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Hyundai Tucson FCEV ix – Click above for high-res image gallery

Hyundai's fuel-cell vehicle development keeps chugging along as the automaker has just unveiled its latest hydrogen-fueled prototype, the Hyundai Tucson ix FCEV (fuel-cell electric vehicle). The Tucson ix FCEV made its U.S. debut at the 2011 Fuel Cell and Hydrogen Energy conference in Washington, DC and will be on display until February 16.

Destined to hit the streets of Korea for testing later this year and expected to enter limited production in 2012, the Tucscon ix crossover is equipped with a 100-kilowatt fuel cell system and a pair of hydrogen storage tanks. The fuel cell directs power to a 21 kW battery, which sends juice to an electric motor, enabling the Hyundai Tucson ix FCEV to hit a top speed of 100 miles per hour and travel up to 403 miles between fill ups.

Hyundai's Tucson ix FCEV features a fuel cell setup that's 20 percent smaller and a total operating range that's 76 percent greater than the automaker's previous Tucson FCEV prototype. Hyundai aims to launch a mass-produced fuel cell vehicle by 2015 and is "confident" that it can beat Toyota's targeted price of $50,000 for its hydrogen sedan. Check out the complete press release after the break. Hat tip to Roy!


Hyundai FCEV ix
  • Hyundai FCEV ix
  • Hyundai FCEV ix

  • Hyundai FCEV ix
  • Hyundai FCEV ix


[Source: Hyundai]
Show full PR text
Hyundai Unveils Tucson ix Hydrogen Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle at Fuel Cell & Hydrogen Energy 2011

Next-Generation Fuel Cell Vehicle to Deliver Higher Fuel Efficiency and Driving Range


Hyundai Motor America continues its commitment to fuel economy leadership and alternative fuel technology with the introduction of the next-generation hydrogen fuel cell vehicle, the Tucson ix Fuel Cell Electric Vehicle (FCEV). The Tucson ix FCEV makes its U.S. public debut at Fuel Cell & Hydrogen Energy 2011 in Washington, DC and will be on display Feb. 14-16.

"We are excited to share the latest in Hyundai's fuel cell technology," said Dr. Tae Won Lim, Managing Director of Hyundai Motor Company's Fuel Cell Vehicle Group. "After several years of testing, we have identified ways to maximize fuel efficiency without compromising driving experience and powertrain range. We hope to continue this momentum in finding ways to better fuel cell technology and performance."

Hyundai's third-generation FCEV is equipped with its newest 100-kilowatt fuel cell system and two hydrogen storage cylinders (700bar) to deliver a substantial improvement in fuel efficiency. The Tucson ix FCEV can travel more than 400 miles on a single fueling, a 76-percent improvement over its predecessor, and a range equal to a gasoline-powered car. It achieves gasoline equivalent fuel efficiency of more than 70 miles per gallon, a 15-percent improvement over the previous version. It can also start in temperatures as low as minus 25 degrees Celsius.

In addition to improving the fuel economy and range of the powertrain, Hyundai has also created a more compact power source for the Tucson ix FCEV. Overall volume of the fuel cell system was downsized by 20-percent compared to the previous system via modularization of bulky parts in the fuel cell system including fuel cell stack, balance of plant (BOP), inverter and high voltage junction box.

Hyundai will test about 50 new Tucson ix FCEVs throughout 2011 as part of the second phase of the Korean Government Validation Program. Hyundai plans to make a limited supply of the Tucson ix FCEV in 2012 and begin mass production in 2015.

The Tucson ix FCEV shows that Hyundai is taking a multi-faceted approach to improving fuel economy, developing hydrogen fuel cell vehicles along with its patented Blue Drive technology," said John Juriga, Powertrain Director at Hyundai Kia America Technical Center, Inc. "Hyundai is committed to developing a diverse portfolio of fuel efficient options for our customers, as seen with our Sonata Hybrid, turbocharged Gasoline Direct Injection (GDI) engine and the all-new 1.8-liter Nu engine delivering 40 mpg highway for the Elantra. The introduction of the new FCEV is just another example of all the things we're doing to increase the ecological friendliness and the fuel economy of our products."


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 47 Comments
      • 4 Years Ago
      The existence of this vehicle offends my preconceptions.

