Toyota’s Bob Carter On “Next Big Thing” – Hydrogen Fuel Cell Cars

3 years ago by Eric Loveday 134

Toyota's Fuel Cell Sedan

Toyota’s Fuel Cell Sedan

Toyota Fuel Cell Sedan

Toyota Fuel Cell Sedan

There’s a lot of unrelated noise (discussion not tied to FCVs or plug-ins)  in the speech made by Bob Carter, Toyota’s senior vice-president of automotive operation, but we figured we’d still include the entire transcript so as to not dilute his words with our own commentary (as the majority of us here at InsideEVs don’t really believe in the idea of hydrogen fuel cell cars being the “Next Big Thing”).

Anyways, Carter discusses hydrogen fuel cell cars and even mention the plug-in electric Toyota i-Road in this transcript from the JP Morgan Auto Conference, printed in its entirety, below:

2014 J.P. Morgan Auto Conference – Bob Carter
August 12, 2014
As prepared for:

2014 J.P. Morgan Auto Conference
New York, N.Y.
August 12, 2014

Bob Carter, TMSSenior Vice President, Automotive Operations

Thank you, Ryan… and good morning everyone.

I thought it was interesting that three milestones on this day in history significantly impacted the auto industry:

In 1908…Henry Ford built the first Model T…

In 1960…the first communications satellite launched…

And in 1981…IBM introduced the personal computer.

Today, they all come together seamlessly in the cars we drive.

And we’re just getting started because later I’m going to talk about the next BIG THING in automotive technology…hydrogen fuel cells.

Oh…and one other historical note for New Yorkers…. on this day in 1935 the great Babe Ruth played his final game…in of all places…Boston’s Fenway Park.

Judging by the standings today, the Yankees could SURE use him now…

Now I can’t promise to forecast the future of the auto industry as well as Babe Ruth predicted home runs…but I’ve had a pretty good record over the past few years and I’m very optimistic about the future.

So, just past the mid-point of 2014, I strongly believe the auto business WILL get stronger and 2014 WILL BE another great year for the industry AND Toyota.

It all starts with a solid foundation…a positive economic and industry forecast.

The auto industry has enjoyed four consecutive year-over-year sales increases… propelled by pent-up demand as the economy recovered from the recession.

This year…we believe conditions are getting back to normal… and sales are being driven by BROAD economic strength, particularly in the second half.

For example…the consensus forecast calls for GDP growth above 3 percent during the third and fourth quarters… a healthy step-up from 2013’s sluggish 1.9 percent growth rate.

In addition… analysts foresee continued growth in new housing starts…which generally correlates to a rise in pickup truck sales.

Additional positive economic signs include:

growing consumer confidence
an improving job market
and solid consumer spending,

So even with a slow start, 2014 should be another good year for our industry with analysts predicting total sales between 16 and 16.5-Million vehicles.

At Toyota, we expect the industry to come in at about 16.3 Million units…an increase of just over 5 percent… healthy growth but at a slightly slower pace than the past few years.

But again…this “new” growth is being driven by stronger economic and market conditions…not hangover pent-up demand from the recession.

For instance, 400,000 MORE customers than last year are expected to come off leases from all brands…and most will turn around and buy or lease a new vehicle.

Leases made up 20% of new-vehicle registrations in 2013 and that trend continues this year, setting up returning customers AGAIN two years or more down the road.

Another key factor is historically low auto loan rates.

Thirty years ago… we saw rates in the mid-to-high teens… but they’ve steadily receded to the 3 to 4% rates we see today.

Of course…rates may tick up again as the Fed eases the stimulus…but we believe they’ll stay relatively low and affordable for most Americans.

In addition, younger buyers are entering the market in bigger numbers.

For example… from 2009 to 2012… vehicle sales to those born after 1980, more than doubled to 2.5 Million.

Sales increased another 20 percent the past two years and are expected to climb 10 percent this year to 3.5 Million vehicles.

So we have a lot of favorable signs…but if you want “real proof”of consumer optimism and a stronger economy…look at July auto sales.

Last month, our industry sold more than 1.4 million vehicles…up 9 percent …the best July sales in eight years!

It was the sixth consecutive month of year-over-year gains and the third straight month with sales of more than 1.4 million.

Combined sales of Toyota, Scion and Lexus vehicles were EVEN stronger…outpacing the overall industry.

Collectively, we sold nearly 216-thousand units…a jump of 11.6%.

We were the No. 1 retail automaker…Toyota was the number one retail brand…and Lexus had its best July EVER.

It was an all-time record month for our RAV4 compact SUV…with sales up 37 percent…while both Camry and the new Corolla had double-digit increases.

As a result, Camry remains the best-selling car in America and Corolla is the best-selling subcompact.

With sales up nearly 19%, Lexus not only had a record July, it was the tenth straight month of year-over-year gains for our luxury brand.

So we’re firing on all cylinders and Toyota is in a great position to grow by 100,000 units… to 2.3 million vehicles this year.

So our current products are exceeding expectations and driving momentum but there’s even better news on the horizon.

A few years ago… our Global President, Akio Toyoda, challenged us to create cars that spark people’s emotions… cars that make them say, “I HAVE to drive this!”

So we’re adding new… fun-to-drive… and exciting products to our lineup that will change the way people think about design…mobility…AND Toyota.

First out of the gate…and on-sale in just a few weeks…the new 2015 Toyota Camry!

For 16 of the past 17 years…including the last 12 in a row… Camry has been America’s best-selling car.

This year…we made it even BETTER.

I’m talking about a huge change with an all-new:

HOOD…
GRILLE…
DOORS…
TRUNK…
FRONT FENDERS…
BUMPERS…
HEADLIGHTS…
And TAILLIGHTS

Together, they give Camry a fresh, more muscular look and an aggressive stance.

Underneath, we strengthened Camry’s chassis and added a newly tuned suspension that provides crisp but compliant handling.

We’ve also completely overhauled the interior with a new design and upgraded materials for an upscale look and feel…including a segment-FIRST available wireless charging system for your mobile phone.

We thought the new Camry was special, but when we unveiled it at the New York Auto Show this spring the reaction was FAR better than we imagined.

C-NET, a leader in tech product reviews, perhaps said it best: “Toyota is sick of us calling the Camry ‘boring,’ so it’s livened things up a bit with the unveiling of the Camry XSE, the ‘sportiest Camry yet’.”

And John Krafcik, the former CEO of Hyundai North America, had high praise for it, saying: “They’ve gone bolder at a time when some of their competitors have decided to smooth things out and kind of quiet things down. I think it’s great from a design-trajectory standpoint.”

This is a MEGA change to Camry… and the most extensive mid-cycle change in our company’s history.

It’s completely unexpected to see a major change like this come just three years in the product cycle, but we’re fully committed to keeping Camry No. 1 for a long time to come.

Now, about the same time the new Camry debuts we’ll also launch the sleek, all-new Lexus RC-F coupe.

It’s got more than 450 horses and a 5-Liter V8 engine under the hood… as well as an 8-speed transmission tuned to produce quick shifts and optimize acceleration.

But instead of telling you WHY it’s a fantastic car, let me show you…

See what I mean?

The RC-F is only one part of an exciting RC family that includes: the RC 350 sport coupe with either a V6 or hybrid powertrain…and the RC 350 F SPORT offering exclusive design elements and heightened driving performance.

In addition to the RC…for the first time ever…Lexus will enter the popular luxury compact crossover segment…when it launches the NX this fall.

