Toyota Plans to Pioneer the Fuel Cell Vehicle Market


While most auto makers still view fuel cell technology as something that will be realistic in about 10 years, Toyota still plans to release a vehicle, fully powered by hydrogen fuel cells by the year 2015. Most likely, if this car becomes a reality it will start with sales in California where hydrogen fueling stations are planned to be installed. In fact, California plans to implement 68 hydrogen filling stations by the end of 2015. If they are able to introduce a hydrogen-cell powered vehicle for the general public according to schedule, this would further cement Toyota as a leader in alternative energy vehicles.

The technology to produce fuel cells is currently available, but the main problem is that it is still costly to produce and would, therefore, not be practical for personal vehicles.
Basically, a fuel cell converts the energy from a chemical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen into electricity. As long as the fuel cell receives a continuous flow of the fuel element and oxygen, it can produce electricity to run a motor. Since cars here on Earth encounter no shortage of oxygen, the only problem is finding a way to supply the hydrogen and producing the cell in a size and at a cost that makes sense to consumers. The main advantage of fuel cells over battery powered electric vehicles is extended range and no “recharge time”. It would be as convenient as stopping at the gas station like we already do.

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