Hydrogen power is a new and slowly emerging technology in many countries. This technology was first used in the Apollo moon project in the year 1960. Hydrogen powered vehicles are the future of automobile industries. So, let us know – what actually hydrogen powered technology is; about vehicles that run on hydrogen power, their advantages and disadvantages.
What are hydrogen powered vehicles – how are they different from gasoline/diesel powered vehicles?
Hydrogen powered vehicles are those vehicles that run with the hydrogen fuel, which is formed by mixing hydrogen with oxygen in air. This produces electricity through a process called hydrolysis, powering the electric motors through which cars run. The only by-product of the hydrogen powered vehicles is water-vapor.
In hydrogen cars, fuel cell plays a very important role; and it is an essential part of it as it helps in producing electricity. For producing electricity or power in required quantity through the process of hydrolysis, a single fuel cell will not be enough for the vehicle. So, a number of cells are arranged in stacks.
Hydrogen is not available in nature in required or useful quantities; rather it exists in the form of molecules and especially in abundant quantities present in water molecule. So, the hydrogen fuel is manufactured in various ways i.e., through natural gas or by passing electric current through water etc.
Advantages of hydrogen power
- Vehicles that run on hydrogen fuel are environmental friendly i.e., they emit only water vapor into atmosphere and not CO2
- Reduced dependency of fuel (i.e., doesn’t have to depend on the imported oil)
- Hydrogen is available in plenty and it is a renewable source of energy
Disadvantages of hydrogen power
- If the hydrogen escapes into the atmosphere, it gives rise to dangerous accidents
- It catches fire easily. The hydrogen flames are not easily visible and they are risky. In ideal situations, there shouldn’t be oxygen in the liquid hydrogen tanks
- Your skin can get damaged if you come into contact with liquid hydrogen
- Less number of hydrogen fuel stations
- Vehicles are expensive as compared to the gas/diesel vehicles
This is all about hydrogen powered technology, and hydrogen power vehicles. So, in future you can expect the vehicles that use hydrogen power technology.
Recently, as a boost to hydrogen power technology, Toyota which is one of the leading automobile manufactures of hydrogen technologies has announced a hydrogen powered car named “Mirai” into the market and expecting good sales in Japan, US and Europe in the coming days. Soon, with increase in the number of hydrogen fuel stations, the hydrogen power vehicles will boom the market.