      I kid.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I think it should be 21KWh and not 21KW. That makes it almost the same size as the Nissan Leaf, and larger than the Chevy Volt. Meaning if they put a plug on it, you could probably use it for day to day driving and not have to worry as much about filling with Hydrogen. Even an SUV should get 50-60 miles on 21KWh.
        • 4 Years Ago
        battery packs are much, much cheaper than PEM fuel cells.

        so it makes sense they would substitute the cheaper battery pack for fuel cell stack capacity.
        • 4 Years Ago
        'Hyundai outfitted the Tucson ix FCEV with the same lithium polymer battery pack used in the 2011 Sonata Hybrid sedan.'

        http://blogs.edmunds.com/greencaradvisor/2011/02/hyundai-debuts-tucson-ix-fuel-cell-electric-vehicle.html

        That is 1.4kwh
        • 4 Years Ago
        The batteries they are sticking in FC cars are around the size of those in hybrids., about 1.4kwh or so, and are there to provide a power boost not to run on the battery alone.
        See here:
        http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/02/tucsonix-20110214.html#more

        The battery is given as 21kw not kwh, and what is more the old model which this replaces is shown as using a 100kw capacitor instead for the power boost.
        • 4 Years Ago
        It seems a bit odd. They shouldn't need such a large battery and there are economic reasons why they would not want it. Then again they might have put it on because it is what they had on hand. Perhaps they simply re-purposed a battery for a pure EV?
        • 4 Years Ago
        "I think it should be 21KWh and not 21KW. That makes it almost the same size as the Nissan Leaf, and larger than the Chevy Volt. "

        In other words very expensive, much more useless than the Volt as a range extender, and entirely unlikely to be actually sold. Where are their EVs? Hyundai's positioning themselves to be massacred when the oil prices surge. Looks like they fell for Toyota's bluff.
      • 4 Years Ago
      I'd like to know more about this "21kW" battery. Is it a low energy capacity buffer that's able to provide 21 extra kW when required? As far as I've heard, fuel cells aren't so great at ramping power up and down very quickly, meaning you really do need a buffer like this. If a fuel cell really is better at steady state operation, that tells me it would make a good candidate for a range extender in a series hybrid. That's how the bus fleet in BC that was used during the olympics operated.
        • 4 Years Ago
        All HFCVs recently have switched to hybrid approach. It is precisely because of the power problem. This allows them to downsize the fuel cell which saves a significant amount of money.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Im minding with performance and results like that, why are they still retarding the commercialisation of this suv ?

      Anyway just postpone any expenditures toward hyunday till they effectivelly sell this suv to consumers.
      • 4 Years Ago
      For God's sake, it's Tucson, not Tuscon. Does anyone there proofread the headers?

      • 4 Years Ago
      Why are they always 5 years away?
        • 4 Years Ago
        Unbelievably there are places outside the US. This car is being trialled in Korea.
        They plan to build around 1,000 a year from 2012 to 2015 when they intend to go to 10,000 a year.
        Unless of course you have references for your baseless speculation?
        • 4 Years Ago
        2015 - 2011 = 4
        2012 - 2011 = 1 (limited test production)

        So we'll see.
        • 4 Years Ago
        No we won't be "seeing" this anywhere except a few spots in Cali as leased trial-runs. These promised 2015 deadlines are all about CARB politics.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Surely a 21kw not 21kwh battery?

      And:
      'The cost of a hydrogen-fueled 80-kWe fuel cell power system projected to high volume production (500,000 units/year) has been estimated to be $51/kW (assuming 2010 technology), as shown in Figure 2.2 Cost reduction was a result of simplified architecture and reduction in stack component costs through ongoing R&D efforts. The cost of the fuel cell stack has been estimated to be $25/kW (assuming 2010 technology).'

      http://hydrogendoedev.nrel.gov/pdfs/progress10/i_introduction.pdf

      This is a DOE projection, and the critical words here is that it is not based on any new advance in technology, but simply on going to mass production with existing technology.
      That means that instead of a guess based on dubious assumptions, this is a normal cost and works accounting exercise, the sort of thing that any CEO might give his cost department and not expect them to be too far out.

