Priligy online now, save money

DEC 16

Recent Comment

"What nonsense is this shitty article talking about. THE REASON for why..."

View all Comments

Top Gear Hails Hydrogen Over Electric



I just finished watching an episode of Top Gear dedicated to the Honda FCX Clarity. Although I enjoyed watching what it’s like to drive around in the thing, I completely disagreed with the conclusions drawn by the show’s host James May. He spent a good amount of time extolling the virtues of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, especially compared to electric cars, which he considers a technological dead end.

You can watch the entire video here. I wanted to highlight a few quotes that really got my goat, though:

“So far most electric cars have been appalling little plastic snot-boxes that take all night to recharge and levitra no rx then take half a minute to reach their maximum speed of 40 and then run out of juice miles from anywhere”

Now, I don’t think that’s a very fair appraisal of electric vehicles. Having driven a Tesla Roadster in a previous Top Gear episode, Mr. May should know that EVs can go way faster than 40. And significant advances are being made regarding ways to make charging quick and everywhere you need it to be (think ultracapacitors and Better Place charging stations). But I guess May doesn’t care, since it doesn’t exist yet. What about hydrogen infrastructure?

“When the how much is viagra 50 clarity runs out of juice, you just pull into a hydrogen filling station.”

What hydrogen filling station? Unless I live near one of the 5 dozen or so that exist nation-wide, I can’t pull into a hydrogen filling station.

[When filling up with compressed liquid hydrogen] “You have to lock it with this lever. Terribly important, that; if you don’t do it you get hydrogen all over your shoes”

Actually, it would evaporate before hitting your shoes. And while we’re on the topic, did you know that hydrogen is dangerously explosive? I’d say that’s worth mentioning, because a hydrogen explosion would be a lot worse than dirty shoes.

“In America, hydrogen costs roughly the same as petrol, but unlike petrol it will never run out, because it is the most abundant element in the universe.”

This might be the most misleading point of all. He makes it seem like hydrogen is like petroleum that will never run out. Although he later admits that hydrogen is “usually stuck onto something else” and “actually quite difficult to scrape off”, he claims that “actually, it isn’t really any more difficult than drilling oil from underneath the sea.”

Hydrogen is not like petroleum. We have to make it, and we always lose energy in the process of doing so. Someone needs to teach this guy about the http://www.eastgreenbushlibrary.org/soft-gel-levitra second law of thermodynamics. Also, petroleum can be easily stored and transported while hydrogen… can’t. You know what can, though? Electricity!

“The clarity is different. It fits the life that we already have. The reason it’s the car of the future is that it’s just like the car of today.”

Again, he’s ignoring the infrastructure problem. The “car of today” is what it is because we have gas stations wherever we go. We don’t even know if we are going to be able to build that kind of hydrogen infrastructure. Iceland tried, and it failed. But even if it works, it is still decades away – hardly something that “fits the life that we already have”.

Look, at the end of the day I support developing hydrogen fuel cells. It's a good system in theory, and it might actually work. My problem is that the costs and benefits of hydrogen vs. electric are completely misrepresented in this video. I don't exactly consider James May a spokesman for hydrogen fuel cell technology, but apparently he does.

Via Autobloggreen

Hits: 14750
Comments (54)Add Comment
0
...
written by Ben, December 16, 2008
haha that was interesting your responses to james' review, it looks like they didnt think it through very well but top gear has got to be the least serious and most sarcastic program their is.
0
...
written by Carl, December 16, 2008
I'm surprised that they even addressed anything other than a "petrol" powered car. The comment about the snot-boxes was totally uncalled for. Do some research on NEDRA (National Electric Drag Racing Assoc) and see just how fast electric cars can go...they have a documented drag race between a viper and a home-built electric car...the electric car beat the viper in the 1/4 mile.
0
...
written by bbm, December 16, 2008
Love the get cialis in canada show, but James is WAY out of his element on this stuff. It's embarassing.
0
telling
written by al, December 16, 2008
The telling think for me on the hydrogen front is that top gear already did this. About 3 years ago they had the GM hyline another prototype hydrogen car, they drove it around and cambridgeacademyaz.com it worked, yet you no closer to buying it know then 3 years ago. But you could buy a useable electric or plugin from a major manufactoring soon, I think that says it all
0
Good point
written by Dave, December 16, 2008
I was struggling to think of the other cars they tested.


But I'm struggling to think of a previous episode where the Tesla has featured. Can you tell me which series and show that was?
0
H2 on your shoes
written by mark, December 16, 2008
I believe that he was making a joke when he said that you'll get H2 all over your shoes. Good point with all of the safety stuff they didnt seem to mention though.
0
...
written by jake, December 16, 2008
@Dave it's the same episode, here's a link on autobloggreen:
http://www.autobloggreen.com/2...roadster/

Watch that and then watch the Clarity part afterwards. Keep in mind they are the same episode.

