GM and Honda are improving hydrogen fuel cells

August 11, 2015 1 By Stephen Vagus
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Automaker partnership is leading to breakthroughs in fuel cell technology

Two years ago, General Motors and Honda began working together on the research and development of hydrogen fuel cells in order to better understand how these energy systems can be used in clean transportation. Both automakers have made significant progress in this endeavor, finding new ways to reduce the cost of fuel cells and improve their efficiency. Fuel cells have become very prominent in the auto industry, as they can generate electricity without also producing harmful emissions.

GM has begun testing the next generation of its hydrogen fuel cells

General Motors has begun testing their latest generation of hydrogen fuel cells and the automaker notes that the weight of these fuel cells has been reduced by half. Their size is also down from previous generations of fuel cells that the company has developed with the aid of Honda. These energy systems are becoming more compact, which will make them easier to use in fuel cell vehicles and their small size means that they use fewer materials, making them less expensive than other fuel cells.

Automakers are finding it difficult to commercialize fuel cell vehicles

Hydrogen Fuel - GM and HondaSome automakers have brought fuel cell vehicles to certain markets around the world, but these vehicles have yet to see widespread commercialization or adoption. Honda was one of the first to bring a hydrogen-powered car to the market, but the automaker has not been rushing to make another. General Motors is also taking it slow in terms of bringing a fuel cell vehicle to the market, as the company wants to better understand how fuel cell technology can be used effectively.

Cost and lack of infrastructure means that fuel cell vehicles will be a difficult sell

One of the major problems with fuel cell vehicles is that they do not have the support of a comprehensive fueling infrastructure. Without access to hydrogen fuel, consumers are unlikely to be interested in fuel cell vehicles. Cost is another problem, as fuel cells are notoriously expensive and this means that any vehicle using them will also be quite costly for consumers.