      And:
      'Electrolysis: Giner Electrochemical Systems reduced hydrogen embrittlement in titanium/carbon cell-separators, demonstrated enhanced dimensionally stable membrane (DSMTM) performance, and projected a decrease in overall capital cost of their electrolyzer stack from >$2,500/kW in 2001 to $463/kW in 2010. In addition, NREL completed an independent review of wind electrolysis, estimating the levelized cost range for state-of-the-art electrolysis to be $4.90–$5.70 per gallon gasoline equivalent (gge) of hydrogen for forecourt refueling stations (including compression, storage and dispensing), and $2.70–3.50/gge for central electrolysis operations (at the plant gate, excluding all delivery and dispensing costs).'

      Put that together with the consumption figures given for the Hyundai with a gallon of petrol around equal to 1kg of hydrogen and clearly you have the makings of a viable transport system.

      As for hydrogen delivery, the same pipes which take natural gas gas have an admixture of up to 12% hydrogen, to be separated at the garage, as they are going to do in Hawaii:
      http://www.greencarcongress.com/2010/05/tgc-20100511.html#more
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well, 21 Kw would be totally inadequate for battery power, considering that the car would have to run on batteries for several minutes until the fuel cell came online. More likely to be 21 Kwh, which probably means a plug-in hybrid design, able to do most local driving without using expensive H2 fuel, and recharge at home.

        The 400 mile range is impressive. With just a hundred more miles of range, it could make it from the "hydrogen island" of LA to the "hydrogen island" of San Jose!
        • 4 Years Ago
        Joe, I don't know if it is by mass or volume. The link I gave is about all I can find.
        You are under a misapprehension though, the plan is not to deliver it to a home garage, but to a filling station - perhaps an Anglicism caused confusion!:
        'TGC produces hydrogen along with synthetic natural gas and delivers it in its utility gas stream, with more than 5% hydrogen content today; it has the capability of producing more H2 through its renewable biogas initiative. TGC plans to tap into its 1,000-mile utility pipeline system at key locations to separate the hydrogen from the stream through Pressure Swing Adsorption (PSA) technology for use by local fueling stations for fuel cell vehicles.

        The cost of deploying a PSA system and associated refueling pump at a fueling stations will be on the order of $300,000 to $500,000, said Jeff Kissel, president and CEO of TGC during a briefing on the announcement—about one-quarter of the cost of currently installing a more conventional hydrogen fueling station in the US.'

        Also of interest is that progress is being made on losses due to compression:
        'The Netherlands-based HyET BV (Hydrogen Efficiency Technologies), has achieved a milestone in electrochemical hydrogen compression, reaching for the first time a single-stage pressure increase of more than 400 bar.

        Building on this promising result, the Netherlands-based company now plans to develop hydrogen purifiers and compressors for several automotive and industrial applications. HyETs hydrogen compressor contains no moving parts, can be produced at low cost, in high volume and is three times more efficient than existing mechanical compressors.'

        http://www.greencarcongress.com/2010/05/tgc-20100511.html#more

        A final thought is that apart from the greater storage offered by upping the pressure in the tanks, the Hyundai gets more miles per kilogram of hydrogen from the equivalent of 63mpg to 72mpg.
        This represents a 14% improvement or so - not to be sneezed at when one of the main criticisms of hydrogen use was it's supposed inefficiency relative to batteries:
        http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/02/tucsonix-20110214.html#more

        It also seems to be around 2.3 times as efficient as the petrol version at 31mpg or so.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Hi Mark,
        I am not so much critical of wind as I am of it's missapplication.
        I am always keen to see how a resource can be made useful, but they have a performance envelope which ideologues seek to abuse.
        As an aside, what I have the biggest reservations about is putting wind turbines on towers, which are massy and have a maximum practical height of around 100 metres, when the good wind starts at around 800 metres on land and 300 metres at sea.
        I am much keener on kites etc which can get higher and are 95% lighter.
        However, that is nothing to do with our present energy plans, which should confine themselves to what we can engineer now or in the very near term and in ways which are clearly understood.

        Using wind to produce hydrogen undoubtedly increases the envelope for wind.
        Perhaps the main way it will do that is by making it easier to run the grid with a higher proportion of wind.
        The issue is that in a blow what do you do with our base load resources like hydro and nuclear? Typically the wind will actually go to waste. This would at least theoretically mean that you could use it to produce hydrogen instead.
        The Achilles' heel of this rosy prospect is that the equipment needed to electrolyse water to hydrogen costs money.
        If you are only using it when you happen to have a surplus of wind you ruin the economics.
        Contrast that with a nuclear plant, where in a dedicated plant you could use the electrolysis equipment night and day.
        However for nuclear it is less economic to produce energy to cover peak demand on a seasonal basis.
        We are getting to the point with battery technology, molten salt or whatever that diurnal variation can be much reduced, but seasonal is a different ball game.