The hydrogen part was horribly unbalanced (not to mention embarrassingly unscientific, major disappointment in May) compared to the EV part, I don't think I need to point out all the problems with the hydrogen segment since Yoni did already. I think May bought too much into the hydrogen PR. I'm sure the average TV audience loved that bit though.
0
...
written by Eric, December 16, 2008
It appears that you're not familiar with the Top Gear mantra of excessive hyperbole and gross simplification of all matters scientific.

I actually think most of the points they made in that segment were for the levitra online samples uk most part true. You have to remember that the most prominent electric car in the United Kingdom of Englandland has been the Gee Whiz which is what they're referring to when they talk about electric cars not being able to go past 40 and needing a recharge every few yards. You mention the Tesla Roadster and the Better Place charging stations, but aside from a very small handful of Tesla Roadsters that have only just recently been delivered to their new owners these things are still in the pipeline and perhaps even further back in development than Hydrogen fuel cells.

When he refers to the Hydrogen filling station in the film I believe he's trying to portray what the future might be. Sure, there might only be a few dozen of the things around but at least they exist and are in use.

Top Gear has actually done a previous segment on Hydrogen fuel cells. It was also presented by James May and www.enshift.com he and the rest of the presenters have definitely discussed the technology several times in previous episodes.
0
Good rebutal
written by Loosely_coupled, December 16, 2008
This guy is arrogant and entirely misinformed. It is not even worth your or anyone else's time to respond to this idiot.
0
Uh... Context.
written by Ashley H, December 16, 2008
This is *Top Gear*. This is the same show that made it clear that they were only talking about fuel efficiency because the BBC told them to, and then did some very silly things, like raced a supercar against a Prius at the Prius's top speed, to prove that the supercar had better fuel efficiency. .... Which it does, at that speed, but that's hardly the only now how to buy viagra point, now is it?

These are also the people who agree about just about *nothing*.

It's like complaining that the Daily Show is really easy on political candidates. Just because the Daily Show does a better job at making you absorb fact based material doesn't mean you have to hold it to rigid journalistic ethics. They are both primarily entertainment shows.

In any case, Jay Leno came off REALLY well in the segment. Not only did he seem to talk fluent British, but he managed to make a decent point about how you can love petrol burning vehicles, and still heavily promote the alternatives.
0
In defence of James
written by David Keech, December 16, 2008
I think you may have completely misread James' style of humour.

Based on those quotes it seems clear to me that almost everything he said is tongue-in-cheek.

The first quote about the range, acceleration and top speed of the "appalling little plastic snot-boxes" is deliberately exaggerated, which sets the tone for the second quote about pulling in to a Hydrogen filling station. Obviously, if these existed, we would have seen them. Since we haven't, this must be a joke.
The third quote is just a throw-away one-liner but, once again, it relies on the audience already knowing that Hydrogen is a gas at standard temperature & pressure and that even liquid Hydrogen would evaporate before it hit the ground. James knows this and he expects his audience to know it too.

The quote about Hydrogen never running out has nothing to do with it being the most abundant element in the universe, even though that is precisely what he said. Petrol is already mostly Hydrogen (by numbers, not by weight). The important thing is that we manufacture Hydrogen rather than mine it. It is a renewable resource because we are not extracting it from finite naturally occurring deposits.

British humour, in general, gives far more credit to its audience than American humour. The jokes tend to be much less obvious and can easily be taken as serious factual information.

Apart from the difficulties of cross-culture humour, I think James' point was to try to balance a message for two separate groups of people.

For normal consumers: Green cars can be just like a normal car. You don't have to make sacrifices to be green... but they're not ready yet.

For car manufacturers: People like the way their cars look now. Don't make electric cars that looklike electric cars. Make electric cars (or whatever) that look like normal cars. Until you do, people won't buy them.
0
hear, hear
written by mattbc, December 16, 2008
Thank you David Keech for your excellent defense of James.

To Yoni Levinson, if you're ever in the UK remember to stop by the Ministry of Silly Walks before adopting any non-standard gait lest you find yourself a guest of HM at the Tower, assuming UNIT has moved out by now.
0
Infrastructure less of an issue in Engla
written by Marc Albrecht, December 17, 2008
My thought, after driving across England in two hours once (at posted limits) is that infrastructure may be less of an issue for a country like England. I also agree with other posts that Top Gear is great fun and viagra fed ex sarcasm and hyperbole are their thing.
0
...
written by Jack D, December 17, 2008
I think anyone taking this show seriously is a mistake. I'm almost positive that James May knows what he is talking about and just adding some cocky British humor, something we Americans sometimes do not get. Parsing these guys words is a huge waste of time and I think you should just get a good laugh and enjoy the viagra order uk fact that the FCX clarity made it on. I mean, some of these guys have said Aston Martins, Ferraris, and Lambos were trash... you expect them to bow to a Honda? Yah. The hydrogen on your shoes was a good joke; I was laughing. And the put down of electric cars was another pretty good joke. I think the segment was excellent.
0
...
written by Joshua May, December 17, 2008
Like others, I'm pretty sure you're overreacting. Their whole gimmick is to take the piss, and not take things too seriously.

