U. S. space agency NASA has been using hydrogen fuel cells since the 1960s to provide power for astronauts aboard their spacecraft. The hydrogen fuel cells have also provided drinking water for the space goers. UTC Power hydrogen fuel cells have been aboard all Space Shuttle flights with over 100,000 operating hours to their credit.
But, what many people don’t know is that back in May 1977, NASA also came out with a document stating that hydrogen helps gasoline-powered internal combustion engines increase mileage and lower emissions.
A week ago, I talked about how the U. S. Department of Transportation (DOT) made the same claim just last year. Some critics have stated that if hydrogen injection is such a viable technology, then why isn’t our government talking about it. The short answer is, they are. We just haven’t known where to look to find the details.
According to the 31 year old document titled, “Emissions and Total Energy Consumption of a Multicylinder Piston Engine Running on Gasoline and a Hydrogen-Gasoline Mixture” adding small amounts of hydrogen to the gasoline and air mix extends the lean range of the vehicle.
In other words, hydrogen with its higher flame speed help lean out or use less gas thereby increasing mileage and reducing the tailpipe emissions. According to NASA, “Using a small quantity, on a weight basis, of hydrogen as a supplement to gasoline was chosen as a way to extend lean engine operation. Onboard generation of hydrogen was selected as a feasible way to use hydrogen in a mobile application.”
Both NASA and the U. S. DOT have validated that using hydrogen in a gasoline-powered vehicle will increase mileage and reduce emissions. Many thanks to Wilson over at run your auto on water for the heads up on this hydrogen injection document that has been sitting around unnoticed for many years now. As the critics of hydrogen fuel injection fall by the wayside, many small entrepreneurs will be newly energized with building more efficient hydrogen generators that give us all an avenue for greener autos now.