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Hydrogen Stored in Safe High Density Pellets

CmdrTaco posted more than 8 years ago | from the get-you-where-you're-going dept.

Power 889

sunbeam60 writes "A group of scientists are going to present their breakthrough in hydrogen storage this Wednesday. In contrast to previous storage mechanisms, this method binds hydrogen to a pellet which is completely safe to handle at room temperature. While bound in this medium no hydrogen loss occurs, enabling hydrogen to be stored cheaply for indefinite periods. When needed, the extraction of hydrogen is relatively simple. The pellets exceed all criteria set by the US Department of Energy for 2015, enabling a car to drive more than 500 km on a 50 L tank (13 MJ/l)"

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889 comments

How does it come out? (4, Insightful)

BiAthlon (91360) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498733)

Ok, so I read the article and it's fairly light. The question I have is how do we get the hydrogen back out?

Re:How does it come out? (5, Informative)

dsginter (104154) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498888)

The question I have is how do we get the hydrogen back out?

The linked article calls the stuff "AMMINEX" which sounds like yet another ammonia hydrogen storage [google.com] scheme. I won't comment on their implementation but others have failed here.

The next problem facing hydrogen as an energy carrier (NOTE - never use the term "energy source" when referring to hydrogen because it only carries energy that has to come from somewhere else) is the fuel cell, which requires costly noble metal catalysts (i.e. - platinum). The whole electrolysis process is highly alkaline so conventional metals are quickly fouled.

Re:How does it come out? (0, Offtopic)

too_poland (845066) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498894)

See this ring near a drop? Put it on pointing finger, swallow a drop and be frodo on steroids. 100mph guaranteed, but please read the recipe first.

Power (5, Funny)

b00tleg (603482) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498735)

If you crash into another car, do you get to steal the car's pellet and absorb its power?

Re:Power (5, Funny)

tdemark (512406) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498832)

Actually, if you crash hard enough, you will form Helium pellets.

Re:Power (1)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498851)

.. but only if you use friggin' laser beams.

but.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498737)

does it run lin..*gets shot by the sense police*

Hold on, more info in the summary than the article (5, Informative)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498738)


There seems to be information in the summary that is not substantiated in the referenced article:

While bound in this medium no hydrogen loss occurs, enabling hydrogen to be stored cheaply for indefinite periods.

The article referenced mentions nothing regarding hydrogen loss (or lack therof).

When needed, the extraction of hydrogen is relatively simple.

Is it? Again, nothing in the article about the extraction process.

So where did the submitter get this extra data? If this data is correct, we'd appreciate a link.

If, however, this detail in the summary is unsubstantiated, we'd appreciate less speculation in the future.

You should be an editor (2, Insightful)

MondoMor (262881) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498764)

You do a much better job actually RTFAing (RingTFA?) they they, and, well, you actually read Slashdot as well.

And you can obviously mash a button on the screen, so you're more than qualified.

Rob, hire this guy and others like him to make your site a non-joke.

TripMaster Monkey for editor! (1)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498784)

I agree. TripMaster Monkey should be an editor here. He's got the knowledge and intelligence to post fantastic articles. He can efficiently get us the info we need to know. To let his talent go to waste would be a terrible thing.

Re:You should be an editor (5, Funny)

tgd (2822) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498812)

If he was really up to that task, he would have posted his reply twice.

Slashdot doesn't need editors that don't take that initiative!

Re:You should be an editor (4, Funny)

tgd (2822) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498836)

If he was really up to that task, he would have posted his reply twice.

Slashdot doesn't need editors that don't take that initiative!

.

Re:You should be an editor (-1, Offtopic)

Xhris (97992) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498838)

Rob, hire this guy and others like him to make your site a non-joke.

If this site is so bad, why are u here reading and posting comments??

Re:You should be an editor (0, Offtopic)

MondoMor (262881) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498859)

Because it's funny to watch something that could be so cool go so horribly wrong due to the ineptitude of the people running it.

If it wasn't for Rob's stunning inability to be good at what he does, this site would just be an information source.

But now it's just a huge, fun joke.

Re:You should be an editor (0, Offtopic)

BarryNorton (778694) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498927)

If this site is so bad, why are u here reading and posting comments??
Maybe because watching a train crash is good entertainment on a lazy unproductive afternoon... that's my excuse!

