The wasserstoff revolution

Discussion in 'General' started by Martin Williams, Mar 5, 2018.

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  1. Martin Williams

    Martin Williams Active Member

    Seems to be taking off with a typically efficient German roll-out of hydrogen filling stations planned for the country.

    It seems Hyundai is poised to take advantage of it anyway with their hydrogen Nexo which seems to be stuffed with all sorts of whizz-bang electronic gimmickry. That said, it is supposed to cost less than the Mirai.

    As the plan seems to be to get 400 hydrogen stations up and running by 2023, difficulty in filling up with hydrogen won't be much of an obstacle. There are relatively few FCEVs there at the moment, but it will be interesting to see how popular they become. We won't have long to wait.
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  3. Roy_H

    Roy_H Active Member

    "The further development of the infrastructure in Germany has now taken shape with the establishment of H2MOBILITY, although the idea of the company in fact goes back to September 2009 and the project “GermanHy”. A study that took into account factors like resource availability, energy efficiency, costs, CO2 reduction potential and import dependence, looked at the prospects of providing hydrogen as a fuel by 2050, and a hydrogen roadmap was produced.

    The study provided evidence that the alternative fuel has a vast potential. Hydrogen could cover up to 40% of the demand for energy in Germany’s transport sector by 2050."

    OMG they are still quoting this old study and following through on the plan? I read that obsolete plan full of fallacies and predictions that by 2020 BEVs would only be able to serve inner city short distance commutes because they would never have a range greater than 150km, a top speed of 110km/hr and EVcharging stations would cost more for BEVs than for FCVs! This is their justification for installing the H2 highway of the future.

    Tesla is installing charge stations by the thousands at no charge to the taxpayer, but the taxpayer is footing the bill of about $1M per H2 pump! The whole report is based on the fallacy that BEVs could never be capable of charging in less than many hours and be totally impractical for long distance driving. Thus leaving FCVs as the only non-polluting option.
    Domenick likes this.
  4. Martin Williams

    Martin Williams Active Member

    Well, whatever their reasons, I think it will be very interesting to see how well hydrogen does there. I suspect that many german homes are not easily able to charge cars at home, and all other things being equal, this may tip the balance.
  5. Marcel_g

    Marcel_g Member

    Martin, you must have missed this one:

    That's 12,000 new charge points in Germany, going in well before this H2 network. Sure it'll be interesting, but plugins have already replaced millions more ICE vehicles than FCEV at this point in time, and that gap is going to widen by millions more over the next 5 years. At which point batteries will be much cheaper, and charge points ubiquitous, and many urban dwellers without charging access will be using autonomous ride sharing anyway. I don't see how H2 vehicles will ever catch up.
    Roy_H likes this.
  6. Martin Williams

    Martin Williams Active Member

    I did miss it, Marcel_g. Thank you for bringing it to my attention. It really isn't a zero-sum game, there is room for both BEVs and FCEVs I think.

    I would, however, make the point that with the majority of these 12,000 charging points (all but 500) being 22kW, that there will need to be a great many of them, simply on the basis of how long charging takes. Lamppost ones will be even lower power I suspect. The underground cabling will be designed for low-power lighting and will be too light for heavy current. I have a feeling, too, that people will connect their cars to these points for far longer than is needed to charge them, perhaps doing a morning's shopping or a days work before returning and freeing them for another user. The battery might be fully charged in far less than that, but the point cannot be used by anyone else until the owner returns and moves the vehicle.

    If you consider a single hydrogen pump operating at the modest rate of six charges an hour for a 12 hour day, it can serve 72 cars a day. Given that the average distance travelled is 40 miles a day, one might surmise that hydrogen cars will need to visit about once every ten days for a complete tankful. That pump can therefore, accommodate 720 cars. Given six such pumps in a hydrogen filling and you meet the needs of 4320 cars. without there being any queues. So with 400 filling stations spread across the country, Germany will be able to support nearly one and three quarter million FCEVs by 2023. Of course, if hydrogen cars become that popular the number of filling stations will rise too.

