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posted by Fnord666 on Thursday November 16 2017, @04:16AM   Printer-friendly
from the clever-naming dept.

"A gas supplier company in the Netherlands has effectively doubled the range of the Tesla Model S by adding hydrogen power to the electric luxury sedan. Dubbed the "Hesla," the modification adds a second charging supply to the existing electrical system, using a tank of hydrogen as an alternative fuel source.

Last week, the Holthausen Group announced that it had begun testing the prototype vehicle. With a fully charged battery and a tank of hydrogen, the Helsa can travel close to 620 miles — nearly twice the range of the stock Model S P100D." http://www.foxnews.com/auto/2017/11/13/meet-hesla-modded-tesla-model-s-that-runs-on-hydrogen-fuel.html


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  • (Score: 2) by frojack on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:08AM (14 children)

    by frojack (1554) Subscriber Badge on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:08AM (#597590) Journal

    How much trunk/bonnet space do you give up for hydrogen tankage and generator?
    How do you find hydrogen fuel refill stations?
    Are they close to the free. Tesla charging stations?

    --
    No, you are mistaken. I've always had this sig.
    • (Score: 3, Interesting) by captain normal on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:26AM (5 children)

      by captain normal (2205) on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:26AM (#597593)

      From TFA: "there are only 39 hydrogen fueling stations in the U.S., with the vast majority located in California." I don't think TRDT would want to drive around that blue state.
      The other problem (again FTFA #1) is that "The first problem with that rosy scenario is that hydrogen and oxygen love each other so much that free hydrogen doesn’t really exist in our atmosphere", but there is plenty of loose oxygen. Kinda like Hydrogen is the number of pretty girls in your bar,but as soon as a couple of them run in a bunch of loose oxygen dudes there is most likely a big kaboom! With the current DHS worried so much about explosive drones, delivery trucks and airport attacks, how will they feel about 200 MPH bombs running around the Highways.

      • (Score: 3, Interesting) by leftover on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:37AM (3 children)

        by leftover (2448) on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:37AM (#597595)

        An 'ordinary' tank of gasoline represents an enormously more powerful explosion than any tank of compressed hydrogen. The real problem with hydrogen is finding a way to get the stored energy density higher. And, of course, keeping the hydrogen contained. It really likes to sneak out of tanks.

        Aside from the [BIG] problem of building a new generation/distribution network, high-density storage is The Critical Issue for hydrogen. My favored approach is metal hydrides, which offer high density plus controlled release. You need to add heat to get the hydrogen out.

        --
        Bent, folded, spindled, and mutilated.
        • (Score: 4, Touché) by Unixnut on Thursday November 16 2017, @11:41AM (2 children)

          by Unixnut (5779) on Thursday November 16 2017, @11:41AM (#597642)

          > My favored approach is metal hydrides, which offer high density plus controlled release. You need to add heat to get the hydrogen out.

          Not bad, as we are discussing favored approaches. My favorite is to bind the hydrogen with carbon atoms [wikipedia.org], ideally forming longish chemical chains. These chains can store an immense amount of energy (so good energy density), are liquid at room temperature, much cheaper and easier to store (not many hydrogen atoms trying to escape through every single gap), easy to use in existing infrastructure and cars, and you can release the energy directly in as controlled (or not) fashion as you want, most commonly by adding heat (although not the only way) :-)

          • (Score: 2) by leftover on Thursday November 16 2017, @03:31PM (1 child)

            by leftover (2448) on Thursday November 16 2017, @03:31PM (#597731)

            Yup. Gasoline and internal combustion Just Work and everything is in place to use them. Makes for one hell of a barrier to entry for transportation. Economic forces, particularly the common shortsighted version, will not support building a replacement.

            --
            Bent, folded, spindled, and mutilated.
            • (Score: 2) by Unixnut on Tuesday November 21 2017, @09:49PM

              by Unixnut (5779) on Tuesday November 21 2017, @09:49PM (#599897)

              Doesn't have to be gasoline and internal combustion to make use of hydrocarbon fuel. There are many other hydrocarbons in there, some very easy to synthesize, and some that can be used in fuel cells to produce no exhaust but water.

              The fact that they can be burnt in adapted IC engines just provides for a nice transition period, rather than this foolhardy attempt to completely build out a brand new infrastructure and distribution (electric charging systems), for a technology that is quite frankly poorer than the alternative in every way possible (except for "tailpipe emissions", which is a bit of a cop out really).

      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:39AM

        by c0lo (156) on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:39AM (#597596)

        With the current DHS worried so much about explosive drones, delivery trucks and airport attacks, how will they feel about 200 MPH bombs running around the Highways.

        Yeah, right, like the LPG is much friendlier [wikipedia.org].

    • (Score: 3, Informative) by c0lo on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:37AM (6 children)

      by c0lo (156) on Thursday November 16 2017, @05:37AM (#597594)

      How do you find hydrogen fuel refill stations?

      Take a trip to Holland, I guess.

