• Feb 17th 2011 at 11:03AM
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Hyundai FCEV – Click above for high-res image gallery

Recently, Hyundai-Kia Motors, along with hydrogen advocacy organizations from Sweden, Denmark, Norway and Iceland, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to collaborate on the deployment of hydrogen-powered fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEV) in those Nordic countries. With this MOU, Hyundai-Kia Motors aims to establish itself as one of the world's leading manufacturers of FCEVs. For the Nordic countries involved in the signing, the agreement will likely strengthen their position as a region that actively promotes the adoption of hydrogen-fueled vehicles.

Recent reports indicate that Hyundai is inching close to conducting a wide-scale test of its next-generation fuel cell vehicle. The hydrogen-fed model, a converted Hyundai Tuscon ix, debuted in Washington, DC earlier this week and is expected to hit Korean streets for testing by the end of 2011 and enter production in 2012.

Photos Copyright ©2008 Jeremy Korzeniewski / AOL

[Source: Green Car Congress]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 4 Years Ago
      "Dr.Woon Chul Yang, president of R&D Division of Hyundai • Kia states, “We expect that the deployment activities of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to the Nordic countries where the network of hydrogen fuelling stations is well established, can help advertise our advanced eco-friendly vehicle technologies to Europe. With this MoU agreement we hope to be a leading manufacturer of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles for the European market”.


      The carmakers can provide FCVs, and the hydrogen suppliers are willing to build infrastructure, and the governments in Denmark, Sweden, Norway, and Iceland are willing to develop appropriate code and standards to allow commercial development. It's nice when everyone plays together. Add this to the agreements among the Germans, and the Japanese, and the FCV picture outside of the US is quite rosy.
        • 4 Years Ago
        • 4 Years Ago
        Don't think of it as coming around... but acknowledging that some situations are well suited for hydrogen. But even when I disagree with you, I have always tried to add an ending caveat where I explain that HFCVs are well suited for situations where long range is needed for EVERY TRIP, BEVs cannot perform well, and H2 infrastructure is much easier to implement. US Long haul trucking for example.

        The Nordic environment favors HFCVs better than BEVs because of the cold, and infrastructure distribution is less sparse. Simple as that. So it makes sense that HFCVs should receive the money and attention to ensure those nations get off fossil fuels.

        Here in the U.S.... the climate is vastly different. Our expanse is much greater. BEVs have the cost advantage for a larger majority of Americans. Sure, many consumers would LIKE to be able to continue the paradigm of central (once a week) fueling they are used to... but it is not really a necessity.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Nice to see you coming around. I don't ask that anyone become an ardent supporter - just that they are willing to acknowledge that FCV tech and infrastructure is progressing, particularly when shown credible evidence.

        Simply dismissing carmaker and energy provider efforts as "greenwashing" or "potemkin village" only shows a lack of respect for the real effort and substantial investments that are happening. Those who would prefer to dismiss FCVs altogether serve no purpose in a discussion about FCV progress.
        • 4 Years Ago
        quite rosy indeed. If the infrastructure is going to be paid for by the hydrogen suppliers... it does seem like a good plan.

        • 4 Years Ago
        Again, Joeviocoe, I thank you for accepting that HFCVs have a role to play in the US car market.

        You make your point well, that there are indeed outlying situations where either a BEV or an FCV outperforms the other.

        That is why I support both BEVs and FCVs, and why the world's automakers plan to introduce both.
        • 4 Years Ago
        " I thank you for accepting that HFCVs have a role to play in the US car market."

        Your welcome I guess ?!

        Although I wouldn't say "US [CAR] market". That implies passenger vehicles only. For that, HFCVs role will probably be little to none.

        And even if I admit that HFCVs could be a solution for certain market segments, and that BEVs will not be a good solution for that segment.... that doesn't mean that other solutions are not better suited than HFCVs.

        I think CNG is the prime competition for HFCVs in many of the markets where BEVs would fail.

        And of course, fuel cells that could directly use liquid bio-fuels (in combination with a sustainable production of biofuels) would be ideal... and render a hydrogen infrastructure moot.
        • 4 Years Ago

        I saw that article a few days ago - the liquid catalyst is interesting. Automakers have worked diligently to reduce platinum loading requirement of FC stacks to levels equivalent to a typical catalytic converter, but it's great to see an approach that comes from a completely different angle.

        "ACAL Energy's radical solution is potentially simpler and lower cost than conventional polymer fuel cell technology, addressing the durability and cost issues that have hindered fuel cell adoption for decades. The company has developed a new way of reacting the oxygen in air with hydrogen by using a low cost liquid catalyst. Conventional polymer fuel cells require expensive platinum catalysts to do this, and the ACAL approach achieves the same performance while offering lower costs and reduced system complexity.