    The interesting thing about Germany is that assuming this H2 programme achieves its aims, the major constraint to hydrogen-powered cars - lack of filling stations - is lifted and the consumer will be able to make a choice as to whether to choose batteries or hydrogen according to his own lifestyle and preferences. It seems, therefore, to be a good bellwether for what will happen elsewhere in the world.
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  8. 101101

    101101 Well-Known Member

    The hydrogen stations need to be banned. It would mean continuing to use the state dole to finance Petrol's welfare. Petrol would collapse tomorrow if its subsidies were removed. That needs to happen yesterday as its gluttons were paid off long ago by the rest of us. Enough of these parasites. Puthat money in Green energy!
  9. Roy_H

    Roy_H Active Member

    If there is charging everywhere then it won't matter that the car is parked longer than charging takes. The point is low power charge points are very cheap, and even lamp post wiring, originally designed for sodium lights now have excess capacity because of change to LED lights.

    You keep harping about how H2 pumps can fill so many cars quickly, but you never consider the cost. BEVs and convenient charging everywhere is much cheaper. H2 will always cost at least twice electricity because whatever non-polluting H2 production you can think of can produce electricity as well and usually electricity is produced first and then electricity is use to separate hydrogen from water and electricity is used to compress it etc.

    I suppose there are a lot of wealthy people who don't give a damn about price and somehow will think that driving to a hydrogen filling station is more convenient than charging at home, but they will be very much in the minority. Everybody on a budget will choose BEVs and most wealthy will too. The wealthy will have garages, the poor who park on streets will still buy BEVs over FCVs because the fuel is cheaper.

    My beef is that the taxpayer is being forced to pay for the hydrogen distribution infrastructure for the sole benefit of the oil companies who will sell the H2 and the small portion of wealthy people who will buy FCVs. If the oil companies would foot the bill, I would have no issue with it.

    Several people have pointed out to me the Mirai $369/mth lease including $15k H2 fuel as being such a bargain. It sure is! Typical lease on a $57k car is about $600/mth and no free fuel. Is that fabulous deal somehow magically produced just because it is an FCV? It only exists because it is so heavily subsidized, and yet FCV proponents point to that as "proof" that FCVs are cheaper than BEVs.

  10. Feed The Trees

    Feed The Trees Active Member

    Martin has a good point on count of stations. The important part isn't raw count of locations, the important part is throughput capacity of cars served.

    Sent from my Nexus 5X using Tapatalk
  11. Martin Williams

    Martin Williams Active Member

    I think subsidising new technology is part of a government's job. All governments do it either directly like this or indirectly via development of technology for armaments etc.

    As to the cost of hydrogen, I expect it will fall to a level dictated largely by the cost of producing it. This is mostly down to energy cost and given we have all the energy we need, provided we take the trouble to collect it, there is very little to stop it falling to a very low level indeed.

    I think it is a mistake to assume that things will stay as they are indefinitely. They almost certainly won't, and there is no harm in governments spending money on developing different technologies. Time will tell which works best, and I am all for allowing people to choose from different alternatives anyway.

    My personal view is that current battery vehicles are unattractive from a number of viewpoints. Hydrogen cars offer all the benefits of an electric car, and allow me to continue motoring without the disadvantages of batteries. You are, of course, free to hold quite different views.

    But I see no reason whatever to object to supplying both electrical charging points for battery powered vehicles, AND hydrogen filling stations. We do not have to force one or the other onto anyone, and I see no advantage in doing so apart from some cost saving which given the total cost of road transport is a trivial amount.

    One final point about street light points. Sodium lamps are quite efficient and take between 100 and 400 Watts. Some are as high as 1,000 Watts, but they are generally not situated near where one can park to charge. The saving, therefore, even assuming LED replacements take NO power is quite small and will make little difference to the rate of charging. In the UK, street cabling is 3-phase and is used to supply houses and other premises so it WOULD probably supply quite high power for a charger, but you would have to replace the cable from the lamppost to this cable and that would involve removing the lamppost, digging down and replacing the cable before replacing the post. It would probably be cheaper to simply install a high powered charging point next to it.
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  13. Pushmi-Pullyu

    Pushmi-Pullyu Well-Known Member

    Sorry to see Germany throwing money down the same rathole as California.

    Promising 400 H2 filling stations within 5 years? It's the same ol' "hydrogen economy" hoax. Looks like whoever is promoting this copied it from how the California Fuel Cell Partnership has been promoting the hoax.