The stylish NX will be the first Lexus to offer a turbo-charged gas engine that will generate plenty of horsepower while delivering impressive fuel economy.

For those customers who want even more efficiency, we’ll offer the NX in a hybrid version called the NX 300h.

And we’ll add a striking F-sport model to the family so our customers have plenty of options when choosing an NX.

With its unique styling…great engine options…exciting driving dynamics…and interior technology, we think the NX will be a big hit, particularly with younger luxury customers.

We believe the new Camry, RC and NX WILL deliver on Akio Toyoda’s challenge to create cars that spark people’s emotions…but they’re JUST the beginning.

Last January, at the Detroit Auto Show we stunned some people with a concept sports car symbolic of a “new chapter” in Toyota global design.

Take a look…

It’s called the FT-1 with the “FT” meaning “Future Toyota”.

It captures the passion, excitement and energy of the Toyota we are evolving into, including elements of emotion and performance that we will imprint on future production designs.

The FT-1 is built for pure performance… with a retractable rear wing…sculpted aerodynamics…and a jet-like heads-up display…so stay tuned.

All of these new products…along with the hydrogen fuel sedan I will show you in a few minutes…symbolize the NEXT chapter in Toyota’s storied history…one that focuses on design…fun-to-drive cars… killer interiors… and continued improvements in MPG.

When we add these components to our trademark quality, dependability and reliability, we believe we have the ideal formula for a successful car company in the 21st Century.

We’re also building a fantastic network to support future growth.

First, we’re strengthening our North American manufacturing network by increasing our commitment to building vehicles where we sell them.

Our 14 North American manufacturing facilities now build 71% of the vehicles we sell in the U.S… and we’re adding new capacity.

In the past two years alone we’ve invested more than $2 billion in 11 expansions creating more than 4,000 new jobs.

That includes our commitment to build a Lexus for the first time in the U.S. when our Kentucky plant begins producing the ES sedan next year.

By building our vehicles where we sell them, we support local suppliers…and most importantly… build great cars for our customers.

Second, we’re blessed with an OUTSTANDING dealer network that’s getting better every day.

We wouldn’t be successful without our dealers and their associates… the thousands of dedicated men and women who develop long-term relationships with our customers…and generously donate their time and resources to support their communities.

They not only support us day-in and day-out, they’re also investing their own money in Toyota’s future growth.

In the past 10 years alone, our Toyota and Lexus dealers have invested more than $8.1 billion to expand and upgrade their dealerships… and improve the sales and service experience for customers.

And they are projected to spend nearly $1 billion MORE this year.

That’s a huge “vote of confidence” in Toyota’s future.

OK…now that you know how Toyota is performing today, let’s talk about the future.

I want to assure you that Toyota is very busy researching the world’s transportation challenges and creating mobility solutions for the future.

In fact, we’re spending an average of more than $1 million AN HOUR this year on R&D to meet customer needs of the future.

One prime example is what I call the NEXT BIG THING…a zero-emission hydrogen fuel cell sedan we’ll launch to the public in California next summer.

It’s an electric car…but instead of carrying around a huge, expensive battery, it carries compressed hydrogen gas…and a relatively small battery.

As needed and on-demand: a fuel-cell stack mixes two elements abundant in nature …hydrogen with oxygen…to produce electricity that powers the vehicle for about 300 miles on a single fill-up which takes about three minutes.

So it has the range of today’s conventional cars without lengthy re-charging… while emitting only harmless water vapor…the best of BOTH worlds.

We’ve reduced the cost of the fuel cell powertrain by 95%…and we’re confident we can reduce the cost further.

So, what about the cost of hydrogen?

Well, according to Department of Energy estimates, the cost of hydrogen fuel will initially be higher than gasoline…but longer term…it will come down and be more economical.1

Based on those numbers, we estimate that to fill our fuel cell sedan to go 300 miles initially will cost about $50 and then go down to about $30.

So our fuel cell vehicle is not only better for the environment, it may also be more economical to operate than conventional cars.

In short…of all the advanced powertrain systems we have in our portfolio…we see hydrogen fuel cells as being THE no-compromise, primary-option vehicle for the NEXT 100 years.

And we’re not alone.

Honda and Hyundai will soon market their own fuel cell vehicles…and most automakers will have one on the road by 2018.

The US movement will start in California and spread to the East Coast, other states and other parts of the world, including England, Germany, South Korea and Japan.

At Toyota we’re not just introducing a refined, affordable vehicle, we’re also putting our money behind building the fueling stations that will make fuel cells viable.

The good news about hydrogen is that it’s not so much about how many stations…it’s about location…and California will set the pace.

Working with the University of California, we’ve modeled specific locations that will result in a 6-minute drive to a station for most owners.

As a result, we believe just 68 stations will handle a population well in excess of 10,000 fuel cell vehicles.

The state of California has already earmarked $200 million to build at least 100 new stations by 2024, with 40 of them to go online by the end of 2016.

In addition, Toyota will actively help kick-start infrastructure through collaboration with regulators, energy providers and academia.

For instance, we’re putting up $7.2 million and entering into financial arrangements with First Element Energy and Linde LLC to support the long-term operation and maintenance expenses of new hydrogen refueling stations in California.

And we hope to share news about the East Coast in the future.

This commitment to the fueling structure is “unprecedented” in automotive history, but we believe it’s a VITAL investment in the future.

Today, we’re on the cusp of the “automotive hydrogen age”…so this is the chance to get in the ground floor on what we strongly believe WILL BE the “Car of the Future”

Looking even beyond fuel cells, we’re working on some other interesting concepts to address the changing nature of mobility in the future.

We know that as more people migrate to cities in the world’s fastest developing countries… cars are competing for a rapidly shrinking space for driving and parking.

But no matter where they live, people WILL want mobility to be part of their daily lives.

So, Toyota is developing an array of concept vehicles to meet issues like population shifts, concern for the environment and congestion.

Toyota i-Road

Toyota i-Road

Being a huge fan of motorcycles, I wanted to share one of those concepts with you.

It’s called the Toyota iRoad…a thrilling, ultra-compact, two-seater vehicle that provides the convenience of a motorcycle and the comfort and stability of a car.

The iRoad’s “active lean technology” automatically raises and lowers its wheels to optimize the vehicle’s angle… ensuring stability and a feeling of unity with the vehicle.

Here’s a video of it in action…

Doesn’t that look like fun? And it’s practical too.

I keep asking to take one home for the weekend, but I haven’t had any luck so far.

The iRoad shows you some of our vision for the future…a future where new forms of transportation will supplement the cars we use today.

Simply stated, our goal at Toyota is to be a LEADER in future mobility.

So when you add it all up… this is a great time to be in…and invest in… the auto business.

The improving economy and great products from all automakers should drive a fifth consecutive year of increased industry sales.

And Toyota is poised for success too.

With strong sales of our new and updated models…an exciting lineup of future products with exciting styling and fun-to-drive characteristics…continued investment in our North American plants…motivated dealers improving their dealerships…

And creating cars and mobility solutions for the future…Toyota WILL grow this year….and WELL into the future.

Thank you… and I wish you all the best for a successful year.

OK…here’s the usual disclaimer about forward-looking statements…and now I’d be happy to answer your questions.

