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Chevy Sequel Drives 300 Miles on One Tank of Hydrogen

DOE Awards $11.2 Million for Hydrogen Research

The US Department of Energy (DOE) announced $11.2 million in awards for research aimed at overcoming the scientific challenges associated with the production, storage and use of hydrogen.

DOE’s Office of Science selected 13 projects that will focus on fundamental science in support of hydrogen technologies.  Universities and national laboratories in 10 states and Washington, D.C. will conduct the research. DOE selected the new projects through a competitive merit-review solicitation process and plans to fund additional projects in fiscal year 2008.

The projects will address two priority technical areas:

  • Novel Materials for Hydrogen Storage (7 projects, $5.6 million over three years). Both the National Academy of Sciences and DOE have identified hydrogen storage as a key technology for the successful implementation of hydrogen and fuel cell technologies.  A broad range of research in hydrogen storage is covered by these projects, including:  complex hydrides; nanostructured and novel materials; theory, modeling and simulation; and state-of-the-art analytical and characterization tools to develop novel storage materials and methods.

  • Nanoscale Catalysts (6 projects, $5.6 million over three years. Catalysts play a vital role in hydrogen production, storage and use.  Specifically, catalysts are needed for producing hydrogen from water or carbon-containing fuels such as coal and biomass, increasing hydrogen storage kinetics and producing electricity at low cost from hydrogen in fuel cells.  Research areas include:  innovative synthetic techniques; novel characterization techniques; and theory, modeling and simulation of catalytic pathways.

The list of new projects follows.

Basic Research for the Hydrogen Fuel Initiative
InstitutionProject Title
Novel Hydrogen Storage Materials
Oak Ridge National Laboratory Quantum Tuning of Chemical Reactivity for Storage and Generation of Hydrogen Fuels
Rutgers University Novel Theoretical and Experimental Approaches for Understanding and Optimizing Hydrogen-Sorbent Interactions in Metal Organic Framework Materials
Stony Brook University Influence of Pressure on Physical Property of Ammonia Borane and its Re-hydrogenation
University of California, Davis Activation of Hydrogen Under Ambient Conditions by Main Group Molecules
University of California, Santa Barbara Computational Studies of Hydrogen Interactions with Storage Materials
University of Missouri-Columbia Activation of Hydrogen Under Ambient Conditions by Main Group Molecules Networks of Boron-Doped Carbon Nanopores for Low-Pressure Reversible Hydrogen Storage
University of South Florida Novel Porous Metal-Organic Frameworks for Hydrogen Storage
Nanoscale Catalysts
Argonne National Laboratory Structure/Composition/Function Relationships in Supported Nanoscale Catalysts for Hydrogen Generation
Brookhaven National Laboratory In-situ Studies of the Active Sites and Mechanism for the Water-Gas-Shift Reaction on Metal/Oxide Nanocatalysts
Georgetown University An in situ Electrode-Potential-Controlled Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Investigation of Sulfur-Poisoning Effect on Platinum Based Mono- and Bi-metallic Nanoscale Electrocatalysts
Ohio State University Investigation of the Nature of Active Sites on Heteroatom-Containing Carbon Nano-Structures for Oxygen Reduction Reaction
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory New Bio-Inspired Molecular Catalysts for Hydrogen Oxidation and Hydrogen Production
University of Virginia Theory-Aided Design of Active and Durable Nanoscale Cathode Catalysts



Does anyone smell bacon?


I swear to god the goverment must be working with big oil to ENSURE THIS INFRASTUCTURE will be a big part of our future...

at least it wasn't the amount Premier Gordan Campbell announced... almost like big boys don't want the utility company to have their day.


Sorry to be off topic but for anyone in Vancouver (Andrey?), Prof. Andrew Frank will be speaking at the VEVA meeting about PHEVs. (BCIT tomorrow night, Wednesday the 16th, SW1 room 1021 7:30.)

C Harget

Nah, not bacon. This is only $11.2 million to pure research outfits. As part of a long-term thing, hydrogen creation, storage, and conversion should be improved. The nano-catalyst stuff really does make sense as a way to increase the usable surface area and yields for a given amount of platinum. I don't know if it reducees the amount of energy required to get a given amount of hydrogen, though.

Maybe someday we'll have enough wind, solar and geothermal to generate hydrogen at off-peak hours.

This is just a drop in the bucket.

Robert McLeod

$11.2 million spread out amongst 13 universities/laboratories isn't really that much.


