Helpful Tech For Soaring Energy Needs

Todd Moses
April 22, 2024

Several significant car manufacturers are developing ambitious projects based on hydrogen as an engine fuel.

Inputs that matter: According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the transportation sector is the most significant contributor to carbon emissions in the United States. However, Electric Vehicle (EV) sales have stalled.

  • Compared to conventional gasoline or diesel vehicles, hydrogen cars offer a cleaner and more efficient drive, reduced emissions of polluting gases, and a longer range.
  • In addition, hydrogen is an attractive option for large manufacturing industries, as it offers opportunities for innovation and expansion in a growing market.

The opportunity: Last week, the EPA finalized stringent greenhouse gas (GHG) standards for medium and heavy-duty trucks from model years 2027 to 2032.

  • The State of California has spent $257 million on a network of hydrogen fueling stations.
  • Former climate regulator Mary Nichols explains, "Right now, I don't think it would be a good bet to assume that there's going to be a big shift to hydrogen vehicles except for heavy-duty trucks, where being able to move a lot of weight is important."
  • Currently, nearly 13,000 electric medium and heavy-duty trucks are on the road.

Zoom in: Fuel cells work by converting compressed hydrogen gas in an onboard tank into electricity that powers the vehicle's motor.

  • Toyota and Hyundai are pushing fuel cell models, and Honda has just announced a hydrogen hybrid version of its best-selling CR-V.
  • "It's clear what technology has won in the marketplace," says David Reichmuth, a senior engineer with the Union of Concerned Scientists' clean transportation program.

Between the lines: Exodus Propulsion Technologies announced this week a significant breakthrough in propulsion technology, creating a new type of engine.

  • Dr. Charles Buhler, a NASA engineer and the co-founder of Exodus Propulsion Technologies, has revealed that his company's propellantless propulsion drive, which appears to defy the known laws of physics, has produced enough thrust to counteract Earth's gravity.
  • Buhler told The Debrief. "This discovery of a new force is fundamental in that electric fields alone can generate a sustainable force onto an object and allow center-of-mass translation of said object without expelling mass."
  • "There are rules that include energy conservation, but if done correctly, one can generate forces unlike anything humankind has done before."
  • "We will use this force to propel objects for the next 1,000 years… until the next thing comes."

Follow the money: As AI's incredible hunger for electricity increases, Sam Altman, OpenAI CEO, has invested $375 million in Helion Energy, a fusion energy company.

  • According to The Independent, "Last year, the company became the first in the world to secure a purchase agreement for nuclear fusion energy after Microsoft made it part of their plan to transition to clean energy sources by the end of the decade."
  • "This first fusion power plant, for which the feasibility is being assessed in Chelan (County), will produce electricity that will go to the grid; Constellation will serve as the Power Marketer for Helion's first customer, Microsoft," explains Jessie Barton, Helion communications director.

Go deeper: Subscribe to the free newsletter to learn more.

Read More