May is pretty much an ubernerd, too, so don't underestimate his knowledge of pretty much every point you raised. End of the day, they're making a TV program aimed at a particular demographic, and they're paid to produce it a certain way. Chill out, man.

(P.S. Why is Javascript required to post a comment?)
0
Fun, but be carefull
written by Rogier Noort, December 17, 2008
I think Yoni's comments are a bit harsh and I do agree with the above defences for May and Top Gear, such as British humor and context.
However, the boys from TG claim a viewers base of 220 mil. That is a lot of minds to influence and cialis for sale cheap lets face it, a lot of them are (very) influencable. With this "power" comes a real responsibility, and when it comes to the "green" thing, I believe they have to take that responsibility a little bit more serious.
0
it's entertainment, right?
written by Akos, December 17, 2008
Top Gear is entertainment stuff. No more words on that.
If you want to have posts about science programs being stupid about latest eco-thinking results, go for Discovery or Natgeo.

Also, I can not understand your utterly strong point of "electric cars are the future because they are much much more green" against for example H2 cars.
What do you make your electricity from??? It is almost entirely petroleum in USA. And you add lots of chemical batteries hard to dispose of when died, and add long hours of waiting for recharge, add delivery losses and other things...
Be more realistic, and open minded. Lose your preconceptions.
0
I actually thought this review was super
written by Charlie Haworth, December 17, 2008
I found this show particularly enlightening, I regularly watch Top Gear and The daily show and find that comedy often highlights really key issues often unintentionally.

In this case the Tesla review before was an eye opener.. my final impression... that it is a toy. They ran out of power after 55 miles and with standard system it would take 16 hours to recharge. Therefore to drive across the UK at this rate would take 3 days, clearly showing that the car is not a replacement for today's petrol powered vehicles. (don't start talking about the fast recharge system or ultra caps this is not the point or even the www.grantontrailers.com average daily driving distance).

Then they show this Honda... which looked like a .. Honda. It drives 200 miles before pulling into a "gas" station for a refill. Exactly as we do today. And this was the whole point they were trying to make. To gain mass appeal and approval this system might just work! I was shocked, I could not believe that they were driving a normal looking car and treating it like any other family saloon, not a hi-tech prototype or rich-mans toy for the weekend.
I know all about the issues with hydrogen production/transportation etc. I was shocked to see the Clarity with a fully working fuel cell engine, a simple re-fueling system, and obviously with all the safety issues worked out.

Maybe hydrogen is the future... i did not believe this before...but maybe..
0
*sigh*
written by Brian Drought, December 17, 2008
You Americans really don't understand irony or sarcasm do you?
0
Ecogeek totally misses the point
written by FailBoat, December 17, 2008
Were you too thick to get the shoes comment? Did you really think he was being serious?

Brian gets it right above, there's hyperbole, sarcasm and humour. All of which the blogger has failed to catch, maybe electric cars are a topic one is not allowed to mock on the internet, like Apple products. Doesn't stop them from being hopeless.

No, not all electric vehicles are milk floats, but they all have serious price, performance, and convenience detriments compared to a normal car. That's the point he was trying to make, and was demonstrated with the charge time of the Tesla.

The whole hybrid is the holy grail thing annoys me. It annoys me that Detroit CEOs chose to travel to Washington to beg while hauling an unneeded massive battery along the freeway.

Just get a small fuel efficient car next time, how about a hatchback? It might not give you that holier-than-thou glee from behind the viagra prescription label wheel, but it's greener and www.animationnation.com surely more fun to drive.
0
Hold on a minute...
written by Scatter, December 17, 2008
I'm British and I understand irony perfectly well thank you very much but this was an exceptionally poorly researched piece (very common for Top Gear). It was like it was scripted by the Honda PR team.

You can't dismiss TG as just a bit of harmless entertainment. Yes they entertain, but they also attempt to inform and whether they treated it lightly or not, this piece was journalism about the future of the car industry.

The BBC themselves categorise Top Gear as a factual programme and it regularly wins "most popular factual programme awards" at the UK national telelvision awards.

People who don't know the first thing about these new technologies (the vast majority of television viewers) won't have known what is exageration and what is fact and now millions of UK viewers (and ultimately hundreds of millions around the world) will come away with the misleading impression that hydrogen is the solution to our transport energy supply and climate change problems and it's great! viagra uk that electric vehicles are a dead end.

The car industry is completely to blame of course. They have been hoodwinking politicans, journalists and society as a whole for way too long with the hydrogen myth.

