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GM plans major test of fuel-cell cars in Asia

Discussion in 'Political Discussion' started by Real World, Jan 17, 2007.

  1. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    We're getting closer people. GM has invested Billions in hydrogen technology. You could almost say they've mortgaged their future on it. Let's hope it proves worth while.

    [​IMG]
    Equinox fuel Cell

    GM plans major test of fuel-cell cars in Asia

    The Yomiuri Shimbun

    General Motors Corp. unveiled Thursday its plan to conduct a large-scale test of fuel-cell vehicles in Asia--including in Japan--as well as in Europe and North America.

    The tests will be the largest ever for an automaker, with the company planning to test anywhere from a couple of dozen vehicles to as many as 100 in each area.

    Fuel-cell cars are said to be the ultimate low-emission automobiles, as they emit only water vapor after using electricity created by a reaction of hydrogen and oxygen. However, several technical problems remain such as the time they take to recharge and the short distances cars are able to travel before they need to be recharged.

    Competition is growing among major automakers hoping to put the vehicles into practical use. GM hopes to maximize the amount of data it can collect in a short period by conducting large-scale tests, thus minimizing development time for the product.


    http://www.yomiuri.co.jp/dy/business/20070112TDY08006.htm
     
  2. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    As soon as these things are at a reasonable price and reasonable performance (I'd probably pay 20% more and take a 20% performance hit), I'm there. I'll laugh my ass off if I'm still alive when the only product the middle east produces is no longer needed. Ha ha ha.

    I don't get the recharge problem, though, I thought that's what alternators did ?
     
  3. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I assume recharge means the time it takes to fill the fuel cell with hydrogen.
     
  4. BelichickFan

    BelichickFan B.O. = Fugazi PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #24 Jersey

    OK. Get it fixed so I can buy one of these babies :D
     
  5. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    I'm a real fan of this technology for countless reasons. A mass move to fuel cells would shut Al Gore up (my way of saying environmentally safe), would flash a giant middle finger at the Middle East , would render Big Oil insignificant to mainstream America, and would help make us self sufficient with respect to energy.
     
  6. Harry Boy

    Harry Boy Look Up, It's Amazing PatsFans.com Supporter

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    I wish I could live to see the day those f-cking Kings & Sheiks get it stuck up their a$s.

    What will our politicians and movie stars do that have stocks in "OIL" :confused:

    Tub Of Sh!t Michael Moore has stock in Haliburton :singing:
     
  7. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Pro Bowl Player

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    Exactly why it will be difficult. Can't wait for the "hydrogen bomb!" scare messages.
     
  8. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    You KNOW those are coming too. To me, I'll here what naysayers offer up. There could be valuable points to their position. However, in reading about the fuel cells as I have, the "explosion" problems are innacurate is it is a different process that is used. I know in Italy, they have cars that run on propane, and others that run on natural gas. My friends dad has a natural gas fueled BMW m3. He opened up his trunk and showed me how it was set up, and basically, it had what looked like a BBQ tank hooked up behind the rear passenger seats. He told me how it cost him 25% of what gasoline fueled vehicle would. Anyhow, driving in it, it felt just like a car. The only problem was he told me, that there had been accidents where cars did explode, and those inside the vehicles were burned to a crisp. Yikes! It's why I pay attention to the dangers of hydrogen, which to this point, have proven to be ordinary.
     
  9. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I certainly wouldn't worry about explosions of a nuclear nature (as in an uncontroled nuclear fusion reaction, which is what happens in a hydrogen bomb), but a conventional explosion still wouldn't be pretty where hydrogen is involved.

    Energy in hydrogen fuel cells is chemical energy (energy released by joining or seperating atoms). A hydrogen bomb's energy is nuclear (energy released by joining or seperating the constituent parts of an atom's nucleus - protons and neutrons). They have nothing to do with each other. But if you've ever done the upside-down-beaker-glowing-splint experiment in school, you know just how explosive even a small bit of hydrogen can be, and how little energy it takes to combust. I'm a fan of new technology, but I also know safety doesn't matter in America until after the first accident. Accordingly, I won't be an early adopter of hydrogen cars.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2007
  10. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    Safety doesn't matter in America? Huh? What America are you talking about? South America?
     
  11. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    America, The United States of.