Re:You should be an editor (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498843)

Dude- stop sniffing trip master monkey's jock strap. Jesus. When did Slashdot get so damn gay?
I am going to get some work done, while you two blow each other.

Re:Hold on, more info in the summary than the arti (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498786)

Haha... You failed... You gonna cry now?

Please go shoot yourself.

Re:Hold on, more info in the summary than the arti (5, Informative)

newnam (631332) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498831)

I saw an article earlier that talked about hydrogen pellets but they were using them to recharge laptop batteries. It could be similar technology but this article talks about how it works. http://news.uns.purdue.edu/UNS/html4ever/2005/0508 28.Varma.fuelcells.html [purdue.edu]

Re:Hold on, more info in the summary than the arti (1)

alyflex (904019) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498841)

direct link to the original source, it is however in danish. http://www.dtu.dk/Nyheder/Pressemeddelelser/DTU-fo rskere%20opfinder%20brintpille.aspx [www.dtu.dk] however there aint many details there eighter but i think those will come soon, they have after all made this pill around 6 months ago and kept it secret since.

Royal TripMaster Monkey to You (3, Funny)

Quirk (36086) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498923)

"...we'd appreciate less speculation in the future."

I assume, as you aren't an editor, you have ascended to Royalty in your usage of the Royal We. Let me be the first to Welcome our new /. bashing Overlord.

If you could give me somekind of pointer on how to ascend to Your Highness, I would be forever grateful.

I look forward to Your Highness first "We are not amused post.

Airships (5, Funny)

mrogers (85392) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498739)

The new pellets could also bring about a renaissance for giant hydrogen-filled airships, or as they will now be known, beanbags.

Re:Airships (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498792)

well, obviously, it wouldn't since the density of the pellets is much larger than that of the gas form...

Re:Airships (0)

too_poland (845066) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498804)

Did you mean bangbus ?

Re:Airships (1)

ikkonoishi (674762) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498904)

The solidified hydrogen is heavier than air so it would be useless for airships.

Additional info? (-1, Redundant)

flyskin (884684) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498741)

The link provided in the story is nearly 100% fluff.

Will be good for solar homes if.... (3, Interesting)

Martix (722774) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498743)

will be good for solar homes if it can be reused and is easy to fill and use...didnt see how it releases H2 from it when stored or how...went to the link but very intresting to say the least if its as good as they claim

Tragically... (5, Funny)

Waffle Iron (339739) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498744)

... they decided to coat these pellets with a mixture of iron oxide and aluminum powder.

And we shall call these pellets... (4, Funny)

utexaspunk (527541) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498746)

COAL!

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498776)

Sorry, but coal is (relatively) pure carbon.

Maybe sugar? People are always trying to put sugar in my gas tank anyway...
=Smidge=

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (1)

utexaspunk (527541) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498819)

okay, you're right... mmm! yummy! so if my car breaks down in the middle of nowhere can I eat the fuel?

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (0)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498826)


Sorry, but sugar is (relatively) pure carbon.

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (0, Offtopic)

Alex P Keaton in da (882660) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498876)

And on a related note- Sugar in your gas tank won't hurt your motor- It will just clog your fuel filter and your car won't run due to a clogged fuel filter. And even if it gets past the filter and into the motor, it won't hurt the motor.
Wait- is this offtopic? Can anything be offtopic when the posted article is so bad that there is nothing to reply to, except to point out its shortcomings?

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498918)

Cane sugar C6H12O6 - Only 40% carbon by weight. Lignite, the poorest quality coal, starts at 40% carbon and the highest quality (anthracite) coal is up around 90% carbon. That's "realtively pure" in my opinion!

=Smidge=

 

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (1)

MindStalker (22827) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498920)

C6H12O6 (most sugar)

mostly hydrogen actually.

No. ICE CUBES (2, Funny)

MondoMor (262881) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498809)

Meets all the criteria.

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498885)

Or more like "sticks of butter" (since they're hydrogenated vegetable oil and other fats, which are just long chains of carbon with lots of hydrogen stuck to it)

Re:And we shall call these pellets... (0, Offtopic)

caronc (601582) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498928)

I think it's pretty obvious: ENERGON

Careful though when you fill up on it, those damn Autobots might show up and blow everything up!!