###

1 Hydrogen fuel cost details – Hydrogen fuel cost is not set yet, but…longer term…probably less than current gas DOE’s long-term estimate: $5 -$7 per kilogram; initial: $9 – $11/kg. Fill-up for 300 miles (5/kg) is $30* in long term, about $50** initially (*$6 X 5/kg = $30; ** $10 X k/kg = $50)

Original Transcript

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134 responses to "Toyota’s Bob Carter On “Next Big Thing” – Hydrogen Fuel Cell Cars"

  1. Big Solar says:

    uh oh, here we go.

  2. DaveMart says:

    ‘“Using nickel and iron, which are cheap materials, we were able to make the electrocatalysts active enough to split water at room temperature with a single 1.5-volt battery,” said Hongjie Dai, a professor of chemistry at Stanford. “This is the first time anyone has used non-precious metal catalysts to split water at a voltage that low. It’s quite remarkable, because normally you need expensive metals, like platinum or iridium, to achieve that voltage.”’

    http://fuelcellsworks.com/news/2014/08/22/stanford-scientists-develop-water-splitter-that-runs-on-ordinary-aaa-battery/

    1. DaveMart says:

      Potentially transformational as hydrogen can be readily transported mixed into the natural gas grid and stored in salt caverns.

      That means that solar, for instance, can be sited in the south west and the power it produces used in the north east in winter, and overbuild of solar anywhere to help mitigate seasonal variation can be put to good use.

      Hydrogen blending in NG pipelines:
      http://www.nrel.gov/docs/fy13osti/51995.pdf

      Salt Cavern Storage:
      http://www.kbbnet.de/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Present-trends-in-compressed-air-energy-and-hydrogen-storage-in-Germany1.pdf

      So a FCEV could run straight off solar when available, but the hydrogen could be either turned into electricity to charge the batteries, albeit at some efficiency cost which might be mitigated by strategies to use the process heat, or run on the hydrogen.

      1. I admire your tenacity DaveMart.

        1. DaveMart says:

          Many thanks.

          However, I am not half so tenacious as reality is.

          Electricity which is not there when you need it doesn’t help much, and cars which are said to ‘run on sunshine’ and really get their charge from the gird at night, including fossil fuels, are a sad attempt to hide that.

          1. Mint says:

            What you describe is a good way to use H2 fuels cells for the grid and especially for going off grid, where overproduction can be stored in tanks at $35/kWh and used on cloudy days, minimizing generator use. 50% round trip is better than 0%. Get below $500/kW, and you have a very competitive system.

            But for cars? H2 will have to go below $100/kW and it’ll still be more expensive than ICE with more expensive fuel.

          2. Francisco says:

            Dave, when I over-produce during the day with my PV, the electricity powers my neighbor’s house(es), which directly reduces the load on the utility’s generators in a non-ficticous way. That means they burn less fossil fuel. Then during the night I may charge from the grid using fossil fuel, but I personally and directly offset that grid fossil fuel usage one for one. It’s not smoke and mirrors. No, I can’t directly charge off my PV at night, but my use of the grid at night has been compensated for by the direct reduction in fuel for the utility during the day. The electricity is not stored, strictly speaking, but the fossil fuel use is a zero sum game. What’s so difficult to understand about that?

            1. DaveMart says:

              I am up on how offsetting works, and even in favour of it.
              It is not remotely the same thing as running your car on solar though.

              The solar array and what is powering your car are quite discrete.

              I believe I have already detailed elsewhere in this thread the negative effects such deliberate confusion creates.

              1. Francisco says:

                The benefit is exactly the same.

              2. Francisco says:

                As if I had charged off the PV directly.

          3. jerryd says:

            Still running that tired old line I see davewmart!!

            Isn’t solar produce during high power demand worth far more than overnight offpeak power?

            One can’t put in solar into the grid one place and take it out another like charging at work on your home or bought clean power?

            Just because you live where the sun doesn’t shine doesn’t change solar is now around $2k/kw installed in the US now.

            Even completely offgrid with batteries and back up generator because of no grid monthly fees cost even less that staying ongrid.

            In the US solar has cut peak utility demand by 3% over the last 3 yrs, EIA US Utility output report. Isn’t that utilities most expensive to buy or produce?

            FC cars are a scam that are 4x’s more to buy and run, YMMV o much worse, than EV’s.

        2. Chris O says:

          Obsessive behaviour really by a guy that should consider getting a life rather than wasting it peddling an annoying Tesla sucks, hydrogen rules message.

          1. DaveMart says:

            Ad hominem entirely without relevant argument is desperate indeed.

            1. I genuinely appreciate Davemart’s taking the contrarian view here, especially when the posts come with well reasoned views and useful links.

              It would be boring and not very mentally rigorous if we all agreed.

              I have learned several things from DaveMart, and I appreciate his contributions.

              1. Mike says:

                There’s no getting around the energy needed to produce hydrogen can directly power EV’s with no Middle-Man Loses, and the pollution and inefficiency they generate.

                This should be in Carbon News, but not here.

              2. DaveMart says:

                Many thanks.

                I can be a bit of an irritable old boy, but I do try for constructive, referenced debate.

                It ain’t really contrarian though, as it is largely simply outlining the consensus and referencing what the major studies and the people who are highly qualified in the various fields have concluded.

                They don’t know what the split will be between batteries and fuel cells, and neither do I!

                Some on this blog seem to feel that they can see perfectly into the future however, and that the umpteen industrial chemists and so on know nothing at all.

                I beg to differ.

                1. By contrarian, I only meant at they are not the prevailing views here on this blog and in this debate.

    2. alohart says:

      The electrical energy required to electrolyze H2O to H2 and O2 is still more than the electrical energy produced by a fuel cell using the H2 and O2 produced by electrolysis. Lowering the voltage necessary to electrolyze water doesn’t reduce the amount of electrical energy required; i.e., the electrochemical reaction remains the same with the same number of electrons involved in the electrolysis. The Stanford discovery does reduce the cost of the electrodes used, but apparently the cheaper electrodes need to be replaced much more often than the platinum and palladium electrodes normally used.

      So I fail to see how this development does much to reduce the cost of hydrogen.

      1. Alaa says:

        +1
        The energy you put in splitting is more than the energy you get when you combine them!

      2. DaveMart says:

        You can’t compare electricity which isn’t there when you need it to electricity which is, even if it has incurred losses in the process.

        Clearly when you can you use your electricity as directly as possible, but unless we can persuade the powers that be to build out nuclear that either means using fossil fuels to produce it or using renewables and storing it.

        In any case electrolysis is of the order of 70% efficient, and in Germany the process heat is used so pushing the efficiency including heat up way over 80%.

        Since charging the Leaf,for instance, loses 10-20% of the electricity from the wall, we are not doing too badly.

        Both transport and storage of hydrogen is very efficient, and the efficiency of compression is coming down towards 95% efficient:
        http://www.hydrogen.energy.gov/pdfs/review12/pd048_lipp_2012_o.pdf

        Everything is lossy, that is thermodynamics for you, the question is are the losses low enough to cope with?

        Since FCEVs work very well as a PHEV and so electricity when available for direct use could still be so used, this would seem to be all gain with no downside to me.

        1. > Since FCEVs work very well as a PHEV

          Where has this been demonstrated?

          I understand the vision, but in reality both BEV and PHEVS have increased weight and space requirements, not to mention a greater capital cost. Add those two together and it would be very unworkable.

          Far in the future, perhaps. But we’re a long way from that being a reality.

          1. DaveMart says:

            ‘Far in the future?’

            Where did you get that idea from?

            No one is going to build them as the first models, as you keep it as simple as possible.

            Fuel cell stacks are rapidly shrinking in size and weight though, and we are continually told of the inevitability of far higher energy density batteries.