Top Gear is entertainment but it is also journalism and this was very poor journalism indeed.
0
it always boils down to electricty
written by Matt Dirksen, December 17, 2008
If I can just have a car that is simply powered by electricity, why on earth would I want a car that requires a new billion dollar infrastructure system to support technology (hydrogen) which simply creates electricity - to power my car? I can't wait for the day when I walk out to my car which is not only fully charged by it's solar paint, but also helped power my home or office I had it plugged into. It seems that the rate of change in battery efficiency and solar efficiency leads me to believe that I will see this day within 20 years (or a couple cars from now.)
0
...
written by suraci, December 17, 2008
Top Gear has always been blatant pro oil propaganda. This episode thrashed an electric car around a circuit then showed it being pushed into a garage when the battery ran down after just fifty miles. If I drove my petrol car like that I would be lucky to get 100 miles from a tankful.
Top Gear has never mentioned and never will mention the EV1, which was superb ten years ago. James May and most of the media are paid propagandists for one elite issue or another. Top Gear lies through it's teeth to the viewers for a reason. It is propaganda, through and through.
0
petrol needed infrastructure too - we go
written by carl, December 17, 2008
I agree with a lot of what you are saying here but the arguements you are making are the same that you could have made at the advent of the petrol car. What comes first the car or the infrastructure?

Hydrogen has more of less the free sample of viagra same infrastructure problems as petrol, though it is trickier to handle (I think he was being a little ironic about getting it on your shoes - we have funny humour that way over here).

I do think it particularly ignorant to suggest that Hydrogen is some kind of infinite resource, ignoring the physics as you put it.

Carl
0
suraci is right
written by Mark, December 17, 2008
suraci is right, Clarkson hates anything that saves fuel and if it isn't a V8 it is basically crap to him.
0
Fuel cells are much less efficient
written by Jim, December 17, 2008
Hydrogen fuel cells are 3-4 times less efficient than battery EVs thanks to the 95% efficiency of LIon batteries. With hydrogen you have to electrolyze water (lose 50% of energy), then compress it (lose 10% that), then combine it with oxygen from air (lose another 60%).

FCEVs will require serious improvement in hydrogen generation, hydrogen storage/transport and www.jubileecampaign.nl the cells themselves. The technical challenge is massive and theres too many steps for it to ever compete on efficiency. After all efficiency is what we are needing right now.

The main complaint about batteries are the charge times and capacity. This is a much smaller challenge than what FCEVs face. Petrol vehicle users are very hung up on refuel times because they go around all the time on a 1/4 tank. A full battery weighs no more than an empty one though so I'm willing to bet that a 10min charge (coming soon) will be fine.

Also dont forget how cheap energy from the grid is, if we have BEVs we'll save a packet. Meanwhile hydrogen will be charged at a like for like cost with petrol and the oil companies will be laughing.
0
and again:
written by Ashley H, December 17, 2008
@Scatter-- When Top Gear came back to America after the whole "Man Love"... thing... US Authorities, based on their Visa requirements to get into the country, couldn't get in on their "entertainment" show credentials-- they had to promise to be factual and not entertaining, which they mocked throughout the long segment. Clearly they put entertainment first.

And besides, if Top Gear is a really good factual show, maybe we shouldn't be shaming Top Gear as much as we shame all the other factual shows everywhere.

@Suraci-- I know this is TEH INTERNETZ, and so we all have to find conspiracies everywhere, but I really do think it likely that Jeremy Clarkson legitimately does hate any car that doesn't give him huge amounts of power over large distances without falling apart, and that's not totally unreasonable.

As much as the Tesla is an expensive toy at the moment, it's pretty important as a concept-- just because it runs on electricity doesn't mean you can't accelerate and have a lot of fun. It has flaws, as most cars do. If there's some support, they'll get fixed.

I'm not exactly sure what we could have expected from a short segment like this. There are problems with today's hybrids, today's electrics, today's hydrogen cars. Any program trying to do a segment cannot go into the pros and cons of all of them while actually showing the car. What gets included? What gets cut? Well, here, the jokes didn't get cut, which was clearly too bad for anyone who doesn't like/understand British (TG) humor.

If we demand that everything covering green technology be deeply researched and recommended site viagra online buy understood, and then presented fully without any bias, nothing will be produced. The closest thing to that that is produced will only be watched by, well, us. And while it's neat to watch something created for you, it doesn't solve the larger problem of educating the masses.
0
@Ashley H
written by Jim, December 17, 2008
@Ashley H

Actualy I expect TV to be thorough & factualy correct, the humour can be laid on top. If i'm talking to some bloke in the pub I might expect him to be as dismissive as Top Gear was of BEVs. On national TV going to tens of millions of people however we should expect people to be both funny and responsible after all we're paying for it.
0
@Jim
written by Ashley H, December 17, 2008
Actually, I'm not paying for it smilies/wink.gif. Although since you are, I suppose that does give you a more defensible position.

But, again, you might have bigger fish to fry: see "you are what you eat" smilies/smiley.gif
0
Top Gear hydrogen "expert"
written by Nick, December 17, 2008
Wait a second guys, this is Top Gear we are talking about and last I checked, they are good when it comes to gas cars and sarcasm. Unfortunately, they first forays into the "new" technologies will take some time to happen.