But try again.. and they will blow it up again!

Wash, rince, repeat and make it a TV series!

Wow (-1, Offtopic)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498747)

I don't think the rumour mills predicted [macrumors.com] anything like this for today's announcement. Generally the focus was on a cellphone that runs iTunes, which may be a nice idea, but, well, it hardly justified Apple's tagline "1,000 songs in your pocket changed everything. Here we go again". A safe, easily transportable, hydrogen system beats all of that hands down.

If this is really what Jonathan Ives, Avie Tevanian, et al, have been working on over the last few years, then I'm impressed. But will they call it the iPellet?

Awesome... (1)

SeekerDarksteel (896422) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498748)

I am now just one bright yellow car that runs on these things from being Pac-Man!

Other measurements (2, Interesting)

varmittang (849469) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498750)

Thats about 60 Miles to the gallon of hydrogen, if my calculations are correct. Now, what is the price of hydrogen, per gallon or liter?

Re:Other measurements (1)

garcia (6573) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498796)

Now, what is the price of hydrogen, per gallon or liter?

Will it matter as oil prices continue to rise? If they raised nearly a dollar in ~45 days what's going to happen in 10 years (if we even make it that far with China's recent upturn in heavy usage)?

Re:Other measurements (5, Insightful)

Bluey (27101) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498800)

I got 23 miles to the US gallon.

500 km is about 310 miles.
50 liters is about 13 US gallons.

This is comparable to many US sedans. The question is whether the cost of hydrogen processing will be more or less expensive than the cost of refining oil.

Re:Other measurements (4, Funny)

Non Dufus (265187) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498840)

It's about 23 mi/gal. Of course I used the conversion factor 20oz=591mL right off my Mountain Dew bottle.

Re:Other measurements (3, Interesting)

scovetta (632629) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498844)

I would question how much energy is required to pelletize the hydrogen? Hopefully not more energy than can be reasonably extracted from the hydrogen after the fact.

That's the problem with some of these emerging technologies-- you can have a car that runs on happy feelings, but if those feelings have to be produced in a factory and cost $500 per gallon, then you might as well use gasoline instead.

I'm sorry, I don't know what the hell I'm talking about. It's a slow week.

Re:Other measurements (2, Interesting)

apt142 (574425) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498848)

I don't know. Probably expensive at first. But as the technology matures it could get very cheap indeed. Unlike fossil fuels Hydrogen is of course very abundant and won't suffer the supply and demand problems that oil is right now.

It could also be produced nearly anywhere a water supply is. So, shortages and pipeline restrictions would be a thing of the past. As would foreign dependance on energy.

The price of hydrogen (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498869)

Depends completely on where the energy you use to manufacture it comes from.

Re:Other measurements (1)

SatanicPuppy (611928) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498899)

Hmmmm...500 k = 312.5 miles. 50 liters = 13.5 gallons. 312.5/13.5 = 23.14mpg

23 miles per gallon is better than an suv, but it doesn't come close to a hybrid. And it's sure as hell not 60 mpg. Hell it's only 37km per gallon. Where the hell did you get that number?

And apparently moderators are on crack, as usual. Come on guys, if you drive a car EVER that number should look suspicious.

Re:Other measurements (1)

Shawn Parr (712602) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498902)

Intriguing math you use sir!

Hm, lets see here, 500km/50L equals 10km/1L according to earth math.

And according to Google [google.com] that equates to 23.5-ish mpg.

What I am really unsure of is wether I should be more amused that you were so far off in the first place, or that the mods put you at +5 Interesting at the time I viewed.

WRONG!! we get 22.6 MPG (1)

spineboy (22918) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498919)

please see my other post - basically
500 km = 300 miles
50L = 13.3 gallons
300/13.3 = 22.6 MPG

Hydrogen reminds me of Houston (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498752)

I'm sure I'm not alone when I say I'm thinking about heading over to the Astrodome.

Not to assist people, I could give a rat's ass about that shit. It's just that watching CNN gives me an erection. Just the thought of those thousands of big beautiful black women all in one place. Those MILFs turn me on. I've never "split the great black oak" if you know what I mean, but damn I sure do want to.