            Since the PIP weighs only around 70kgs more than the hybrid, as the batteries for a PHEV are much lighter per kwh than for a hybrid, which is the battery pack currently used in the FCEVs they can pretty much turn out an FCEV PHEV any time they want to.

            Bulk is the only issue, which better batteries and smaller stacks will solve by 2020.

            Of course they are desperate to hold down cost, but in my view they will build them in that time frame, as if you have a PHEV having a hydrogen station right nearby is not so important and it would maximise the number of cars a given number of stations can serve, so reducing the cost of the roll-out greatly.

            Similarly fuel cell cars overcome the awkward issue of roadside charging for BEVs.

            Both technologies work superbly well together, whatever the FUD by those who want just one, and one only, solution.

            1. pjwood says:

              Toyota admits:
              “Fill-up for 300 miles (5/kg) is $30* in long term, about $50** initially (*$6 X 5/kg = $30; ** $10 X k/kg = $50)”

              So, 300/$30, or $.10 a mile was a bar passed long ago, by hybrids. To get to PHEV/BEV electric miles, you need to loose about another 6 cents (3 miles @$.12 per kwh).

              Toyota/VW/Mercedes..really, those wires look sorta jazzy.

        2. Alaa says:

          I don’t understand your English let alone your logic!

          1. DaveMart says:

            If you are addressing me, then if you clarify what you can’t follow, I can certainly explain.

            If you can only express general incomprehension, then that is unfortunate but can’t be helped.

            1. See Through says:

              Dave,
              Pardon my good friend Alaa. English is not his mother tongue; gibberish is.

        3. Dwayne says:

          Don’t forget you still have to compress that hydrogen to 10,000 psi or so. There is as much energy needed there as required to create the hydrogen in the first place.

          1. DaveMart says:

            That is a ‘slight’ overestimate.
            Coming down very nicely towards 95% efficient, actually:
            http://www.hydrogen.energy.gov/pdfs/review12/pd048_lipp_2012_o.pdf

            Every previous target in the field of hydrogen and fuel cells has been met or exceeded very handily, and ionic compression means that this one is unlikely to be any different.

            For present practise, try around 10% loss instead of your 50%.

            1. I appreciate the link to a very interesting report, thank you.

              It seems though, that “present practice is quite a stretch. The report says:

              • Project start date: 7/15/10
              • Project end date: 7/14/13
              • Percent complete: 61%

              This is for a lab demonstration that produces at best 4 lbs of H2 per day.

              It’s a great idea, might be part of a future solution. But no way we can pretend that this is current best practice.

              1. DaveMart says:

                Uh? I used a completely different figure, twice as high, as a WAG for current practise.

                1. Just pointing out that the document is a progress report from 2012, which states that the project is 61% complete, not a commercial solution. I sincerely hope it works out, will be a step on the path. But a consumer today can not take advantage of this technology, or efficiency.

                  1. DaveMart says:

                    That is pretty much why I said:
                    ‘Every previous target in the field of hydrogen and fuel cells has been met or exceeded very handily, and ionic compression means that this one is unlikely to be any different.

                    For present practise, try around 10% loss instead of your 50%’

                    Which seems clear enough to me.

        4. Mint says:

          FCEVs do not work well as PHEVs.

          The room issues are only part of the problem. Cost is the big one, as is infrastructure.

          An ICE PHEV already does 70-95% of its miles on electricity. Who in their right mind would pay so much to replace the small ICE that rarely gets used with an expensive FC stack/system and also pay their share of expensive H2 infrastructure and fuel?

          You’re talking about an extraordinary expense for very little benefit. Going from ICE to PHEV is the big gain.

          There’s one other important thing to consider: No serious FCEV manufacturer will offer a plugin FCEV. That will just convince them to go PHEV or BEV for their next car.

          1. DaveMart says:

            Really?
            Here is Fed-Ex and Plug Power:

            ‘ Plug Power Inc., the leading provider of hydrogen fuel cell technology to the materials handling market, will develop hydrogen fuel cell range extenders for 20 FedEx Express electric delivery trucks, allowing FedEx Express to nearly double the amount of territory the vehicles can cover with one charge. (Earlier post.)

            This $3-million project is funded by the US Department of Energy (DOE) and includes project partners FedEx Express, Plug Power and Smith Electric Vehicles. The resulting hybrid vehicles will be powered by lithium-ion batteries and a 10 kW Plug Power hydrogen fuel cell system. The fuel cell solution is based on Plug Power’s GenDrive Series 1000 product architecture. ‘

            http://www.greencarcongress.com/2014/01/20140109-plugpower.html?cid=6a00d8341c4fbe53ef01a3fbee3335970b#comment-form

            And here is La Poste and Renault:

            ‘The Franche-Comté region and La Poste (the French postal service) are testing hydrogen fuel cell range extender kits from Symbio FCell in three Renault Kangoo Z.E. electric mail delivery vehicles under real working conditions. This system is expected to double the range of the electric cars used for postal delivery.’

            http://www.greencarcongress.com/2013/12/20131211-sfc.html

            Its strange that people with such absolute knowledge of what will happen have such little knowledge of what is happening at present.

            Personally I can’t predict the future, but I have taken the time and trouble to find out quite a lot about what is actually happening, instead of simply making claims without having done proper research.

            1. I believe the conversation was about cars. If you want to change the subject to trucks, which are not viable as BEVs at this time, by all means. But you’re referencing very limited trials to develop and evaluate the technology for cargo truck, not production passenger vehicles.

            2. See Through says:

              Dave,
              Very good info. I also thought, a plug-in FCEV makes complete sense, as the cost of H2 and frequent fill-up issues get mitigated.

              I’m glad to see that this is being tried out already. Now, the electric car guys will be happy. And Hydrogen guys will also be happy.

              Win-win. Peace to ya all.

              1. Mint says:

                The cost of H2 gets mitigated. The cost of fuel cells get amplified, as it’s now used for fewer miles.

                Let’s say that by some miracle the fuel cell, tanks, etc cost “only” $10k more than a 40MPG
                ICE range extender.

                If that range extender is used 2000 miles a year for 20 years, that’s 1000 lifetime gallons for ICE, and 9 tonnes of CO2 emitted. So you’d pay over $1000/tonne to stop your CO2 emissions using fuel cells, even assuming renewable H2 costs as little per mile as gasoline.

                It’d be over 5x better for the environment to put that $10k into a fund to help buy an EV for someone and offset 10k+ miles per year.

        5. Spec9 says:

          I don’t understand how you can fail to grasp the function of electricity grid. You seem to view things as simple war of a solar array against a nuclear plant. But that is not reality. Absolutely no one suggests such a battle.

          Instead it is grid of solar PV, onshore wind, biomass, hydropower, concentrated solar, offshore wind, geothermal, nuclear, natural gas, some storage, demand-response, additional smart-grid technologies, etc. versus the current centralized infrastructure of a few fossil fuel & nuclear plants.

          Germany shows that it can work . . . and work very reliably. And it can be done for a relatively low cost now since the price of solar PV and wind turbines has plummeted in the last 10 years.

          But go ahead . . . keep jousting against the windmills (I mean solar arrays).

  3. ffbj says:

    Exactly. Oh well. All I will say that if Hydrogen is twice as expensive as gas, by Toyota’s own admission, and gas is three times as expensive as electricity, how is this an economical alternative? It simply is not and will always be a niche market. There is a place for fuel cells, but not in mainline mass market vehicles. Maybe someday but as we know: Someday never comes.

