A closer look at the gm hydrogen

В рубриках: Automobile | Автор: admin 22.12.2011

A Closer Look at the Gm Hydrogen4

General Motors Corporation aims to showcase its fourth generation fuel cell technology in Europe with the launch of the HydroGen4 model, a revised version of Chevrolet Equinox Fuel Cell that is bound for the European market.

“Fuel cell propulsion with hydrogen as a fuel highlights General Motors’ commitment to take the car out of the environmental debate and reduce our dependency on oil. HydroGen4 is powered by GM’s most advanced fuel cell system and marks an important milestone on the road toward completely emission-free, competitive fuel cell technology in the automobile. The HydroGen4 features considerable progress in everyday usability, dynamics and system durability compared to its predecessor.” says Carl-Peter Forster, President of GM Europe.

Mr. Forster added:

“The Fuel Cell Activities (FCA) research division with over 600 employees is currently being integrated into regular series development, giving it key importance within the concern. We are thus preparing for the series production of fuel cell technology.”

The GM HydroGen4 is scheduled to be unveiled at the upcoming 2007 International Motor Show (IAA) in Frankfurt this September. HydroGen4 is equipped with a fuel cell stack that consists of 440 series-connected cells. Fuel cells convert chemical energy into electrical energy without combustion through the process of electro-chemical reaction, which combines hydrogen and oxygen to form water and produce electricity as well. This power line can produce 93 kW of electrical output, combined with the 73 kW/100 hp coming from an electric motor. This powertrain package allows the GM HydroGen4 to sprint from a stand still up to 62 miles per hour in about 12 seconds with an electronically limited maximum speed of approximately 100 mph.

In addition, the GM HydroGen4 also comes with 700-bar high-pressure tanks made from carbon fiber composite material. These tanks can hold up to 4.2 kg of compressed hydrogen fuel, providing the GM HydroGen4 with 199 miles (320 km) of driving range. GM has been working with two versions of this mode: one powered by liquid hydrogen and the other with compressed hydrogen. But GM is now only focusing on the compressed hydrogen version. Dr. Udo Winter, Director, GME Fuel Cell Activities explains: “The main reason for this is the unavoidable ‘boil off’ that occurs with liquid hydrogen. Even with optimum insulation, the tank’s contents warm up slowly, so that the liquid hydrogen vaporizes and the pressure in the tank increases. After a few days, gaseous hydrogen has to be released from the parked vehicle, leading to a loss in fuel. There are no such vapor losses (“boil off”) with compressed gas, however.”

Moreover, the new fuel cell propulsion system of the GM HydroGen4 comes with a nickel-metal-hydride buffer battery. This helps the entire powertrain system to gain more power output and enables regenerative braking. This feature allows the battery to be recharged using the energy produced when braking.

Other features of the GM HydroGen4 include driver and passenger frontal air bags, roof rail side-impact air bags, ABS, traction control, StabiliTrak (ESP), just to name the few. GM will reveal other features of this model at the IAA Frankfurt. GM will unveil other production and concept models in Frankfurt like the Saab Turbo X equipped with Saab clutch discs.

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