Thursday, July 2, 2009

Hydrogen cars for UK's GenNext

One more car - named Hydrogen car supposed to say that it is a UK's next generation car. But they would not be able to buy them as the makers intend to let them out on lease.

A non-toxic car powered by a fuel cell that combines hydrogen with oxygen from the air to release energy was unveiled in London reports at newscientist.com.

Riversimple's RUC is aiming to lease its first fleet in 2011 and mass produce in 2013. The lack of fuelling infrastructure aside, the three main problems with building a hydrogen car are that fuel cells contain expensive platinum, are difficult to make powerful enough to power a conventional vehicle, and the hydrogen they use is hard to store in large quantities. But Riversimple founder Hugo Spowers said, "If your car is light and efficient enough, the hurdles are lowered."

The RUC weighs 350 kilograms and uses a cheaper 6 kw fuel cell, he says. The fuel payload need not be huge, either: just 1 kg (S2 lb) of liquid hydrogen (26 litres at normal pressure) is enough to take the car 300 kilometres. The car's top speed is 50 miles per hour, and it can accelerate from 0 to 30 mph (48 km/h) in 5.5 secon, Is. Even using hydrogen derived from natural gas, its well-to-wheel carbon emissions for urban driving are only 30 gms/km.

The car would not be on public sale, but will be leased. "That means we are driven to encourage people to keep them for as long as possible than replacing their vehicle quickiTy, as is usual in the car business," Spowers said.

He hopes to lease the first fleet in 2011, in a small UK city. The leasing cost is predicted to be around £200 (Rs 15,630) a month.

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