    1. Rav4 EV AZ says:

      +1

      1. Assaf says:

        Another +1.

        Just imagine what those $200M from California to build 100 H2 stations can get us: around 10,000 multi-standard QC spots.

        1. Mike says:

          +10
          Exactly.
          At total failure of state government, funded by the carbon industry. Shock.

  4. Fishhawk says:

    So, initially a fuel cost of over 16 cents per mile, eventually dropping to 10 cents per mile. My 2011 Chevy Volt has averaged a fuel cost (gas and electricity) of 4 cents per mile over the 3+ years I’ve had it.

    Not to mention the price of the car.

    And this is progress?

    1. Big Solar says:

      Yeah, big progress. lol. My i-miev is less than 3 cents per mile to fuel. Seems like we should be down to 2 cents before long. My 1984 toyota tercel got 40 mpg. Whats the problem here? Is there some underhanded greedy folks somewhere behind the curtains or am I imagining things?

      1. DaveMart says:

        Since your iMiEv will not go 300 miles on a charge you are not comparing like for like.

        If there is a problem with fuel costs then FCEV PHEVs can certainly be built.

        1. Martin B. says:

          I can barely drive 150 miles before peeing myself so I don’t care about stopping. As long as we have Chademo/CCS fast chargers, electric wins by far.

          1. Assaf says:

            +1! Especially with kids in the back! Once they’re old enough to talk for themselves, you’ll lucky to do even 150 miles straight. And then every break involves at least 3 different activities around potty/drink/eat/fuel. Might as well QC for 30 minutes and get done with it.

          2. Spec9 says:

            Yep . . . but we need the 150 mile range EVs. The current crop of 80 mile EVs is OK for the early adopters but we need more range to make a big market penetration.

            Come on Gigafactory!

        2. Big Solar says:

          I was comparing a Tercel to todays equivalent such as maybe the yaris which does not get better mileage than the tercel in 1984.

        3. Mike says:

          The Volt Killed the Hydrogen Car, the 1960’s want their Failed Solution Back.

  5. Stimpacker says:

    OK…. so we got a reskinned Camry but with carryover engines. Wow, and that is supposed to be big exciting news?

    Don’t even want to talk about future tech. Pfff.

    “Simply stated, our goal at Toyota is to be a LEADER in future mobility.”

    Noble goals, please keep trying, even if FCV’s fail.

    As for the dealerships, it’s not how much they’re spending. It’s the way they do business. The Toyota dealerships in my town are like thugs/scammers/jerks. Every Toyota owner I know of has a horror story about them and they all go to dealers in neighboring smaller towns.

    1. Mike says:

      They can keep trying by doing a licensing agreement with GM to get the Volt Patents, and stop pretending they have a carbon-free solution.

      We can go now directly to EV’s with Solar and Wind power.
      Solid State battery breakthru has also just killed this “solution”.

  6. jmac says:

    Hey, i just realized that the Big Oil Companies are behind the hydrogen economy.

    ? Who could have guessed ?

    The auto companies have been in the hip pocket of Big Oil for over 100 years, so what else can you expect from the car companies ?

  7. Chris O says:

    “but instead of carrying around a huge, expensive battery, it carries compressed hydrogen gas” and a HFC drivetrain is not bulky and expensive?

    “fuel-cell stack mixes two elements abundant in nature …hydrogen with oxygen”…alas the closests source of pure hydrogen is Jupiter…

    ” it has the range of today’s conventional cars without lengthy re-charging” No,recharging happens at night, one starts with a full tank every day, at least 200 miles if Tesla has anything to do with it. 15 minutes of fastcharging should add another 100 miles, it all stacks up brilliantly compared to spending 10 minutes at a dreary HFCV station for 265 miles (Hyundai Tuscon HFCV)of range every few days. The way most people use their car its actually hydrogen that costs a lot more time to fill up.

    Vague promises about hydrogen cost coming down to gasoline levels…not very compelling compared to homecharging and the occasional free to use supercharge.

    Some promises about mostly taxpayer subsidized infrastructure and some minor Toyota investments… Too bad each hydrogen station costs as much as 13 Superchargers…

    …and this is Toyota’s promise to use for the next 100 years? Not if Tesla has anything to do with it I think. Model 3 and the further improvements in charging speed Tesla is working on should pretty much expose hydrogen as a bizarre boondoggle that serves no real consumer interest.

    1. DaveMart says:

      You are however remarkably OK about vague promises of batteries having ever increasing energy density and lower cost, and notions that they will be able to do without subsidy.

      To be clear I support both battery cars and fuel cell cars, and am happy to see how they work out.

      That makes it a lot easier to be even handed.

      1. Chris O says:

        Gigafactory should bring battery economics at a level that makes a 200 mile/$35k three series competitor a profitable proposition by 2017 without any subsidies.

        Not aware of any similar timetables offered by Big Hydrogen. They would still have to throw in the fuel at heavily reduced cost to make a similar value proposition, or nobody in their right mind is going to opt for a HFCV over a 200 mile BEV.

        Why support a technology that is likely always to be an inferior value proposition compared to the best alternative that also has the best cards for greening up transportation and durability?

        That’s just weird.

        1. DaveMart says:

          You are convinced that you have hit on the one and only solution.

          With rapidly changing and evolving technologies that is more than weird, it is incomprehensible.

          1. Chris O says:

            …wasting your life proselytizing a technology that needs massive technological progress on many fronts to make it viable while more appealing alternatives are making faster progress is quite beyond incomprehensible.

            Do you really think that massive amounts of Tesla sucks, hydrogen rules postings are an effective way the spread the gospel BTW?

            1. DaveMart says:

              Do you really think that your evasions, refusals to discuss the issues constructively and personal attacks tell us anything at all, except to show your personality in a rather unfavourable light?

              1. Chris O says:

                No evasions, no refusal to debate issues. I put quite a few issues out there in my initial post and your response to that was completely irrelevant.

                ..and frankly, between the arrogance and the perpetual sour undertone I wouldn’t accuse others of personality issues.

                Frankly sometimes I wonder if you are really a plug-in supporter using reversed psychology to convince people that only a total a-hole would support hydrogen.

                1. Spec9 says:

                  LOL! 🙂

                2. Rick Danger says:

                  +100

          2. Mike says:

            Solid State Batteries just announced.
            If I were you I’d not bet any money on hydrogen.

        2. sven says:

          “Gigafactory should bring battery economics . . . without any subsidies.”

          Really? Are you saying that Tesla won’t receive any subsidies to build and operate it”s Gigafactory?

          1. Francisco says:

            I think he’s saying the factory won’t _NEED_ them to be profitable. Regardless of whether it receives them or not.

      2. krona2k says:

        Please DaveMart don’t try to claim to be even handed on this subject. You constantly claim that battery improvements are based on faith but no faith is required for the success of FCEV.

        I honestly don’t think you will convince a single person who regularly visits this site to change, or even shift, their opinion with regards to FCEV (plug-in with FC range extender might be a different matter). So all you’re doing is wasting your time and spamming up these message sections.

        1. Rick Danger says:

          Bingo!

  8. Alaa says:

    It seems that JP Morgan sees that if we can produce our own energy from the sun using solar panels then life will change to the worst for JP Morgan! The new thing is EVs. Now our lives will change to the better because energy will be free, and transportation will be free which will make the lives of JP Morgan and the like less profitable. People will lease less borrow less which is a dooms day for greedy banks.

