Hydrogen Fuel Cells Are Down, but Perhaps Not Out

This article describes how, with nearly every major auto maker promising to launch a battery-powered electric car of some kind in the next couple of years, it would be easy to presume that hydrogen fuel cells are dead. The article describes how hydrogen-powered cars have found their thunder and much of their funding stolen by battery-powered vehicles. The Obama administration, which has thrown big dollars behind electric-battery development and plug-in-car incentives, wants to slash spending on hydrogen technology by nearly $70 million, or 40%, next year. California's grand plans for a "hydrogen highway", a string of up to 200 hydrogen refueling stations across the state, have stalled. Against that backdrop, some car makers, such as Ford Motor Company and Renault SA, have scaled back hydrogen development programs for now to focus on bringing plug-in electric cars to market. But hydrogen should not be buried just yet. In fact, a growing number of auto executives argue that hydrogen is the ultimate alternative to fossil fuels and that its moment is closer than ever. Yes, there are a lot of opportunities for battery-powered vehicles, but in many ways, the opportunities for fuel cells are much bigger, says the head of the Daimler AG research unit that is developing electric and other alternative-fuel technologies. He adds that the German car maker aims to bring fuel-cell cars to market by 2015.

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  • Accession Number: 01342522
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Jun 6 2011 12:13PM