Hydrogen versus modern electric batteries, who will win?

  • The hydrogen fuel cell progresses much slower commercially speaking.
  • Various electric models homologated and autonomous regions above 300 kilometers.
  • The investment required to launch hydrogen is much higher, and costs are always higher.

The hydrogen refueling model approximates the best we have become accustomed oil. It can not be refueled at home, but in places authorized to do so, hidrogeneras

Two technologies are going to fight in the future by the hegemony of roads, electrical and those of hydrogen, although there will be hybrid and electric generators as models shaped parting oil plus gas engines and synthetic / biological fuels. Gasoline and conventional diesel are increasingly more future oil color. The reasons are primarily environmental, rather than a shortage of crude.

Autonomies of electric cars are rising sharply in recent months. Battery optimized designs manage to get more energy density without altering the livability, trunk or external dimensions of vehicles. Autonomies homologated in many cases exceed 250, 300 and 400 kilometers. Does that mean we can already travel? We do not run.

Increases the battery capacity, recharge speed not

Approval is tremendously advantageous conditions for electric cars. For example, the Renault ZOE z.e. 40, which accredits 400 kilometers with 41 kWh batteries, would take an average of about 10 kWh / 100 km. Out of town It is an average impossible to get normal speeds unless it is downhill. Within realistic action are 200-300 kilometers, reaching 120 km / h, air conditioning and driving using a completely normal way.

Fast charging network is essential to enable long distance travel

Autonomy is highly variable depending on the conditions of use, the electric motors will "Bush" reaching highway speeds, maximum efficiency is reached at low speed and low speed. For normal, there is only one gear ratio, and meaningless put "marches" an electric. Basically just we are going to change the acceleration, not autonomy, and would add weight and mechanical friction. Do not care.

Much electric range = high price

The Opel Ampera-e, which is the most promising generalist in terms of autonomy, can reach 400 kilometers real autonomy. To travel is essential to use fast charging points that will lengthen travel, but they make possible. This requires a public network that, today, is almost nonexistent.

Still more promising to travel the hydrogen is refueled in minutes and autonomies are superior. The main problem with this technology is that everything is still expensive sounding hydrogen: Cars, fuel cells, riding "hidrogeneras", Obtaining hydrogen itself (not loose), etc. Now only it makes sense to use hydrogen in very specific areas of the world.

Toyota hopes "massify" Mirai next decade, but it will remain a very low volume (about 30,000 per year)

Several companies are driving, your own "pocket", Installing hidrogeneras to create a network of public refuel. When there is enough coverage, the pioneers are encouraging. Otherwise, it's a bit stupid to spend an amount equivalent to double or triple a conventional car that can go anywhere. In most cases, now pioneers refueled "free", but they pay a considerable monthly fee.

Now take advantage electrical

Will be easier to mount a fast charging network for electric cars hidrogeneras a network. For this to be faster, the oil industry will have to get in garlic and anticipate the inevitable, if not, one day they will have to drink their refined oil. It's not as simple as placing a deposit and a pair of pumps, storing hydrogen is complicated and expensive to be safe. And that it is, it is safe.

In my opinion, It is not going to impose any technology over the other, as the advantages and disadvantages do not overlap, the electrical have some advantages and hydrogen are other. Clearly, for short and medium range electrical end up being more interesting, especially if exceed 30-40 kWh battery capacity and can be recharged to 80% in 15-30 minutes. Long distance hydrogen, if lower costs, will be better than any current diesel.

Tesla cars are high-end, we should not forget that little detail

Until recently, much autonomy meant many banks (more weight, volume) and dedicated platforms for electric cars, Tesla case. Gradually the general size and compact models are reaching autonomy more than decent, but again, to see in what conditions. Do not expect disruptive leaps in battery technology.

Middle of the next decade cars hydrogen fuel cell will begin to be equivalent to pure electric prices, but its adoption depends heavily on strong public and private investment: no network there is nothing to do. A poor, electric can be loaded slowly into existing infrastructure or low investment, rapid recharge involves higher costs.

For example, a quick recharge point for a city council can cost more than 40,000 euros just to place and pay the power company about 5,000 euros per year assuming no one use! You should add the power consumed to which it is contracted, ie availability. They will begin to place more load points when you see a business model for that.

The network of hydrogen fueling begins to be interesting in places like California or Japan, where they are investing thousands of dollars / euros

In other words, recharging will not be free, not cheap

In no place like home, they say. The same can be said of reloads for electric cars, at a cost that can exceed two or three times to do so in the comfort of the garage. Will still be cheaper than doing dinosaur juice, or in the worst case, at a similar cost. The consumer is willing to travel to that if the daily routine life and saves up to 80% on fuel.

For hydrogen refueling is economical, it must be mass produced and organically, without pulling fossil fuels or energy-inefficient processes. That still has not been resolved on a massive scale. Achieve abundant and renewable energy for electric cars is much closer to being achieved. Moreover, the surplus of the system is going to waste much less as increase the fleet of electric cars.

Electricity came to stay, and is unstoppable

In the future we will not speak of petrol or diesel, talk of plug or fuel cell. No system is better than the other, they are complementary. Cities will becoming quieter and cleaner, As the old internal combustion engines go silencing their escapes. The 2030s will be very very different from today, and you'll see.