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Old 01 Sep 2010, 10:00 am
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Default FCX Clarity: Hydrogen Infrastructure

Honda is moving ahead with research into hydrogen production and supply systems to help support the more widespread adoption of fuel cell vehicles.

Solar-powered Hydrogen Stations

Honda is conducting feasibility tests on its Solar-powered Hydrogen Station

Since 2001, Honda has operated an experimental solar-powered water electrolyzing hydrogen station at Honda R&D Americas in Torrance, California. The station employs Honda's water electrolyzing module, and utilizes next-generation thin film solar cells developed by Honda Engineering. Based on a highly efficient water-electrolyzing module, we have achieved a high-pressure hydrogen production efficiency of 52-66%. Using the Honda-developed thin film made from a compound of copper, indium, gallium and selenium (CIGS) for the solar cells, Honda's next-generation refueling system has been made more environmentally responsible by reducing CO2 emissions during the production of the solar cells.

Home Energy Station

The experimental Home Energy Station - hydrogen refueling and cogeneration

The Home Energy Station, which generates hydrogen from natural gas, is designed to provide heat and electricity for the home through fuel cell cogeneration, and to supply fuel for a hydrogen-powered fuel cell vehicle. Honda began experimental operation of the Home Energy Station in 2003. On the basis of research conducted in cooperation with technology partner Plug Power, Inc., refinements were subsequently incorporated into Home Energy Stations II and III that made it more compact and convenient. In 2007 Honda developed Home Energy Station IV - which is even better suited to home installation began operating it experimentally. Honda research into hydrogen production and supply systems for a future hydrogen-based society is ongoing.

Overview: Home Energy Station IV

Home Energy Station IV is designed to be more compact, more efficient, and less expensive than previous models - and therefore even more suitable for the average household. The size has been reduced by 70% compared to the first generation, CO2 emissions for a household using the Home Energy Station would be 30% lower than those for an average household using a gasoline-engine car and commercial electricity and energy costs about 50% lower.

Home Energy Station IV configuration

Fuel cell vehicles require high-purity hydrogen. In addition to hydrogen, reformed gas created from natural gas contains some CO2 and N2. Previous Home Energy Station systems were equipped with a separate purifier and fuel cell. In Home Energy Station IV, these two components have been unified. The new system can switch from hydrogen refining to power generation, helping reduce size and improve efficiency.

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