      (grin)

      ---

      Or go to your favourite hardware store, where you buy:
      - barbecue aluminium trays - thickish foil of aluminium, still a decent surface - take about 2-3 kg of them
      - some sodium hydroxide (I'm too lazy to compute how much you need for 2-3 kg of Al)
      - a bucket with a tube attached to the lead.

      Fill the bucket with water, drop and mix in the lye (always lye in water, never water over lye), roughly shred the aluminium trays and drop them in the lye solution.
      Enjoy the developing hydrogen and the potential of it as a fuel for hydrogen powered cars [wikipedia.org].

      PS - keep the resulting sodium aluminate, if you neutralize it (e.g. hydrochloric acid), you'll obtain aluminium hydroxide as a precipitate - good antacid, hearth-burns and acid reflux; open an online pharmacy and sell it as Gaviscon/Pepsamar [wikipedia.org].

      Or just calcine it to aluminium oxide, mix it with cement (and some other ingredients) and sell it as refractory cement.

      In addition, you'll never run out of table salt (from the neutralization step).

      (larger grin)

      • (Score: 2) by jimshatt on Thursday November 16 2017, @07:56AM (5 children)

        by jimshatt (978) on Thursday November 16 2017, @07:56AM (#597609) Journal
        Wouldn't electrolysis be a viable option?
        • (Score: 0, Disagree) by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 16 2017, @08:42AM (4 children)

          by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 16 2017, @08:42AM (#597616)

          only if you discover an exotic way to not spend in the process the same amount of energy that you could use to move the car...

          • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Thursday November 16 2017, @09:17AM

            by c0lo (156) on Thursday November 16 2017, @09:17AM (#597621)

            Electrolysis on-the-run is indeed stupid. As a source of hydrogen to 'fill a tank'**, it's Ok.

            ---

            ** Assuming a tank of hydrogen reaches a decent level of specific energy.

          • (Score: 2) by fritsd on Thursday November 16 2017, @01:08PM (1 child)

            by fritsd (4586) on Thursday November 16 2017, @01:08PM (#597664) Journal

            I asume jimshatt meant: electrolysis *at home in the garage*.

            • (Score: 3, Informative) by Phoenix666 on Thursday November 16 2017, @01:51PM

              by Phoenix666 (552) Subscriber Badge on Thursday November 16 2017, @01:51PM (#597681) Journal

              I saw a Discovery channel program once where a retired engineer did that. He had an array of solar panels that drove the electrolysis, and tanks in his yard to store the hydrogen. He ran his car on it and occasionally through a fuel cell in his house as a backup in case the solar panels weren't meeting his needs (like in the winter) at any moment in time.

              --
              Washington DC delenda est.
          • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Thursday November 16 2017, @03:53PM

            by Immerman (3985) on Thursday November 16 2017, @03:53PM (#597735)

            Actually, *more* energy than you would use to move the car - the laws of thermodynamics demand efficiency losses at every stage.

            On the other hand there are *already* a number of not-so-exotic hydrogen-producing techniques out there - from bioreactors to solar-electrolysis catalyst panels.

            And more importantly this "stunt" demonstrates the fact that EVs are relatively easy to modify to run off alternative fuels - the charging system doesn't care whether the electricity is generated from hydrogen, ethanol, biodiesel, wood-gas, or cold-fusion reactor.

    • (Score: 2) by VLM on Thursday November 16 2017, @01:58PM

      by VLM (445) Subscriber Badge on Thursday November 16 2017, @01:58PM (#597686)

      How much trunk/bonnet space do you give up for hydrogen tankage and generator?

      This is why the article is cheaty stunt.

      My wife's new car can theoretically tow 3500 pounds which is close enough to 3600 to make the math easy, and at about six pounds per gallon for avgas, and presumably mogas, that would be about six hundred gallons of gas, which again in the theme of making the math easy at 15 mpg which is probably pessimistic, thats nine THOUSAND miles without refueling. Of course the oil change interval is 5000 miles so you'll have to change the oil while underway, LOL.

      I'm sure if you take a four seat tesla and replace three of the standard people-of-walmart passengers at 300 pounds per with fuel tanks, thats some 900 pounds of extra batteries or H2 or whatever.

  • (Score: 2) by Immerman on Thursday November 16 2017, @03:46PM

    by Immerman (3985) on Thursday November 16 2017, @03:46PM (#597732)

    One of the greatest benefits of EVs is that they decouple the power source from the motive force. Generating electricity is the default goal of most alternative energy sources, and there's lots of well-understood ways to do it. Whether you're talking a hydrogen fuel cell, a biodiesel generator, or a Mr. Fusion, it's relatively easy to modify the charging system of an EV to accept it as a power source.

    Take an old EV, replace 20% of its dead batteries with fresh ones as a power buffer, and use the remaining space/weight capacity to install your alternative generator and fuel storage, and you've got your alternative-energy car of choice. And, since a generator doesn't need to vary its power output, you can tune your wood-gas fueled multistage Tesla turbine to operate in one specific maximum efficiency power-band.

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