As to choosing a Hydrogen Honda over a Tesla Roadster, it makes no sense, even for Top Gear. Yeah, they rushed through that one...
0
Top Gear
written by Less of an Idiot, December 17, 2008
You folks who claim to know British humour so well should watch the video. Except for the one comment about spilling Hydrodgen all over your shoes the chap is absolutely dead serious. A bit misguided perhaps but dead serious. So get off your high horses, watch the video and the do some real research.
0
Hydrogen economy is NOT the answer.
written by Chicardo Estrella, December 18, 2008
Of course they will chosse hydrogen. They are corporate. They are establishment. A hydrogen car economy means Shell suplying you the hydrogen at the same stations you buy gasoline today. An electric economy means charging at home, sometimes from the government. Further research in the electric car economy would have people charging their cars from solar panels.

Hydrogen = Big Oil as the middleman
Electric = No big oil as middleman
0
Defending crass mediocrity
written by Balaclava Betty, December 18, 2008
I'm British and I won't defend either James May or Clarkson. The homour is immature and insulting. Mainly built upon belittlement of others in an arrogant condescending manner.

Don't let other condescending Brit's fool you that this is some superior form of sarcasm that Americans just can't understand. It is exactly what you see and hear. An oversized bully having a laugh at somebody elses expense. Clarkson is a notorious coward.

Poor journalistic quality, just entertainment for a brainless crowd at the public pillory.
0
oh come on...
written by Igor Kolar, December 18, 2008
I see a lot of people here arguing between themselves on how much they are familiar with irony, sarcasm, and other commonly articulated points of British humor...

However, I haven't seen (and mind you, the quarrels became annoying at one points so I just rushed it to the footer) anybody trying to teach a lesson on the meaning of the word entertainment, which Top gear, is kind of supposed to be. 'Cept that one episode when the americans asked them to only be factual while filming in the states.

Anyway, I'm jumping into my own mouth by writing this, but I'm surprised how many people, and on top of them, a respected blog can bother writing up on that episode, in a ...well, factual manner.

If I want facts, I google, wiki, annoy my professors, read, watch discovery if nothing else, I don't watch a show that compares the rear end of the Porsche Cayenne with an open gangrene wound.

But most of all, I can hardly believe you can complain, considering top gear of all shows... actually supports an electric-hydrogen hybrid =) And there wasn't even one trash at its aesthetic which I think is rubbish.

Bottom line, how can you take them seriously, it's just entertainment ...
0
But that's just the point Igor...
written by Scatter, December 19, 2008
It's not just entertainment and to think otherwise is quite frankly naive. We learn from entertainment.

Do you really think that the viewers just go "I'm not going to pay any attention to the content and express cialis delivery messages of this show, I'm just going to switch my brain into neutral and laugh at their jokes"? Of course not.

Entertainment is an extremely powerful tool for spreading messages (cf WWII propaganda which was completely framed around news and entertainment) and the media frequently abuse their extremely powerful position by spreading disinformation (both knowingly and unknowingly)*.

If you are enjoying yourself while information is being communicated, then it's highly likely that those messages will stick. And in the case of new technologies you need to be quite knowledgeable about the subject in order to separate the jokes and hyperbole from the facts.

I'd love to believe that lots of TG viewers will go and check out a load of green blogs, wikis etc and make up their own minds but that ain't going to happen because most people aren't eco/bloggeeks like everyone posting on this thread! smilies/tongue.gif

* I can heartily recommend Ben Goldacre's book Bad Science for a good analysis of this subject (http://www.badscience.net)
0
top gear : 404 on YouTube
written by Wouter, December 20, 2008
smilies/sad.gif can't see the TopGear video due to: "A copyright claim by BBC Worldwide Ltd." smilies/sad.gif
I also can't watch in on the BBC site sinds I'm not in the UK. I can't even pay-per-view for it...
So why do they block it on YouTube?
Don't I have the right to see this?
0
Daily Telegraph column
written by Linden, December 22, 2008

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/mot...ought.html

James continues to bang on (his words) about the Honda FCX Clarity, this time in his column in the Daily Telegraph.
0
messy stuff
written by dontbotherme, December 22, 2008
"...if you don’t do it you get hydrogen all over your shoes"

yoni, meet humour. humour, this is yoni.
0
James May is correct...
written by Antonio, December 23, 2008
The quote relating to hydrogen spilling onto shoes was a play on irony. The author of the article above pointed it out whilst completely missing the humor.

The author quotes thermodynamics, yet completely forgets that the escaping hydrogen would encounter energy loss due to the sudden pressure change, hence dramatically lowering its temperature. Therefore, a majority of the escaped hydrogen would condense into a liquid before evaporating (in a similar fashion to LPG). You wouldn't want to get it on you because it would be cold enough to inflict burns.

In theory, the volatility of hydrogen is similar to LPG gas - which is perfectly safe and cialis cost has been used by cars for decades.

Apart from the Tesla Roadster and Venturi Fetish, all contemporary electric cars have been slow pieces of dribble. Why would a consumer want to pay more for an electric car (Tesla Roadster) - which utilises grid power to recharge itself anyway, when they could purchase a better handeling Lotus Elise for much less dosh? When comparing petroleum and coal, I would like to point out that petrol is the lesser of the two evils - simply because it burns cleaner.

