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TOTAL Begins Construction of First Hydrogen Station in City of Munich, Germany

In partnership with BMW, TOTAL has begun building the first public hydrogen filling station in the city of Munich, Germany. (Munich Airport—28 km/17 miles northeast of the city—has had a hydrogen filling station since 1999.)

Located in Detmoldstraße, not far from BMW Group’s Research and Innovation Center, the station features an underground storage tank for liquid hydrogen—the first such in a hydrogen filling station in Germany. Other stations, such as the one at Munich Airport, use an aboveground storage tank for liquid hydrogen.

The hydrogen filling station will be visibly indistinguishable from a conventional gasoline station. As well as hydrogen, the new filling station will also offer gasoline and diesel fuel and is scheduled to go on stream at the end of the year.

This marks a significant advance in the integration of hydrogen as a future fuel into the day-to-day refuelling infrastructure.

—Daniel Le Breton, Director Transport and Energy of the TOTAL Group

BMW Group and TOTAL are working together to promote hydrogen as an energy source for road traffic. The two companies signed an agreement in May 2006 which will see TOTAL setting up and operating three hydrogen filling stations in Europe by the end of 2007. (Earlier post.)

BMW is currently developing a 7 Series vehicle with a hydrogen combustion engine to production standards. (Earlier post.)

In March, the Clean Energy Partnership (CEP) opened Berlin’s second hydrogen filling station. The new station, integrated into a newly-built TOTAL service station, provides both liquid (LH2) and gaseous (CGH2) hydrogen for vehicles. (Earlier post.)




Liquid H2 seems like a silly choice for an automotive fuel. What is the point of filling your tank with a liquid that gradually disappears if you don't use it immediately? Not to mention the well-to-wheels efficiency considerations...


I ran two cars on compressed natural gas. I liked the concept and the savings at the time of about 30 percent.

The problem was it took 5 minutes to fill the vehicle, ten if there was more than one car trying to fill at the same time. The tanks in the trunk weighed 115 pounds each and had to be tested every five years. The station equipment cost roughly a million dollars, served perhaps 50 customers a day and the cost of a fill up was about 5 dollars (good for about 100 miles). Assuming zero maintenance costs and a 2X markup on the fuel it would take 20 years to pay off the initial investment. The government closed the stations down due to rising costs of natural gas and general lack of economics after a few years. Sadly, the taxpayer footed the bill for demolition.

Hydrogen is compressed to 3X the pressure of compressed natural gas, so I suspect that these new hydrogen stations will prove impractical as well. Home fueling is probably the only viable solution.


Well the 10k tanks are alot lighter then even the old 3k tanks used to be. Supoosedly they will also be cheaper to mass produce tho im sceptical on that point.

One big thing to remembere tho is a fuel cell car replaces the transmission the radiator the engine.. all the costly parts of the car. So it itself can be fairly expensive and yet still wind up being close to the cost of a normal car.


"So it itself can be fairly expensive and yet still wind up being close to the cost of a normal car."

Please read this news before being *way* too optimistic :

Yes I Am a Rocket Scientist

What is wrong with these people?

Hydrogen will never work. All the current research for it involves getting the hydrogen by one of two methods.

1. Reforming natural gas. This is brilliant, and does so much to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels.

2. Electrolysis of water. 80% of the electricity in the US is obtained from fossil fuel sources. Hydrogen is just a terrible battery, not the answer to anything.


Doesn't Methane Gas Reforming to H2 produces CO2, besides the fossil energy cost of the steam generation?
Besides, methane gas is already immediately very suitable for the "bridge" from petrol to Turbo hybrids/ Electric.

I think water Electrolysis is the best way to produce Oxygen & Hydrogen, if renewable energy such as Wind, Solar, is used.

But H2 for fuel cell cars, though non-polluting and looks promising now, in the long run actually might decrease the Oxygen content in the atmosphere by locking it into water vapour ? Also , isn't the current 100 of millions of ICE's already decreasing the armospheric oxygen ???

Any verified studies on this ??

tom deplume

Atmospheric CO2 is about 375 ppm. O2 is about 200,000 ppm. There is not enough fossil carbon in the world to make a significant dent in O2 levels.

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