Bmw’s Kickin’ Hydrogen Prototype

Lynne Kiesling

Thanks to Stephen Bainbridge for his post on BMW’s H2R. He cites this Edmunds blurb that discusses the high-powered 12-cylinder BMW with only steam as a by-product.

BMW has been out in front on this development for years; a couple of years ago they even had a PR event in LA where Jay Leno, a noted, sports car afficionado, drank the water from his tailpipe after he took the then-prototype for a spin.

Striving for a fast, green future …


4 thoughts on “Bmw’s Kickin’ Hydrogen Prototype

  1. Hydrogen is the fuel of the future and it’s quite possible it will remain the fuel of the future forever.

    The reality is that the much hyped “hydrogen economy” is decades away (and has been for decades) and would require hundreds of BILLIONS of dollars of new infrastructure. Somehow I doubt that’s going to be provided solely by the market.

    Plug in hybrids, which as the name suggests can be plugged in to the existing electrical infrastructure, and run primarily on electricity reduce emissions now and if they are charged overnight don’t require additional power generation

    see:

    http://alt-e.blogspot.com/2004/09/hybrid-cars-forbesnewsweek-discussion.html

    Plug-in hybrids and electric cars are the green now.

    James
    Alternative Energy Blog

  2. Arguably, hydrogen might be referred to as the “battery” of the future, offering a potential alternative way of storing energy in a conveniently usable form.

    In small numbers, “plug-in” hybrids can be recharged at night with very inexpensive electricity and result in the production of minimal incremental environmental emissions. In large numbers, this scenario rapidly breaks down as surplus nuclear generating capacity is committed and overnight operation of intermediate load coal plants is required to meet the increasing demand.

    Electric vehicles, while they can also be recharged at night (as above), are of very limited utility because of their limited power and limited range. They are also still plagued by rapid early loss of effective battery capacity and thus range.

    Recharging these vehicles with wind power is also problematic, as long as wind power is “source of opportunity” power, useful when available and replaced by conventional power when windpower is not available.

  3. “In small numbers, “plug-in” hybrids can be recharged at night with very inexpensive electricity and result in the production of minimal incremental environmental emissions. In large numbers, this scenario rapidly breaks down as surplus nuclear generating capacity is committed and overnight operation of intermediate load coal plants is required to meet the increasing demand.”

    Ed, have you actually checked the figures or is this your intuition?

    see:

    http://ergosphere.blogspot.com/2004/03/is-tide-turning.html

    James
    Alternative Energy Blog

  4. James,

    It is what is typically referred to as engineering analysis. (Yes, I am qualified.)

    Solar recharging requires connection to the solar source when the sun is shining, or a second set of batteries at the collection location with the associated costs and energy losses. I guess solar PV arrays could be installed at assigned parking spaces at work locations to facilitate this scenario. However, cloudy or rainy days present a potential problem for solar recharging, while still days present a similar problem for windpower recharging. Keeping a sleeping bag and clean jammies at work could help deal with this issue.

    Wind recharging requires that the wind be blowing at adequate velocity when the vehicle is connected to the wind generator (during the day at the work location or at night at the home location), or a second set of batteries at the collection location.

    Electric vehicles (real vehicles) lose approximately 40% of their range within the first 6 month of operation. RDD&D may improve that scenario over time. Mass vehicle sales will await this improvement.

    Recharging during the day at work will not be cheap, since much of the charging will occur on peak. The potential of low cost charging at night will only exist if utility commissions permit real time pricing of electricity for residential customers.

    The real range of any vehicle decreases dramatically if the vehicle is stuck in traffic. Real range also decreases if the vehicle occupants insist on such creature comforts as heat or air conditioning. This makes use in major cities problematic.

    Reality is often harsh. I don’t make it so. I merely “run the numbers” and report the results.

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