    Here's a reality check:

    "How to Promote the Hydrogen Economy Hoax"
  14. Pushmi-Pullyu

    Pushmi-Pullyu Well-Known Member

    No, Martin does not have a good point. Not a single one of his claims or arguments regarding fool cell cars, electric vehicles, or the "hydrogen economy" hoax, passes a reality check. At best, he's good at sophistry -- at making arguments which appear to be valid but are subtly fallacious. I don't know what Martin's motive is for his campaign of posting EV bashing FUD while promoting the "hydrogen economy" hoax, but one thing is certain: It's not one he's willing to admit to.

    Regarding throughput of cars served, here's a reality check regarding cost: Hydrogen fueling stations cost ~$1 million per dozen fool cell cars served per day. Typically, in California, the cost is either $2 million for a station with a capacity of 2 dozen cars or $3 million for a capacity of 3 dozen cars. If we assume every car gets filled once a week, that comes to a cost of ~$11,900 per car just to build the infrastructure to fuel the cars. That's on top of the significantly higher cost for the fuel itself, plus the higher cost of maintaining those expensive stations.

    Compare to the cost of installing a L2 EV charger in every parking spot where cars are parked overnight or long-term. With mass installation, the cost would easily be less than $500 per car.

    Martin keeps insisting that it's so difficult to install EV chargers at curbside, in areas where people park on the street, that this will never become commonplace. If you look at Martin's arguments on their logical and factual merits, you'll quickly see that every single one of them fails, and fails badly!

    As they say, a picture is worth a thousand words:


    As the EV revolution progresses, this is a sight which will become more and more commonplace everywhere cars are parked.
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
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  15. Roy_H

    Roy_H Active Member

    Public outdoor low level charging locations will be mostly inductive. This both for convenience and vandal-proof. Billing and control will be wireless. Yes these stations will be more expensive, but when done in large numbers the cost/station will be low. All EVs will have inductive charging at least as an option.
  16. Pushmi-Pullyu

    Pushmi-Pullyu Well-Known Member

    I also think the industry will move toward wireless charging being the standard for L1 or L2 charging. But it's going to take awhile to get there. Currently*, Tesla has a firm no-wireless-charging policy.

    As you say, burying the charger under the pavement will make it more convenient and mostly eliminate the danger of being a target for copper thieves.

    *Pun intended. :cool:
  17. Feed The Trees

    Feed The Trees Active Member

    You're getting ranty and name calling again.

    And as seems to be tradition, you totally change the point of my statement and then refute it. Seems you can't help yourself. Here, in this case, I wasn't commenting on anything to do with hydrogen itself, merely location throughput, but you take a post, ignore the context, and go all Pu-Pu about something different.

    You wouldn't happen to be Dutch would you, because you sure do love some red herring.
  18. Martin Williams

    Martin Williams Active Member

    A third of the population of the USA have no facilities for home charging. These people would be wholly dependent on public charging points, so to supply them you need a number of charging points more or less equal to the number of cars these people are likely to own. There are roughly 240 million cars in the USA at the moment and were they all to go over to battery power this would mean at least 80 million charging points - just for those who cannot charge at home. There will be others who wish to use public charging points, particularly commuters who have parked their cars whilst they work and wish to top up, so lets say 100 million are needed. So far, the country boasts about 50,000 - about 0.05% of what is needed for an all-battery car economy.

    I suspect the cost of this would be enormous. A single hydrogen filling station - as argued above - will serve 4,000 FCEVs and costs (allegedly) $3 million. But 4000 battery car charging points will - at a low estimate of $1500 per wireless charging point, cost $6 million.

    It is worth remembering, too, that with wireless charging, the already low efficiency of around 85% would be degraded to almost nothing by the layer of steel rebars which exist in road concrete, so this would have to be dug out. Perhaps some form of non-conductive rebars could be used in replacing the concrete, although I don't know of any. You would probably need a much deeper layer of concrete. It all sounds very messy an expensive to me. Leaving the rebars in place would mean a lot of energy being dumped into them, raising the temperature during charging and likely causing the concrete to crack. It simply isn't an option to ignore this.