    1. DaveMart says:

      I did not know JP Morgan owns Toyota, but you live and learn.

      What was the Prius, a diversionary tactic by Toyota to hide their enslavement to Big Oil?

      What is even weirder, those who insist most fervently that the mega-corporations are conspiring to push fuel cells and hydrogen, are also loudest in insisting that the hydrogen infrastructure will never be built, as it can’t be financed!

      That is quite an impressive display of the ability to believe two mutually contradictory ideas at the same time.

      1. pjwood says:

        It is no mystery that corporations do not want to finance what’s less profitable. If regulated to do so, they will follow along. This isn’t hard to understand. If FCEV HAS to be, then they will be there to price it as close, as they can to gasoline. It will be no different than CNG’s $2.50 “gasoline gallon equivalent” being about a 625% mark-up from a $4 mmbtu. Only here, the “green”ness of the substance and its actual higher cost would command an even higher premium.

        “Home brew” H2 might be the only way around this, but how is it if an H2 filling pump can cost $2,000,000, that a home-owner is to go about making their own? I see problems, lots of problems that 10’s of millions of outlets are ready, today, to solve.

  9. jmac says:

    “What was the Prius, a diversionary tactic by Toyota to hide their enslavement to Big Oil?”

    No, Dave Mart, the Prius was an answer to the Californis ZEV mandate.

    1. DaveMart says:

      I would give up trying to resist then, as Toyota could see into the future and started work on the FCEV to cover ZEV in 1992!

      Does Dr Emmett Brown work for them?

      Those ZEV credits are remarkably generous too, if they give money for the FCEVs Toyota is releasing in Europe and Japan!

  10. Spec9 says:

    I think Bob Carter will be as successful with this as Disney was with John Carter.

    1. DaveMart says:

      Probably the most cogent argument against FCEVs yet presented in this thread.

      I would argue against it, but I have got a sore thoat.

      1. Spec9 says:

        The best argument for FCEVs is FCEVs. If they are so great then they should ship them. But they don’t. Just endless broken promises and test fleets.

        1. DaveMart says:

          No doubt you are being impartial and consistent and were therefore saying exactly the same thing about battery electric cars before 2009 or thereabouts.

          That does not show your judgement in a very favourable light.

          Technologies take time to mature.
          That is how it works.

          1. shawn marshall says:

            there is no sane or rational reason to oppose Toyota’s attempt to develop FCVs. It is pure demagoguery to insist on a certain technology at this point. If T can be successful, FC might have some use also as a home generator eventually; who can say? Only an idiot can say NOT.

  11. jmac says:

    Bob Carter is just a paid stool-pidgeon,a spokesman for the status quo.

    The auto manufacturing companies have been sold out to the internal combustion engine and the oil that powers it for over 100 years. The auto companies long incestuous relationship with oil companies is finally coming to light.

    Time to break the spell.

    Bring on the electric cars…………….

    1. liberty says:

      toyota has been quite sucessful at getting money from Japanese, US, and California governments.

      I would say don’t be so short sited. Carter is part of the lobby, that is getting more money for toyota. The arguments don’t need to make sense to us, they come with campaign contributions and quid pro quo to get toyota’s agenda passed. Carb really really wants to pretend fuel cells will work, it gets to expand its staff and its taxing power. If plug-ins work on the other hand, what need do we have for mary nichols?

  12. jmac says:

    Look Dave “Know it All” Mart…..

    The U.S.”freedom car” was sponsored by the U.S. to help counter the oil import problem in the U.S. after the Arab oil embargo of the early 70’s.

    When Toyota heard the U.S. was working on a high mileage “super car”, they also began to do to work on the Prius.

    1. DaveMart says:

      Probably somewhere in your head that chain of causation and assumed motive makes some kind of sense.

      A simpler hypothesis however is that both the US Government, Toyota and for that matter the European and Japanese Governments all realised that oil will not last forever, and looked for things which could keep us mobile and be produced from multiple often indigenous resources, and hydrogen and fuel cells were one of those approaches worth following.

      They, and by that I mean including Toyota, also vigorously pursued and are pursuing battery technology.

      It is just that I, Toyota, and the US Government all lack your perfect foresight, and knowledge of what will ‘inevitably’ come out on top, and so are trying to push on and see what happens.

      1. shawn marshall says:

        how many trolls are you going to kill?

  13. pjwood says:

    You’ve heard of Carbon Capture Sequestration, but get ready for Hydrogen Sequestration.

    Saline aquifers. They are the “new black”.

  14. Francis L says:

    “So our fuel cell vehicle is not only better for the environment, it may also be more economical to operate than conventional cars.”

    1. First part of the sentence here still need to be proven. Fuel Cell are so inefficient that it might be even worse.

    2. “It may be more economical” or not. And who are the first people you will accept to pay high for a car that cost more to fill up than ICE?

    Toyota, you should look for comments all over the Web. People (who buy cars) are telling you they don’t see any interest in fuel cell.

    1. Chris O says:

      The DOE NREL long term study of HFCV test vehicles puts the CO2 emissions of a 120HP hydrogen vehicle at 356gr/mile (based on on site natural gas reformation).

      Toyota Prius with similar power is rated at 179gr/mile.

      Better for the environment indeed….

      1. DaveMart says:

        You really can’t get the hang of citing sources, can you?
        Of course if you had done you would have had the inconvenience of that only being true under a limited set of conditions, which is not half so much fun.

        1. Chris O says:

          No, I cited a source, you cite yourself.

          1. DaveMart says:

            I provides links to the document I am referring to.
            You wave your arm.

        2. Francisco says:

          Dave, it’s not that you aren’t contributing to the discussions. But it’s this condescending and insulting tone you use that puts people off. This thread is a perfect example.

          1. DaveMart says:

            If you find that so, I apologise.

            It arises from irritation with being told umpteen times that ‘This is what is going to happen’ or about the inevitability of the victory of big batteries etc.

            Such assumption of more than mortal knowledge when the guys with the smarts and qualifications can’t begin to be sure I find a tad irritating, and respond to the grandiosity.

            I’ve spent 40 years reading everything I can get my hands on about energy issues, including many of the Government tomes on the subject, and can confidently say that I have no idea how it will turn out.

            The real experts are the same.

            “The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt.” – Bertrand Russell

            1. DaveMart says:

              That general irritation also causes me at times to be far too sharp with people who are far more moderate than those I am criticising, and for that, apologies.

              1. Francisco says:

                Thanks. And that’s a great quote.

    2. When even the enthusiasts (early adopters willing to pay more and put up with inconvenience) are not enthusiastic about your new product, you might have a problem.

  15. jmac says:

    Look, it’s so simple.

    We need to go from a 25% efficient ICE to a 25% efficient fuel cell.

    Ding Dong… Is anybody Home Upstairs ?

  16. GeorgeS says:

    “That is quite an impressive display of the ability to believe two mutually contradictory ideas at the same time.”

    Oh shit. I think David just described my whole life in one sentence. 🙂

    1. DaveMart says:

      Nah, both of them! 😉

  17. wraithnot says:

    “Working with the University of California, we’ve modeled specific locations that will result in a 6-minute drive to a station for most owners.”

    Notably absent was any talk of hydrogen fuel stations that would allow for road trips where that 3-minute fueling time would actually be an advantage over charging an EV. Right now a fuel cell vehicle in California will be stranded in one of two metro areas with no way to go between them or go more than 150 miles away from those metro areas without the help of tow truck.

