Hydrogen refuelling with 'ordinary' cars at home

By Paritosh Bansal

A British company has unveiled a way of generating hydrogen gas at home, for use in powering conventional petrol cars.

ITM Power plc has converted a Ford Focus to burn hydrogen as well as petrol (actually not hugely difficult as a hydrocarbon such as petrol is not that different to hydrogen as far as the engine is concerned).

The test car drove over 40 kilometres on carbon-free hydrogen, before reverting to petrol - far enough for many commuting journeys.

The source of the hydrogen is an at-home electrolyser that converts water to hydrogen, either via off-peak electricity at night, or from wind or solar power.

ITM says the electrolyser will go into production in 2008 in a factory in Sheffield.

ITM may not be about to sweep the world, but their approach was indirectly endorsed by Honda recently, who said that in-home hydrogen generation could become standard practice in 10 years or so.


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