Check out the caboose on some of those babes. Junk in the trunk indeed. Baby got back! And daddy want!! Mmm, daddy like!! I like them thick and round, brothers. It's like banging Louis Jefferson. Damn straight I'm down with that.

Astrodome here I come!! Make that the ASStrodome!

Proprietary technology. (1)

reality-bytes (119275) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498753)

So they've patented it? - Well, fair-play to them; this is actually an invention.

It would be nice if they license the tech cheaply but if not, there is another solution.

There is another material which can store hydrogen completely safely at room temperature (unless you are drowning in it).

Re:Proprietary technology. (2, Informative)

TripMaster Monkey (862126) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498777)


The energy density of these pellets is 13 Mj/l (compared to gasoline's 34.6 Mj/l).

Tell me: what is the energy density of water?

Re:Proprietary technology. (1)

Smidge204 (605297) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498833)

Tell me: what is the energy density of water?

Depends on its temperature and pressure. :)
=Smidge=

Re:Proprietary technology. (1)

HateBreeder (656491) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498837)

2.09593 Mj/l

Re:Proprietary technology. (1)

Anonymous Cowpat (788193) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498867)

missing one minor problem... unless you're fusing it (in which case you've more dangerous things to worry about than a tank of hydrogen, things like a million-degree plasma to keep stable) you're gonna have to put as much energy in at point of use as you're going to get out of it, so you'll actually be running on whatever other power source you're using.
Of course, if you simply want to move hydrogen from one place to another water is very stable, but a large percentage of the mass that you're transporting is actually 'useless' oxygen, 4/5 of it, infact, there's only 200kg of hydrogen in each metric tonne (ish)

Re:Proprietary technology. (1)

FluffyWithTeeth (890188) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498912)

Mmmmm, Palladium... For given values of safe ;)

Finally (1)

Neeth (887729) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498754)

This might well be a breakthrough that will shape the future, in a positive way I mean... Now make it power my laptop and all is well.

Residue? (1)

grantedparole (95617) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498755)

I looked at the website and it looks interesting. I am a not a chemist, so I am was surprised to see that much hydrogen released from one gram.

My question about the process since H2 is held inside something that looks like a pill would be are there any residues resulting from the chemical conversion?

Using Hydrogen to power your car (3, Interesting)

ReformedExCon (897248) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498756)

The article (advertisement) is pretty short and doesn't explain the technology in much detail. I wonder how much a "full tank" of hydrogen pellets would cost. And would the extra weight of the pellets be significantly detrimental to the car's performance?

When you go to the pump, do you swap pellets with the gas station attendant? How flammable are these things?

What if I swallow one? Is it non-toxic?

Re:Using Hydrogen to power your car (2, Insightful)

koniosis (657156) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498821)

What if I swallow one? Is it non-toxic?


I dont think that's an issue, what happens if your drink petrol or car oil or battery acid... don't expect it to be safe to eat (if is is, that's a bonus, but not really going to save anyones life...)

Re:Using Hydrogen to power your car (0)

ReformedExCon (897248) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498873)

If a dog laps up some spilled gasoline at a service station, he will get very sick.

If a child eats a dropped pellet (it looks like a Smarties tablet) at a service station, it would be nice that she didn't die.

Re:Using Hydrogen to power your car (1)

ledow (319597) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498823)

What if I swallow one? Is it non-toxic?


So you're the git that means airline peanuts have to have warnings such as "May contain nuts". Not everything is fit for human consumption, so take that bottle of bleach out of your mouth.

Re:Using Hydrogen to power your car (3, Funny)

Kevin DeGraaf (220791) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498854)

What if I swallow one? Is it non-toxic?

Make 'em as toxic as possible and let natural selection do its thing. It'll clean up the gene pool for the rest of us.

Are they chewable? (3, Funny)

DaFork (608023) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498757)

I won't be buying any of their power pellets if they taste terrible.

Re:Are they chewable? (4, Funny)

markov_chain (202465) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498783)

I wouldn't eat those if I were you. They could give you gas.

