Patrick Molloy at Rocky Mountain Institute runs through the pros and cons of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles (FCEVs). The big pluses are that hydrogen has an energy density of around 120 MJ/kg, almost three times more than diesel or gasoline. Half the energy generated by an internal combustion engine is wasted as heat, whereas electric drivetrains used by FCEVs only lose 10%. Nikola Motors, a U.S. maker of hydrogen trucks, claims its vehicles can get 12 to 15 mpg, well above the average 6.4 mpg for a diesel truck. But hydrogen production needs to scale up rapidly and reduce costs. The fuel needs transportation and storage infrastructure (though producing hydrogen “anywhere” or using existing gas pipelines can solve this). And diesel trucks beats hydrogen on range (though 500+ miles seems plenty). What are the drivers? The EU has committed to removing gasoline and diesel vehicles by 2030. California and Canada have similar ambitions. Japan currently has 3,400 hydrogen vehicles on its roads and wants this to increase to 800,000 by 2030. China’s target is 1 million by 2030.
Energy Post 17th Oct 2019 read more »