        One can't escape the feeling that the reason the DOE report talks of wind rather than nuclear as a source is because wind is the fashionable resource.
        I would be prepared to bet that the costings would show that pure nuclear hydrogen instead of pure wind would be cheaper.

        So am I arguing that wind is no good for hydrogen production? By no means. Like most renewable resources you just have to use it where appropriate and not try to use it where it is not viable.

        So for instance in Texas where wind is low in the summer when electricity demand is highest it is difficult to make a case for producing hydrogen from wind.
        However in the north where both the wind and demand for electricity peak in winter the case is very different and the case for using wind to produce hydrogen on a hydro or nuclear baseload is much stronger.
        Unfortunately though there is a second peak in the summer even in the north in the US for air conditioning, so that it is a matter of close and precise calculation.

        I have omitted a very large factor, as obviously the exact calculation depends on the cost of the electrolysis equipment.
        If it were free then all surplus power from wind could be used.
        How much can be used will depend on the actual cost.
        What will help a lot is storing energy in batteries for a few hours, meaning that you can use a lower amount of equipment for longer.
        That in turn depends on the relative cost of batteries though.

        If I am not very clear, I hope that I have at least highlighted some of the considerations in the production of hydrogen from wind and other resources.

        One theoretical answer just will not cover it - we pretty much have to suck it and see as the technology develops.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Curious about the possibility of getting h2 from existing residential natural gas lines. What is the average CFM (Cubic feet per minute) rate that flows to homes? Is that 12% by volume or by mass?

        Either way.... that might be an extremely slow way to get H2. You would have to take all day to compress and store the H2 in someones garage so that significant quantities and pressure will accumulate when a fill up is needed.
        • 4 Years Ago
        David, I am wondering what you think of using wind power to make hydrogen. On one hand, you are critical of wind because of its intermittent nature, which then must be backed up with fossil fuel generation. And you point out that hydrogen can be generated by using excess electrical capacity. So wouldn't the two go together? Make hydrogen from wind turbines when the wind is blowing, store it, and use it when the wind isn't blowing.

        Is it economics that are the problem?
        • 4 Years Ago
        I like the wind electrolysis approach. It gives windmills something to do when the normal demand for electricity isn't that large and the choice is to:
        1. crash the grid by generating too much energy
        2. pay people to use energy so that you don't crash the grid
        3. stop windmills

        Better still it lets you build more wind power because you know that you will be able to use the excess energy and make a profit. I foresee Texas being a large hydrogen producer and consumer.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Chr4is M
        Please see my other posts in this thread where I give references to the actual battery used. It is the same as the Hyundai Sonata hybrid and is 1.4kwh and 21kw.
        Since the previous model on which this builds had a 5 second start up time it seems very unlikely that this has a several minute warm up period:
        'Hyundai was very proud of the fuel cell's 5-second start-up time, which they claim is better than most competitors.'
        http://green.autoblog.com/2008/10/30/first-drive-daimler-f-cell-hyundai-fcev-toyota-fchv-and-gm-hy/
      • 4 Years Ago
      Great looking FCV, Hyundai!

      It looks like Obama is willing to give the rest of the world a leg up regarding FCV introductions; but maybe other nations are just better at planning for their futures...

      Look how far the Koreans have come in the past couple decades - their auto and electronics industries are more than competitive with the world's best: the Germans and the Japanese.
        • 4 Years Ago
        We are putting all of our eggs into one industrial policy basket- the basket that we think is most efficient. It is quite a gamble and I don't know how Obama/Chu think auto makers will compete in the green SUV/Minivan/Truck/Van segments. Maybe they think that in the future nobody will need to drive a truck with three passangers and 2,000 lbs of cargo more than ten miles...

        PS- saw a MBZ fuel cell car on the street outside my house.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "The current administration is not really fundamentally opposed to HFCVs. But with the economy like this... they cannot afford to spend billions on a H2 infrastructure."

        The DoE budget for FC and hydrogen research is only being cut by about $70 million dollars. That's chump change.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Korea is not the U.S.

        It is far easier and cheaper to deploy a H2 infrastructure there than an infrastructure in our vast expanse.