$11.2 million dollars is pretty pathetic if we take into consideration how much hydrogen technology costs to develop. According to, the Iraq war thus far has amounted to $426 billion (and let's not forget how much money we'll be spending for military retirement, medical, etc in the long run). I'm not here to debate whether the Iraq war was a good choice or not, but I'm just pointing out that if we can dish out that much for a war, we sure as heck better dish out a lot more for research into technology that could prevent America from going into another country to secure our nation's oil supply. Right now everyone of us that goes to the gas pumps are supplying more money to the terrorists in Iraq (oil money in countries such as Iran goes to pay for insurgents' weapons in Iraq, heck even the Bush administration agrees with me on that point) than alternative energy research such as this which costs us each a total of 27 cents.

Gerald Shields

Wow. 11.2 million dollars tossed down the toilet by a administration I've never voted for. Make MINE PRIUS!


Ok who keeps using up all the tinfoil?

Its a simple task for a simple goal.. one more useful non polluting fuel.

Rwading more into it then that is silly as thinking bush could blow up the tradecenters without 60000000000000 tell all books



I'm certainly not a supporter of all the hype of hydrogen and don't believe it will be a technology applicable to mainstream cars anytime in the near future. But... this is a mere 11.2 million and is going to universities. This isn't pork to companies, it's a subsidy for graduate student research. At least we're getting something for this money... well educated engineers and scientists.


Hydrogen seems to be a great source of energy. But to make hydrogen, you need lots of electricity. So where is that huge amount of electricity going to come from?

Say you had that much electricity. Why do you need to make hydrogen? Why not just make a better battery. Afterall, a hydrogen fuel cell car used the hydrogen to run an electric motor. So why not just create a better battery? Then you can take that electricity you would have used to make the hydrogen, and put it straight into charging people's batteries.

If what they say about the new ultracapacitor batteries are true...that they charge up in minutes and don't degrade with recharging. Then that seems to have alot more promise than hydrogen.

Unless you are an oil company.


Many believe that the REAL inventions are swept away, covered up, or bought out by big petroleum companys. This website is worth examing.
Quote from the website;
"Professor Kanarev has shown a new form of electrochemistry which can generate much more Hydrogen than conventional electrolysis ever could. He claims at least 10 times but his data suggests more like 4,000 times more Hydrogen than the Wh input would predict. He also has measured very significant Hydrogen generation when his cell is not powered and mentions Foam as is accepted in a stage 3 Joe cell." -- Congress:Member:Greg Watson (May 4, 2006)

C Harget

Waterpower, have you heard of drinking too much water and getting water intoxication?

Water is a stable molecule without mjch energy to give, which is why it requires adding energy to convert it into 2 H2 and an O2, which are less stable, hence better for combustion or reaction into something lower energy and more water.

Presently about half the energy used to create H2 from water is lost, and there is hope better catalysts will reduce that percentage, but not below zero percent.

Hydrogen is not an energy source...only an energy storage medium, and a very inefficient one today. If biotech discovers a cheaper way to release H2 from microbes, or if these catalysts make it more efficient to store electricity as H2, there will still need to be better storage technology. This is not "Plan A" or B or even C, but it is worthy of a side bet.


Sorry to be off topic but for anyone in Vancouver (Andrey?), Prof. Andrew Frank will be speaking at the VEVA meeting about PHEVs. (BCIT tomorrow night, Wednesday the 16th, SW1 room 1021 7:30.)

I'll be there!!!


C Harget states:
"If biotech discovers a cheaper way to release H2 from microbes, or if these catalysts make it more efficient to store electricity as H2, there will still need to be better storage technology."
WAKE UP PLANET. It's already being done. Water is the storage with very little electricity needed to split it.


Hydrogen is a pretty neat concept, but just like a lot of things, in practice it fails miserably. Here is some interesting numbers when comparing energy loss of a hydrogen fuel cell vehicle to a plug in diesel hybrid electric vehicle.

HFCV: Making Hydrogen (electrolyzer) 20%-25% Loss -> Transferring Hydrogen Gas 1% Loss -> Compressing Hydrogen 15% Loss -> Transporting Hydrogen in Bulk 2%-20% Loss -> Storage at Distribution Site/On Board Vehicle 1% Loss -> Using H2 in Fuel Cell to Make Electricity 50%-60% Loss -> Using Electricity Wheel of Vehicle 10% Loss. Total electrical input lost is 65%-82%.

PDHEV: Battery Storing Electricity 10% Loss (<-regenerative braking system electricity) -> Using Electric Wheel of Vehicle 10% Loss. Total electrical input lost is 20%.

Now of course some factors should be considered. With the PDHEV, the inefficiency of the diesel (which can be bio-diesel w/ a Scuderi engine or a bar engine) that acts as a generator is not calculated in. Furthermore, the "Electric Wheel of Vehicle” refers to the design that does not use a drive shaft, but rather electric motors in each of the wheels. Finally, for both calculations, the inefficiency of the electricity (produced from coal, nuclear, wind, solar, etc and then its loss along a power grid) used in both vehicles was not calculated. However, that shouldn’t make a big difference in this comparison, considering that is a constant variable.