*rimshot*

Extraction? (4, Insightful)

D3 (31029) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498760)

Sadly not much detail on the extraction process. Good ol' water can store a lot of hydrogen cheaply but getting it out is a PITA. Still, it'd be nice to pull up to a station and just drop a pellet (or bag of pellets) into the car and drive off again. D

Why would a "gas station" be needed? (2, Insightful)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498905)

This technology would render gas stations obsolete. Why would you need to drive to such a station in order to drop a small pellet into your pellet tank? It's completely unnecessary! You could easily buy a bag of these pellets from your local hardware or grocery store, and refill your vehicle in the comfort of your own garage!

interesting (3, Interesting)

rayde (738949) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498762)

i see huge potential in a fuel source that could be stored in this manner. Imagine a world where you could just buy a box of fuel pellets at the grocery store, since it's safe enough to keep in the aisles. My guess i that this could potentially do away with "gas stations" as we know it, leaving them to scrounge around for the few remaining gasoline-powered cars, and becoming more and more relegated to doing service and maintenance.

What about the economics? (4, Insightful)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498763)

The main thing to consider is the economics. More to the point, how will the existing oil/energy companies financially benefit from such technology? For if they don't have an interest in this product, it will never come to fruition, regardless of its technical merit.

Re:What about the economics? (1)

HateBreeder (656491) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498879)

Unless a government acts responsibly enough and develops the product for the good of humanity...

Though you'd need pretty serious lobbying to get past the corrupt officials.

I Wonder (4, Funny)

.tardo. (790129) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498766)

If I feed this to my dog, will he fart lightning?

Criteria of 2015 ... (1)

Ihlosi (895663) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498768)

The pellets exceed all criteria set by the US Department of Energy for 2015, enabling a car to drive more than 500 km on a 50 L tank (13 MJ/l)

... and here I thought a car that needs more than 10l/100km qualifies as a gas guzzler by the criteria for 2005. Guess I was wrong.

However, any way to solve the storage issues associated with hydrogen should be welcomed. I'd want a fuel-cell powered car rather sooner than later.

22.6 MPG. for Americans (1)

spineboy (22918) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498887)

That's what this car will get on H2 fuel.
500 KM = 300 miles
50L = 13.29 gallons
300/13.3=22.6 MPG
  There is no tax on cars that avg at least 22.5 MPG
Here are some numbers taken from the US DOT for the gas guzzler taxes

at least 21.5, but less than 22.5 $1000
at least 20.5, but less than 21.5 $1300
at least 19.5, but less than 20.5 $1700
at least 18.5, but less than 19.5 $2100
at least 17.5, but less than 18.5 $2600
at least 16.5, but less than 17.5 $3000
at least 15.5, but less than 16.5 $3700
at least 14.5, but less than 15.5 $4500
at least 13.5, but less than 14.5 $5400
at least 12.5, but less than 13.5 $6400
less than 12.5 $7700

Amazing (1)

gauntlet420 (646001) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498772)

Provided that this isn't merely pre-IPO hype, and that the technology is actually feasible, one can only hope that the automotive industry is taking keen notice of this.

There are arguements that the energy density of fossil fuel cannot ever be supplanted by hydrogen, and that replacing gasoline will be a long, challenging problem to solve. This is still an exciting idea, though.

Dubious? (1)

Xhris (97992) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498773)

The link looks like it is just a way of someone trying to advertise their new product. Anyone else think they are just trying to raise money...?

Re:Dubious? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498852)

Considering the quality of the website, definitely. Check out the page names...

interesting, but not new (1)

jburgess (167907) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498775)

This has been done several years ago by United Nuclear (http://www.switch2hydrogen.com/ [switch2hydrogen.com] ). For a while they had a sports car of some kind running with this kind of system. Now they're testing to begin selling home hydrogen generation systems, and car conversion kits. They're in the final stages of fleet testing their systems now.

Could these be... (1)

Cliffy03 (663924) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498778)

Energon cubes?

Pellets!? (1, Funny)

Jackie_Chan_Fan (730745) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498785)

Now all we need is science to invent a 4 wheeled giant hamster that seats 4. If she goes 0-60 in 2, even cooler.

We can park them hamster wheels and sell back the energy to the city!

Ah the list of stupid ideas is endless.

In OTher Words (1)

CleverNickedName (644160) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498788)

enabling a car to drive more than 500 km on a 50 L tank

Or to put it more clearly: 13.75 km on a 1.375 L tank.

Well, wait until Wednesday's report (4, Insightful)

Red Flayer (890720) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498790)

""A group of scientists are going to present their breakthrough in hydrogen storage this Wednesday."