Believe it or not, there are a few hydrogen filling stations in the world right now... It wouldnt be that hard to equip other petrol stations with the same hydrogen facilities. It should be noted that the Germans were producing megaliters of hydrogen in WWII. Why couldn't we tailor some infrastructure to support hydrogen production now?

Taking the rule of thermodynamics into account, it is obvious that hydrogen, an element that rarely occurs on its own in nature, can only be obtained through processing. Generally, to produce hydrogen, electrolysis is required. Yes, electorlysis does require a source of electricity... Therefore, the ecological footprint of a hydrogen powered car is similar (if not identical) to that of a conventiona electric one. However, the convenience factor of hydrogen cannot be dismissed. When you run low, simply top up (not plug in and wait for hours on end).
0
Hydrogen is better than batteries.
written by Antonio, December 23, 2008
The quote relating to hydrogen spilling onto shoes was a play on irony. The author of the article above pointed it out whilst completely missing the humor.

The author quotes thermodynamics, yet completely forgets that the escaping hydrogen would encounter energy loss due to the sudden pressure change, hence dramatically lowering its temperature. Therefore, the majority of the escaped hydrogen would condense into a liquid before evaporating (in a similar fashion to LPG). You wouldn't want to get it on you because it would be cold enough to inflict burns.

In theory, the volatility of hydrogen is similar to LPG gas - which is perfectly safe and has been used by cars for decades.

Apart from the Tesla Roadster and Venturi Fetish, all contemporary electric cars have been slow pieces of dribble. Why would a consumer want to pay more for an electric car (Tesla Roadster) - which utilises grid power to recharge itself anyway, when they could purchase a better handeling Lotus Elise for much less dosh? When comparing petroleum and coal, I would like to point out that petrol is the lesser of the two evils - simply because it burns cleaner.

Believe it or not, there are a few hydrogen filling stations in the world right now... It wouldnt be that hard to equip other petrol stations with the same hydrogen facilities. It should be noted that the Germans were producing megaliters of hydrogen in WWII. Why couldn't we tailor some infrastructure to support full scale hydrogen production now?

Taking the rule of thermodynamics into account, it is obvious that hydrogen, an element that rarely occurs on its own in nature, can only be obtained through processing. Generally, to produce hydrogen, electrolysis is required. Yes, electorlysis does require a source of electricity... Therefore, the ecological footprint of an individual hydrogen powered car is similar (if not identical) to that of a conventiona electric one. However, the convenience factor of hydrogen cannot be dismissed. When you run low, simply top up (not plug in and wait for hours on end).

When it comes to pipeline dreams, 'ecologically aware' people tend to possess them in spades. Supercapacitors? Claiming that these could effectively be employed in vehicles, infact, claiming that they could be manufactured in the first place is pure speculation. Personally, I am awaiting a time when aircraft will be able to exceed the speed of light. Somehow, I think I'll be waiting forever. We can all speculate - however, some of us remain pragmatic.

A poster above suggested that solar panel paint will be able to charge a car... All I can do is snicker at that sort of dribble. To this day, solar panels are still unrefined and can do with improvement. If we had experience with that sort of technology to begin with, then just maybe it would be viable.

On a final note, lets not forget that batteries also require processing. Many of the chemicals that go into batteries are extremely toxic and environmentally damaging. Forget about the manufacturing processes of the batteries (and the damage that they cause the environment), we should take the disposal of the batteries (once their servicable life has vanquished) into account... Hydrogen once again proves to be the better alternative.
0
Stupid
written by Magic, December 23, 2008
i'm sorry man this is the biggest kind of stupidity i ever read. most of the ele car take days to charge ( days here doesn't mean REAL days mean LONG TIME). man this is just new of course not a billion station are in the world and this is only been tested in CA. so this is really stupid what are you saying. "it would evaporate before hitting your shoes" it's a joke man cuz everyone knows it that's why it's funny sorry man but watch the show more often. that's it for now i hope you see the error of this post.
0
Hydrogen / Electric not interchangeable
written by Carol Shetler, December 24, 2008
Having studied hydrogen fuel cell (HFC) technology for a number of years, in fact since Ballard Power Systems began operation in Canada, I believe that for individual automobiles, some form of electric will be better than HFC. Ongoing steady use of energy, such as backup power systems or bus fleet vehicles, are much better uses for HFC technology, because the supply and demand for the energy are pretty much continuous. The automobile, with its start-go-stop-park-start again style of locomotion, is better suited to electricity, which can be turned on and off easily without detriment to the "engine".
0
Batteries for Electric Vehicles
written by Vash the Stampede, December 29, 2008
Ye of little faith should try to have a little faith that some of this stuff has been thought about and researched.

I read an article a while back on the subject and levitra best price the answer to the battery charging situation is quite simple...much like a petrol/gas station you could stop by and switch out your depleted battery for a fully charged one. Since the batteries might be extremely heavy the Attendants could exchange them for you while you swipe your Battery Account card. Finally, the batteries could be serviced regularly for efficiency and safety then be recycled at the end of their life.