    We are a very reactive people. Until the ceiling fell and a woman died in the I-90 tunnel, nobody thought about safety much. Companies only think about data security once credit card data is stolen. Loopholes in corporate accounting aren't addressed until after someone's taken advantage of them. Certain auto companies, as we now know, decided against a recall because they calculated that lawsuits from injury would be cheaper. We're not pro-active, instead we wait for something to happen and only then react to it.
     
    Last edited: Jan 18, 2007
  12. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    Are you serious? You're kidding right? Do have any clue as to how many rules and regulations there are in this country? Accidents happen. Fraud happens. People will always find ways to circumvent the law or security. You're never going to be 100% successful. That's reality. Making sure every construction site followed the rules would mean you'd have to have an inspector working with every crew, on every job in the country. Impossible. This country has rules and regs for everything. If you ask me, we're over regulated. Your problem is with individual accountability, not with the government being lax on safety. The rules are in place, it's up to people to follow them.

    With respect to recalls, that's business. The people have a means to get one by going to court.

    I could have told those tunnel designers that straight anchor underpinning with epoxy wouldn't work. Straight anchors work when strength requirment is compacting, and not supportive. Only 90 degree L rods would have been acceptable if I was overseeing the job. At any rate, the specs were right, but the reality was wrong. When I PM'd projects for my dad, I used to argue with architects and engineers all the time. What they drew on paper didn't always translate in the field. Furthermore, when your dealing with Anchors and Epoxy, it only workswhen you follow the specifications to a T. Meaning, you have to drill to the required depth, you must clean the hole properly, and then you have to mix the epoxy exactly as is detailed. It's very sensitive stuff. If it's not mixed correctly, it won't support didly. If the hole isn't drilled to the right depth, then it looses it's support strength as the weight is carried by less of the epoxy & bolt. My guess is that the tunnel crews had issues drilling into the concrete in the way of hitting the reinforcing rebar. This is a common problem. Therefore, the whole depths suffered, as did their integrity. There's no way the onsite engineer would monitor every hole. He was probably monitoring every hour or two, and was surfing the net the rest of the time. Common on alot of Big Dig sites.
     
  13. wistahpatsfan

    wistahpatsfan Pro Bowl Player

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    #75 Jersey

    About the same amount as there are lawyers? :eek:
     
  14. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    EXACTLY! ;)
     
  15. IcyPatriot

    IcyPatriot ------------- PatsFans.com Supporter

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    #87 Jersey

    The Jetsons had it right ... unfortunately, we will only shove it up the
    oil producing nations butts when the oil companies can align themselves
    to continue to make all the money with energy.

    Click the link below Jetson for a layman's tale
    of the energy market monopoly courtesy of our Congress.

    [​IMG]

    http://www.winktimber.com/reader/reader060401.htm
     
  16. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    I'm not talking about rules and regulations, I'm talking about the mindset of the people. Americans are the most reactive, least pro-active people in the Western world. We don't think about what "can" happen, we think about what DID happen.
     
  17. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    That's cuz we're not a socialist, liberalistic society. We're headed that way unfortunately. People here don't wake up in the morning and think about how they can alter the lives of a million, in order to prevent something that might happen to one unlucky soul.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2007
  18. Pujo

    Pujo Experienced Starter w/First Big Contract

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    That's not what I'm talking about, either. I'm talking about the mentality that says "It's ok to save a few bucks here, the ceiling probably won't come down". Or "We don't need to worry about security, after all we've never had personal information stolen from our systems before."

    It's not an indictment of America, but there are many times when a decision is made entirely from a financial point of view. You know, is it cheaper to fix the faulty breaks, or is it cheaper to settle the lawsuits?
     
  19. Real World

    Real World Moderator Staff Member

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    Hey, I wouldn't argue with you in respect to the financial aspects of your last point. ALL companies do that, or at least 99% of them. If you think we are bad here, it is far worse overseas. We have a court system that protects accountability. I think your position is nice and all, that ethics and morality should always come first, but that's not reality. I think there should certainly be safeguards in place, and there certainly are. My problem comes with over regulation that is unnecessary. Hackers will always crack a system, and an accident will always cause injuries. For example, Volvo's rep is safety, whereas Kia's rep is affordability. It's the responsibility of the buyer to decide which he, or she, wants. Both vehicles must meet the governments safety regs to be sold. That's fine by me.
     
  20. Terry Glenn is a cowgirl

    Terry Glenn is a cowgirl Banned

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    I can see alternative energy will be a big asset... after the world really does run out of oil... which is a LONG time from now.

    It is a good theory, but... I wouldn't invest a penny in that one.
     

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