Published on October 22nd, 2007 | by Stephanie Evans0
Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles
The President’s Hydrogen Fuel Initiative combined with congress’ Advanced Energy Initiative of 2006 have garnered over a billion dollars in research monies for the development of hydrogen fuel cells. The AEI even goes so far to state that vehicles powered by these zero polluting fuel cells need to be made practical and cost effective by the year 2020.
Automobile manufacturers don’t seem to be waiting that long. Most major manufacturers are already testing some sort of fuel cell vehicle for the mass market. In 2006, Mazda released a dual fuel RX-8 to the public, making them the first manufacturer to offer a hydrogen vehicle to customers. Toyota also began leasing buses equipped with hydrogen fuel cells in 2006. BMW and Honda both plan to release a fuel cell vehicle in 2008. DaimlerChrysler has made strides in hydrogen fuel cell technology by introducing three buses that provide the city of Reykjavík, Iceland with their public transportation.
Cars, trucks, buses, and other vehicles that are powered by hydrogen fuel cells receive energy from the fusion of hydrogen atoms with oxygen atoms. Like any other energy source, there is a by product. Unlike combustion engines, there is no harmful exhaust associated with this technology—the only emissions from a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle are heat and water.