in dry areas.
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  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by V8Ian View Post
    That alone could cause massive environmental change, in dry areas.
    Not really. The earth re-distributes water to where it goes very efficiently.

    Just remember that every glass of water contains at least one H2O molecule that was in the mug of whatever Socrates drank.

    DL

  6. #16
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    My point is that the environments of Babinda and Birdsville have occurred and adapted to the the amount of water in each environment.
    The amount of traffic in Birdsville, for the races alone, would have to deposit more water, from hydrogen exhaust, than the annual rainfall. That would have a dramatic, possibly catastrophic, effects on the ecosystem.
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  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by V8Ian View Post
    My point is that the environments of Babinda and Birdsville have occurred and adapted to the the amount of water in each environment.
    The amount of traffic in Birdsville, for the races alone, would have to deposit more water, from hydrogen exhaust, than the annual rainfall. That would have a dramatic, possibly catastrophic, effects on the ecosystem.
    You're up late for an old fella!
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  8. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Saitch View Post
    You're up late for an old fella!
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  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by 350RRC View Post
    When used (or 'burnt') it becomes............................ water.

    DL
    Only if burnt in pure oxygen. When burnt in air as in fuel cells or even an internal combustion engine, water will be formed but it also burns the nitrogen, and can release various oxides of nitrogen into the air. Oxides of nitrogen are dangerous particles that can help create acid rain and take part in other destructive cycles. However the amount of these oxides is small compared to burning fossil fuels.

    So while burning Hydrogen in air is relatively clean, it is not totally clean and just getting water out the tail pipe is a bit of a myth.
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  10. #20
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    The concerns about either water use or the effects of the water produced by use of hydrogen are simply ridiculous.

    The amount of water required for direct conversion of hydrogen for realistic quantities of hydrogen is trivial compared to the amount of water required for just about any other use - since the hydrogen content of water is 1/8 of the mass of the water, a tank of hydrogen containing 10kg of hydrogen, probably typical for a car, represents only 80l of water, far less than the average per capita use by Australians.

    The vision of climatic devastation by a hyrogen economy is equally ridiculous when you consider that the energy content to 1kg of hydrogen requires 3kg of petrol. Since the fuel cell is around three times as efficient as a petrol engine, the practical equivalent is about 9kg of petrol. Which contains about 1/7 of its mass in hydrogen. So existing internal combustion engines are producing more water vapour in their exhaust than would be produced from the same vehicles using hydrogen via fuel cells!

    All that is equired to ridicule these suggestions is to simply do a few calculations.

    However, similar calculations lead to the conclusion "Hydrogen has been called one of the least efficient and most expensive possible replacements for gasoline (petrol) in terms of reducing greenhouse gases; other technologies may be less expensive and more quickly implemented."
    John

    JDNSW
    1986 110 County 3.9 diesel
    1970 2a 109 2.25 petrol

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