    Unless you need to drive more than 200 miles per day within a single metro or don’t have a way to charge an EV at night I can’t see a single advantage of owning a fuel cell vehicle over an EV with 200+ miles of range. And I can see a host of disadvantages including more expensive fuel, the need to drive to a fueling station in the first place, and more hands-on time to fuel.

    1. Very well said. There are plans for a station in Coalinga, but your point is well taken. H2 requires stations in both metro area and travel waypoints, which greatly inflate the infrastructure cost well beyond the 20x cost of an H2 station over an EV quick charge station.

      1. See Through says:

        These are not really comparable. H2 fill-up is 5 minutes. L2 charger takes 7-8 hours for same distance. Even Tesla supercharger takes 1 hour. And the Tesla superchargers may not fill up continuously at that rate.

        1. Omar Sultan says:

          You really should take some lessons from Dave–at least he has some cogent arguments, you just spew gibberish.

          1. Big Solar says:

            Yeah See Through you are a little slow compared to ole DM.

        2. Spec9 says:

          I suspect you sleep, right? Unless you don’t sleep, I don’t understand why 7 hour L2 charging speeds matter.

  18. jmac says:

    Dave, “know it all” Mart said:

    “A simpler hypothesis however is that both the US Government, Toyota and for that matter the European and Japanese Governments all realised that oil will not last forever, and looked for things which could keep us mobile and be produced from multiple often indigenous resources, and hydrogen and fuel cells were one of those approaches worth following.”

  19. jmac says:

    No, Dave “Know it All” Mart

    Fuel cells at 25% efficiency are no more worth developing than 25 per cent efficient ICE vehicles.

    1. DaveMart says:

      I await your sourced references to 25% efficient fuel cells with interest.

      That is pretty remarkable if true, as the Toyota Highlander FCEV got 68miles/kg.

      At 33kwh per kg, that comes out to 2miles/kwh for a smallish SUV driven in typical highway conditions.

      Using your 25% efficiency, that is 8 miles/kwh!

      Eat your heart out iMiEV!

      In fact of course they are around 50% efficient, and got similar mileage to an electric car after the hydrogen was converted to electricity.

    2. Chris O says:

      @jmac: You are right if you mean grid to motor efficiency through hydrolysis

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Battery_EV_vs._Hydrogen_EV.png

      That’s 25% effciency for hydrogen vs 86% efficiency for BEVs.

      1. DaveMart says:

        That is handy to know if you happen to have a wind turbine attached to your house.
        OTOH if you are using the US grid you are getting around a 32% or so average efficiency by the time it comes out of your wall socket before charging losses for your battery:
        http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=107&t=3

        http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=105&t=3

        1. OTOH if you are using residential or commercial rooftop solar the efficiency is not really the point, it’s the cost per kWh.

          That’s now below $0.13 per kWh in sunny regions and continuing to drop by double digits every year.

          It even works out if you are charging your car overnight: your daytime solar offsets peaker plants or imported supply (the most expensive) and you get the cheapest, cleanest power (i.e. more wind supplied power) at night.

          This grid tie info comes directly from LADWP (phone interview).

          1. DaveMart says:

            To be clear I have nothing against solar panels in suitable places, which include almost everywhere in the US.

            What I dislike is the deliberate miss-statement that that is what is charging your car, when it isn’t

            That avoids the whole problem with solar, not having it available when it is needed.

            I strongly argue that the US grid is perfectly capable of supplying many millions of electric cars without capacity increases.

            That is perfectly true, but so is the fact that off peak nuclear and hydro base load is fully taken up, and if they are charging at night then the fossil fuel plants will be running more.

            That is not good for CO2 emissions, and it is one of the reasons why battery cars are not a sole solution for future transport but part of a portfolio.

            Your solar array has nothing to do with charging your electric car unless you do that during the day.

            Deliberate miss-statements delay the realisation of what is going on, for instance the need to encourage solar at work.

            Hydrogen can help solar and other renewables cover more of the market as you need to be able to store it, and batteries can’t do it in the quantities needed.

            1. DaveMart, offsets are the way that utility engineers and policymakers think about and create these systems. It is pretty naive to think that your car has to be plugged in to your residential solar to be “green”.

              If you want to be a purist, you can charge your car at work while your residential system is producing. But you’ll pay a lot more for the privilege, and have a larger carbon footprint.

              Wind is most abundant, and contributes its greatest percentage to the grid at night. In some places, like Texas, there is so much excess wind capacity that *TXU actually pays people to consume electricity at night*

              I am not making this up, check it out for yourself.

              1. DaveMart says:

                Renewables are regional by nature.
                I also have nothing at all against off-sets.

                I have got a great deal against false claims that people are running their car on solar when they ain’t, for reasons I have already detailed.

  20. Priusmaniac says:

    Al right lets be objective and fair but how do they answer these inconvenient questions:
    1) If hydrogen can store electricity on a large scale (if some day they happen to really demonstrate a higher or even equivalent 70% yield of pump storage), how would they store that massive amount of hydrogen without resorting to liquefaction and cryostorage that would reduce yield even further.
    2) Since carbon dioxide can be turned into methanol in a reversed methanol fuel cell and methanol can be stored conveniently, how would hydrogen storage be able to out compete methanol fuel cell.
    3) since simple gas storage underground already result in large quantities of hydrogen sulfide being produced that result in costly ethanolamine extraction treatment afterwards, how do they expect to handel an even larger amount that would result from pure hydrogen storage.
    4) how do they respond to the fact that battery vehicles are exactly the way to store intermittent renewable energy and that therefore hydrogen is irrelevant.
    5) how do they defend renewable hydrogen when Toyota bases its hydrogen wel to wheel yield on fossil produced electricity and hydrogen instead of the inconvenient comparison of solar photovoltaics to wheels where hydrogen obviously becomes irrelevant.

    1. DaveMart says:

      Priusmaniac:
      Your point 1} is dealt with in the links I gave in the first couple of posts in this thread.
      Salt caverns is the short answer.

      If you have a look at that first then it should answer a lot of your issues with hydrogen storage, and you can come back after you have had a chance to study it for further discussion.

      Have a look at Tom Murphy’s blog too,
      http://physics.ucsd.edu/do-the-math/

      There is a lot to read there, but he gives a good idea of the potentials and limitations of all sorts of methods of storage.

      Batteries are fine for overnight storage, covering for the sun not shining at night and so on, but can’t do the storage to put a dent on storage for winter.

      Hydrogen can.

      1. Priusmaniac says:

        Salt caverns!
        Are you serious?
        You said pump storage required a special location when actually a 200 m hill can d the job and suddenly it would be no problem finding a salt cavern everywhere. That is not very coherent.

        1. DaveMart says:

          You clearly have not read the links provided.
          In view of that further discussion is pointless.

          1. Priusmaniac says:

            Wel Etzel may be an exceptional location but the link indicates at the very best 40% yield which I even doubt. They also mention that pump storage is way better for day a week fluctuations on the grid. And for the seasonal variations, overall it is way simpler to store other types of fuels then hydrogen for extra generation during the winter. Conventional fuels could be used since a remaining production is likeky to last for a while, or renewable fuels like biogas or simply wood. Wood stockpiling for the winter has taken place for centuries, so there is no reason we could not transform that in a way of storing extra electrical generation for the winter months. Other posibilities would involve cycling between electricity waterand carbon dioxide and methanol which can be stored more conveniently then hydrogen and has an energy density of 10000 KWh/m3, still two order of magnitude higher then hydrogen. Carbon dioxide could be stored underground or in a cooled form in isolated reservoirs.

