GM Readying Fuel Cells for Mass Production

GM Fuel Cell Stack
In brief: General Motors, like Toyota, Honda and others, is planning to roll out thousands of hydrogen fuel cell vehicles to the market in 2015 and has now taken a big step in that direction.

The word

GM Fuel Cell Stack

That big step is the next generation of their fuel cell, which GM is basing on the HydroGen4 model. Their plan is to produce the cell with less than 30g of platinum, slashing the costs of production this most expensive component by 75% while tripling the catalyst's lifetime.

How? Through a newly-formulated and now-being-tested alloy of nickel nanoparticles. Cutting costs of production by 75% is a huge step, putting the price of the fuel cell stack in line with a comparable lithium-ion battery pack.

The current fuel cell stacks cost nearly $100,000 to build - in large part because of the cost of platinum. This cuts that heavily and sees GM one step closer to market with their FCVs.

Their next challenge, which should be easy to surmount, will be extending the range of their test SUVs from 200 to 400+ miles, matching the range of the Honda and Toyota competition fuel cell vehicles.

And so ...

Very cool news from GM. I expect a lot more out of their FCVs than their Volt.

Photo credits: GM

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