Seeing as neither the article nor the summary give any specifics, why is a press release being passed along as an article?

Why not wait until they've presented their findings, and then submit an article with more information?

Whoever submitted this article is probably interested enough in the subject to search for a better article come Thursday or Friday -- and if it gets on /. again, I, for one, will not cry "Dupe".

exciting (1)

dhbiker (863466) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498791)

to say the article is thin on info is a bit of an understatement :-D

Its still pretty exciting though, I mean concievably you could have a pellet manufacturing machine underneath your garage or something (the hydrogen stored in a sealed container before it makes it into pellet form). You'd have a solar panel on your roof and you pump out pellets 24/7 when weather permits, you then use the pellets to power your car/toaster/computer (anything with a pellet drive in it)

maybe I'm getting a little ahead of the technology here but I for one am looking forward to the day when it doesn't cost a small fortune to fill my car ;-)

What's the catch? (2, Interesting)

swelke (252267) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498794)

I don't get it. Are they made out of solid platinum? No, the article says the materials are inexpensive. Does it take 400 hours to handcraft each one? Do they crumble to dust in the presence of gravity? Do you have to hold a seance to get the hydrogen back? Ooh, I know: each 20-gram pellet is made from the concentrated brains of twelve dead whales. Come on folks, there has to be something that makes these things completely impractical. All we have to do is figure out what it is.

Re:What's the catch? (0)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498929)

Orphans...well, parts of them anyway. Are you happy now?

Everyone out of the elevator now! (1, Funny)

NotFamous (827147) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498801)

There could be some interesting side effects if you swallowed one...

I need information (4, Insightful)

TomorrowPlusX (571956) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498802)

The linked article gives very little information. So, while I'm super stoked by this ( it's a really, really important development ) my questions are:

1) How do they get the hydrogen back out? Do they crush the pellets ( destroying them ), do they heat them, etc.

2) Are the pellets re-usable? Or do you have to get new ones? And if they *aren't* re-usable, can the carrier material be re-cycled into new pellets?

My concerns would be that if the material isn't re-usable/re-cyclable we'd end up with vast landfills full of crushed or otherwise useless carrier material, in which case this is hardly a boon.

On the other hand, if it's recyclable, I can see the oil companies being very happy with this, since you could go to a hydrogen station and dump your used pellets and "refill" with a dump of charged pellets. The station would send the used pellets to a recharging or recycling facility. I say "oil companies" because they've already got quite an infrastucture, and would probably be willing to make the investment into such facilities, since it would maintain their quasi-monopoly on automotive energy distribution.

Still, the appeal of safe hydrogen storage is great.

Re:I need information (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#13498924)

http://www.dtu.dk/Nyheder/Pressemeddelelser/DTU-fo rskere%20opfinder%20brintpille.aspx [www.dtu.dk]
This site is in Danish, and i cant find a babelfish translator with danish support. But it does show the
director om Amminex trying to ignite a pellet with a lighter. The article also metions that the pellets are re-useable, and the hydrogen is released using a catalyst.

all wet (3, Funny)

tjic (530860) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498813)

I too have come up with a scheme to

* bind hydrogen
* that is completely safe at room temperature
* has no loss of hydrogen
* thus enabling cheap storage
* allows for simple extraction of hydrogen

I use a proprietary process involving oxygen. I'm not at liberty to give more details until the patent is issued.

Re:all wet (4, Funny)

ntsucks (22132) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498858)

"* that is completely safe at room temperature"

Unless your city is below sea level

Speaking of innovations.. (-1, Offtopic)

CyricZ (887944) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498861)

OSNews has posted an article describing a laptop with a 6.8 GHz laptop processor and over 1 TB of RAM and solid-state storage [osnews.com] .

If combined with this hydrogen-based technology, we could be on the very edge of a massive breakthrough in computing power. Imagine a laptop that could run for years, literally, on several of these hydrogen pellets. Now imagine a laptop with the specs of the aforementioned laptop. Such a system would be, to put it bluntly, a revolution on personal computing.

Now let's bring it to the desktop. Suppose you fit four, or even eight, of the processors capable of 6.8 GHz into a typical PC desktop. Power it with these hydrogen pellets, removing any dependency on the power grid (potentially reducing costs magnificently). You'll basically be bringing the power of supercomputing to all computer owners.