It's not a panacea and there would be obstacles but it could be done in a responsible way.
0
Hydrogen is the dead end technology
written by CBDunkerson, December 30, 2008
The power costs to produce, transport, and safely store hydrogen are prohibitive. Think about it. Just to PRODUCE the hydrogen we'd need to build MORE electrical capacity than would be required to run electric cars. Then we also need to factor in the power needed to distribute this hydrogen all over the country AND to keep it cooled/pressurized.

Ergo, switching over to hydrogen vehicles would require vastly more electrical capacity than switching over to electric vehicles. You would then have a vehicle that takes twice as long to fill up as a gasoline vehicle with the same tank size would... and which then goes less than 1/4th the distance before needing to be refilled again.

Compare that against someone taking maybe ten minutes to manually swap out the batteries in your car with fully charged replacements (far less time if simple machine assists were developed) that'll take you ~250 miles before needing to be swapped again... which is assuming that electrical storage capacity ceases to improve. If EEStor is to be believed you'll be able to recharge (no battery swapping) in ~5 minutes and go 500 miles before needing to charge again.

The problem with switching over to hydrogen vehicles is that it requires all the same infrastructure improvements needed for electric vehicles, in greater quantities, AND the hydrogen infrastructure itself... to deliver a result which is inferior in almost every way to pure electric; Costs more to build. Costs more to refuel. Requires more frequent refueling. Has greater safety risks. Requires a more complex engine (which currently can't run at all below 0 Celsius).

Environmentally, hydrogen is obviously cleaner than current battery chemicals, but that advantage is vastly outweighed by the much greater electrical and infrastructure needs of hydrogen... and again, some of the ultracapacitor claims currently being made would fix the volatile chemical problems with electrical storage.

Hydrogen (like ethanol) is an inherently flawed and self-defeating path. Electric vehicles are vastly superior across the board. While infrastructure for full electric is being built there is no reason we could not start using electric-gas hybrids right now. Something midway between a Tesla Roadster and a Chevy Volt would be the ideal... can fully charge on standard AC overnight, get ~125 miles on battery, and then have a gasoline generator for longer trips. That is easily possible with CURRENT technology. Would require more electrical capacity to be built as people switched over to it, but that moves us towards being able to handle 100% electric and quickly scales down gasoline usage en route.
0
Hydogen yes but forget fuel cells
written by Martin, February 21, 2009
Why bother with fuel cells? Hydrogen internal combustion engines are easier to build and it's great! order generic levitra use tried and tested methods and can be serviced just like petrol engines. Some tweaking with duty and tax regimes could pretty quickly encourage the development of filling station infrastructure. It's not that different from LPG to process and transport and their are already a reasonable number of stations selling that.

Then all we need are some water cracking plants next to some nuclear power stations and job done. All available 1950s era technology cheaply sourced today. We could also pump hydrogen through the gas pipe network for domestic heating while we are at it.
0
Great points
written by Jayen, February 21, 2009
Great points. Of cause the biggest long turn (maybe sooner than we think) problem is going to be the pollution we create with both these methods, if we don't fix that it will be the end of us!

Am i the only one that is wandering how much the oil companies and people in that position of power are influencing programs like Top Gear to there benefit?

Jayen
0
Don't dismiss Hydrogen so easily
written by Anthony Hocken, February 21, 2009
"Now, I don’t think that’s a very fair appraisal of electric vehicles. Having driven a Tesla Roadster in a previous Top Gear episode, Mr. May should know that EVs can go way faster than 40."

Firstly, james said "most". Last time I checked that allows for exceptions. the Tesla being the most obvious. But the Tesla is a grossly overpriced sports car and not even remotely close to a practical family car which most can afford. Second, it was said tongue in cheek with a hint of sarcasm, and most grasped the sentiment I'd have hoped. Third, Ultracapacitors sound brilliant because of the charging time, but they're some way off - the issue is making them small enough.

"What about hydrogen infrastructure?". "What hydrogen filling station?"

The ones which will hopefully replace petrol pumps at gas stations. You seem to underestimate what's needed to charge an electric vehicle. You're assuming most people have convenient access to a power outlet in a cosy garage.

"This might be the most misleading point of all. He makes it seem like hydrogen is like petroleum that will never run out."

Petroleum is limited and pharmacy selling viagra in israel finite. I think I read somewhere that we're already half way through what's available. James is arguing that's not the case with hydrogen, which it isnt. We will always have ways of producing hydrogen indefinitely.

"We don’t even know if we are going to be able to build that kind of hydrogen infrastructure. Iceland tried, and it failed."

Just because someone tried and failed doesnt mean its not worth pursuing, and doesnt mean it wont eventually work. Remember there's a fair amount of corruption from oil companies trying to protect their ecosystem.

