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The Chinese Volt?

10128 Views 17 Replies 10 Participants Last post by  &eye
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The more options we have to not use petrolium the better. GM is on the right track... They are designing a system that is flexible enough to use many different fuel technologies to extend the range of the batteries and even use different/better batteries as they become available.

Rather that find fault with hydrogen, or any other alternative fuel, let's cheer the efforts. I for one am greatly encouraged by this announcement.

You totally did not get my cheer for hydrogen! I'm not proposing that GM or anyone else drop batteries and move over to fuel cells. Actually I'm cheering GM for doing both at the same time. It's all about developing technologies that are out there to get us off of petrolium. It's possible to poo-poo any technology and tell us why it won't work. I'll take a crack at it right here and now. Let's explore all the roads ahead. Perhaps more than one will mature and be a part of our future. One thing is for sure, oil is going away. If we aren't going to use new technologies, then let's all find a horse and buy it.

Anyway, here's my crack at discrediting everything:

OIL: It's easy to fuel up with. The technology is mature. But it's running out. It's terribly expensive. I't dirty and polluting. It allows our nation to be held hostage by foreign governments that don't like us very much.

BEV's:They are clean, and the battery technology is maturing quickly. But, they have limited range and the time required to refuel (i.e. recharge) them makes it difficult to see how BEV only vehicles will ever fully replace a vehicle that can be fueled quickly.

Hydrogen: Can be burned directly or used in fuel cells to make electricity. It's relatively easy and quick to refuel a hydrogen car. The only polution from from combustion is water. It can be made from water using electricity. But, curretly it's "cracked" from fossil fuels releasing lots of CO2 in the process. There's no fueling infrastructure setup. To "crack" hydrogen from water requires a whole new electricity generation paradigm of solar, wind, wave or nuclear power to make the product without polution.

Bio-Fuels: Renewable and sustainable (maybe). That's the best we can say for it. But, using food stocks to create bio-fuels is driving up food costs and starving people in 3rd world countries. The UN is already taking the West and the US in particular to task for diverting food to fuel production. It may turn out to be a stop gap at best.
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