When you consider what a company like Apple, or the Linux and *BSD projects, can accomplish today with our meager (in comparison) systems, it would be absolutely fantastic to see what they could achieve with such vast amounts of processing power and RAM.

Not very efficient (2, Interesting)

kilodelta (843627) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498863)

50L to go 500kM is 10kM to the liter. Or about 23MPG. Not good.

Unless we come up with a serious breakthrough on hydrogen production it'll never happen.

There are several groups working on describing how photosynthesis actually works in plants. It is theorized that the process would yield us all the hydrogen we wanted. But that is still a few years off.

Which one (1)

panxerox (575545) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498875)

Its either
1. A real solution to energy storage and one of the greatest inventions of all time.
2. Not i.e. overhyped product with a very poorly writen webpage. vaporware anyone :)
Let me know when everybody figures it out.

This is how they get it back out: (1)

SteakandcheeseUm (191173) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498878)

Heat

Better article (3, Informative)

Akbar (30002) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498884)

A better article which goes into a bit more detail about the pellets can be found at this french website http://www.achats-industriels.com/actualites/dossi ers/269.asp/ [achats-industriels.com] .

The google translation is available at http://translate.google.com/translate?hl=en&sl=fr& u=http://www.achats-industriels.com/actualites/dos siers/269.asp&prev=/search%3Fq%3Damminex%26hl%3Den %26lr%3D/ [google.com] .

This is an interesting storage solution but to really evaluate this we need to know more about the process to extract hydrogen and the waste products involved and their potential re-uses.

Another link (1)

Wassini (61178) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498889)

I did post this several hours ago but it was rejected. Her is another link to DTU [www.dtu.dk] news section [www.dtu.dk]

Fossil Fuel problem solved? (1)

erroneus (253617) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498890)

There's a lot about this technology I don't understand. For one, what does the extraction process require? While using this stuff, what is the waste amount? Can they be "recharged"? And if so, how?

The article is little more than an announcement in that there's not much I could see in the way of "how it works." Since this is patented perhaps someone who knows how to read that stuff could be asked to interpret it for the rest of us?

I'd like nothing more that to shed our dependancy on fossil fuels for personal/individual use. Do you realize how much world peace could result from that change? The middle east could go back to being what it was -- a useless desert area inhabited only by archaeologists and nomaic people. :) The U.S. would no longer need to control anything over there... suddenly terrorists have a lot less to complain about. I can only dream.

We stand to gain a LOT more than just a cleaner atmosphere and potentially cheaper fuel costs.... a LOT more.

Hydrogen (1)

FirienFirien (857374) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498892)

This doesn't change the fact that hydrogen is only a storage medium - you have to spend energy creating it, and you lose a little energy when you change it back again. All in all, we're currently looking at spending 2.5 times as much energy as you get out.

Thing is, this hydrogen is currently derived from... you guessed it, petroleum. So essentially, you're burning 125 litres or gallons of fuel to get 50 litres or gallons' worth of car movement.

It's not all bad - you can make hydrogen from any power source, so you can have a fully environment-friendly hydroelectric hydrogen generator. However, that's less efficient than burning up petroleum to make the hydrogen, so for the moment hydrogen is worse for the environment than simply burning fuel; the only 'plus' side is that the dirty waste products are released away from your car and from town, so the pollution is moved away from cities to specific fuel burning areas. We can only hope that it's easier to clean up there.

Almost forgot... (0)

Ritz_Just_Ritz (883997) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498909)

The only byproduct of combustion is gold dust out of the tailpipe and the aroma of lavender.

Background info..... (4, Informative)

CnlPepper (140772) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498914)

A bit of background info found doing a quick google:

http://lww.kt.dtu.dk/pdf_publications/department/D TU_04.pdf [kt.dtu.dk]

Not much there but adds a bit more ligitimacy to the claims. Its a university annual report from the Technical University of Denmark, see pages 24-26.

This is all well and good, but (1)

DJCacophony (832334) | more than 8 years ago | (#13498922)

What is it's milage ( in miles of course, one would wonder why it was given in litres )? Not trying to start a flamewar, but I dont know what a MJ/L is.
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