Anyway, Hydrogen has advantages if it replaces oil, or even works along-side oil similar to how we have leaded and unleaded pumps. The infrastructure is already there - we just have to put the pumps there which really isnt that hard to do once it gains momentum. You can refill quickly on a long journey where as with electric you're screwed unless you have several hours to kill. Hydrogen cars can be much lighter because you dont have a ton of batteries to lug around. You don't use up energy carrying all that weight around either.

Plus batteries have a limited life span. Think about how that will affect the environment. Granted it takes energy to make the Hydrogen, but if it's from clean renewable energy who cares. it's a world away from heavily polluting the air I breath in every day.
0
...
written by Anthony Hocken, February 21, 2009
"Compare that against someone taking maybe ten minutes to manually swap out the batteries in your car with fully charged replacements (far less time if simple machine assists were developed) that'll take you ~250 miles before needing to be swapped again..."

You seriously expect someone to replace all the batteries in their car? Have you any idea how many batteries are in a Tesla for example and how much it all weighs? And even though the batteries contributes greatly to the vastly overpriced Tesla you expect someone to buy a second set? Hydrogen technology can last just as long before refills as oil, and more than batteries.
0
For Hydrogen
written by Toby Durkin, February 21, 2009
I've always thought it made sense to run cars on Hydrogen, never thought I'd see it happen though.

Not that keen on the idea of electric cars though, the sheer amount of batteries needed to store the electricity just make them impratical in my opinion.

Plus someone tried to make the argument that making hydrogen would outweigh the benefits of having hydrogen cars, but surely it would just as bad having electric cars because then everyone would be making huge demands on the national grid forcing electricity companies to increase their output and it's been already reported that they need to build new power stations just cope with demand as it is now.
0
i laugh at you guys
written by OMG, February 21, 2009
u do realise Top Gear is an entertainment show dont you...

those comments you took out, you do realise their jokes dont you...u no, laughing and things...

this just shows you have no sense of humour and you are extremely sad...
0
erm
written by Alan, February 21, 2009
You seem unable to decipher joke from fact.

The hydrogen would actually boil before it his his trousers, not evaporate. And it would not explode.

Few filling stations? The electric car will have the same issue, if you want to ch it in less than a night, you need a filling station of sorts, be it a large battery capable of delivering high current at home, or something which looks a lot like a petrol station.

Please stop watching top gear, it clearly brings out the factually challenged bigot in you. There are some real points you could make about hydrogen to kill it, rather than this tripe.
0
great debate
written by Robert Llewellyn, February 21, 2009
I am English, I sound a bit like James May when I talk, but there the similarity ends. This episode of Top Gear, a show I love to watch, really got my goat and everything else. It was so blatant and levitra pill set up, which is what they do and it's an entertainment show, but they did lie about the Tesla and they did have to admit it. The Guardian ran with the story. The Tesla batteries did not run out. I repeat, the Tesla batteries did not run out. They faked it to make their rubbish point. They pushed the car back to the garage to, and this is the quote from the producer, 'to show the audience what would happen if the battery did run out.' When did you last see the crew of Top gear push a fossil fuel car back to the garage to show what would happen is the petrol ran out. Cheap rubbish gag and worth remembering that although the TV show is funded by the BBC, their own 'Top Gear' franchise is supported by, guess who, Shell.
Then the nonsense about the Honda Clarity (cost, $1.4 million) and the simplicity of re-fueling. Where, anyone seen a hydrogen re-fueling station. And where does the hydrogen come from? Electricity? Maybe, or far more likely, fossil fuel. These lies and myths need to be confronted. However, all that said, I still watch Top Gear, it's a load of nonsense but it's fun, as long as they don't get too political, which they did in this rubbish episode.
0
Alert! Alert! Typical Guardian reader th
written by Shug, February 26, 2009
Now a a few facts:
1. in the episode they never said that they run out of batteries.
1a.What they did say was "Although Tesla says that it does 200 miles, we worked out that on our test track, it would run out after just 55 miles".
They say that because the battery power was down to 20% pretty quick.

2. Top Gear never admitted they lie about Tesla and never will cause they simply didn't.
The thing is that Tesla claimed that their car can run 200 miles even if you really push it. Which turned out not to be true....

3. Top Gear supported by Shell - probably
by me - definitely
by you - doubtedly
by Jesus Christ - probably

4. Honda FCX Clarity cost thing... on official site it's offered only as a leased vehicle, for $600 a month for 3 year... not exactly $1.4 million as you claim.

So I've come too the conclusion that you kind Sir is... erm... well... not exactly a reliable source of information.
0
...
written by James, May 18, 2012
What nonsense is this shitty article talking about. THE REASON for why electric cars are a dead end is because you can't be waiting HOURS for it to fill up. That is it, end of discussion.

Hydrogen whilst a lot harder to make is by definition a substance to be able to be filled up with unlike Electricity which can't be forced in any quicker and if it does, it will quickly die.

Write comment

security code
Write the displayed characters


busy
 

Are you an EcoGeek?

We've got to keep 7 billion people happy without destroying our planet. It's the biggest challenge we've ever faced....but we're taking it on. Are you with us?




The Most Popular Articles