Hydrogen as a near-term transportation fuel

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The health costs associated with urban air pollution are a growing problem faced by all societies. Automobiles burning gasoline and diesel contribute a great deal to this problem. The cost to the United States of imported oil is more than US$50 billion annually. Economic alternatives are being actively sought. Hydrogen fuel, used in an internal combustion engine optimized for maximum efficiency and as part of a hybrid-electric vehicle, will give excellent performance and range (>480 km) with emissions well below the ultra-low emission vehicle standards being required in California. These vehicles can also be manufactured without excessive cost. Hydrogen-fueled engines ... continued below

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9 p.

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Schock, R.N.; Berry, G.D.; Smith, J.R. & Rambach, G.D. June 29, 1995.

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The health costs associated with urban air pollution are a growing problem faced by all societies. Automobiles burning gasoline and diesel contribute a great deal to this problem. The cost to the United States of imported oil is more than US$50 billion annually. Economic alternatives are being actively sought. Hydrogen fuel, used in an internal combustion engine optimized for maximum efficiency and as part of a hybrid-electric vehicle, will give excellent performance and range (>480 km) with emissions well below the ultra-low emission vehicle standards being required in California. These vehicles can also be manufactured without excessive cost. Hydrogen-fueled engines have demonstrated indicated efficiencies of more than 50% under lean operation. Combining engine and other component efficiencies, the overall vehicle efficiency should be about 40%, compared with 13% for a conventional vehicle in the urban driving cycle. The optimized engine-generator unit is the mechanical equivalent of the fuel cell but at a cost competitive with today`s engines. The increased efficiency of hybrid-electric vehicles now makes hydrogen fuel competitive with today`s conventional vehicles. Conservative analysis of the infrastructure options to support a transition to a hydrogen-fueled light-duty fleet indicates that hydrogen may be utilized at a total cost comparable to what US vehicle operators pay today. Both on-site production by electrolysis or reforming of natural gas and liquid hydrogen distribution offer the possibility of a smooth transition by taking advantage of existing low-cost, large-scale energy infrastructures. Eventually, renewable sources of electricity and scalable methods of making hydrogen will have lower costs than today. With a hybrid-electric propulsion system, the infrastructure to supply hydrogen and the vehicles to use it can be developed today and thus can be in place when fuel cells become economical for vehicle use.

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9 p.

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OSTI as DE95015907

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  • International symposium on energy environment economics, Melbourne (Australia), 20-24 Nov 1995

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  • Other: DE95015907
  • Report No.: UCRL-JC--121355
  • Report No.: CONF-951161--1
  • Grant Number: W-7405-ENG-48
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 105877
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc626061

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  • June 29, 1995

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • June 16, 2015, 7:43 a.m.

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  • Feb. 16, 2016, 7:39 p.m.

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Schock, R.N.; Berry, G.D.; Smith, J.R. & Rambach, G.D. Hydrogen as a near-term transportation fuel, article, June 29, 1995; California. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc626061/: accessed July 20, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.