    The Devil, as ever, lurks in the detail. It is only when you start digging into the problems which are rarely if ever mentioned by the manufacturer or enthusiasts that you get a whiff of sulphur.
  19. Roy_H

    Roy_H Active Member

    Well, Martin, I give you a point. Best argument yet. Around here all roads are asphalt, not concrete and no rebar, quite easy to dig up as I see all the time for road maintenance, replacing in road stop light sensors etc. But I agree even $1500 is a low price for mass installed inductive chargers. You have now set a new target, how to get this down to $500.
  20. Pushmi-Pullyu

    Pushmi-Pullyu Well-Known Member

    Well, you're entitled to your opinion. Seems odd for someone calling himself "Feed The Trees" to take the side of an EV basher and a shill for Big Oil's "hydrogen economy" hoax, though.

    I thought your point was about throughput of H2 fueling stations vs. EV charging. If that wasn't your point, then please restate it more clearly.

    But yes, I certainly did refute it. It's simply not true that it's easier to increase throughput for H2 charging stations. That is factually incorrect, both on the basis of science and economics. This simply isn't in dispute, it's established fact.

    Arguing with Martin is like arguing with a climate change denier, or even a flat-earther. It's difficult for me to understand why you would take his side, if your agenda is really pro-environmental as your screen name indicates.

    Seems you want to make this an argument about personalities, rather than facts or logic. Also seems like you're picking a side sharply contrary to what your screen name indicates.
  21. Pushmi-Pullyu

    Pushmi-Pullyu Well-Known Member

    ROTFL!! :confused: :eek: o_O :p

    We should award you the Golden Scoop Shovel award for all the bull pucky you're shoveling out.

    As I have pointed out, a single $3 million H2 fueling station in California will service an estimated (36 x 7 =) 252 fool cell cars. Of course, that's optimal; the actual number served will be less. Your assertion here that a single $3 million H2 fuel station would serve 4000 (!!) fool cell cars, just demonstrates how far away from the truth you have to go to have even a false argument. You've lied by more than an order of magnitude!

    I dunno about anybody else, but when a person on one side of an argument consistently lies, and the person on the other side sticks to facts and truth, then the person who's not lying wins... every time.

    You mean, the very high efficiency of that as compared to the overall 20-25% energy efficiency of using hydrogen as a fuel for passenger cars.

    It's really amazing that you keep bringing up energy efficiency, as that's a loser for your argument every time!

    There's this stuff called "asphalt" that they use to pave roads. Doesn't need any rebar. They even use it to patch concrete roads, so wireless charger installers could easily cut a hole in a concrete street, install the charger, and patch it with asphalt.

    I guess you never heard of "asphalt", either. :rolleyes:
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  22. Pushmi-Pullyu

    Pushmi-Pullyu Well-Known Member

    You can get a wireless charger now, for about $1500 retail (see link below). That doesn't include installation cost, but Google only charged us $300 for installation including laying a fiber optic cable, which involved digging a trench through the yard. So with mass production, wholesale cost, and installation by either a city's utilities (which already deal with digging up streets and patching them) or by a specialty company, it seems pretty easy to show that the average installed cost could be brought down significantly below $1500 per charger.

    My earlier estimate of $500 was for installation of curbside EV "hitching posts". That figure might be lowball for wireless chargers buried in the street. But since we're talking about installing something like 100 million chargers to cover every public parking space, then that $500 might actually wind up being an over-estimate for an average price, by the time most of the installations have been completed.

    And most importantly, let's not let the EV hater control the debate here. The need for ~100 million wireless EV chargers in public streets is not an expense that must be paid for by taxypayers. It's a new business opportunity in a growth industry! I can easily see the day when an EV owner would pay for wireless charging in the same way we now pay for cell phone service.

    From InsideEVs news, July 2015: "Plugless For LEAF Is Now $1540 With Free Shipping Including Canada, Price For Volt Is $1,260"
    Last edited: Mar 6, 2018
  23. Martin Williams

    Martin Williams Active Member

    Well, Roy_H. I imagine installation costs WILL fall, whether to $500 remains to be seen. Roads vary here. Sometimes they are concrete, sometimes not.

    I don't know how diligent road cleaning is in your country. I imagine it varies, much as it does in mine, but certainly, you wouldn't want a squashed drinks can, for instance, getting between the road and the car either. This would do your efficiency no good. By how much I don't know. Some feedback from someone who owns or uses one would be nice. Perhaps it won't have much effect.

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