            My fundamental opposition to Hydrogen comes from the fact that it is clearly pushed by oil companies that would simply like to replace gasoline oil by hydrogen oil, that is why I don’t like going in that direction even if some aspects of it could have been interesting in other more serene circumstences where oil interests would not have been such a major data in the equation.

          2. Priusmaniac says:

            By some aspects interesting, i don’t specialy think of seasonal storage but rather in applications. Rocket fuel obviously, but also long distance jet flights and ship transportations.

  21. Omar Sultan says:

    My favorite part of the speech was not the hydrogen spiel, but this–this is what passes for innovation in the auto industry these days:

    >For 16 of the past 17 years…including the last 12 in a >row… Camry has been America’s best-selling car.
    >
    >This year…we made it even BETTER.
    >
    >I’m talking about a huge change with an all-new:
    >
    >HOOD…
    >GRILLE…
    >DOORS…
    >TRUNK…
    >FRONT FENDERS…
    >BUMPERS…
    >HEADLIGHTS…
    >And TAILLIGHTS

    Wow new headlights and taillights a the SAME TIME! The competition won’t know what hit them.

    O

    1. rotfl. I actually had to get a handkerchief and wipe my eyes I was laughing so hard. Good thing I wasn’t drinking milk at the time.

      Maybe it’s because my dad just sold his fairly new Camry and bought a Ford Focus Electric.

      He said he’s “never going back to gas” My mom, ironically the harder sell, nodded vigorously.

      Just for the record, they’re both rock-ribbed Republicans.

  22. jmac says:

    “To express the efficiency of a generator or power plant as a percentage, divide the equivalent Btu content of a kWh of electricity (which is 3,412 Btu) by the heat rate. For example, if the heat rate is 10,140 Btu, the efficiency is 34%. If the heat rate is 7,500 Btu, the efficiency is 45%.”

    http://www.eia.gov/tools/faqs/faq.cfm?id=107&t=3

    According to this formula the efficiency of most combined cycle power plants in the U.S. is 60 per cent, not 32 per cent as someone posted.

    1. Francisco says:

      Dave was comparing apples to oranges with that one anyway. The poster above him was comparing outlet to motor for hydrogen vs outlet to motor for battery. Both are figured after the plant losses themselves.

  23. jmac says:

    “If It Doesn’t Have A Plug, It Doesn’t Appear At InsideEVs!”

    This is a direct quotation from Inside EV’s website.

    Hydrogen vehicles do not have a plug.

    What now, Inside EVs ? ??

    1. Jay Cole says:

      Well, any fuel cell vehicles sales direct to the public are still at the theoretical stage…so they could still be plug-in fuel cells.

      (I dunno best I could do…I took the AM off today, plug-ins are still the be all/end all of the site)

    2. DaveMart says:

      You could start by respecting normal standards of behaviour on this forum before critiquing what articles are on it.

      Blogs about combustion engine cars will naturally talk about plug ins and BEVs from time to time as they are related subjects.

      This blog deals with related issues of transport from time to time.

      In any case what subjects appear on the blog are at the discretion of the people running it, and they can raise whatever subjects they chose.

      That is quite apart from your impertinence in raising the issue of what is discussed, since you ignore how it should be discussed.

      1. Francisco says:

        Wow, look who is critiquing others’ “standards of behavbior.”

  24. jmac says:

    Okay Jay,

    Please allow me a few moments of your precious time.

    Here’s the deal.

    The Diesel trains that carry most U.S. freight are known as diesel locomotives.

    The actual motors that engage the tracks and that propel so called diesel trains are actually electric traction motors.

    But, our Diesel Trains are seldom, if ever referred to as electric trains or even referred to as diesel-electric trains. They are commonly known simply as Diesel Locomotives.

    By the same token, Hydrogen Fuel Cell cars runs on hydrogen. They are not a pure electric car any more than a diesel locomotives that makes electricity with an on board gen-set.

    Electric traction motors propel diesel locomotives down the tracks. The same is true of fossil fuel based hydrogen fuel cell vehicles.

    In the case of diesel (electric) trains, the fossil fuel is oil.

    In the case of Hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, the fossil fuel of choice is natural gas.

    Zero progress.

  25. Gadge says:

    Battery powered vehicles are winning the race because they are;
    -less expensive
    -safer
    -more efficient
    -inductive charging capable
    I don’t envision hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicles ever
    achieving much less surpassing the above!

  26. Bob Hodgen says:

    Using Bob Carter’s numbers above, best case–in the future–ten cents a mile for hydrogen.

    My Volt has averaged three cents a mile for two years and 28,000 miles.

    The state of the art (two years ago) for PHEV and BEV’s is already three times better than the projected best case for hydrogen.

    BMW’s i3 is even more efficient than the Volt.

    The Tesla Model S has a 265 mile range.

    Battery technology is here already, and it’s improving. Hydrogen technology always seems to be about 5 years away.

    Hydrogen is a way for auto makers who aren’t serious beyond compliance cars to greenwash the brand.

    The energy companies like hydrogen as well, because the majority of hydrogen comes from natural gas. They get to stay in the transportation game.

    1. DaveMart says:

      You strangely omit that by far the biggest customer for natural gas is the electricity industry.
      That is not going to change for a long,long time whatever solar enthusiasts think.

      It is an odd conspiracy which conspires against its biggest customers.

      Even odder that car companies without oil interests should join it, when they could sell a more expensive product if much of the margin for oil was included the premium they can charge for batteries.

  27. Martin T says:

    oh please…. what an inefficient Process just to maintain the status quo.

    Give me Plug in any day of the week over fuel cell temporary energy wasteful technology.

  28. Bob Hodgen says:

    True, a large share of our electricity comes from natural gas. But it is a domestic source of energy. We don’t buy it from people who hate us overseas.

    A funny thing happens when you buy a plug in vehicle, you closely examine your energy usage. We ended up installing LED bulbs throughout our house. We have low e glass windows and doors. Our bills have gone down. We save more energy than we use in our EV.

    We plan to install solar panels to further offset our EV’s energy usage. This is something many people are doing today. How long will it be until we can generate hydrogen at home from solar?

  29. jmac says:

    The Pro Hydrogen Crowd howls and cries foul play because some of the electricity for electric cars comes from natural gas.

    But what H2 fans want to do is either take natural gas produced grid electricity and use it to hydolyse water into hydrogen and O2. Then use the hydrogen once again to make electricity in a fuel cell that is far less efficient than a battery, that is simply and efficiently charged with electricity from the grid whether that electricity is from hydro, natural gas, coal, solar or whatever.

    The cheapest known source of hydrogen is steam reformed natural gas.

    It’s just so much more efficient to use natural gas to make electricity than it is to steam reform natural gas to make H2 that eventually goes to a fuel cell that is in the final analysis less efficient than a simple grid charged battery.

    So. we have an extra energy transformation to make the hydrogen in the first place, but we also end up with a fuel cell that is less efficient in making electricity on the spot versus a battery that uses stored electricity from the grid.

  30. Tom says:

    …. Just so they can save the all mighty gas station. They will sell you fuel, it will be no where near as efficient as charge, store, then use batteries. Then comes the Hindenburg syndrome. As with all combustible fuels, there is a real fire/explosion hazard. I for one am glad not to buy fuel from a gas station. The gas companies have had a long enough go at my wallet. And I won’t be pulling in to by 30,40 or 50 dollars worth of hydrogen!