New Hydrogen Powered Bike Developments

Discussion in 'Spare Parts, Tools & Product Developement' started by bamabikeguy, Sep 14, 2007.

  1. bamabikeguy

    bamabikeguy Active Member


    The Chinese Company Pearl-Hydrogen developed a new type of fuel cell powered bicycle. The 32kg (70pounds) bike has 180W motor and a range of 60 kilometers (37 miles). The bike has a maximum speed of about 25km/h (15mph) and fairly hefty price tag of $2600 until mass production will kick in.

    Motorized bicycle have been around since the 19th century. Some early models used internal combustion engines, but more recent models have switched to electric engines powered by batteries. One problem with electric motors is the weight of the batteries (a similar problem to that which happens in electric cars) which is still considerable. New Lithium-ion and Lithium-ion-polymer batteries which are lighter and can store more power have started to appear in the last few years but they are relatively expensive and are still not as light as many riders would like them to be.

    The new bicycle has two 600L hydrogen cylinders behind the seat which are lighter than most batteries giving the bike a fairly long range compared to most electric bicycles. Recharge is also faster, only half an hour or so compared to several hours for an electric bike.

    There are however several open issues. Hydrogen is highly flammable and handling the material is not necessarily something you want the general public to perform on a regular basis. More importantly, hydrogen can not be obtained as easily as electricity or even fuel these days, leaving you with a $2600 manual bike. If you are into cycling because of the environmental benefits - think twice - although hydrogen itself does not pollute the atmosphere, much of the existing hydrogen currently used around the world is produced using fossil fuels (solar and wind are good alternatives but only a small fraction of all the hydrogen currently produced is created using renewable energy sources).

    Mass production of the hydrogen powered bicycle should bring their price down (maybe as low as $500). However safety and usability concerns might still slow down the adoption rate, at least for the near future.

    TFOT recently covered several other hydrogen related stories including Ford's Fusion Hydrogen 999 record breaking car, a new method that uses aluminum alloy to extract hydrogen from water and a proposed floating rig with retractable wind turbines which separates hydrogen from the oxygen in water.

    Details on the hydrogen powered bicycle can be found on Shanghai's Pearl hydrogen power sources technology website.

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    Last edited: Sep 14, 2007

  2. Kncool

    Kncool Guest

    I can pedal at 15mph all day long...
  3. rickeagle

    rickeagle New Member

    How about propane powered?

    Could a guy convert a small engine to burn propane from those torch/stove cylinders? Inquiring minds want to know!
  4. Revorunner

    Revorunner Member

    +1 I totally agree.:grin5::grin5:
  5. mabman

    mabman Member

    Probably not a 70 lb one though.....

    The speed limit is in line with their regulations regarding electric bikes in Asia. I am sure that it could be souped up as all you would have to do is double the wattage via voltage to start, it is the use as hydrogen as fuel that is important and many think that hydrogen is the answer? I am not so sure personally but I have an open mind and do run a hydrogen generator with good success in my 305 v/8 that seems to be good for a 15-20% increase in mileage and a better power feel also. I like the way it steam cleans the engine also and my plugs run nice and clean which is the only way for me to tell without tearing in to the motor. And I don't look to fix what ain't broke.
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2009
  6. mean lean

    mean lean Member

  7. mabman

    mabman Member

    There was supposedly a propane 49cc Honda wheelchair that was supposed to surface but hasn't. The tiller motor is 49.4cc according to the spec but alas it looks to be very wide....Unless they come up a refillable cannister the waste would be significant just using the ones on sale a MalWart. It says the tiller gets an hour per cylinder and that might be about comparable to a bike +/-. Sounds expensive also.