        The current administration is not really fundamentally opposed to HFCVs. But with the economy like this... they cannot afford to spend billions on a H2 infrastructure.

        Not that a charging infrastructure or BEV incentives are free.... just that you get more bang for your tax buck.

        2 Million dollars can buy one full-sized h2 station... or 400 Level 2 public chargers.
        Since 90% of charging is done at home, 400 public chargers service more people (and a much wider land area) than a single h2 station.
        Plus, chargers don't have a significant continuing operating/maintenance cost like fueling stations do.

        -----------------------

        Augustus,

        Minivans and trucks will come.. EVs must start somewhere.

        Obama/Chu are not only thinking about BEVs... in the segments where BEVs cannot compete, they are pushing for CNG vehicles and working on biofuels that generate themselves from waste stock.

        Hydrogen is still on the table too. Just not one of the more cost effective solutions.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Joe,
        Comparing the energy use of this fuel cell car to the Leaf and assuming that you obtain the hydrogen by electrolysis then I come up with the following:
        The Leaf is rated at 100 miles for ~24kwh, or ~250watts/mile.
        I would be happier using around 300watts/mile to allow for heating, air conditioning and so on.
        This vehicle gets around 72 miles/kg hydrogen, or around 500watts/mile.
        If we allow a 70% conversion efficiency, then it does around 700watts/mile, or about 2.4 times worse than the battery car.
        For that reason, after fuel cell costs are reduced I would favour plug in hybrid fc cars.
        If you do 12,000 miles/year and 2/3rds of those are within range of your battery, then average consumption is around 5300kwh, or 440wh/mile, and you have a lighter longer range car than the pure battery one.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Joe:
        Reference for hydrogen conversion and compression efficiencies:
        http://www.nrel.gov/hydrogen/pdfs/36734.pdf

        Check out page 8, Norsk Hydro which includes compression up to 6000psi.
        This rather old (2004) report seems to think that 78% is doable, but I am happier using around 70%.
        The conclusions I reached will not materially differ for efficiencies anywhere between 60-80% anyway.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Thanks David for the info.

        Although http://www.nrel.gov/hydrogen/pdfs/36734.pdf presents a nifty proposal... I don't hold it too realistic. Not only for the reasons you stated (coal and NG electric plant efficiency)... but also, their justification (appendix B) for using HHV (higher heating value) of hydrogen production. They used HHV instead of LHV only because it makes their efficiency numbers higher. That is dishonest at best. Technically, they are right, even if the electrolyzer was 100% efficient, the LHV would only give you 84% efficiency. However, that is the nature of hydrogen production for most applications. You cannot use that extra energy in vehicle applications... so you cannot count it.

        ----------------------------

        Rolling out hydrogen infrastructure to a set of limited locations may SEEM like a fix for the high costs... but then FCVs lose their main advantage over BEVs. Their autonomy over long distances. Yes, the their operating radius is larger. But why would a car buyer purchase a vehicle that only works in limited locations? Buying a FCVs in San Diego would mean having to live in that city (or in one of a select few) for the foreseable future. No resell value either until the infrastructure is whole.

        With BEVs, the operating radius is smaller... but the home charging infrastructure is already there. in every town, city, or village.

        ----------------------------------

        I agree (and always have) that HFCVs are well suited for when significant range is a necessity. However, even with the slightly less overall efficiency, and the CO2 emissions from the tailpipe... CNGVs are MUCH cheaper to build, operate, and to provide infrastructure for.

        HFCVs might be nice to have in the future... but it CNGVs gets us off foreign oil too. And the U.S. gov't will choose the cheaper option.

        Like the President has said on the 14th of Feb 2011.... The budget will require the govt to cut the things we think it would be nice to have, but can do without.... and keep funding (and increase) funding that can give us the most bang for our buck to "win the future".

        Passenger vehicles are still the largest single segment of oil consumption. The low hanging fruit. And Battery powered vehicles represent the quickest, most cost effective way to reduce oil consumption in that segment.

        For heavy duty applications... Natural Gas vehicles represent the quickest, most cost effective way to reduce oil consumption in that segment. It may not be the best solution. Not the cleanest, nor most efficient.. but cheapest. And we can do it now. Without waiting for cost reductions, or a new infrastructure.

