The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #59418 Message #1522078
Posted By: Amos
14-Jul-05 - 11:40 PM
Thread Name: BS: The Mother of all BS threads
Subject: RE: BS: The Mother of all BS threads
July 14, 2005
Graphite films only nanometers or billionths of a meter thick could help store hydrogen in an inexpensive, easily manufactured, lightweight and nontoxic manner, an international team of scientists told UPI's Nano World.
"If -- and that's a very large if -- a practical method for preparing the nanostructures can be found, there is a possibility for large-scale, economical production," said researcher John Tse, a materials scientist at the University of Saskatchewan in Saskatoon.
Government and industry leaders are convinced hydrogen will prove a key fuel in the future, with a five-year $1.2 billion U.S. initiative announced in 2003 to develop hydrogen fuel cells and Shell Oil committing $1 billion over five years, according to plans they announced in 2001. This is because hydrogen is the most common element, making up roughly three-quarters of the known universe, while fossil fuels are limited.In addition, the chemical reaction needed for hydrogen cars combines hydrogen with oxygen to produce energy and water, with none of the dirty mix of toxins and global warming gases burning gasoline spews.
"The use of hydrogen as a fuel in which the combustion product is water will help to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases that are detrimental to the environment," Tse said.
The problem of how to store hydrogen remains the Achilles' heel for a hydrogen economy, however.The desired end is a cheap device no heavier and no bulkier than a traditional gasoline tank that provides enough hydrogen to power a vehicle for at least 300 miles before refueling.This is challenging, because storing hydrogen often demands extreme cold, heat or pressure, which requires equipment that is heavy, bulky or expensive.
This may be very important.