Hydrogen fuel-cell cars developed by Israeli researchers

Israel 21 (www.israel21c.org) reports that researchers in Israel are looking for a solution to power electric cars:

Auto Engines powered by hydrogen fuel cells Can you hear the Saudis sweatin'?
Successful research in Israel into improving the efficiency of solar-hydrogen fuel cells has raised the potential for their use in non-polluting cars of the future that could drastically reduce growth in the use of oil.

A team of scientists at the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, led by Prof. Stuart Licht, has been working for several years on producing hydrogen by so-called solar water splitting systems. If the hydrogen production method could be made efficient enough hydrogen fuel cells could be used to power electric cars using energy that would be constantly renewable, overcoming problems with recharging, weight, pollution and short battery life that plague today's electric vehicles.

Early models had predicted that the solar method of producing hydrogen would work, but only with about 15 percent efficiency, not enough to make the technology practical for automobiles. This was later improved to 30 percent, but intensive research by the Technion team has now raised the level even higher.

These breakthroughs have attracted the attention of companies such as Royal Dutch Shell and Daimler, which have already experimented with fuel cells and hydrogen as an alternative to oil, and have been waiting for a more efficient way to create hydrogen at a commercially feasible price.

While the public may have to wait for hydrogen fuel-cell cars, automakers are already working to place prototypes in fleets. Recently, Los Angeles signed a deal with Honda for five fuel-cell cars.

So, less polution and we stop the flowing of billions of dollars to Saudi Arabia and the terrorists it supports (Al-Qaeda, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, etc...) - sounds like a good solution! I studied at the Technion, Israel's Institute of Technology in the early 90's and I'm proud of my college.

I cope the full article below.





Technion team helping to make hydrogen fuel cells work in cars
By Rick Radin November 04, 2002
http://www.israel21c.org/bin/en.jsp?
enZone=technology&enDisplay=view&
enPage=BlankPage&enDispWhat=object
&enDispWho=Articles^l216

Successful research in Israel into improving the efficiency of solar-hydrogen fuel cells has raised the potential for their use in non-polluting cars of the future that could drastically reduce growth in the use of oil.

A team of scientists at the Technion - Israel Institute of Technology, led by Prof. Stuart Licht, has been working for several years on producing hydrogen by so-called solar water splitting systems. If the hydrogen production method could be made efficient enough hydrogen fuel cells could be used to power electric cars using energy that would be constantly renewable, overcoming problems with recharging, weight, pollution and short battery life that plague today's electric vehicles.

Early models had predicted that the solar method of producing hydrogen would work, but only with about 15 percent efficiency, not enough to make the technology practical for automobiles. This was later improved to 30 percent, but intensive research by the Technion team has now raised the level even higher.

These breakthroughs have attracted the attention of companies such as Royal Dutch Shell and Daimler, which have already experimented with fuel cells and hydrogen as an alternative to oil, and have been waiting for a more efficient way to create hydrogen at a commercially feasible price.

While the public may have to wait for hydrogen fuel-cell cars, automakers are already working to place prototypes in fleets. Recently, Los Angeles signed a deal with Honda for five fuel-cell cars.

The California Fuel Cell Partnership, a consortium of automakers, government agencies and others, plans to have 60 cars operating in California by the end of next year.

The Technion group improved the efficiency of the hydrogen extraction process by placing a photovoltaic cell on top of two flat, finger-long electrodes. The combination "is very efficient in converting solar energy into electric current, but also provides nearly the ideal voltage for splitting water" into hydrogen and oxygen, Licht said.

The technique converted sunlight to an electrolysis current with 18.3 percent efficiency. The current, in turn, creates hydrogen gas as it passes through acidic water.

In 1998, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory in Golden, Colo., demonstrated a novel apparatus for solar-to-hydrogen conversion. To achieve unprecedented efficiency, the device used multiple layers of semiconductor materials. The researchers arranged the layers to form two active regions, or junctions that would absorb solar photons that dislodge electrons. Some of the less energetic photons weren't captured in the first junction, but passed to the second, where they generated more current.

The design gained an energy advantage by combining solar electricity and water splitting into one unit. Their cell's efficiency doubled that of any previous solar-to-hydrogen device.

Licht and his colleagues have improved upon that pioneering effort in several crucial ways. The NREL device had to be completely immersed in water to operate. That feature forced the researchers to select semiconductors that wouldn't break down in solution.

By keeping their stack of semiconductor layers dry, Licht and his group were free to optimize them for both converting sunlight to electricity and water splitting. Their design permits a low electrolysis current, which also reduces energy waste.

Rick Radin is editor of ISRAEL21c

Posted by David Melle
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Comments

are the solar cells mounted on the vehicle to produce hydrogen onboard the vehicle
see stm corp.-a power unit composed of fuel cell,elecrolyser and water distiller and water tanmk

Posted by: joseph braverman at October 7, 2003 04:33 PM


GOOD GOING ISRAIL YOU PROBALY FIRST MIDILE EAST USEING HYDROGEN NOT FOSSILE FUEL POTROLIUM

Posted by: JAMES BRASELTON at April 26, 2005 09:03 AM


my name is Robert Jones I live with my family in Queensland Australia.I have spent 7 years experimentally researching hydrogen water / fuel technology. I have successfully been able to run several fuel injected car engines from my H20 fuel cells but much work needs to be done to perfect the technology hindered only by lack of funding.My methods of producing hydrogen/oxygen fuel relies on high frequency pulsed voltage rather than electrolytic reactions.Any interested in assisting me to perfect this work for the common good are invited to contact me at youspeak@bigpond.net.au

Posted by: robert jones at May 22, 2006 12:39 AM


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