        ---------------------

        Yes, let us keep researching ways to produce, transport, and use hydrogen. I do like the swing adsorption method. But anyway you propose it... the hydrogen infrastructure will cost more to implement than expanding our Natural Gas infrastructure into more vehicles. Maybe the UK is different... but the U.S. cannot afford to buy into the hydrogen fantasy this decade, maybe next.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Well, Toyota plans to re-introduce the RAV4-EV, Tesla announced plans for a future SUV model, Ford announced EV versions of the Transit Connect and C-Max models, and of course Smith Electric and Modec are making electric trucks of various sizes up to 2 ton capacity.

        So, yes, I think there will be competition in the EV truck and EV-SUV markets.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Joe,
        Actually of course the efficiency argument only applies to some far future when little of our electricity comes from coal and gas.
        With around 70% of it coming from them it makes no sense to convert that to electricity then to hydrogen.
        Reforming and compressing them can be done at similar efficiencies to electricity production from those sources, so there is no energy penalty.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Joe,
        Taking the figures from the link I have already given you, and using the higher estimated cost of a hydrogen pump of $500,000, then the cost for 10,000 in the US giving substantial although not universal coverage, then that is about $5bn, or around 5 days of US oil imports.
        If one assumes that for one reason or another pumping the hydrogen with the natural gas is not used, again using the higher estimate for costs given in the same link of around 4 times as much per pump, that is $20bn, or 20 days of US oil imports.
        This would not of course provide enough pumps to run the whole of the transport system on hydrogen, but at or before that stage private enterprise would take over, as the main reason to swap is if running cars on hydrogen is cheaper than on oil, and so by definition there is a net saving anyway.
        Well before that stage also there would be heavy pressure on costs, as the figures given are at the present low volume and not optimised.

        Only the US seems to make such a meal of infrastructure changes, with emphasis placed on the vast distances and so on.
        Most people and most journeys in the US are in relatively high density areas, comparable to Europe. Montana, although very beautiful, is not that relevant.
        Throughout most of Europe, not to mention Pakistan, you can undertake journeys relatively easily on either LPG or NG, and sticking a hydrogen pump in enough stations to get around is not an insurmountable challenge, although not one of course that the car companies unassisted can undertake.
        Presumably the US can eventually match Pakistan in rolling out alternative infrastructure, although you would never guess it sometimes.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Hi Joe,
      Since I do not have the honour of being a US citizen I am a bit less concerned than yourself about what may or may not be the actions of the Government there, which in any case seem to have it in common with that of the UK that if there is a clearly advisable course of action they will at any cost avoid it.

      I agree that it is all too common to find very partial and biased argument in even the most august publications, and in all such discussion I have to bear very firmly in mind that I am not an engineer, so the degree of deconstruction of the arguments given are necessarily limited.
      However, taking the arguments given there with a very large pinch of salt and looking with a jaundiced eye it appears that some practicality is coming into view.
      Taking current costs of hydrogen and ignoring all their projections, then around $8kg given the fuel economy of the Hyundai make it a viable if no cheaper than at present choice, but natural gas prices for reformation seem likelier to remain relatively low than oil.

      I really cannot agree with you about the difficulty you see in building infrastructure.
      As noted above the cost is modest using natural gas pipes to bring hydrogen, and this is a proven technology at the present 5% of NG rate as they do it already in Hawaii, it just needs upping to 12%.
      $5bn for 10,000 pumps is really chicken feed, and since there are around 200,000 stations in the US would give you good although less than perfect coverage.
      For that you can transition an important portion of the vehicle fleet on to a power source which can, even if expensively, be run on a whole raft of different resources which are indigenous not imported.
      Since to power natural gas vehicles you are going to have to run a pipeline into the garage anyway, to provide for fuel cell vehicles also you are really talking about the extra expense of adding the hydrogen and the pump.

      The reason that I favour them over natural gas vehicles is that they are much more easily combined into a plug-in hybrid, which lifts the fuel economy into a whole different class, whilst at the same time overcoming the limitations of battery vehicles.
      To get more range on a BEV you need bigger batteries, and even on fast charge the recharge keeps going up with battery pack size, and also much fast charging wears out the battery.
      In addition a plug-in fuel cell hybrid automatically covers those who can't charge at home.
      The addition of a fuel cell gives you a lighter and much more flexible vehicle than trying to do it all with monster batteries.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Unveiled in Washington, DC so they can use their newest test vehicle to get some of that sweet taxpayer money.