Now of course Hydrogen is still in its infancy, but that is even more of a reason to go with the PDHEV, instead of inefficient hydrogen, which actually can produce more environmental problems than it solves. Many critics point out that Hydrogen is just being used as a political cover to extend the use of oil. Whether that "conspiracy theory" is correct, the fact that hydrogen will not be a viable option for wide spread use for many years to come is a fact. Even when Hydrogen becomes viable, I fear that it might be similar to the nuclear situation. In 1959, pro-nuclear scientists claimed that a nuclear fusion plant would be a reality in about 25 years (1959+25=1984). In 1994, 35 years and $10 billion in research later, and after a major technological advance at Princeton University, pro-nuclear scientists announced that nuclear fusion was only about 30 to 35 years away…about 2029. It seems like it could be deja vu, only this time with Hydrogen.

Please note that most of my numbers came from Energy Power Shift: Benefiting from Today’s New Technologies by Barry J. Hanson, if anybody wants to look into it.

Roger Pham

John & Waterpower,
It is not necessary to make hydrogen from electrolysis of water. Hydrogen can be economically produced from steam reformation of coal, biomass, natural gas, and even petroleum. The heat from steam reformation can be coupled with electrical current for high-temp steam electrolysis at twice the electrical efficiency of normal-temp electrolysis. Overall efficiency can rival the efficiency of BEV using either fossil-fuel generated electricity or renewable-source electricity. come on, I have a better offer. I have a gorgeous beach-front estate in ultra-sunny Arizona for cheap, where you can bath in the virgin and pristine seawater (where no man has gone before ;), and if you would make an early offer, I would throw in the Brooklyn bridge for free. Call 969-666-9696 he he he!



Can you post some pointers to the research/results for high temp electrolysis.

You say "twice the electrical efficiency." Is the amount of energy put in as heat less or more than the savings in electrical energy.


Roger Pham. Your insults are rediculous, as I'm sure you believe my suggestions are. However, DO THE RESEARCH before you jump to conclusions and discover your conclusion was the top of a tall steep cliff. H2O to hydogen cars ARE on the street with no additional electricity source needed. The people perish for lack of knowlege.

C Harget

Ok Waterpower,

I've got an open mind. A google of Waterpoweredcar+hoax gets 214 hits.

Even if you're partial to the idea that Meyer was a paranoid genius who had patents, that still doesn't get you very far. Ideas don't have to work to get patents, they just have to be unique. The patent office doesn't test anything

This article, details how Meyer never published in a peer-reviewed journal, and was eventually sued for defrauding investors, couldn't prove the car worked, and had to pay $25,000. That, and the first law of thermodynamics, suggest that Meyer was a fake.

However, if you truly have conviction he was on to something, Google his patents listed in the wikipedia article above and study them long and hard, and maybe you can figure out where he was going with it.

Roger Pham

for high-temperature electrolysis:
the input is heat at 800 degrees C plus 1/2 of the voltage required to electrolyze water as would be required at room temp, thus only 1/2 of electricity required. The electricity can come from wind or solar sources, and the heat can come from coal and biomass gasifiers, or gas-turbine power plants (without a bottoming-steam cycle) that would otherwise be wasted.


Roger, "waste" heat like this is far better captured using organic rankine cycle. This can be used to make electricity from flue gas temperatures right down to 200 degrees C. Such technology can increase the efficiency of a typical coal station from ~35% to about 60%.

Of course by making electricity rather than hydrogen, approximately 5 times as many BEV or PHEV cars can be propelled for the same amount of waste heat.


I did not know how to get this link on here about hydrogen except this way, so here goes.

It is an aluminum alloy that gives off hydrogen for use in cars.

Cheryl Ho

Since DME has an advantage of decomposition at lower temperature than methane and LPG, R&D for hydrogen source for fuel cell has been carried out. DME has a potential of feedstock for chemicals. DME to olefins is under development in Japan.

If you would like to know more on the latest DME developments, join us at upcoming North Asia DME / Methanol conference in Beijing, 27-28 June 2007, St Regis Hotel. The conference covers key areas which include:

DME productivity can be much higher especially if
country energy policies makes an effort comparable to
that invested in increasing supply.
National Development Reform Commission NDRC
Ministry of Energy for Mongolia

Production of DME/ Methanol through biomass
gasification could potentially be commercialized
Shandong University completed Pilot plant in Jinan and
will be sharing their experience.

Advances in conversion technologies are readily
available and offer exciting potential of DME as a
chemical feedstock
By: Kogas, Lurgi and Haldor Topsoe

Available project finance supports the investments
that DME/ Methanol can play a large energy supply role
By: International Finance Corporation

For more information:

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