        Detailed Carbon Trust analysis, based on a US Department of Energy model, has shown that the ACAL technology has the potential to cut system costs, once in mass production, by up to 40 per cent while potentially increasing durability."

        "At the heart of the groundbreaking new design is a proprietary liquid ‘catholyte’ system based on commodity chemicals. It is the brainchild of Andy Creeth, co-founder of ACAL Energy, who uncovered the principle working in a previous role where he developed chemical solutions for everyday uses such as detergents or personal care products."
      • 4 Years Ago
      Fuelcells cost less to build and offer more power and efficiency then any other things and hydrogen g is almost free and non-polluting. Millions of peoples are terrified by it because it will cut their jobs like us army employees and generals, usa presidents, news reporter, wall street dealers, third world politicians, us politicians,

      autoblog green journalists, car manufacturers technicians and engineers and half the

      employees, petrol refiners, petrol sellers resellers and provider and extracters, etc, etc, milions of them with billions and billions of revenues.

      This is not a valid reason not to put on sale near where i live a used big car from the 70's with a hydrogen tank and the top solar panel to make the hydrogen.

      stop any expenditures toward any car manufacturers that don't put for sale hydrogen fuelcell cars.
      • 4 Years Ago
      It might just make sense there, if they can split water with hydro power.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Chris M: Running the figures for the Hyundai I made it around 2.4 times as much electricity if you obtained it by electrolysis as by using batteries.
        Finland and likely Sweden are building more nuclear plant though, and if that is a high proportion of the grid you have electricity to spare at night.
        In the case of Iceland their hydro resources are so large and so isolated from anywhere they could be fully utilised that it is the obvious way of getting the hydrogen, and fuel cell vehicles are a far better answer outside of Reykjavik in the cold and extensive countryside, as they are in the northern areas of the other Scandinavian countries.

        For countries which use quite a bit of natural gas in their grid anyway to provide electricity it is pretty much a wash whether you burn it to make electricity or reform it to provide hydrogen for fuel cell vehicles.
        • 4 Years Ago
        More likely they plan to make H2 by steam reforming of natural gas from their North Sea oil fields.

        The problem with storing electrical energy via H2 fuel is that the whole process of electrolysis, compression of H2 for storage, and fuel cells is about 24% efficient, compared to 85% efficiency for battery and charger. Going the H2 route would require 3x more electricity than using batteries. Can they really spare that much more hydropower?
        • 4 Years Ago
        At first I was totally against HFCVs, but you guys are convincing me they deserve another look.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Don't forget, in the climate zone of the Nordic countries, BEVs have a great disadvantage simply due to cold-weather battery performance. Diminished range in particular.

        They do support BEVs, and BEVs will also be sold in the Nordic nations, but FCVs have a distinct advantage in reliability on cold weather.

        Overall efficiency is a great goal, but sometimes there are mitigating factors that mean sacrificing extreme efficiency for increased reliability, range, and capacity.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Queue FC bashing in 3, 2, 1...
        • 4 Years Ago
        nah... not this time.
        • 4 Years Ago
        Swing and... Missed!

        It isn't fuel cells that are bashed, it is that bulky and difficult to store and expensive hydrogen fuel that is bashed. Develop an inexpensive fuel cell running on an easy to store and readily available fuel, and I'll be all for it.
      • 4 Years Ago
      Potemkin Village, with any volume they'll switch to Natural Gas, the Natural Gas reserves the Oil Industry is currently buying up. Fuel Cells the solution no one is asking for, except the Oil Industry.
        • 8 Months Ago
        An interesting comment. I am into engineered solutions for a variety of transport needs, you are into 'changing mentalities'.
        Unfortunately ideological driven prejudices have an appalling record in actually creating anything practical.
        I should stick to sociology if I were you John.
        BTW I have absolutely nothing against using BEVs where appropriate.
        It is simply that they are not always the answer to every use and question.
        • 4 Years Ago
        "BEV's allow the whole "fuel station" mentality to die off..."

        Not true. BEV supporters acknowledge that a charging-station infrastructure is required for mass-market acceptance of plug-in vehicles.

        I'd rather have one station on the corner, than having the entire street scape and every parking lot littered with charging points (which resemble gas pumps quite a bit).
        • 4 Years Ago
        I like fuel cells used where appropriate, and the last time I checked I was not an oil company! ;-)
        • 4 Years Ago
        You may as well be with your endless support for all forms of hydrogen. BEV's allow the whole "fuel station" mentality to die off, FCV's perpetuate it.
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