      If this was a real vehicle they actually planned on producing they would have taken the wraps off it off at one of the major auto shows this time of year such as Detroit, Chicago or Geneva, or New York.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Hi Joe,
        Since I do not have the honour of being a US citizen I am a bit less concerned than yourself about what may or may not be the actions of the Government there, which in any case seem to have it in common with that of the UK that if there is a clearly advisable course of action they will at any cost avoid it.

        I agree that it is all too common to find very partial and biased argument in even the most august publications, and in all such discussion I have to bear very firmly in mind that I am not an engineer, so the degree of deconstruction of the arguments given are necessarily limited.
        However, taking the arguments given there with a very large pinch of salt and looking with a jaundiced eye it appears that some practicality is coming into view.
        Taking current costs of hydrogen and ignoring all their projections, then around $8kg given the fuel economy of the Hyundai make it a viable if no cheaper than at present choice, but natural gas prices for reformation seem likelier to remain relatively low than oil.

        I really cannot agree with you about the difficulty you see in building infrastructure.
        As noted above the cost is modest using natural gas pipes to bring hydrogen, and this is a proven technology at the present 5% of NG rate as they do it already in Hawaii, it just needs upping to 12%.
        $5bn for 10,000 pumps is really chicken feed, and since there are around 200,000 stations in the US would give you good although less than perfect coverage.
        For that you can transition an important portion of the vehicle fleet on to a power source which can, even if expensively, be run on a whole raft of different resources which are indigenous not imported.
        Since to power natural gas vehicles you are going to have to run a pipeline into the garage anyway, to provide for fuel cell vehicles also you are really talking about the extra expense of adding the hydrogen and the pump.

        The reason that I favour them over natural gas vehicles is that they are much more easily combined into a plug-in hybrid, which lifts the fuel economy into a whole different class, whilst at the same time overcoming the limitations of battery vehicles.
        To get more range on a BEV you need bigger batteries, and even on fast charge the recharge keeps going up with battery pack size, and also much fast charging wears out the battery.
        In addition a plug-in fuel cell hybrid automatically covers those who can't charge at home.
        The addition of a fuel cell gives you a lighter and much more flexible vehicle than trying to do it all with monster batteries.
        • 4 Years Ago
        'While mass production of the Tucson ix FCEV is not slated to begin until 2015, limited production is anticipated in 2012, Hyundai said. Fifty copies of the vehicle are already being field tested by the South Korean government in Hyundai's home nation, and these tests are expected to continue through the rest of this year.'

        http://blogs.edmunds.com/greencaradvisor/2011/02/hyundai-debuts-tucson-ix-fuel-cell-electric-vehicle.html
        • 4 Years Ago
        'The Tucson ix FCEV made its US public debut at Fuel Cell & Hydrogen Energy 2011 in Washington, DC.'

        http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/02/tucsonix-20110214.html#more
        • 4 Years Ago
        ??? It's a new version of an already existing fuel cell vehicle which has already been 'unveiled'.
        Since they are Korean perhaps they tend to do that in Korea anyway.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Polo,
        since you are writing both with your usual acerbity and complete lack of clarity and references I have no idea what link you think I have both 'spammed' and ignored.
        Unlike yourself I habitually give references and often quotes to substantiate the points I am making, so on occasion the same articles may be referenced more than once in a thread, as some here seem to have difficulty looking at links or understanding what they read.
        Were you able to do so you would understand that it is perfectly clear that the battery is 21kw, not 21kwh.
        However, your posts tend to be more in the line of arm-waving and assertion than any form of reasoned argument, and apparently rely on higher sources than merely the information available in the mundane world, and divine revelation is above reason.
        • 4 Years Ago
        David Martin, no need to spam his post especially since you ignored it.

        If it were actually going into production it would be debut at a major US auto show, where contrary to what you suggest, automakers regularly show new production versions of existing vehicles that have yet to be produced (often referred to as "concept" cars).

        You can't both believe Hyundia's claims of a sub-$50K "FCEV" (with a battery about the size as a Nissan Leaf) to be produced in 4 years and believe they'd rather unveil it at some Hydrogen cocktail party than a major US autoshow.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Polo is one of the worst anti-FCV trolls, David Martin - he simply ignores reality and logic.

