NASA Working on Fuel Cell Technology

Thanks to a deal agreed between UK-based Cella Energy and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration here in the U.S., a new research and development program on hydrogen fuel cell technology is now underway.

Cella, based in Oxford, with a U.S. subsidiary has found a way of storing hydrogen in small beads, making it much easier to store as a liquid and transport, without the need for extremely low temperatures.

By teaming up with NASA, the idea is that utilizing the expertise of an organization with extensive experience in handling volatile fuels and explosives (such as rocket development), the chances for a practical application of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are that much more probable.

At NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, Robert Hubbard, partnership development manager, observed that Cella Energy’s concept has great potential.

“In tests, the hydrogen is stored in its rawest form, encased by the company’s hydrogen storage materials [and] has proven to be quite stable,” he said. “If [the company] is able to successfully get this product to market, I think we are going to see a lot of changes within hydrogen storage and fuel cell industries to utilize safer and more easily adaptable technologies.”

Eventually, the partners hope to use these cell beads in fuel cell engines, which will combine both hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity. The current agreement between Cella Energy and NASA, labeled a Space Act Agreement, was signed for five years with provisions for renewal.

The Green Car Website

  • car

    really good but need some more solutions and really we need to save fuel and this will help in the resorviors

  • Uncle B

    Soon enough the world will come to see that long distance travel is only proctical by high efficiency of steel Wheel to steel rail systems using Thorium LFTR reactors (or better) from China for the electicity. Watch now as jet engined flights and gasoline automobiles fuel costs sky-rocket in comparison. All Humanity is a decade away from astounding paradigm shift – starting in the U.S.A. and ending in China where folks are already well prepared for it. H2 cars will never out-pace Solar and Wind charged batteries in personal cars, and since only short hops will be required for cars, going to H2 for more distance will seem redundant.

  • Liz Karschner

    I’m not up on hydrogen fuel sources, but anything that would allow us to become less oil dependent is good. Electric cars are great, but they can’t go the distance (too few miles per charge) unless you work and live close together and don’t need to drive much. I have to put 30 miles on my car at least every day, which an electric car would be great, but there are times where I have to go much further and therefore purchasing an all electric car is out of the question. Really I’m hoping that the technology advances so that people who need to go further will be able to use them versus standard or hybrid cars.

  • dutchinchicago

    @Liz Karschner,

    Look at the Volt. 40 miles electric and then unlimited gasoline miles. I have owned the car for 8 months now and not yet have had to fill it up but I am planning to do a 500 mile trip next month and I will be using the 40 Mph gas engine and probably have to visit a gas station to buy something other than a Gatorade.

    99% of hydrogen today is made from natural gas. Not really environmentally friendly.

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