        "You can't both believe Hyundia's claims of a sub-$50K "FCEV" (with a battery about the size as a Nissan Leaf) to be produced in 4 years and believe they'd rather unveil it at some Hydrogen cocktail party than a major US autoshow."

        1. Yes, it is quite easy to believe Hyundai's claims. They were signers of the Sept. 2009 MOU, and recently signed another MOU with the Nordic nations regarding their intent to produce FCVs for market.

        http://www.newenergy.is/newenergy/upload/files/pr-hyundai-kia-mou-nordic-countries.pdf

        2. Unveiling a new FCV at a Hydrogen trade show is entirely believable, and is in fact what happened. Hyundai can unveil a vehicle wherever they choose - automakers do not always wait for an autoshow (or specifically one in the US) to introduce a vehicle.



        "If this was a real vehicle they actually planned on producing they would have taken the wraps off it off at one of the major auto shows this time of year such as Detroit, Chicago or Geneva, or New York."

        The Hyundai ix35 FCV made its debut at the 2010 Geneva Autoshow. I'm not saying it's old news, but it certainly is something that people who follow the green car scene are already aware of.

        http://green.autoblog.com/2010/05/25/report-kias-hydrogen-vehicle-plans-include-10-000-on-the-road/
        • 4 Years Ago
        Yep, just another handful of test prototypes, just enough to keep the hype going and the research grant money flowing.
      • 4 Years Ago
      As Joe notes,

      Installing a range extender that is nothing more than an ICE burning compressed natural gas (CNG) costs a fraction of what a PEM fuel cell range extender would (4-figures vs. 6-figures)

      And the infrastructure is much better developed for CNG - and much cheaper to expand than H2 infrastructure.

      Until FCVs can fuel with CNG and reform it on the fly the refueling issues alone will seriously limit adoption of FCVs.
        • 4 Years Ago
        I also think that in the very likely event that there are supply problems and high prices for oil there will be a move to natural gas, especially in the US, including retro-fitting of existing cars.
        It seems unlikely though that many of them will be natural gas/electric hybrids, or at any rate plug-in hybrids, as the fuel costs around 1/4 to 1/2 the price of petrol, and the extra costs of the hybrid simply can't be justified at that price.
        The issues facing NG cars are range, price for the tank in the vehicle and the availability of fuel stations, not NG costs.
        Hybrid NG cars would also retain all the complexity of petrol hybrids and would not reduce maintenance costs the way electric cars, and likely fuel cell/battery hybrids would.

        What might make sense though is the addition of hydrogen to the natural gas, as some argue that it increases performance and it almost certainly cleans up the emissions, and perhaps reduces engine wear, although hard data is difficult to come by:
        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hydrogen_fuel_enhancement
        http://www.netl.doe.gov/technologies/hydrogen_clean_fuels/utilization.html

        One way of adding the hydrogen would be to add it to the natural gas in the pipe to the garage, which as I said would mean that we would have much of the infrastructure needed for fuel cell cars anyway.

        I'd conclude that in the US moving to NG cars would likely slow any move to electric, as well as not be used for hybrids.

        That is all fine, given an infinite supply of NG, but I have my doubts about that, whatever the optimist's say.
        Unfortunately increasing gas prices would also put up the cost of electricity, as they are the swing producer, and so a rise would not immediately encourage electric cars.

        Other countries though are in a very different situation to the US, and have no assured access to cheap gas.
        That is why the push for fuel cells is much more pronounced in Japan, Korea and Germany, as at least potentially hydrogen can be got from a whole variety of resources.
        China is in a similar position, and may use it's coal resources to produce hydrogen as it certainly has not got natural gas about to run much of it's fleet that way, although of course it could also reform the coal to natural gas.

        For fuel cells I would see the push being to reach around 500,000 to 1 million units of 80kw or so to reduce costs, and that is obviously easier than if you go to a plug in of 25kw.

        This is likely to be lead by other countries than the US, as they have far greater incentives to do so.

        The real point of using a combination of fuel cells and batteries eventually is that it gives great flexibility of energy sources, and you can use the whole raft including nuclear, whereas with natural gas you are using that and that is it.

        How many years all this takes to play out is another question, and in the event of another oil crisis I think the likeliest way that economies will be made for most people is not being able to drive much and recession rather than many getting access to a natural gas vehicle, and electric one or a fuel cell.

      • 3 Years Ago
      So What??? Ford introduced a hydrogen fueled Edge in 2007.
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